What Smell Do Cats Hate – 10 Scents You Can Use to Humanely Keep Feral Cats Away 

Understanding how to humanely and effectively repel feral cats can help ensure that you don’t have to deal with as many of these animals on your property. And this may have you asking yourself “what smells do cats hate?”. While knowing what smells do cats hate can help you keep feral cats at bay, there are several other methods you will want to use in conjunction.

In today’s article, we are going to talk about what smells do cats hate, along with other methods you can use to keep your property cat-free.

Feral Cats vs Domesticated Cats – What You Should Know

1 a feral cat walking in dirt
Feral cats are not the same as domesticated cats.

A feral cat is a cat who has been born and raised in the wild. They are not socialized to humans and have no experience with people or other animals. Domesticated cats are the opposite of feral cats. Domesticated cats are friendly toward people, can be trained to use a litter box, and enjoy human interaction.

Feral cats can have kittens just like domestic cats do but their offspring will also be feral until they are adopted by humans or socialized into becoming domesticated cats themselves.

Unlike many wild animals, feral cats can be domesticated. However, this takes quite a bit of time and is usually best implemented by someone with vast experience with feral cats.

The feral cat population is growing. A new study by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) found that there are now between 100 million and 150 million feral cats in the United States. Feral cats are strays who have either been abandoned or have had to fend for themselves because they were born outside and never socialized with people. They are different from domesticated cats because they have not been trained by humans to be comfortable around people and other animals.

With that said, feral cats rarely attack people or pets, but they can compete with pets for food. Feral cats will sometimes kill small dogs and cats to protect their territory or because they are hungry. Do not let your cat roam outdoors unattended if there are feral cats in the area.

II’s also important to note that both domesticated and feral cats can carry a variety of diseases, including feline leukemia virus (FeLV), rabies, ringworm, and toxoplasmosis. You should never touch a feral cat or bring one inside your home unless it has been tested for disease and found to be healthy by a veterinarian.

Common Reasons Feral Cats Might Be Attracted To Your Property

2 a feral cat with its ear clipped
Feral cats are often attracted to food and water sources around your property.

Feral cats, like other animals, are attracted to areas with ample food, water, shelter, and protection from predators.

Cats are carnivorous mammals that hunt small animals such as mice and rats for food. However, they also eat plants, fruits, and even insects if needed. Feral cats are known to scavenge for food in garbage cans or trash bins on a regular basis.

Your property could be attracting stray or feral cats because it’s close to a source of food. For example, if there’s a large dumpster or garbage bin on your property that’s accessible through an alleyway or driveway, hungry animals might be attracted to this source of food while trying to find something to eat.

Feral cat colonies can form in any location that meets those needs. These locations can include:

Farms and orchards – Feral cats often live in barns or under trees on farms and orchards. They may also be found living in grain bins, sheds, and outbuildings.

Landfills – These sites provide food (garbage) and water (sewage runoff), but they also have many hazards such as poisons and traffic that can injure or kill feral cats.

Parks/playgrounds/jogging trails/playgrounds/parks/ponds/streams/rivers/ and lakes – Feral cats can be attracted to these areas because they provide protection from the elements, as well as plenty of food (from trash cans), water (from fountains), shelter (from under benches), and prey (rodents).

Businesses/commercial properties/industrial complexes – In addition to providing food (garbage), water (sewage runoff), and shelter from the elements, these areas often provide additional benefits for feral cats.

When looking into what smells do cats hate, it also helps to know other reasons as to why cats are attracted to your property. Along with the above areas feral cats may roam, these animals are also attracted to overgrown yards, pet food left outside, and even bird feeders. The birds that eat from the feeder are also a source of food for the feral cat.

With all that said, now that you know what attracts feral cats and how to reduce these attractants, let’s talk about what smells do cats hate. Keep reading.

What Smell Do Cats Hate? 10 Scents Cats Despise

3 feral kittens
Cats are very sensitive to certain smells.

When you choose to use what smells do cats hate to repel feral cats, you’re choosing a safe and humane method of pest control. This is because you are not exposing feral cats to any harmful chemicals or toxins.

But does using what smells do cats hate work completely to get rid of feral cats?

