How To Keep Cats Out Of Your Yard: Tips, Tricks & Natural Solutions

  • By: Bob
  • Last updated: February 23, 2023
  • Time to read: 9 min.

Fed up with the local cat population crapping in your flower beds? Do you want to discover how to keep cats out of your yard? You’re not alone and whilst it can be a difficult task, often it is possible.

By identifying access points and using deterrents such as water sprayers, noise repellents or physical barriers like netting and chicken wire – combined with natural solutions like plants and herbs that cats hate – you’ll have an effective strategy for keeping them out.

In this article I discuss all the successful methods I have used to keep cats out of my yard so that you too can enjoy a cat-free space.

Identifying Access Points

Inspecting Your Yard:

The first step in figuring out how to keep cats out of your yard is to inspect the perimeter and try to figure out how the critters are getting in. Look around the boundary of your property and check for any gaps or holes that a cat could fit through.

Pay special attention to areas near fences, sheds, garages, decks, and other structures where cats may be able to find shelter or hide from predators. Also look at overhanging trees and shrubs that may provide access into your yard.

Common Entry Points:

Cats can squeeze through surprisingly small spaces so even if you don’t see an obvious gap in the fence they might still be able to get in. Common entry points include gaps under gates, broken boards on fences and openings between slats on chain link fencing. If there are any nearby trees with low-hanging branches these can also provide easy access for cats looking for a way into your garden.

Once you have identified all possible entry points, it is time to start securing them against intruders. Start by repairing any broken boards or replacing missing sections of fence with new materials such as chicken wire or burlap sacks filled with rocks or sandbags, which will make it difficult for cats (or other animals) to climb over them.

Make sure gates close securely and consider installing additional latches if necessary.

Cat Deterrents

If you can’t make your fence cat proof the next step is to make your yard as unattractive to your neighborhood cats as possible so that they don’t bother coming back.

Water Sprayers:

Cats hate water so a motion activated sprinkler is one of the most effective ways to keep cats away from your yard. They work by spraying a jet of water when the cat enters within range, startling them and making them run. It works on feral cats, stray cats and pet cats, racoons, deer, dogs, squirrels and just about any other critter you can think of.

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  • The noise and movement already has the cat running before the water actually sprays
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  • Cats absolutely hate the Hoont Cobra
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Cons:
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Noise Repellents:

Noise cat repellents are another great option for keeping stray cats out of your yard. These devices emit high-frequency sounds that only animals can hear, making it unpleasant for cats to be around but not disturbing humans nearby. There are several different types available on the market including the ones I’ve personally tested and can vouch for below.

Visual Deterrents:

Visual deterrents use bright lights or reflective surfaces to scare off cats from entering an area they shouldn’t be in. Examples include motion-activated spotlights or laser pointers which create flashes of light when triggered by movement; these will startle any animal who comes too close and make them want to stay away from that area in the future.

Other visual cat deterrents include hanging shiny objects like CDs or aluminum foil strips in and around your flower beds; these will reflect sunlight and create moving shadows, which can frighten curious cats away.

Deterrents can be effective in deterring cats out of your garden, but physical barriers are often the most reliable solution. In the next section, we’ll explore some physical barrier options for protecting your garden from neighbourhood cats.

Physical Barriers

Before you start looking at buying one of the many commercial cat repellents on the market you should first of all consider if there’s anything you can do to discourage or stop cats from entering your yard in the first place.

Netting and Fencing:

Netting and fencing are two of the most effective physical barriers for keeping all cats out of your garden. Netting can be placed over flower beds or other areas where cats may try to enter, while fencing can be used to create a perimeter around the entire yard.

When using netting, make sure it is securely fastened so that cats cannot climb over or squeeze through any gaps. For fences, choose a height that will deter cats from jumping over them. Both netting and fencing should also have an angled top to prevent cats from attempting to scale them.

Chicken wire is another popular option for keeping neighborhood cats out of gardens as they don’t like the feel of it on their paws. Install chicken wire directly onto existing fences or used on its own with stakes driven into the ground at regular intervals along the perimeter of your garden.

Burlap sacks filled with soil can also be used in combination with it, providing extra weight to help keep the fence in place even if a cat tries to push against it and protecting plants from being damaged by sharp edges on the mesh when installed correctly.

Physical barriers such as netting, fencing and burlap sacks are an effective way to keep cats out of your yard. However, there are also natural solutions that can be used to repel cats from your garden without the need for physical structures.

Natural Solutions

If you have any catnip planted in your garden you should get rid of it as it’s a magnet to many cats who get high on the scent.

Plants and Herbs Cats Hate:

Lavender can help keep cats out of your garden
Lavender can help keep cats out of your garden

There are plenty of plants that keep cats away. Some of the most effective natural cat repellents include the Scaredy Cat plant, lavender, rue, pennyroyal, rosemary, and citronella grass.

These plants have strong scents that cats find unpleasant. If you don’t want to plant these herbs directly into your garden soil, you can also try planting them in containers or hanging baskets around the perimeter of your yard.

Home remedies to keep cats out of your yard

Essential oils are another natural way to repel cats from your garden. The most popular for this purpose are lemon balm oil, peppermint oil, eucalyptus oil, tea tree oil and lemongrass oil.

You can mix a few drops of each with water in a spray bottle and use it on any areas where cats may be entering or lingering in your yard. Be sure not to spray it directly onto any plants as some essential oils can damage foliage if used too heavily or too often; exercise caution when using these products.

If these don’t work try some of our readers home made cat repellent recipes that you can easily make yourself. A cats sense of smell changes with age so what works on one may not on another so it’s always a good idea to try more that one homemade cat repellent.

Using natural solutions such as plants, herbs, and essential oils can be a great way to keep cats out of your yard. However, if cats have already visited the area, it is important to properly clean up after them in order to discourage further visits.

Cleaning Up If Cats Get in Your Yard

Removing Cat Waste Safely and Properly:

Cat poop can be dangerous so it is important to remove it from your yard as soon as possible in order to maintain hygiene and prevent the spread of disease. When removing cat waste, it is best to wear gloves and use a shovel or scoop to pick up the waste.

