How to Keep Cats Out of Your Garden? – 6 Effective Ways

Written by

William Golder


Dorian Goodwin

how to keep cats out of your garden

Do cats wander into your garden frequently and treat it as their litter box? It’s undoubtedly frustrating having to deal with smelly cat urine and poop, not to mention felines may also chew on plants and ruin the look of your pristine yard.

When these things happen, it’s necessary to learn how to keep cats out of your garden. You can use commercial repellants, ultrasonic devices, and more. Read on for additional information.

Home Remedies to Keep Cats Away

1. Use plants that cats dislike


Cats have highly sensitive noses because they possess 200 million odor receptors. With that in mind, it makes sense to put plants like lavender, pennyroyal, and rue in your garden. These floras will keep cats out of your yard due to their strong scents, which cats dislike.

If you have no space left for these plants or simply don’t want to grow them, try placing citrus fruit peels in your garden. Orange, grapefruit, lemon, or lime peels will do.

2. Use commercial cat repellent for gardens


Using a granular powder such as Shake-Away may be the best way to deter cats from garden. All you have to do is follow the product instructions, which usually involve mixing and spraying the powder on plants and around garden beds. Sounds very convenient, doesn’t it?

  • With that said, there are some things to keep in mind when selecting one of these repellents:
  • Regardless of which commercial repellent you choose, make sure it’s licensed to avoid harming cats.
  • Check the product description to see if it’s safe to use around plants. Clearly, you don’t want your gardening efforts to go to waste.
  • Remember to pick an outdoor formula if your garden is out in the open.
  • Reapply the formula as instructed by the manufacturer.

3. Spray water


Any cat owner would know the struggle of bathing their feline companions. Suffice it to say, our furry friends do not enjoy being doused with water. Thus, one simple method to repel cats from garden is to spray water on them.

There are two ways to buy a water gun or set up automatic sprinklers.

  • The former is inconvenient because you need to carry the gun yourself and have it ready whenever you see cats in the garden.
  • The latter is much less troublesome, as motion-activated sprinklers exist. You won’t have to sit in your yard and wait for felines to show up. Just buy a watering device with a big enough radial range to cover your garden.

Once the sprinkler is set up and ready to work, you get the benefits of deterring cats and providing moisture to your plants at the same time.

4. Install an ultrasonic device

Aside from their excellent olfactory sense, cats are also very adept at hearing. They can hear sounds that the human ears cannot perceive, making an ultrasonic device a great tool to keep cats out of garden.

All you have to do is buy one of these sound emitters and stake them down in your yard. Then, they will activate when cats come into your garden, and you won’t need to clean up animal poop anymore.

Another positive of this method is that it can keep out raccoons, deers, and rats, so you’re hitting two birds with one stone.

Another good thing about this method is that it can keep out deers, raccoons, and rats, so you’re hitting two birds with one stone.

5. Set up physical barriers

Installing physical barriers will keep cats out of mulch. To implement this idea, you should prepare one of the following:


  • Chicken wire
  • Stone mulch
  • Eggshells
  • Sharp pine cones
  • Prickly holly leaves

Then, follow the tips below:

  • Chicken wire is often sold in sheets. To use it, unroll the sheet you bought and cut it into shapes that fit the base of your plant pot or garden bed. Then, line the chicken wire on top of your soil.
  • As for the stone mulch, egg shells, holly leaves, and pine cones, you just need to spread them over your garden bed. No need to do any cutting.

As you can see, the above items are all prickly, and cats do not like to touch them. Setting up these physical barriers will stop cats from pooping in the garden, particularly into the soil of your plants.

6. Make your yard unappealing to cats

Another way to get rid of cats in garden is to remove things that might attract them. Before you follow our tips for this method, prepare the following:

  • Garden vacuum (to pick up food bits)
  • Clean cloth (to wipe and clean outdoor furniture, if you have them)
  • Enzyme cleaner (pick one that’s made specifically for cats)
  • Water hose

Step 1: Ensure your yard doesn’t have food

If you frequently have barbecues or feed pets on your lawn, chances are you’ll leave food remnants behind. These remnants will produce smells that appeal to cats, and they will come to your garden.

Therefore, it’s best to avoid eating in your yard and clean up any food bits there. If you put leftover meals into your garbage can, close the container tightly as well. You may not have any use for the old food, but that doesn’t mean cats won’t try to get to it.

Moreover, since cats will eat birds, consider removing all your bird feeders. At the same time, fill all holes and take out anything that might attract mice, which are tempting prey for felines.

Step 2: Remove cat urine


If cats have come into your garden, it’s likely they urinated there as well. Hose down all areas with cat pee and sanitize them with an enzyme cleaner. Doing so will discourage cats from relieving themselves in your yard in the future.

Frequently Asked Questions


1. I don’t want to keep cats away from the garden but don’t want them to mess it up. What can I do?

You can limit the effects of cats to one area. Put a litter box, and some catnip in one garden spot, and cats will only poop there.

2. Does vinegar keep cats away?

Yes, vinegar has a scent that cats dislike. It doesn’t harm felines but will keep them away from gardens. Just combine equal parts of vinegar and water and spray it around your plant pots.


We hope this article showed you how to keep cats out of your garden. No matter which method you choose, remember that felines are protected by law, and you should not harm them to keep them away from your yard.

Do you know any effective ways to deter cats? Feel free to share them with us. Thank you for reading!

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