How do I stop cats from killing my plants?

Andrea Kane
by Andrea Kane

I have tried EVERYTHING to stop the neighbor's cats from peeing on and killing my flowers and perennials in my garden. He is an unaltered male so his urine is strong. Over the years I have spent over a thousand dollars to replace plants. Do not suggest talking to the neighbor as that has not worked. I have tried the following: upside down mouse traps (to scare, not hurt the cat), plastic forks in the ground, chicken wire over annuals (he pees through the wire), lemon slices, pines cones, motion activated sprinkler (which had gotten me and my husband MANY times), sonic noise maker, pepper flakes, coffee grounds and many types of commercial repellants. Nothing has worked. Every year I have to replace the dead flowers that the cat "waters" over and over again. Any additional suggestions or should I give up?

  6 answers
  • Judy Judy on Jun 22, 2019

    Andrea I’m so sorry. Have you asked your town if there is any ordinance?

    My dad used nails in the boards under the dirt. Not long enough to cause abuse or harm but enough to make the cat not come back.

    It didn’t like the spikes and never came back.

    He did it on the perimeter of our garden.

    I know some may get upset over this but it can be done humanely. Your neighbor isn’t a good owner especially knowing this.

    • Andrea Kane Andrea Kane on Jun 24, 2019

      There is an ordinance that both cats and dogs must be leashed. However, it is not enforced by our police department. Both are roaming the area.

  • Marly Marly on Jun 22, 2019

    Pls don't try the nail trick above that's not humane, I had the same problem and was told to put a plastic gallon of water on the walkway/area, It sounded crazy, but it worked....not sure how/why but....they stopped coming and peeing on my porch area, worth a try...good luck

    • Andrea Kane Andrea Kane on Jun 24, 2019

      Will give this a try but I have to admit, I am clueless as to why this would work. However, I am thinking of not planting any longer because of this problem.

  • Karen Brunck Karen Brunck on Jun 23, 2019

    Hi Andrea. Use a trap large enough to catch him. Bait it with a can of cat food. When you get him, take him to a no kill shelter where he will be neutered, vaccinated, and found a home with owners that care.

    • Andrea Kane Andrea Kane on Jun 24, 2019

      Would love to do this, however I do not need retaliation from people who think they can do whatever they desire. Because I have spoken to them, they would figure it out that I was the perpetrator. Their yard looks like the set from Sanford and Son TV show.

  • Judy Judy on Jun 24, 2019

    They will continue to pee since the scent is there.

    How about raised beds?

    • See 1 previous
    • Anonymous Anonymous on Jul 11, 2020

      Sorry for chiming in to this thread so late, but I just had to share this in case it helps someone out. I wish I had gotten this advice years ago as a cat owner.

      My best advice?

      Give the book " Ultimate Cat Secrets" a read.

      It really is the only long-term solution to discipline your cat, OP.

      This might come as a surprise to you, but your cat actually wants to obey you.

      It’s kitty’s independent, sassy nature that makes you fall in love with him, but it’s this very attitude that makes it frustrating to train fun behaviours into your favourite feline.

      Cats respond best to positive reinforcement – yelling, punishing or disciplining your cat just won’t work.

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  • Karen Brunck Karen Brunck on Jun 24, 2019

    So sad. My neighbor is the same way. I trapped their mama cat and my other neighbor caught the kittens. We found them all good homes and had them spayed and neutered. The crappy neighbor never said a word.

  • Andrea Kane Andrea Kane on Jun 25, 2019

    Thank you everyone. Nice to know that there are great people left in this crazy world. Too bad some of us live near the opposite kind.