Place the waste into a plastic bag that can be securely tied shut before disposing of it properly. If you have access to a hose, spraying down the area with water can help reduce odors and discourage further visits from neighbourhood cats.

Cayenne pepper, coffee grounds or vinegar are all odors cats dislike so sprinkling around the area will also deter them from using the same spot again.

FAQs in Relation to How to Keep Cats Out of Your Yard

How to get rid of neighbors cats in my yard?

cat digging in yard

There are several methods to keep neighbourhood cats out of your garden. Firstly, you can install a physical barrier such as fencing or netting around the perimeter of your yard.
Secondly, consider investing in an ultrasonic cat repellent device which emits high frequency sound waves that cats find unpleasant and will avoid. With these methods combined, it should be possible to keep neighbourhood cats away from your garden.
Thirdly, you can place scent deterrents such as citrus peels or cayenne pepper around the perimeter of your yard to prevent cats from entering.
Finally, if all else fails invest in a motion-activated sprinkler that will spray water when triggered by movement.

Why do stray cats come into my yard?

a cat will often enter your garden via a tree

Cats will be attracted to yards that have lots of bird activity so if you have a bird table or bird bath in your garden you should consider putting it away in the shed, at least until you have solved your cat problem.
Check you don’t have plants growing that attracts cats to your yard. Catnip in particular will have all the local cats heading to your yard.
Finally, you can make sure to remove any potential food sources like pet food dishes which may attract cats into your garden space.
Bird tables, feeders and baths may attract birds to your garden but where there are birds cats will follow.
Additionally, if possible try to provide an alternate outdoor area for cats in your neighbourhood with things like scratching posts and toys so they have somewhere else to go instead of your garden.

What smells will keep cats away?

scaredy cat plant

There are a variety of smells that cats find unpleasant and will avoid. Commonly used scents to keep cats away include citrus, lavender, peppermint, and eucalyptus. Citrus fruit peels such as oranges or lemons can be placed around the garden perimeter to repel cats.
Lavender oil can also be applied directly onto furniture or the ground in the garden area. Peppermint oil is another effective scent for keeping cats away; it can be diluted with water and sprayed around the perimeter of your yard. Finally, eucalyptus leaves have been known to deter cats from entering certain areas when scattered around them.

What is the most effective homemade cat repellent?

ground cayenne pepper

Homemade cat repellents can be effective in keeping cats away from your garden. The most popular and effective homemade cat repellent is a mixture of equal parts white vinegar, water, and lemon or orange essential oil. Spraying this solution around the perimeter of your garden will create an unpleasant scent that cats find unappealing.
Additionally, sprinkling cayenne pepper flakes around the area may also help to deter cats from entering your yard. Finally, making sure to clean up any messes quickly and properly disposing of food waste can also help keep cats away as they won’t have anything to attract them into your space.

Conclusion

Overall, keeping cats out of your yard is a difficult task but with the right strategies and solutions, it can be done. If not, then with the use of either a few natural or a commercial cat deterrent you can put them off from returning.

Are you tired of neighborhood cats wreaking havoc in your garden and invading your outdoor space? It’s time to take action! There are a variety of humane solutions available that will help keep cats out of your yard while also caring for them.

With the right tools and strategies you can protect both yourself and the cats from potential harm.

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  1. I put the commercially available cat spikes on my fence but have been told by our council that I have to take them down. Could you tell me if there is anything actually illegal about the use of these spikes?

    1. I am having problems with cats too..I have telephoned the police to ask about the cat spikes and she assured me that they can be used but on the condition that you also display a sign stating that they are in use..We have put the spikes on 3 of our walls and in the top middle of each wall have displayed a small notice

      1. My police told me the cat spikes were not allowed cos PEOPLE climbing where they shouldn’t might hurt themselves! I was trying to stop young kids from breaking my high fence cos they jumped it to use my back garden path as a shortcut (which drove my dog mad at night and I wasn’t too happy with it either) I was told I could not deter them with the spikes cos they might hurt themselves and I couldn’t use the slimy black paint either. Who is being protected by these daft rules!

        1. Those are definitely daft rules. These kids that you are talking about (as terrible as it may sound) Should not be there in the first place. End of story. Furthermore, if the police are telling you this crap. Take the matter above their head. Show them that you are willing to fight for your rights. And if that doesn’t work keep going up the chain.

    2. There is a simple fix. Lay bird netting (Lowes has it–big roll for like $13) flat on the garden soil like a blanket before you plant your veggies. It is black and you barely see it once it is in place. Secure it to the ground with landscaping pins. Cats wont use your garden as a litter box because they wont be able to scratch the ground with the netting down. As the plants come up you may occasionally have to cut a slit for the bigger leafed ones (like potatoes) to grow through the netting. Some plants like herbs just grow through the squares in the netting with no help. It is a cheap, easy, effective fix.

      1. The ownerless cats in my garden love pooing there so much that they will do it straight on the lawn. Can’t put bird netting on the lawn as it cocks up the mower

  2. Right now I stink of cat pee for the third day running! I absolutely hate the things! I have to work outside my workshop with the consequence that the covers over various pieces of equipment are always scent marked. Whilst I would love to use a pair of bricks on all cats in the neighborhood I feel that my only legal option is to make up something that is so potent that all cats not only stay away from my garden but ideally stay 100 yards away from the entire road! Of course I don’t think any cat marks its owners garden. They do it outside the area they feel is home. My mother always recommends befriending the cat and then treating it with an old cure, sloans linament on the backside! If anyone knows of any other more effective treatment such as automatic hose pipe valves or triggers for super soakers I will gladly use it! Im off to get clean again! Filthy horrible pests!

    1. First off, cat’s are not filthy.They are very clean animals. My advice to your cat problem is to take you and your mom to live on top of a mountain preferably volcanic. The cat’ts wont miss you, i bet people wont either. POOF! problem solved.