The answer is yes and no. This method may work better for some people and some cats, but it will not work on all cats. It also depends on how strong the odor is as well as how often you are using it. With that noted, it’s important to use other methods along with what smells do cats hate to help keep feral cats at bay.

So what smells do cats hate? There are lots of things that cats don’t like the smell of, but some will make a cat run away faster than others! Here are some common smells that cats hate.

  1. Lavender
  2. Banana
  3. Citrus
  4. Mustard
  5. Eucalyptus
  6. Cinnamon
  7. Peppermint
  8. Pine
  9. White Vinegar
  10. Curry

Let’s learn more.

1. Lavender

4 lavender
Lavender has a strong, sweet smell cats are repulsed by.

Lavender is an evergreen shrub with fragrant leaves and flowers. It has long been used in cooking and for its medicinal properties, including pain relief, insomnia, and stress relief. Lavender oil has a distinctive smell that many people find soothing.

Feral cats are quite repelled by the smell of lavender, which is why it is first on our list of what smells do cats hate. If you plant lavender near your garden or yard, the scent may help keep stray cats away. The best way to do this is by planting several varieties of lavender in your yard or garden. This way, if one type doesn’t work well as a deterrent, another might work better.

Feral cats aren’t the only pests that dislike the smell of lavender. Other animals such as skunks and raccoons also find it unpleasant; so if feral cats aren’t your problem, try planting some around your home to keep these pests away from your pets or children!

Lavender essential oil is also an effective way to deter feral cats from entering your garden and yard.

You can use the oil alone when looking into what smell do cats hate or you can make your own lavender essential oil repellent spray.

To make your own lavender spray to repel feral cats, first, fill an empty spray bottle with water then add 10 drops of pure lavender essential oil (or other essential oil of choice). Shake well before each use.

Next, spray the solution thoroughly through all areas around your yard where you’ve seen feral cats. Apply it once every three days to help prevent the cats from returning to your yard.

2. Banana

5 a banana
Bananas can be used to repel feral cats.

Bananas are a great way to repel feral cats, as well as other pests. The smell of bananas is very unpleasant to feral cats and other animals, which is why many people use them to keep pests away from their homes.

Banana is a fruit belonging to the genus Musa and native to tropical Southeast Asia.

The smell of bananas is especially unpleasant for feral cats. There are several ways that you can use bananas to repel feral cats from your yard or garden. Placing slices of banana around your property will deter them from entering your yard or garden. You can also make a spray using the peelings from ripe bananas and water in a spray bottle for easy application around your home or yard. Use about 10 peels per cup of water for best results.

3. Citrus

6 citrus
Citrus can come in the form of many fruits.

Citrus fruits are members of the Rutaceae family, which also includes lemons, limes, and oranges. They come from tropical climates where they grow on trees with thorny branches that protect them from animals who would eat them. Since they’re unappetizing to most insects and animals ( other than humans), people have cultivated citrus for thousands of years not only to eat but also to repel pests. There are many different species of citrus fruit, but only four — orange, lemon, lime, and grapefruit — are commercially grown in North America today.

Cats don’t like the smell of citrus, so it makes sense that if you use this scent then cats will stay away from it.

There are a few different ways to use citrus as a method for what smells do cats hate to repel feral cats, but one of the most popular is to buy a cat repellent spray that contains citrus. Most of these sprays are basically just water with citrus oil added in, and they work quite well for keeping cats away from your yard or garden.

You can also plant citrus trees around your property to help repel feral cats. Citrus plants like lemon and orange trees repel cats because they hate the smell of citrus. If you plant citrus around your property, feral cats will be less likely to come near your home for food.

Other pests that are repelled by citrus include ants, wasps, mice, and rats. Citrus plants also help keep mosquitoes away from your yard because their strong scent masks the aroma of humans. For the most part and depending on where you live, planting citrus is easy and can be done anytime throughout the year.

Of course, you can also make your own repellent spray using citrus oil. Citrus fruits like oranges and lemons are great for making your own sprays.

