There is nothing worse than having cats spraying in your garden, leaving yellow patches on the grass and Oh dear, the smell of that cat pee. So, let’s have a look at the way I can answer your question “How to stop cats spraying in my garden” and show you a method that actually works.
Cat spraying is not uncommon for cat owners. It gets frustrating when you do not own a cat but your garden is ruined by cat urine. This is because you cannot be able to understand the local/stray cats in order to curb this behavior. Obviously, you want to protect your garden from cat pee. So how exactly will you be able to do stop cats spraying your garden?
Of course, you do not want to hurt the kitty regardless he is yours or not. Therefore, you will have to come up with safe ways to make sure that your garden is protected. Before we proceed from here, I will have to ask you a question; is it your cats or local stray cats that are spraying your garden?
If your cats are spraying your garden, then you do not need to be alarmed. However, you will need to understand why they are attracted to spray in your garden. So why do cats spray in the first place? There are several answers to this question, you will just have to determine which one drives your kitties to spray in your garden. Some of these reasons may include the following;
- Stress – This is a common perpetrator of spraying. Stress in cats could be a result of several factors including litter box issues, inadequate resources, and space as well as a change in the household. This means that cats are easily triggered and they immediately start to react. You will have to determine the cause of stress in order to withdraw the stimuli. Now, cats, especially cats in a multi-cat home tend to be exposed to stress. This could be a result of lack of space for your cats and sometimes the competition for resources in your household might be stiff. Changing your residence or even remodeling your house is also a possible reason for stress in cats.
- In need of a mate – well, we all know what happens when our cats go in heat. In most scenarios, cats become uncontrollable and could possibly spray everywhere including your garden. This could end badly as your plants might get ruined in the process. As much as we emphasize that cat owners need to get their kitties neutered, this should be done before your cat is of age or after the season is over. Cats over the age of 4 months are most likely sexually mature and may exhibit the need to mate. Spraying is usually one of the first signs of a cat in heat.
- Urine marking – cats, like most animals, want to communicate with other cats, only that in this case they will use their urine. Marking, like most animal behaviors, is usually initiated after your cat is triggered. For instance, your cat might be triggered to mark territories because he senses other cats approaching your household. Understand that cats are naturally territorial and they want the other cats to know that he ‘owns’ the property. Upon seeing other cats in your garden, your cat might want to chase them away by spraying your garden.
- Illness – even though rare, it is important to keep an eye on your spraying cat in case of illness. Your cat might be spraying because of a urinary tract infection among other illnesses. One way to tell if you should be concerned about a medical complication is by observing how your cat is spraying. Often, your cat will experience pain while spraying. He may also tend to spray more frequent and in severe cases, he could suffer blockage. Watch out for these symptoms and have him treated by your vet.
The above-discussed factors are the major contributors to cat spraying. You will have to figure out which one is leading your cat to spray in your garden. This way, you will be able to curb this behavior effectively.
How do I stop cats spraying in my garden
Now that we understand some of the reasons why cats spray, it is time we focus on how we can stop this behavior. However, we cannot be able to understand why other cats are spraying in your garden. But, we can also be able to stop them from engaging in ugly behavior. The following methods will help you keep cats from spraying your garden:
Restrict cats from accessing your garden
Gardens are probably the best places where the cat may want to spray. This is because it will often have soft soil, which is usually quite comfortable for the cat’s paws. As much as something could be attracting them to pray in your garden, you may want to restrict access. There are various ways of doing this including deterring cats from your garden. Let us look at some of these ways to keep the cat away:
Make the place inaccessible and unattractive
As mentioned above, the reason why the cat prefers to spray in your garden could vary from one to another. We do not have time to determine the reason why cats are attracted to the place especially when we are dealing with the cases of stray cats. Therefore, making the scene inaccessible is effective. Cats enjoy the soft feel of garden soil on their paws. This means that he is comfortable walking up and spraying everywhere, which could destroy your plants.
You can be able to make it inaccessible by making it really uncomfortable for the cats. Consider placing pebbles on the ground from which the cats are spraying instead of soil.
Well, one effective way of stopping cats from destroying your garden is by making sure that they do not have access to your garden. Therefore, cat deterrents work well to drive them away. Understand that the objective here is to keep cats away and not to hurt them. That being said, let us quickly look at some of the most effective cat repellents you may use;
Essential oils like eucalyptus and lavender oil are some of the most effective homemade remedies to cat spraying your garden. This is because cats hate the smell of the oils. To be able to use this method, you should add a few drops in water in a spray bottle. You should then go ahead and spray your garden. This will keep these cats away from your property for a few weeks. And since spraying is usually repetitive, those cats will not come back after a few days. You can also use peppermint in the place of the eucalyptus or lavender oil. Citronella oil also works well to keep cats off the garden.