      1. And how about those of us that don’t appreciate cats using our raised garden beds as their litter box – are we to be banished also? Discovering fresh cat poop while working the soil really makes my day! But it sounds like you’d enjoy it Lynn.

        1. Oh, and the thought of the toxosis in the freshly squirted cat poop is so thrilling. I would like to know why cat owners think that it is okay to let their animals roam on other people’s property and poop there, other than the fact that they are highly irresponsible owners.

        2. We use cayenne pepper in our yard that deters rodents and cats and dogs. I love my kitties but I wouldn’t want them jumping in somebody’s flower beds or gardens.

      2. Typical “cat owner” reply, it’s a shame they don’t piss and shit in your gardens. I personally hate them and have a 12 volt deterrent that keeps the them away. How would you like it if my dog came into your garden and took a dump in your flower bed every day ??? bet you would be banging on my door to complain then but because its a cat its OK with you.

        1. exactly 100% agree cat lovers piss me right off how they act all righteous about there beloved vermin., but take no responsibility for them shitting and pissing on other peoples property. They should keep there dirty vermin indoors and keep them under control they wanted a cat so they should be responsible for them. I have bird avierys and next doors cats keep sitting on the roofs but won’t come in the garden because i have the best deterrents 3 DOGS

          1. I am a cat owner and completely agree with you. My cats are contained to my backyard, we have a vinyl fence that they cannot climb and a “action” on our front porch that they cats use, they are NOT allowed to room. My problem now is my neighbors cat is coming over and taunting my cats! My cats are starting to spray due to stress and feeling that their territory is being threatened. Their cat was literally laying on my front walkway a couple of weeks ago and told them, “hey your cats over here, can you call it over”, their response “oh she’s fine, we are okay with her roaming”. So I told them I treated for weeds and insects and she was basically laying in poison, they just shrugged. Trust me, those of us that do not allow our cats to roam get just as frustrated with these type of cat owners. I have an Aussie that is very well trained and dos not leave the yard. I have started to let him out when I see the cat in my yard. He loves our cats but not strays. I am letting him scare the cat home at this point. I don’t think he will hurt the cat but at this point if he does get a hold of it while it is on my property I don’t care. I have cameras and can always prove that it is the cat in my yard and not the other way around.

        2. I’m a cat owner in love her but I don’t feel that anybody should have to put up with anybody’s animal destroying their property whether it’s taking a dump peeing or digging. As much as I love my pets I wouldn’t want to be digging in feces in my flowers. That’s just not right.

        3. I am a cat owner who also has a garden. I love cats. I keep mine indoors as they should be. Hate the irresponsible owners, the animals don’t know any better.

          1. If you keep cats as indoor pets…..shame on you! They are creatures of the outdoors.
            Spay the cats, we have! They dont roam or spray!
            But there’s a ginger fucker who sprays on our three doors every night!
            Camera spies him at least 3 times a night.
            He’s not spayed! Utter smelly basterd

        4. I absolutely agree with you I’m considering throwing my dog poo over the girl who owns 10 cats and might I add doesn’t let them in her house because she now has a dog so her cats are seeking refugee in my flower beds so annoying and so angry

      3. You like cats n own them. Fine. Keep them home like I do my 3 pound yorkies that has her own fence which she can’t use due to cats getting in an attacking her!!!
        I don’t agree with hurring the cats. But if you are going to be a pet owner. Keep it home. And don’t let it cause your neighborhood greif.

      4. They are filthy and carry many diseases that can leech even into water systems and they should be kept indoors as we kept our cat indoors. Mh dog can’t poop in your garden, so keep your cat out of mine. It’s the cat lady mentality to think its natural for kitty to be outside 24/7 while killing and causing so many birds, baby mammals to become extinct. Australia now has leash laws for cats. It’s time the UK and USA did the same thing.

          1. I agree 100%. Most cat owners dump their cats outdoors so they don’t have to deal with their crap, and they’re lazy as h..l because they won’t even care for their cats by taking measures to provide their cats any kind of enrichment to make them happy indoors.

            Just think of this common phrase by cat owners: “My cat is miserable unless I let them out!” Sounds like their cats don’t like them either

      5. Cats are only clean if you don’t live next door to them, or any where near them. If you own a cat it’s clean because it shits in your neihbours garden, and you don’t clean it up.

      6. Keep your f*cking cat out my yard and we won’t have a problem. I assure you if you continue to let your filthy cat roam MY yard, kill my birds, crush my plants and knock over my seed pots, it will end up as my scariest and most horrific Halloween decoration ever.

          1. If I wanted a cat I would get one. I have a pet and couldn’t imagine just letting it out not knowing where it was and if it was ok, I love my pet too much. I have a nice privacy fence but it hasn’t stopped other people’s cats from killing a mother robin leaving her newly born babies to die, and my pet yard bunny that another cat drug out from under my shed viciously killed, and tried to carry out of my yard until my screaming made it drop her. I love animals but these cats are not killing because they are hungry, these are pet cats, not strays so they are being fed, they are killing for the fun of it. All I can say is this…my yard is my property and I can and will do whatever I want to unwanted pests that are killing my innocent pets and there isn’t a damn thing you can do about it! My advice to you is be a responsible pet owner and if you love your cat KEEP IT IN YOUR HOUSE, afterall, it has no reason to be outside anyway!

        1. I pissed of with cats coming in my garden tried everything been round to see the people that own them they just laugh i dont think its funny got spikes they still come in i can see why people really angry they broke my trellis last year climbing it iresponsible cat owners i think i might put my dog in there garden to poo and piss in i dont like cats used to but didnt realize what a pain they are killing birds for the fun of it

      7. I disagree. Cat poop in litter or in dirt and use their feet to cover it up, come back at another time, repeat and thus their FEET are NOT clean! Then they walk on your eating table or kitchen counters, so, I DO NOT think of cats as “CLEAN” animals!

        I think if people own animals, they should keep them in their yard or in their house, NOT in mine!

      8. You are a typical cat owner. UGH. I don’t walk my dog to use the bathroom in your yard because I respectful of other people and their possessions. You are just RUDE. Go live on the hill yourself.

