Gardeners across the globe will know how destructive unwelcome cats can be to their outdoor spaces. Whether they are digging up flower beds and vegetable patches, defecating on lawns or scratching at outdoor surfaces, cats can cause some serious damage. However, there is a range of cat repellent options available to help you combat the destructive tendencies of errant felines. From discreet prickled mats to deter digging to ultrasonic sentries to send cats packing, there’s some very effective ways to safeguard your garden against feline pests. Our go-to guide on Best Cat Repellent has everything you need to know about cat repellent strategies, allowing you to decide which solution is right for you.
Preliminary Steps to Securing Outdoor Spaces
Before you invest in cat repellent solutions to safeguard your garden against feline invaders, it’s always worth taking some initial steps to help minimise the issue. If possible, remove cat droppings from your outdoor space as quickly as possible. This helps break a habit before it forms, with a cat less likely to return to the scene of the crime to repeat the behaviour.
If possible, clean any areas where cats have been urinating to remove the odour as quickly as you can. Again, this will help prevent the recurrence of such behaviour. However, it’s arguably even more important to remove trace odours as cats will utilise these as territory markers. If a terrorising tabby thinks your lawn or flower beds are their territory to do what they want with, you’ll have a real time of keeping them at a distance in the future.
Introduce Aromatic Foliage to Deter Cats
This is one potentially effective way of convincing cats to stay away. Many plants carry pungent aromas that are very unappealing to felines. Catching just a whiff of these shrubs, flowers and herbs can send them packing. Plants like rosemary and lavender are particularly good choices if you are looking to adopt this tactic. Simply introduce a potted plant of your chosen variety to problem areas and see if it has any effectiveness in forcing felines away.
The obvious issue here is that you’re having to make potentially unwanted changes your garden to eliminate a problem that hasn’t been created by you. Adding aromatic plants is all well and good if you are a fan of the plants required or you can put edible herbs to good use, but you may decide that you’re not prepared to plant your garden around pests.
Protective Netting and Mesh
Securing specific parts of your garden with protective netting or wire mesh can prove to be a very effective way of keeping cats away. Provided you’ve invested in netting or mesh that’s robust enough, even the most persistent pussy will have a hard time breaching your defences. The problem here is that introducing protective barriers to your garden is quite labour intensive.
You may also need to continuously add extra netting as you spot new points of entry a cat has discovered. What’s more, most of these materials are rather unsightly, thereby spoiling your enjoyment of your garden. If aesthetics aren’t a concern for you, it’s certainly worth giving this a try before you progress to more offensive methods of cat deterrent.
However, you will want to ensure you are not introducing any material that might potentially harm any cats looking to invade your outdoor spaces.
Effective Cat Repellent Options
If you have tried all of the above and are still fending off a feline invasion, it’s probably time to up your defences. Below, you will find a line-up of some of the most effective repellent options you can introduce into your garden to stave off cats for good.
Water Spray Repellent Devices
Repellent devices that utilise water spray as part of their mechanism are among the most common options on the market. What’s more, they are the easiest to maintain and won’t cause any real harm to problem cats. Most devices of this type will include a ground spike that can be pushed down into soil, with the spraying mechanism houses at the top of the spike.
Water Spray repellent devices are very similar to solar-powered garden lights in this regard. Once placed in the desired location, these silent safeguards utilise sensor detection to alert themselves to the presence of a nearby cat. Once a sensor picks up a target, it will emit water that should hopefully send a cat fleeing from the scene. The spraying power of such devices varies significantly. The most effective can be connected to a hose to provide a much more robust jet of water.
However, even the less powerful varieties available on the market will deliver a spray that should sufficiently deter cats from sticking around. If you are considering this repellent option, make sure you go for one that offers a good spraying range. If you are looking to project an entire garden, you will want models with wider ranges and should definitely be looking to introduce multiple repellent units to your garden.
However, they can be used effectively individually. If you want to protect specific areas of your garden, such as plant beds and seating areas, a quality repellent device with a range of two metres should be more than adequate.
Wall Spikes and Fence Guards
If you like the idea of netting and mesh, but have so far found the strategy to be ineffective in keeping mischievous moggies away, wall spikes and fence guards are worth looking into. These types of deterrent can be placed along the tops of fences and walls to add a robust layer of defence against feline intruders. You will find wall and fence spikes in a range of colours and materials, giving you plenty of choice to ensure a sympathetic match to your existing outdoor space. Quality spikes and guards are less of an eyesore than mesh and netting material, ensuring you can continue to enjoy your garden without compromising on aesthetics.
Admittedly, installing such spikes can be a hassle, taking significant amounts of time to ensure they’re fitted correctly and effective enough for their intended use. What’s more, if you have a great stretch of wall or fence panel to protect, it can be potentially expensive. It’s not really a solution you can put to good use in partial form. However, if you’re utilising other methods of deterrent, spikes can be a good supplemental measure.