Cayenne pepper is also a good repellent for cats. This is because it irritates your cat’s throat, eyes and sometimes the nose. Therefore, upon smelling it, cats will stay as far away as possible from the sprayed surface. You can apply this method directly on the plants. Alternatively, you can also mix with water and spray your garden. You will also need to be very careful to avoid getting cayenne pepper in your eyes and nose. This is because it might also irritate your eyes and throat.
If this is not a repellent for all pets, I do not know what is. Cats will not go anywhere near vinegar. However, you will need to be very careful with vinegar in your garden. Understand that applying the latter directly on the plants will definitely destroy them. To apply this method, add vinegar to the water, in equal amounts. You should then use it in a spray bottle before spraying the edge of your lawn or garden. This will keep cats away for a few days and thus you will need to repeat this method severally tot completely curb cats spraying your garden.
Cats actually detest the smell of citrus and will stay away from it completely. Therefore, lemon peels or even those of oranges will definitely work well in order to keep cats off your garden. To use this method, consider leaving a few peels in the garden, particularly the place in which the cats are spraying.
If you do want to keep your garden all blossoming, it is important to keep the cat and other animals from accessing it. By placing twigs on your garden, you are simply making it inaccessible for cats. Consider placing twigs on the targeted place and leave it like that. It is a great way to restrict cats from accessing your plants.
Often, when we are talking about cats destroying our gardens, we are mostly referring to our flower beds. You definitely do not want your plants ruined and thus the need to curb the behavior. Place the chicken wire on the flower beds. Since cats dislike the feel of the chicken wire on their paws, it is unlikely that he will get to the garden.
Get your cat neutered
As we mentioned earlier, if you are struggling to make your cat stop spraying in your garden, you should look into his behavior. This is because he might be trying to communicate. Well, we looked at this in the first segment of this article. Now, getting your cat neutered is important in efforts to discourage spraying and other behaviors. An unneutered cat will tend to want to spray whenever in heat as well as to mark his boundaries.
When your cat gets to the age of 4 months, you should consider getting him neutered as soon as possible. This will eliminate occasional spraying for sexual purposes.
Treat Underlying cat stress
This will mostly work well when you are trying to stop your own cat from spraying in your garden. Our cats, even if indoor cats, go through stressful periods at some point. And due to this, your cat may result in spraying in the garden. As discussed before, the best way to stop cat behavior is by determining the cause of the behavior, which in this case refers to spraying.
Identify the reason why your cat seems stressed and eliminate the stimuli. In addition to this, make sure that your cat is comfortable with the conditions at home. Provide enough resources as well as safety for your kitty. Furthermore, increase playtime and stick to the routines.
Avoid changing anything in your home to avoid cat stress. It is important that you get to understand your cat’s behavior so that you can always notice when he is off.
We tend to mostly keep our cats indoors at all times, regardless of whether the cat wants it or not. Just like humans, cats will also prefer different living conditions. If your cat seems so much into outdoor activities than indoors, you can solve this by providing an alternative. Place an extra litter box on the outside and also encourage him to use it.
Wash the sprayed spot
Well, I know we are talking about a garden but if you are looking to stop cats spraying in your garden, you should get rid of the smell. This will help in that cats will not be attracted by the smell of the urine. Therefore, you may use the hose to wash away the smell thoroughly. This way, the spraying cat will not remember the last spot and also prevent reoccurrences.
In addition to this, consider watering your garden before leaving the house and also in the evening. Cats do not like wet and muddy grounds which means they will not find your garden a great spot to spray. Washing the place will also prevent other cats from wanting to spray the same spot since the scent is all gone.
If you are looking to make your garden cat free, you should apply the above-listed methods. Like always, the goal is to keep the cats away from your garden as opposed to hurting them. Luckily for us, we have been able to study cat behavior and now we understand why they do the things they do. We also know how to make them stop engaging in said behaviors. Spraying is not something you should take lightly.
Unless you have noticed other symptoms of an illness that accompany spraying, you should not have to spend a tonne of money trying to figure your cat out. Whether you are looking to make your or local cat get away from your garden, these tips are definitely going to work for you. Be careful with each method to avoid hurting the cats. In addition to this, remember that using vinegar on the plant will kill them and thus avoid using the method directly on the latter.