      9. Then you don’t have to clean their mess nor pay for expensive damage to plants and property. One should be allowed to kill the bas..ds.They are pests and evil. They kill beautiful birds. You should go up in a poor with them.

      10. You are so disrespectful. Very rude and abusive. I love cats…..Not in my garden or near where my children play. Deal with disillusioned once and you’ll begin to understand. Or maybe not!

      11. and this is why MEDICAL DOCTORS, tell a pregnant female, to stay away from cat poop. because they are so clean, wow SERIOUSLY. I DO NOT SEE MD AFTER YOU NAME
        cats are filthy, can carry the COVID-19 deadly disease and kill people. maybe you should go take your sad pathetic cat life and live on this volcanic mountain. POOOOOFFFFF!!!

      12. How utterly selfish. What makes you think other people should have to put up with your vermin spraying and defecating on their property and not yours? Cats are vermin, they kill wildlife and ruin the gardens of others but hey, why should you care, eh?

      13. Cats are little bastards. My toddler plays in my garden and the neighbours 3 cats shit snd piss everywhere. Do you think this is ok????

      14. I like cats but do NOT want them in my yard. My puppy is very sick from eating the droppings of the cats that use our back yard. It has a 6 ft wall all the way around but they chose here to come. Cat owners need to keep them in their yard.

      15. BULL SHIRT.
        A cat belongs in one place a Chinese restaurant
        Your cats crap,pee,and terrorize the wildlife . KEEP YOUR DAMN CAT IN THE HOUSE. I am a retired pest control technician , your cat will be euthanized. Take yourself and your cats and move your ass to a mountain.
        Over the years I have noticed that cat owners are ignorant slobs.

      16. You are obviously unaware of the damage cats cause. They are so indulged and weigh so much, they have loosened a number of fence posts in my back yard. We also have numerous scratches on the sides of vehicles where they jump on top then slide down the side with claws extended when they get down. I have cleaned cat vomit up from my patio chairs, and I haven’t even mentioned the overwhelming stink of their poop all over my yard. How about you and your cats go occupy this volcano?

  3. Lynn wow, talk about over the top.

    Amazing how a simple request for information to deter cats always inspires the “Homicidal Cat Ladies” of this world to demand death for anyone who would even dare to suggest that cat owners keep their pets out of other people’s property. I agree that house cats are pets and if you like the horrible, little murderous beasties that’s fine for the cat’s owner.

    However if it was legal I would poison the feral and wandering feline vermin, as we can do with rodent vermin. As this isn’t an option thanks to “Homicidal Cat Ladies”.
    Normal people of the world are forced to find environmentally safe, non harmful, wishy washy and ineffective methods to stop these vile, filthy (in this case it’s a reference to their little gifts) and murderous little blighters from ruining our lives and killing any and all wildlife they can sink their claws/teeth into.

    1. Oops forgot the best tip to stop cats entering your space is a mix of spikes and trellis on the top of the wall or fence with more spikes where the cat will land if it jumps into your yard. Add in sonic/water sprayers and they won’t be back.

      The best spikes are ones your local authority can’t do anything about, plants such as holly, roses, thorns etc.
      Put climbing ones on the walls or fences. Grow them up a trellis on the inside of your property and ensure the trellis extends up above the top of the wall or fence by about 6 inches. Put low lying thorny ground cover plants below the areas where cats can still jump into your yard/garden.

      When the local cat lady (homicidal or otherwise) complains to the town hall you can quite happily reply that you are simply trying to deter burglars by using strategic planting up a trellis extending slightly above your fence/wall top. This actually is a recommended tip from several police forces and security agencies to do just that. The fact that you can use it to deter unwanted cats is merely a happy bonus.

    2. Clearly Lynn the “cat lady” is not aware of all the disease that cats carry. Toxoplasmosis which is found in most cat feces is not only responsible for causing harm to unborn fetuses is also responsible for eye diseases, depression, and schizophrenia, Get a clue lady! Not to mention what your cat shit is doing to our water system.

      1. Totally agree not to mention allergies and for people like myself that can’t take any allergy meds or treatment . Your respiratory system can be compromised as well as your immune system . Look, I don’t know about others, but I pay my bills and mind my own business, take care of things and so on. I’ve had rescue pets and loved them dearly, HOWEVER it’s a lot like something else I could mention, but am sure to get on a different tangent…I NEVER imposed my pets on someone else’s space. I used to take one little cat out in his cat carrier, put it on the back of a bench and he never knew any different and was a very happy feline. One neighbor that I had came over EVERY single day in the summer and sprayed all of my flower beds et al with and orange mixture and her cats walked around my property and usually never bothered other neighbors because the cats weren’t often out of her sight. It’s for your own benefit as well to be a responsible pet owner. We had a bit of a controversy in our neighborhood regarding cat and dog poop on the yard or the owner putting it into the bins…BINS any day! I have another neighbor that feeds stray cats and they never bother me. There was one cat that he had that used to visit me and I enjoyed him. That cat never pooped in my yard. I know that for a fact.There’s another thing too…if you keep the cat litter clean and take good care of your cat, it usually doesn’t want to poop any where else except home.

      2. Cat intestines are the ONLY place Toxoplasma Gondii reproduces, then they spread the oocysts through their feces, which ends up in water, plants, on the ground, on their feet which tracks it everywhere and spreads the disease to other animals. No cats means no Toxoplasma Gondii. The cycle stops because TG requires cats to reproduce.

    3. If you care about wildlife, please please do not use poison, because many animals eat carrion, and they will be poisoned too. Bald Eagles, some hawks, opossum, crows, vultures, raccoons, and more.

      Last year there was an eaglet who died because the parents brought in a dead rat that had been poisoned.

      Poison always kills more than its intended target. I hate cats with a passion for many reasons, and I think an alternative solution with regards to handling cats will at least keep our beautiful and necessary wildlife safe from poisoning.

  4. Do you really have to be so hateful towards these nice animals? Yes there are some that are not so nice. But in my experiences, most are nice. They are just trying to survive like we are.