To make your own citrus essential oil spray to repel feral cats:

1) Wash a bowl with soap and water then rinse it well with hot water

2) Pour 1 part water and 1 part orange or lemon juice into the bowl

3) Put 5 to 15 drops of orange or lemon essential oil into the mixture

4) Stir well until all ingredients are mixed together

5) Pour the mixture into a spray bottle or squirt bottle or any other kind of container that has an opening wide enough for cats to inhale the spray fumes when they pass by

6) Place this open container around areas outside your home where you have seen feral cats or use a spray bottle and spray areas around your yard where you wish to keep feral cats at bay.

4. Mustard

7 mustard plant
Mustard is a flowering plant that can repel a variety of pests.

Mustard is a plant that belongs to the Brassicaceae family. It is an annual herbaceous plant that grows up to 60 cm tall. It has yellow flowers with four petals and its fruits are called mustard seeds. The plant is native to Eurasia, but now it can be found in North America as well.

Because it has a unique smell, mustard can be used when looking for what smells do cats hate.

Mustard is an inexpensive herb that can be easily found at your local grocery store or garden center. You can use it against feral cats by mixing it with water and spraying it around your yard. The smell will repel them and make them stay away from your yard for good!

This versatile herb works great against many types of pests, not just feral cats. The plant can be used fresh or dried as an ingredient in pest control formulas. When combined with other ingredients such as garlic, cayenne pepper, and soap, it can be used as an effective repellent against cats, dogs, and other animals.

In fact, it also works against rats, mice, squirrels, rabbits, and raccoons! If you want to prevent these unwanted animals from entering your property, add some mustard seeds to your compost pile or sprinkle them around the area where pests frequent and they won’t soon come back!

To repel feral cats using mustard all you need is a spray bottle filled with water (or any other type of liquid) and some

Growing mustard is easy because it thrives in most climates throughout most of North America. While it does need full sun exposure for optimal growth, it can tolerate partial shade conditions with little impact on production or quality. You’ll want to start planting your mustard seedlings outdoors when soil temperatures reach 50 degrees Fahrenheit or warmer; this should occur no later than April first in most regions of North America if you plant early enough.

When it comes to using a spray or repellent of mustard as a form of what smells do cats hate, you can either buy a commercial product or make your own homemade version. The advantage of using mustard is that it is cheap, easy to find, and it has no harmful side effects.

The downside is that it has a strong smell that might be unpleasant for some people.

Here are some instructions on how to make your own mustard repellent:

1) Mix together two cups of water with one cup of dry mustard powder in a large spray bottle;

2) Shake well to combine;

3) Spray on any plants or trees that you want to protect from feral cats;

4) Let it dry before using the area again.

5. Eucalyptus

8 Eucalyptus
Eucalyptus plants can repel cats as can eucalyptus oils.

Another product that belongs on our list of what smells do cats hate is eucalyptus.

Eucalyptus is a great plant to keep feral cats away from your garden. It’s not only a great repellent, but it’s also a beautiful ornamental plant that can improve your yard and garden.

Eucalyptus is a genus of trees and shrubs that are native to Australia and Tasmania. There are more than 700 species, with the most commonly used being Eucalyptus globulus or blue gum. Eucalyptus trees can be grown outdoors in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 9 through 11, while some varieties are suitable for growing indoors as houseplants.

Both eucalyptus and eucalyptus oil has long been known for its ability to repel insects and pests such as mosquitoes and ticks. However, it also works well against many other types of pests including mice, rats, opossums, and feral cats. The oil contains terpenes that are released when the leaves are crushed or burned.

The smell of eucalyptus is very strong and it can be used as a repellent for many animals. It is especially effective against feral cats. You can buy eucalyptus oil or plant some eucalyptus trees in your garden or backyard as a method to use what smells do cats hate to keep feral cats under control. You can also make your own spray using the leaves of this tree or essential oils you purchase from the store.

To make your own eucalyptus spray to repel feral cats, you will need either a handful of dried eucalyptus leaves or 10 to 15 drops of eucalyptus essential oils, as well as two cups of water.

If you use the leaves, boil them in a small pot of water for about 30 minutes. Then pour this solution into a spray bottle and spray it around your yard where you have noticed feral cat activity. For an easier method, simply use 10 to 15 drops of the eucalyptus essential oil.

Mix the essential oil into two cups of water in a spray bottle and shake the bottle until the solution is combined. Then spray areas around your yard to repel feral cats.

6. Cinnamon

9 cinnamon
Cinnamon is a strong-smelling spice that can irritate a cat’s nose.

