Sometimes, it’s adorable to find cats hanging out in your yard. But when their visits become frequent and long, it can be detrimental to your lawn.

Unwelcomed cats can tread on and crush your grass, dig up your flowering plants, and spread parasites and pathogens all over.

Since a yard attracting pollinators is good enough, and you don’t need any other free roamers, let’s learn how to prevent them from entering your lawn.

In this blog, we will share the best tips to keep cats out of your yard.

So, let’s get started!

Reasons to Keep Cats Out of the Yard 

An infographic on the top three reasons to keep cats out of the yard

Here are the main reasons to keep cats out of your yard: 

Cat droppings in vegetable and flower beds or spread across walkways and lawns can destroy your yard.

Cats dig various areas in the lawn to hide their feces. Their waste may contain parasites that can damage the lawn’s growth.

You need to keep cats out of the yard because they sharpen their claws on tree bark, leaving marks on it.

The spots that they choose to relax are left with crushed flowers and grass.

You may find dead animals abandoned in the garden, including birds, etc.

Another important issue is cat urine. The excess nitrogen in dog and cat pee can negatively impact lawns, which are sensitive to it. 

Over time, brown patches will appear on the grass. This can be fixed by applying organic fertilizer and regulating the pH of the soil; it can be very difficult to restore the health of the afflicted areas. 

In addition, if you leave the impacted areas of your lawn for long, they may entirely wither away, necessitating a reseeding or sod replacement.

How to Keep Cats Out of Your Yard: Top 11 Methods 

An infographic on how to keep cats out of your yard

Here are the tips to keep cats out of the yard:

1. Make Your Garden Rough 

Just like you cats also like loose garden beds with soft soil. But the difference is that they like it for fulfilling their toiletry needs.

Cat poop is not only bad for the yard, but it can also affect pregnant women and their unborn children.

By reducing the appeal of your garden beds and their resemblance to a litter box, you can keep cats out of your yard.

The goal is to make the soil too uncomfortable for them to walk.

To keep cats out of the yard using this tip, here is what you can do:

  • Place twigs over garden soil that cats frequently visit until your springtime plants take root. Space them out across the bed at intervals of a few inches.
  • Incorporate pine cones and other spikey yard debris, such as fallen leaves, into the soil surrounding your plants. 
  • Other choices include reused plastic carpet runners with the rough side up, eggshells, stone mulch, etc.
  • Turn wooden chopsticks into posts for your garden. The goal is to space them out far enough apart that it will be difficult for cats to turn around.
  • Cover the areas you want to protect with wire or sections of plastic fencing.
  • Place repurposed mesh produce bags made from potatoes or onions in the garden and fasten them with pegs or twigs to make a fence.

2. Hang Tin Foil

To keep cats out of your yard, you can use aluminum foil. As mentioned in the last tip, cats like to walk on smooth surfaces. 

You can place bubble wrap, sheet metal, or aluminum foil on top of your fence, on your patio furniture, or in trouble spots.

Having foil around your yard will keep the cats out of the yard for some time. 

But, being highly adaptable, the cats may get used to it and start wandering in your yard again. 

Furthermore, aluminum foil can reflect heat back to your plants, so watch out if the area receives excessive amounts of sunlight.

So, this tip to keep cats out of the yard may not be a long-term solution.

3. Create Unpleasant Noises

Cats are easily scared. You can use this characteristic to keep stray cats out of your yard.

Anything that can create noise can be useful. Whenever you see a cat sneak in, use an air horn, whistle, bang your old utensils, or shake a can of marbles or pennies. 

Keep changing the noise so that the cats don’t get used to them.

4. Remove the Food Source 

Take out your bird feeders or rubbish to eliminate the source of the cats’ visits. 

There’s a reason cats keep coming back to your yard. 

If you store trash outside, make sure the lids are tight to prevent cats from digging for food. Storing your trash inside in a more secure spot to keep cats out of the yard.

You can stop other animals, like raccoons and dogs from rummaging through it in search of food. If you can’t keep the trash inside, your garage is the second best location.

If you have several bird feeders in your yard, removing them will help to keep cats out of the yard, as birds also tend to draw cats.

5. Use Aromas They Hate 

Citrus oil, lemon, lime, and orange peels all work to keep cats out of the yard. 

Simply chop them up and discard them in your yard. 

Spread the peels to a specific trouble spot, like the one where the cats prefer to lounge. This method also repels ants

Similarly, the scent of coffee grinds irritates cats. Coffee grinds should be reapplied roughly once a week. 

You can scatter them thinly over the yard or incorporate them into the soil to keep cats out of the yard. 