    1. Most cats are fed by their owners, so the death toll they leave in their wake is particularly tragic. In the UK it’s estimated 30 million birds small mamals and reptiles are killed (needlessly) by cats.

      1. To quote the experts… “A cats desire to hunt and kill is independent of their hunger.” They just kill and kill and kill. Those things are very off in the head.

  5. We have the misfortune to have a mad cat lady as a neighbour. Unfortunately, we share a path so are limited to what deterrents we can use there but we’re at the point of desperation now.

    This woman puts food outside all day every day to attract every cat in the neighbourhood and beyond. She has stolen two cats – one had adverts up by the owners looking for it and the other she just blatently kept in her house. There was a stray kitten that we tried to trap in conjunction with CPL – she released it from the trap – it is now semi feral and has no home. These cats are constantly fighting, day and night, spraying and pooping everywhere and anywhere and we cannot let the dog out into his own garden for fear he gets attacked. We tried to shoo one of them away and it turned on us.

    We’ve put chicken wire everywhere we can to try and stop them cutting through our garden but now they just come up the path and sit on the doorstep – 9 of them at one point.

    I will not have any cat lover telling me that this is acceptable.

    Our problem is that whilst we want to deter the cats, we don’t want to affect our dog. He’ll be 11 years old next month and he has never known being able to go out into his garden to have a wander and a sniff – it’s always a collar and lead and cat check first, then he’s out, toilet and in again – this is not fair.

    Any suggestions gratefully received

    1. Take photos and video if you can, especially when there are a large number of cats involved. Photos/video of the cat lady leaving out food is also usefully as a lot of local authorities actually have rules/bylaws that forbid you from doing exactly that. Basically leaving food outside attracts unwanted vermin, in this case the cats.

      Before any homicidal (or not) cat lover wants to scream their invective in my direction, the simplest definition of vermin is, noxious, objectionable, or disgusting animals. The word we are looking at here is “objectionable”, therefore vermin is an appropriate description.

      Getting back to the problem. Make use of the Human Rights Act as suggested on this very site. http://www.catsaway.org/cat-law/
      If you have gone to the trouble of documenting with photos and preferably video the “little gifts” left on your property, any damage caused by the cats and any risk posed to your dog from having the cats on your property, then this can help back up your case for her actions and thereby those of the cats being a breach of your rights under article 8 of the Human Rights Act.

      Any photos or video footage of her leaving out food could be used in a court case by the council if she is in fact breaking any bylaws regarding that. Check your local authority/ parish council regulations on the control of vermin. Basically look at everything she is doing that you can prove. Please remember if you go to your local authority they will want evidence capable of standing up in a court of law or they will do nothing.

      A possible solution to keep them off your doorstep and path would be a sonic device fixed securely to the doorway and positioned so that cats wanting to come to your doorstep have to approach it. I would suggest a mains one so you can drill a small hole to fit the mains lead and position it so that the lead is behind the scarer to prevent anyone tampering with it. Use sealant to prevent water ingress and you’re done. When you wish to take your dog out just remember to turn it off first.

    2. Catastrophic: I am a cat lady but even I think your neighbour may be out of control.
      Classic signs of cat hoarding and I’d be furious if she stole my missing cat!
      By the sounds of things her cats aren’t getting neutered, which not only attracts all other unneutered cats, but you can bet she isn’t getting them vaccinated either. Some people think they’re helping but if they dint know what they’re doing then it turns in to a situation like your neighbours and things are getting out of control.

      Citris is a great cat deterrent and safe for your dog (granted he might not like the smell either but it won’t poison anyone)
      You may want to get the council involved with “putting food out” situation. Not only does it attract flies and like but also rats.
      I never leave food outside. I don’t feed other people’s cats either. These people falsely think the cats who eat it are strays when they have homes and are just greedy.
      I love my cats (i have a respectful 2, one is 14 and never leaves the yard) but I’m sympathetic to non cat people.
      I’d much rather work with a neighbour for a non harmful solution than leave people to get so angry they resort to being cruel (as verbally displayed in some comments here)
      Putting scrunched tin foil on fences is also very effective.
      Some cat people underestimate their cats. If cats are restricted from going in to a garden in a non harmful way, the cat will stop trying. No one gets hurt and everyone is happy.
      Cats by law are free to roam because they are semi wild animals. However, it doesn’t mean we carry people have the right to be an arse about it. It’s better to work with your neighbours by providing non cat people with nonharmful ideas is far better than trying to convince someone to love your cats.
      I have a concrete yard but have a sand & soil box for my cats to use to try and prevent them going into other people’s gardens. I can’t say 100% they still don’t use someone’s flower bed but I’m doing my own thing to try and minimise these things.
      And I’d be a hypocrite if I said i wouldn’t be annoyed if some one let their dog poo in my garden everyday – so I don’t see why all these topics have to end up abusive. People go out of their minds!
      Compromise is key!

      1. Thank you. That is a well balanced view. I am also a cat person, but even I would be a little irritated with neighborhood cats peeing all over my outdoor stuff and pooping in my flower beds. Not to mention that neighborhood cats outside the window make MY cats upset. I found this site trying to find solutions to keep my 2 cats IN my yard. I’m looking to buy a house with a cement block wall, but it’s close to a busy road and one of my cats is a good climber and jumper. I want to keep them safe inside the yard and also away from the neighbors. I wouldn’t let my cat roam outside the yard anyway as evidenced by the comments, dogs, roads, mean neighbors, rats, rabies, snakes. I’ll keep my fur babies inside my yard or just inside.