Arguably the most effective solution available, ultrasonic cat repellent devices should keep your garden free of unwanted guests for the foreseeable. Superficially, they are quite similar to those devices that use water sprays and jets to chase away cats. As with those models, ultrasonic options usually include a ground spike so you can drive them into the soil of your lawn or plant beds so they stay firmly in place.
Once again, a sensor is used to detect the nearby presence of a feline. When this sensor does pick up the presence of a cat, the device emits a high-pitched ultrasonic signal that will prove unbearable to cats, driving them away from your garden immediately.
Although they are a little more expensive than other options available, ultrasonic devices will likely to prove to be the best long-term investment for you. They are a discreet choice for those not looking to spoil the view of their garden, with subtle designs that will blend into the surrounding foliage with ease. What’s more, they are designed with long-standing outdoor use in mind, meaning you don’t have to worry about maintenance and weathering.
In most cases, you won’t need to worry about keeping them powered. While some models may utilise batteries, the vast majority of ultrasonic repellent designs on the market utilise a solar-powered cell in order to carry on functioning. There’s a slight issue here in that they will need to be placed in a position that receives adequate sunlight. However, you only need minimal exposure to light sources to ensure effective charging.
Product Reviews of 6 Best Cat Repellents
Ready to reclaim your garden? We have put together a pick of reliable repellent options to keep cats at bay. There’s a variety of model types included here, with plenty of budget-friendly choices that won’t break the bank.
If you are after an effective option for sending cats packing fast, this Pestbye® Ultrasonic Cat Scarer should more than suffice. It’s a very affordable option for those with less budget to work with, but it doesn’t skimp on technology and effectiveness.
This cat scarer is easily fixed in place via the ground spike, with the integrated motions sensor on hand to pick up the presence of cats. When it does detect a feline, it emits a high-frequency sound that will quickly deter unwelcome visitors. What’s particularly nifty about this device is that the frequencies can be adjusted, allowing to make tailored changes to target specific cats. Waterproofed to withstand the elements, this cat scarer is also solar powered so you don’t need to worry about batteries.
If it’s digging that’s causing you concern, this Defender Prickle Strip Dig Stopper is well worth investing in. These prickle strips are simply positioned below ground level before being covered with a light top layer of soil. When installed, these strips prevent cats and other pests from getting stuck into your flower pets and vegetable patches, with the prickled texture an effective deterrent against probing paws.
You can cut these prickle strips to size to accommodate ample coverage of specific areas, while the weather-resistant material means you can leave them in place all year ground. What’s more, the mesh design of the material won’t impede plant growth, making them particularly handy for use in growing beds and patches.
Here’s another great choice of dig stopper solution for those looking to protect flower beds and growing areas in their garden. This great-value pack of prickle material includes six individual strips that are ideal for use in tighter spaces or awkward spots. As with the previous solution, they’re incredibly robust and made from material that will withstand year-round weathering, while the mesh design of these strips allows for plant growth to continue on as normal.
These strips have an interlocking design that means you can combine multiple strips to secure a larger area, without needing to cut and shape as you go. As such, they’re a very versatile option and can be retrieved and re-positioned with minimal fuss.
This zonpor Ultrasonic Cat Repellent unit is a great option to consider if you’re dealing with more persistent cats. As with similar models on the market, you simply need to anchor this device in place with the ground spike to safeguard your outdoor spaces.
There’s some very impressive technical spec on offer here, with a sensor angle of 110 degrees. What’s more, there’s a detection range of up to nine metres, although this will ultimately depend on the size of the target animal.
Another handy feature here is that frequencies can be adjusted. This is very useful if you’re having trouble deterring specific cats and need to tailor your signal strength and frequency range. The sensitivity of the infrared sensor can likewise be adjusted via user-friendly controls.
If cats are entering your garden over fences or walls, these wall spikes are a good way to secure your outdoor space. This pack contains ten individual spike strips that measure 49 centimetres in length, making them an ideal solution for lining atop fence panels and walls, not to mention window sills.
The high concentration of spikes will definitely prove a successful deterrent against birds and small animals, while also serving as an extra layer of defence against larger pests like cats. Made from robust materials that are protected against UV and frost weathering, these strips will make a welcome addition to your defensive strategy.
We have previously discussed the effectiveness of ultrasonic devices in deterring cats, with this option from FITFORT a prime example of what we’re talking about. This device is a particularly powerful one, operating at 20 watts to ensure effective deterrence against unwanted pests. Frequency conversion technology is the real start of the show here. By combining the effectiveness of ultrasonic frequencies and electromagnetic waves, pests don’t have the chance to adapt themselves to the effects of this device.
There is also an additional Bionic Wave element that imitates animal sounds to help chase away larger animals, such as persistent cats and other pests like foxes. If you’re after a safe and environmentally-friendly choice, this is definitely the way to go. Not only is it safe to animals, it won’t add any unwanted hazards to your garden, allowing you and your family to enjoy your outdoor space with no worries.