Dealing with Nuisance Cats

Even as cat lovers we understand that sometimes you can have unwelcome guests spraying on your doors, tormenting your caged birds, starting cat fights on your front lawn or pooing in your kid’s sandpit. Sometimes these cats are owned by your neighbours, stray or feral. Regardless it must be remembered that cats are still living creatures that are just doing their natural thing and that there are humane ways of deterring them from your property. When you have a constant issue with cats in your neighbourhood try the following.
Talk to your neighbours

If you know who owns the cat, talk to the owner. Often they will be apologetic and will make an effort to rectify the problem by keeping their cat contained. Some councils have a cat curfew, and the cat must be indoors between certain hours. So it is worth calling your council and finding out what, if any, laws they have in regards to cats roaming. This information can be passed onto the owner of the cat.

Preventative Measures

Before you try any of the following suggestions listed below, please ensure that the cat/s do not belong to a neighbour. If they do belong to a neighbour, we strongly encourage you to talk to your neighbour and try to resolve any issues.

Cats prefer to dig in loose dirt. If you have a small area try placing some pebbles in the garden beds.

Pine cones also act as a deterrent as cats don’t like the feel of them on their feet. So try adding some to your mulch & spread around flower beds to keep the cats away.

Citrus is unpleasant to cats, so if the neighbourhood cats are zoning in on a smallish area, you can try putting orange, grapefruit or lemon peel in this area. Chilli Powder also works to make cats avoid certain areas.

Place netting on the ground, especially in areas where there is freshly turned over soil & or seedlings.

Chicken manure around established plants can also deter cats as they don’t like the smell.

For children’s sandpits cover and secure a tarpolin over the area to not only protect it from being a cats large litter tray but also to stop birds pooing in it as they carry many diseases.

If you have a bird feeder in your garden, make sure it is hung up in a location which is difficult to get to for cats to reduce their chances of catching birds.

Natural Spray Deterrent

If you would like to avoid the expense of commercial spray repellents, this is a recipe that you can make up at home:

2 cups white vinegar
1 tablespoon whole cloves
2 or 3 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
2 or 3 pepper (small skinny hot ones)
2 or 3 drops of concentrated dish washing liquid
Black pepper
Water to fill bottle

Combine all ingredients in an empty two litre bottle, and leave mixture overnight. Fill a spray bottle and spray around the area that you wish to deter cats from. Keep the remaining mixture for later. You don’t need to spray much to give the cats the hint. Just respray every week or two until they disappear. Be aware that this recipe has a very unpleasant odour, so do not spray in the house or near open windows, and do not spray directly onto the cats.

A Cat Deterrent Garden

Plant cat deterrent plants as a border in your yard. These are generally herbs that have a scent or texture cats don’t like. If you have a cat these plants will also form boundaries to your yard that will help keep your cat in. These plants will not harm the cat, instead they have a scent or feel that the cat will not like. Some of these plants are listed below:

Lemon Thyme
Coleus canina

Commercial Deterrents

CatWatch – Ultrasonic Cat Deterrent

CATWatch is an Ultrasonic Deterrent that actually trains even the most persistent feline visitor to stay out of your garden for good. CATWatch has an ultrasound alarm which is triggered by the cat’s movement and body heat as it enters the protected area. As soon as the cat leaves the protected area the alarm stops and therefore the cat soon learns that to prevent the ultrasonic alarm the area MUST be avoided.
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Thorny Devil Spiked Fence Capping

Specifically designed strips of plastic spikes can be purchased and fitted on top of fences, shed roofs etc to prevent cats from walking on it. The thorns are designed to maximise discomfort without unnecessary harm. Thorny Devil Fence Spikes can be fitted quickly (around 1-3 minutes per metre). Intruders are warned 3 ways by sight, sign and touch, before they try to climb.
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Scarecrow Motion Activated Sprinkler

Scarecrow senses animals the same way security lights detect people; movement and heat. When an animal is seen, a valve opens instantly releasing a three-second pulsating spray of water. The combination of the sudden noise, movement, and water frightens animals away.
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Shake Away

The natural repellent found in Shake-Away granules will repel cats without harming them.
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