        1. I have a cement block wall on all four sides of my yard and it does not keep any neighborhood cats (or anything else) out of my yard. I feed the hummingbirds and orioles all over my yard only to find killed ones weekly. Yes, the feeders are up over six feet. Talking to the stupid neighbors who leave their cats outside to go and come as they please does not help; they don’t give a damn. They remind me their cats can come inside anytime, day or night (cat doors); but that isn’t the problem. I have three cats; the elderly one likes to hang in the backyard for about 15 minutes per day and then she comes in on her own; she never goes near the birds (I have no idea why but I’ve watched her and used trail cameras in the backyard in case I was wrong about her; she just wants a little sun and to eat grass). My other two cats (males) never go outside as they would be able to scale the fence and they would annihilate the birds. The spikes don’t help much, I’m told. I am ready to use barbed wire on the inside of my fence lines (not on top) but fear it would harm the cats and the birds. I’m with you. Lost in a world of cat haters, dumb neighbors, & ignorant people.

        2. Thank you for being a responsible cat owner. Friend of mine had a cat enclosure built similar to an aviary with home opening thru bathroom window. Big tree for climbing, cat nip and pond inside enclosure. Rabbit fencing and framing not too expensive. How much does your cat mean to you? Cats loved it. Owners provided safe clean environment and no bird killing or damage to neighbors gardens children or property. Wish my neighbors would take a hint from you.

      2. My friends are all cat people and I understand what you are saying but.. And yes it’s a big but.. I have a dog I have to by law clean up after my dog when outside, I have to ensure said dog is safely controlled. Cats however poop in both my front and back gardens making it unsafe for my children. They fight and scratch my dog. They make smells around our area. And the cat owners let them out and let them back in again totally oblivious to the chaos they cause.

    3. Sounds like my situation exactly!
      Don’t have prob with them having cats. Just keep them home like I do my dog. But likes yours. She can’t go out due to cats attacking her “in our own fence!”

  6. Interesting reading these replies, the best way I find to stop cats from entering my garden was to take some 2 inch down pipe and saw through the whole length long ways, allowing me to clip it over the top of the six foot high solid panelled fence, it worked a treat, So I done the whole garden, which cost me about £30. buying second hand pipes from a reclamation yard, had ghe council down to inspeck it and it past their rules with flying colours, in fact thew inspector has now employed the system at his own home, One draw back is THE SHED. my sheds are only about 12 ” away from the fence and next doors shed is again about 12″ away the other side, which means one particular cat has learned to jump between the two sheds and so into my garden, But I am working on it,

    1. Hello John, If you are still reading this site, I need to ask what down pipe is. I’m American (no snickering please). 😎

      Is down pipe metal tubing that the cats cannot grasp because of how slick it is? How thick is it? I have a cement fence that I share with four other neighbors (neighbours) so I don;t think I could put the piping anywhere else but over my wooden gate. Please share, if you would. Thank you kindly from across the pond.

      1. Hi Sasha. Downpipe in the uk refers to the pipe that brings the water down from your guttering and feeds it into a gulley.

        The modern stuff is made from pvc so is very smooth so a cat would not be able to walk along it.

        I’ve also seen half round pvc gutter lengths attached to the tops of fences to prevent cats walking along it.

        Hope that helps, Bob

    2. Hello. Are you able to take a photograph? I would really like to see it as we have just moved to a place where the cats visit our garden. Want to use an alternative to cat spikes if possible.

  7. Dave Tutt, when cats were spraying in my front porch it stunk the whole place out I went and sprayed Dettox mould and mildew remover bright green bottle about £3.50 a bottle, it took a few times of my spray for the kitties to get the message that mine is pongy to but much stronger than theirs, they have left my porch alone since and about once every couple of months I give it another spray as a refresh it gets rid of the green on the concrete as well. It turns the cat pee into a white foam so that you can see where they go.
    Carastrophic with the shared path, there may be nothing stopping you from growing a lovely hedge of Pyracanthus or Firethorn as its often called, it deters most animals and grows thick plant about two to a metre, the added bonus is you can cook the berries and the little birds love to nest in them and eat the berries as well, the red variety grows the fastest but you could alternate all the colours for a pretty border. Which is what I plan to plant because I am in the same situation as you shared path and my neighbour is a cat man. I hope that this helps you guys out a bit. xxx

    1. one can also buy a bottle of chlorophyll attaches to the end of a hose and you can spray it to wherever a cat has peed and it will vanish the spray.

  8. I’ve run 25 pound fishing line about 3 inches out from the paling fence (using L brackets. One end of the line is tied to the bracket. At the other end I have another L bracket and the line is kept reasonibly taut using a weight (in this case, a piece of heavy angle iron or you could use anything. The line is not ties. The line does not have to be too tight otherwise it will snap when the cats hit it. The brackets are 30 feet apart. The cat comes over the fence and hits the line, no injury to the cat except shock. So far it seems to work. The cats still can come in my driveway but they are then within sight and rock distance.In answer to the cat lover above, we have had many small native animals become extinct due to the voracious appetites of Australian feral cats. Keep them inside of a nighttime and with bell collars on.

  9. There are cat spikes designed to be uncomfortable but not harmful to the cat. Seems
    a reasonable compromise:solution

  10. In addition to using gardens as a litter box, cats are serial killers. If only I’d been able to try any of these tips in time…

    My magnificent indoor/outdoor bunny, who was wild in spirit, ‘though domesticated by breed, was just chased to death by a huge stray cat from my backyard. She was minding her own business, lounging outside the open back door, enjoying the sounds and smells of the rainy night, when a huge feral cat decided to chase her for no other reason than to torment her. She ran for her life and was found several houses from here, dead in the middle of the lawn. Not a mark on her. No blood, nothing. Her heart just gave out due to the extended chase.

    Even after murdering my miracle-rabbit, who appeared on my patio one day and decided to make my home her home, that huge cat continues to stroll through my yard uninvited, mocking my grief with his yowls and whines. He didn’t seem to take an interest in her for many weeks, all the while plotting and planning for that dark, fateful night…

    It wasn’t the first time she’d been chased. The indoor cat of my next door neighbor accidentally got out and couldn’t resist chasing her as well. Luckily she survived that encounter.

    Cat owners, please keep your cats in at night — they’re going on the prowl because they thirst to kill beautiful innocent creatures that make our gardens so lovely. They can’t resist the urge. You feed them, so there’s no reason for them to hunt and kill and they’re probably well behaved indoors with you, away from prey animals. If nothing else, please put a bell on your cat’s collar to give prey animals a fighting chance. And please don’t feed strays unless you live on an isolated farm, far away from other homes. Thank you!