Note that caffeine toxicity in cats can result in elevated blood pressure, nausea, cardiac arrest, and even death. Hence, avoid piling them up.

Cats detest pepper as well, and they will instinctively avoid an area where it is present. 

You can use a pepper-based spray by combining a few tablespoons of cayenne pepper and water in a spray container, or you can sprinkle cayenne pepper over your yard on a regular basis. 

Sprinkle or spray pepper on plants or other entryways into your yard to keep cats away. 

If cayenne is ineffective, you can always try substituting black pepper. Itis effective to plant some pepper plants in your yard or garden.

You’ll need to reapply pepper if you use pepper dust or a pepper-based spray each time it rains.

6. Get Ultrasonic Noise-Producing Gadgets 

Infrared ultrasonic gadgets will produce a high-frequency noise to frighten cats. 

For cats, the sound will be similar to nails on a chalkboard, but it won’t be perceptible to humans. 

These devices usually operate on batteries, and all you have to do is turn them on and set them outside in your yard. Once you set them up, they will keep cats out of the yard.

The gadget will detect movement as long as it is turned on, buzzing the alarm when cats approach too closely.

7. Utilize Store-Bought Repellents 

The olfactory barrier technique is used by commercial cat repellents to keep cats out of the yard. 

For example, you can get powder that smells like coyotes, foxes, and bobcats. These are enemies of cats, and they wouldn’t want to be in the same area as them.

You can scatter the granulated version of this store-bought cat repellent about the troublesome area. 

The products are organic and non-toxic, so they won’t damage your plants.

8. Install a Sprinkler with a Motion Sensor

Water is a shock factor for cats, and they will try their best to keep their fur from getting wet.

Thus, a fantastic method to keep cats out of the yard is to install motion-activated sprinklers. 

The sensors on these sprinklers detect motion within a 30—to 40-foot radius, and then they start spraying water. 

A built-in infrared sensor in certain models reduces the likelihood that they may activate when leaves or other material falls by. 

Make sure you get the right variant if you don’t want your dressed-up guests to get wet.

9. Douse Trouble Areas with Predator Urine

Predator’s smell can successfully keep cats out of the yard. These smells alert the prey animal to the possibility of a predator nearby, and they don’t dare to come close to that place.

Cats can be preyed upon by coyotes, foxes, and bobcats, so it makes sense that they would retreat from their urine. 

Many deer-repellent solutions are available on the market. Some of these products may also keep feral cats out of yards. 

You can spray or sprinkle them on trouble spots, such as plant beds.

10. Install Cat-Proof Fencing 

Fencing is a traditional method to keep cats out of the yard.

There are devices that you can attach to an existing fence and options for free-standing fences. The majority of commercial cat fencing products are made of cat netting. 

Some people employ rolling bars fixed over preexisting fences. 

Cats will often try to climb the fence by grabbing onto the bar, which will spin and make them leap back down. 

But, in colder regions in Canada, these rolling bars may freeze in winter. 

11. Keep Plants That Cats Dislike 

Certain plants emit scents that cats find repulsive. Coleus canina, known as the scaredy-cat plant, is one such plant. 

This strange-looking yet pretty blossom is actually a mint family herb, and it smells worse when you brush against it. 

When the cats will rub against this plant, it will make them flee with the stinky smell.

Other plants that are suggested to keep cats out of the yard include pennyroyal, rue, and lavender. 


Which methods can be harmful for the cats?

To keep cats out of the yard steer clear of techniques that may endanger cats or other animals, like using poison, as it can hurt pets or other living beings in the yard. Secondly, traps that can harm or even kill cats. Lastly, don’t utilize harsh chemicals or potentially harmful materials.

Which plants attract cats in the yard?

Certain plants, including catnip, valerian, and catmint, are highly appealing to cats. If you have these in your yard, consider getting rid of them or transferring them to more difficult-to-reach spots to keep cats out of the yard.

What attracts cats to my yard?

Your yard may attract cats for various reasons, such as the availability of food, water, shelter, or other animals. They may also show up due to a particular flora in your garden or to use it as a litter box.

In Conclusion

These are the techniques you can use to keep cats out of the yard. 

Using repellent sprays, sprinkling pepper, coffee, citrus peels, and predator urine, getting plants they hate, removing things that appeal to them, and fencing are all ways to keep them away.

If you are experiencing problems with unwanted cats, try to identify any patterns in the locations of the cats’ hangouts in your yard. 

You may be missing something in your yard if the cats keep coming back.

If you are constantly struggling with wild animals coming to your yard, Falcons Landscaping can offer great fencing solutions.