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Cat Behavior

How Can You Stop Your Cat From Pooping In The Garden?

If you’re one of those unlucky people who always find some cat poop in their yard, you’re probably wondering, how can you stop your cat from pooping in the garden? Think about it . Your garden is supposed to be a place of relaxation and therapy, but a cat poop here and there will certainly ruin the mood. While it’s easy to lay the blame on the cat, we should still exhibit some compassion and understand that cats will do anything to survive. Hitting them is going too far, and if you love animals, a little compassion for our animal friends will not hurt.

That’s not to say that some cat poop in the garden will not cause bad things on your garden. If you don’t tolerate this behavior for too long your garden will suffer in the long run.

Why you should not tolerate some cat poop in the garden

1. It simply ruins your garden.
Let’s face it . You may add or those cute cats hanging out in your garden but if these cats enjoy their long stays in your backyard, the health of your plants and flowers will greatly suffer. Cat poop contain bacteria and pathogens which are not good for your plants , so you can’t just let them stay in the soil for too long . They are not some compost that will nourish your plants and flowers. Think about the pathogens and bacteria in the cat poop. The health of your plants and produce will be affected.

2. Cat scare the birds away.
Cats are natural predators that like to kill small animals. Unfortunately, they like to kill birds, too. Birds act as pollinators that in turn help your natural produce and your flowers bloom. If you keep welcoming those cats in your garden, pollination will likely lessen or not even happen at all. So in other words, something must be done with those stray cats to prevent them from doing their business in their garden.

3. Cat urine smell way too strong.
I’m pretty sure you’re not the only one who complained about the smell of cat urine. Every cat parent will tell you that the foul odor of cat urine is something else. Some even say it’s much stronger then dog urine. But urinating is more than an act of relieving oneself for cats. Urine serves as their marking in order to claim that territory. Since cats are territorial animals, once they spray a certain spot, they will keep coming back to that place over and over again.

Therefore once a cat sprays in your garden, that certain area is now his territory. You can bet he will keep doing his business over and over. And even if you wash it off, the faint smell that only cats can smell still remains there. How annoying is that?

4. It can cause disputes with neighbors.
Feral or outdoor cats are not the only possible culprit behind those poop in the garden. Cats from your next door neighbor could also be visiting your garden without you knowing just to do their business. A cat that urinates and poops in the garden could lead to misunderstanding and disputes among neighbors especially if there are laws and policies involving private property right where you live. The best thing you can do to address this issue is by having a talk with your neighbor and take some necessary measures to keep those cats away from your property.

5. Cats and their wastes can destroy flowers and natural produce.
We’ve already discussed the harm caused by cat urine on your plant’s health. But that’s not the only way a cat can ruin your plants, though. Cats that chew on plants and flowers can greatly ruin your garden, too. Cats that eat leaves have a condition called pica. Cats that have pica are said to lack specific nutrients in their daily diet, so they chew on leaves to satisfy themselves. If left unattended for too long, who knows what will happen to your plants? Your plants will definitely suffer aesthetically speaking. Your flowers will also scatter all over the place. In other words, your garden will look like a big mess. Nobody wants that.

6. It causes so much stress.
Sitting on your garden and admiring the plants you worked so hard for must give you so much relaxation and a great sense of tranquility. But if cats keep coming over to poop and pee, you will not have time to sit and relax. You will spend so much of your time picking up all the poop and throwing them away in the trash. You will spend so much time washing away the cat urine and its horrible smell. Worse, you will do this almost everyday which will cause you so much stress.

How Can You Stop Your Cat From Pooping In The Garden

Fortunately, there are so many things you can do to stop cats from pooping and even peeing in your garden. None of these are too dangerous nor too harmful to cats, so you can rest assure that these measures will not hurt them. The point of these measures is to discourage cats from going to your place again when it’s time to use the bathroom.

1. Cover your soil with twigs.
Cats like soft surfaces under their paws. This could be why they like walking on the flowerbed. On the other hand, they don’t like walking on sharp, prickly surfaces. So cover your garden soil with twigs. Gather twigs and cover your soil with these little things. I’m sure these stray cats will think twice about coming over to your garden again.

Other alternatives would be pine cones, stone mulch, egg shells and holly cutting.

While this is an effective method, this is labor-intensive because of the spaces you will cover. Other than that, your garden will look like a mess because twigs are everywhere. When the cats stop coming over, you can remove the twigs.

2. Chicken wire
You can also cover the garden with chicken wire. Cats dislike walking on chicken wire because they prick and are not sensitive to paws. While they work well as a deterrent, you will have to put in the work especially if you have a pretty large garden. You’ll also put off walking around your garden for awhile since all open spaces are covered with chicken wire.