    RIP, Bunny-girl! You are missed! The world is a far less interesting and joyous place without you here!

    1. So sorry to hear about your rabbit being chased to death by the cat. I was on here looking for ways to cat proof our garden after our precious little quail was murdered in her (supposedly safe) pen by a cat which managed to get in through a small gap in the cover. Now that cat regularly patrols our garden looking for more prey, and threatening our two free-range rabbits who like your bunny enjoy sunning themselves peacefully.
      I honestly believe that God takes all the dear little innocent creatures of this world to heaven, and so if you turn to Jesus to rescue you from death and guide you to heaven, you will see your rabbit again.

    2. Cats are notorious for stripping the skin off of baby rabbits. I know rehabbers who have to deal with that, and I was a volunteer at a wildlife rescue and rehab center, and almost all of our intakes were animals that were lucky enough to survive a cat attack. It’s absolutely disgusting what those walking horror shows do and how little cat owners care.

  11. I agree with everyone above I am so fed up with cats either crapping or spraying in my garden. I have been reduced to putting cat and dog powder down with little success.
    I have black plastic all over my garden to kill off the grass to put gravel down. But there is one particular cat keeps having a dump in the same area behind my shed. Last summer I did not have these problems but now it’s really getting me down.
    As for Lynn the cat lady above comment I think your rude and very unsympathetic to our problems. So why don’t you go live on top of a mountain and take your cats with you!

    1. Amen I agree. Such a typical idiot remark from an individual who doesn’t understand responsible pet ownership. Why should anyone have to move because she is practices and is sympathetic to animal abuse and neglect.

  12. My comment is above. Has anyone got any tips for me or suggestions towards keeping the cats out of my garden please. I have a 5 year old granddaughter and another granddaughter who is due in 10 weeks time. I need to stop the cats pooing and spraying now.

  13. A legal way of deterring cats and people is you grow bushes with long thorns I don’t know what it’s called but I believe they are part of the Rose family and have very sharp long spikes, it takes a while to grow and this can be planted and trailed where ever you desire as it’s a natural Defence and not man made.

  14. I have just moved and I’m finding cats a problem no I do not want to hurt them and yes they are doing only what is natural but please keep your cats inside, I love birds and wild life in my garden the spikes have gone up thanks for info on notice, will do , the fishing line is very good idea will be implementing that next, having something handy on the window sill to throw at them works e.g. coat hangers or small bottles of water the cats just have to see me now and they leg it I’m not a good thrower but the noise is enough, persistence is my motto they want an easy life and my garden doesn’t give them that, wanting to have bird boxes next year so have to be cat free zones by then wish me well xx

  15. Thanks for the ideas. I have two cats which stay in the sunroom, garden or garage where they have toys and beds. They come in at night. I get other cats attacking mine. Yesterday I found my cat cowering in the garage and another cat ran out. (I have cat doors). Then I saw my cats fur in clumps all over the floor. He was so sore he growled at me and ran off when I tried to pick him up. He’s never done that. Now he jumps at everything. I’ll try your ideas as the two tennis balls by the back door aren’t working.

  16. I have a problem with feral cats in my neighborhood. Neighbors feed the cats and house them. There are about 30 -35 cats that the neighbors keep:-) in thier shed. They even put in a doggie door on it. They say they are not thier cats but they house them and feed them. The cats pee and poop everywhere. Can’t enjoy our yards. The smell at my front door is unreal from the cat pee. The cats have torn up my swing cushions. Of course no one wants to pay for the damages the cats do to your property. Every day there is at least 10 to 15 piles of poop in my yard from these cats. The smell is bad even in the winter. Summer time you can’t even sit outside and enjoy your own property due to the smell. Cats should be kept indoors. I had cats growing up and we didn’t let them out to be destructive or mess in anyone’s yard. Any suggestions??

    1. Spray the area with chlorophyll it will remove the smell. Garden areas you can cover with chicken wire, cats will never walk on chicken wire. You can also get hose and sprinklers that are motion activated and will squirt the cat. Although it is beyond me why we should have to pay to keep somebody else’s pest off of our property. it is making me mad enough I’m about to use a much bigger deterrent but I’m not there yet.

  17. This is an ongoing problem for years and the neighbors could care less. I have literally stepped in the poop from the cats. I have even ran over it with my car and it was stuck in the tires. The odor us so unreal. Try getting fresh poop out of your car tires. This is so unfair to me to have to put up with this from my rude and unthoughtful neighbors.

  18. I totally agree with one of the posters above who stated the USA needs to adopt a cat leash law. Over the last couple yrs. a neighbor’s 4 cats have done so much damage to an in-ground ‘porous’ winter pool cover (peeing on it several times a day and night) then using the edges as a scratching post, it’s being ruined. Then from jumping on the 6′ wood fence all around the back yard, their weight has finally weakened the boards and the posts are breaking below ground level so now the fence and gate are laying almost down! What an expense this is going to be!

    Since my husband died, I now have to hire these things to be done. I’ve spent literally hundreds of hrs. reading sites like this trying to find solutions, then mixing sprays (which take time and cost money and do no good – especially with all the snow we’ve had.) When I finally called the neighbour, who’s not too friendly she immediately had her hackles up, and said they only have ONE cat, the others are strays. I told her they’re being fed and housed, as well as being pampered, but she still denied it, which I’ve been reading is the common answer. This has been a nightmare as I’m now facing over $2000 in damages, plus a handyman and I are trying to figure out how / what to put on top of the fence to deter them and that’s going to cost. My husband would have been able to do all this but I can’t.

    After the last couple days with even more damage being done, I’m so angry I’m thinking of having him put up an electric fence. Apparently, it’s enough to startle them, but won’t harm them. I don’t hate cats but why should *I* have to suffer through this and pay all this money to protect MY property? I’m a senior with only S.Security, paying property taxes, and have never in my life had anything like this anywhere else we lived.

