How can I stop cats fouling my garden

01:00 Mon 24th Dec 2001 |

A. apfoster has been having problems with cats using his garden as a local convenience and has been looking for suggestions on how to deter them. Thanks to andy hughes for his own insight into the matter. Here The AnswerBank looks into the matter further.

Q. Other than resorting to a commercial product, are there any steps I can take to stop cats fouling my lawn

A. There are quite a few you can try for starters.

Try planting pungent smelling plans around the borders of your garden. Cats hate strong smells on themselves and will avoid areas where they might pick something up on their fur.

Another smelly solution maybe to put a few drops of eucalyptus oil on some used tea bas an spread these around your garden. The oil tends to last longer than curry powder and pepper which cats also hate the smell of.

Q. Any others

A. Yes, try a cat scarecrow: putting statues of cats around your garden may deter the more timid unwanted visitors to your garden. For the more fearless cat, try spreading lion dung on your garden.

Q. Lion dung

A. Yes, the idea is that the average domestic moggy will take one sniff, realise that it's got serious competition for its toilet territory and very wisely take itself elsewhere. Of course the fact that this is just a case of replacing one kind of dung with another makes it unworkable for some gardens.

Q. And where do I buy lion dung

A. Try contacting a zoo or safari park or anywhere else that you know keeps lions!

Alternatively you can also buy lion dung pellets, which are probably more convenient to use.

Q. What about sonic cat repellents

A. These devices are supposed to emit unpleasant sounds at a wavelength inaudible to humans but that cats can hear, contact your local RSPB centre to buy a recommended one. But don't expect it to perform miracles, some owners report that cats just ignore the sounds and carry on regardless.

Another problem is that they don't survive a downpour very well, either a conventional one or one from cats who show their disgust by urinating on the device!

Q. And if all else fails

A. There are various commercial products around. Many of them are chemically based and so you have to be very careful with them if you have children or pets of your own. They can also be quite labour intensive, requiring digging into the soil on a regular basis.

Got a pest problem Why not question The AnswerBank on possible solutions.

by Lisa Cardy

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