3. Smells
Certain smells can act as a deterrent to your cat. Cats hate the smell of lavender, rue and pennyroyal. Plant them in the garden or make a spray out of them. Combine any of them with water and store the solution in a bottle spray. Spray the mixture all over your garden so cats get the memo.

The one disadvantage to this method is you have to keep spraying the liquid all over the garden a few times in a day, so you better stock up on the essential oils to make sure you won’t run out.

Similarly, cats don’t like the smell of bananas. Finely chop them and scatter them all over the garden.

4. Wash it away.
As mentioned above, when cats mark their territory, their urine will stay on that spot even if nobody can smell it. Cats have a super sharp sense of smell, so even if the urine dries or is washed away by water, the cat will still be able to smell the urine.

In order to completely eliminate the smell of a cat’s urine, you better use a solution such as Rocco & Roxie. It breaks down the enzymes in the urine so the next thing you know, even your cat won’t trace his pee. Eliminating the cat’s urine is important otherwise, those cats will keep doing their business on the same area.

This is one of the easiest things you can do to ensure your cats will no longer pee and poop in the same place.

5. Scatter some store-bought urine.
Cats back out when they sense other animals already marking the territory that they aim. Use a store-bought urine and spray it all over the garden, and in places where the cat will likely poop and pee. A store-bought fox urine like American Heritage Industries will do wonders. The downside is, the urine is way too strong and a great inconvenience because of how foul it is.

6. Use lion dung
Lions are like cats, except they are much bigger. Once cats sense the smell of another animal, they will back off and find another territory. You can buy lion dung and place it in areas where cats are likely to eliminate.

Again, the downside is the smell. But wait for a week or two before removing it.

7. Motion-activated sprinkler
A motion-activated sprinkler will automatically sprinkle water once it senses some motion. Cats hate water. With this so-called device installed in your garden, it’s like having a detector watching a cat’s every move. It will sprinkle water once it senses a cat’s presence, and the cat would have no choice but to leave.

The downside to this is the hefty cost of the sprinkler.

8. Use a sound motion detector
Such devices like this will automatically emit an extremely high frequency upon detecting a movement. They sound off, which is barely audible to us humans, but is very unpleasant to the cat. Since the sound covers a small area of the garden, it is recommended that you place this device upon entry of the garden.

This is very effective in handling cats, unfortunately they are very expensive.

9. Spray some water.
If you can’t afford a sprinkler, you can use a toy gun and spray at the cat whenever she’s about to pee or poop. Since cats hate water, it will deter her and will instead look to leave.

While this method works, waiting and watching for any cat sightings is a tedious thing that’s why an automatic sprinkler is suited for the job.

Do’s

1. Understand the cat situation.
Many of us would get mad or frustrated if a cat would poop anywhere in the garden. But before you get up and take some extreme measures, calm down. I once read about a man who poisoned some stray cats because they kept coming to his backyard. You certainly don’t want to do something harsh like this. No matter how mad your are at the situation, you can’t afford to go too far and abuse some innocent animal for doing something she needs to survive.

While the scattered cat poop can be a nuisance, just remember that there are pointers you can do to discourage them from eliminating in your property without actually harming them.

2. Think about adopting or give her up for adoption.
If you already have cats, maybe you’re tempted to adopt that stray cat that’s been coming over to your garden. Or if not, bring her to an animal shelter for adoption. That way, there’ll be a loving home that will be looking out for her.

3. Combine two or more methods.
You just can’t rely on a single method to work against the stray cat. Combine 2 or more of the methods above to make sure that no more cats will eliminate in your garden again.

4. Stay patient.
Most of all, stay patient when you’re trying to stop a cat from pooping in your garden. You will not get the results you want in a day, not even in a week. It will take weeks at best to see the outcome you want, so don’t ever take the blame or your anger out on the cat.

Don’ts

1. Don’t be harsh on the cat.
Since the cat that’s pooping in your garden isn’t even yours, you’re not training that cat to do a certain thing. So don’t go around yelling at the cat or use physical punishment. You’re only causing the cat to be even more anxious and disregard your presence just to poop anyway.

2. Don’t give up easily.
Even though the methods enumerated here are proven to work, that doesn’t mean that you’re guaranteed not to fail. Maybe despite the fact that you’ve spritzed the cat with water, she’s still coming over to your garden, it’s time to use other methods. Stick to the same method for at least 2 weeks to see if the method will work.

3. Don’t forget to clean up the cat poop and urine.
Just remember that a cat’s urine has his personal scent. If the marking is already there, chances are she’ll come over and over to the same place to do her thing. That’s why it’s absolutely important that you use Rocco & Roxie or something similar that breaks down the urine enzymes so the scent completely disappears.