    There are thousands and thousands of comments such as these all over the internet and I know others locally who are going through this. It’s SO unfair. I feel if enough people like all of us banded together and made a huge issue to someone at the government level (don’t know who at the moment) but it would get enough attention and let the proper officials realize just how big this issue is. It’s major and needs to get national attention. Most people have no clue as to what’s going on until it happens to them. I wasn’t aware.

  19. Dam cats I have waged a war with ones that damage my plants crap all over my garden kill birds I try feed ,I have put spikes around my fence I have my hose pipe handy to give them a soaking and I have a super soaker water pistol I carry around ready for quick suprise attack on the pests ,I am now good shot I give them right soaking they run away screeching scrambling up fence to get away eventually they will get message or continue to be soaked .

  20. I am totally on board with the previous comments… I HATE CATS, they are filthy. nasty dirty creatures. They carry leptospirosis and we all know how dangerous that is to kids especially. You cannot have a nice garden with them roaming the neighborhood. I am constantly catching them shitting in my garden (the smell is of shit and urine is (sickening), destroying my freshly painted walls, and worst of all I am constantly finding dead birds …. no wonder the bird population is suffering,. On top of that I cannot sleep with their constant noise screeching, fighting and mating into the night. Their stupid superior selfish owners don’t give a damn once they kick them out for the night and everyone else suffers. I have had dogs over the years and never let them annoy my neighbours…But cat owners think it’s their god given right to let their cats do what they like and destroy other peoples property…IDIOTS!!!!

    1. Agree 100%. Laws should be enforced for the pet cat population and owners same as dogs and other pets. We lost our 14 year old springer Angel to leptosporosis second infection due to free roaming cats our neighbors insist on neglecting and allowing them to roam free. Vaccination helped some but she was very injured when we rescued her so she was not as strong to fight infection. Vet said cats carry it but don’t get sick. All it takes is for a dog to sniff where an infected carrier cat has peed. Also killing birds including egg bearing cardinals. Neighbors don’t give a hoot. We are trapping now and turning them over to police to take to animal control.

  21. People need to take dogs for walks but you people with cats just need to sit on your backside and let your cats out the door. Cars are selfish animals and apartments are their owners. Says a lot!!

    1. Where I live we have a dog AND CAT containment law… that arrogant and narcissistic cat owners completely ignore.

      cat owners should be forced to make their cats wear a collar with a rabies tag so they can track down the owners and cite them for a first offense, cat quarantined, and owner highly fined. Second offense, fine and jail time, third offense.. fined x how many cats they’ve let out… and the animal(s) confiscated permanently.

      Cat owners think they are God-like and are above the law, but animal control here rarely enforce except to offer to trap them. We are allowed to trap them, and we do.

  22. To protect my fence and my yard:
    – 2 boxes of Critter Pricker – Proven Humane Raccoon Cat Deterrent 10 connectable Spike Strips, 20 in total.
    – Shoe Goo Shoe Repair Adhesive Glue Clear (2 x Pack of 2),3.7 oz (to glue down the Spike Strips and wood patching of the damaged fence)
    – Piscifun PE Braided Fishing Line 300 yards Black 65lb Braid Line (put up 2 or 3 lines above the fence to deter climb-overs, wire between existing poles on my fence line)
    – 3M All-Weather Duct Tape, 2245-A, 1.88 Inches by 45 Yards (to tape down the fishing lines onto the posts).

    That’s about $110 worth of gear from Amazon to battle the cats and raccoons in my ‘hood.
    Meanwhile, the local cat lady spends her Social Security check on $110 worth of cat food…she rolls a cart to her feeding spots for the ferals.

  23. Along the top of the fence, string fishing line at about cat head height – so that when the get their paws at the top, the string is ‘in their face’ or entangles their paws when jumping. Which will cause them to drop back down the way they came. I use lots of outdoor-rated duct tape and a few strategically placed poles to mount 3 rows of fishing line (65 pound rated). The first row is an inch above the fence, 2nd row an inch or two higher, 3rd row an inch or two above row 2.
    To protect my fence and my yard:
    – 2 boxes of Critter Pricker – Proven Humane Raccoon Cat Deterrent 10 connectable Spike Strips, 20 in total.
    – Shoe Goo Shoe Repair Adhesive Glue Clear (2 x Pack of 2),3.7 oz (to glue down the Spike Strips and wood patching of the damaged fence)
    – Piscifun PE Braided Fishing Line 300 yards Black 65lb Braid Line (put up 2 or 3 lines above the fence to deter climb-overs, wire between existing poles on my fence line)
    – 3M All-Weather Duct Tape, 2245-A, 1.88 Inches by 45 Yards (to tape down the fishing lines onto the posts).

    I think its working, though I’ve had to re-tape the first row of fishing line a few times after the cats ran into them and the line became slack. Rows 2 and 3 appear untouched. The Critter Pricker spike strips are quite sharp and work well. Instead of linking them into a big mat to protect a pool, I broke up the strips into smaller pieces (like a Kit Kat bar) and glued them on the fence cross bars. Be careful, use gloves when snapping them or you’ll be the one getting stung.

  24. Thanks Bob first if all for you support. I followed you advise and spoke to the cat owners, as a first step but, I got the free roaming bs, and if they keep there cats inside their garden they would not live fulfilled lives, can you believe that. My fulfilling live is right now to collect 6-7 goodies every day out of my garden. I covered all the areas around the garden with chicken wire and so far so good. Could be that this night they kept the cats inside. Btw I don’t hate cats and I’m not moving of the top of a mountain, in case anyone like crazy Lynne suggested. I just want to enjoy my garden.

  25. The question at the beginning of this conversation that began was if anyone knew of ways to keep cats in or out of your yard. It didn’t ask for your opinions about cats in general. If anyone has anything to say of use as far as keeping your cats in or out of your yard, I’m all ears. Thanks,

  26. how can i stop cats coming into my yard? They are putting off all my beams. The next door nabour have 6 cats. They are also peeing and pooing on all my plants.

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