Cinnamon is a spice that you can use to repel feral cats, which is why it is six on our list of what smells do cats hate. The scent is strong and can cause irritation to a cat’s sensitive nose, causing them to avoid areas that smell of it.

But what is cinnamon? Cinnamon is an aromatic spice that comes from the inner bark of certain trees. There are many different varieties of cinnamon, but all have a similar flavor and aroma.

The most common type of cinnamon is called cassia and it has a stronger, spicier aroma than true cinnamon (also known as Ceylon). Cassia is what most people think of when they think about ‘cinnamon’ in their homes or kitchens.

Cinnamon can be used in all kinds of foods, but it’s also an effective pest repellent for feral cats and many other pests!

If you’re looking for some natural ways to deter feral cats from your yard, here are some tips:

Sprinkle ground cinnamon over plants along your fence line or near doors and windows where you don’t want cats entering your home or business. You can also spray cinnamon oil on surfaces near entrances where you want to repel feral cats.

You can also make your own cinnamon spray by mixing one tablespoon of ground cinnamon with two cups of water in a spray bottle and shaking vigorously before spraying it onto surfaces where you don’t want feral cats hanging around.

7. Peppermint

10 a peppermint plant
You can grow peppermint or use peppermint oils to repel cats.

Peppermint is a perennial herb that belongs to the mint family Lamiaceae. It has many different uses including culinary, medicinal, and cosmetic. It can also be used as a repellent for cats and other pests, which is why it’s here on our list of what smells do cats hate.

You can use the essential oil of peppermint to repel feral cats from your garden or yard. Here are some ways that this can be done:

Place a small amount of peppermint essential oil on cotton balls or place them in empty tin cans and place them around your garden or yard. The smell will deter feral cats from entering your property, especially if you place them near areas where they like to hide such as under bushes or trees. You should replace these every week or so as the scent fades quickly.

Plant peppermint plants around your property to keep feral cats away from certain areas of your home or garden. Not only does it act as a deterrent but it also looks nice and smells wonderful when it blooms in springtime!

Last, you can make a homemade cat-repellent spray using water, peppermint oil, citrus essential oil, and witch hazel. Combine the ingredients into a spray bottle and spray around areas you don’t want cats to be.

8. Pine

11 pine
Pine trees are very common in colder climates. Their strong smell can deter a variety of pests.

Pine is another scent that belongs here in what smells do cats hate. It is a natural pest repellent for many pests and can help keep feral cats away from your garden or yard.

Pine trees are coniferous evergreen trees. They are most common in the cold regions of the northern hemisphere. Pines are also known as “cones”, “fir” or “pine tree”.

To use pine as a method for what smells do cats hate, you can try planting pine trees around your garden or yard to repel feral cats. Feral cats will avoid areas where these plants are planted. You can plant pine trees along fences, near vegetable patches, and in other places where you don’t want feral cats to go!

Pine is also known to repel other pests such as rabbits, squirrels, and raccoons! You can plant pine trees around your home to keep these pests out of your yard and garden too!

You can also make an oil extract from Pine needles by boiling them in water for 15 minutes and then straining out the needles through a cheesecloth or muslin bag (a mesh bag). Add 1/2 cup of this extract to one gallon of warm water and use as needed in a spray bottle to repel feral cats.

9. White Vinegar

12 white vinegar
White vinegar has a repulsive odor for cats.

Another winner on our list of what smells do cats hate is white vinegar. White vinegar has a strong and distinct odor that can be irritating to feral cats. Cats will often avoid areas where they can smell it because they find it unpleasant or even uncomfortable to their noses.

The best way to use White Vinegar to repel feral cats is to spray your yard with it every few days. This will help keep the cats away from your yard or garden. You should also spray it directly on any cat feces you see in your yard or garden so that other cats won’t want to come near those areas either in an effort to mark their territory.

Along with feral cats, white vinegar will also repel other pests like ticks, fleas, and mosquitoes when sprayed directly onto their bodies or into their habitats (such as their nests or hiding places).

To make your own white vinegar spray, simply combine equal parts vinegar and equal parts water in a spray bottle. For extra cat-repellent power when looking for what smells do cats hate, you can add a shot of alcohol or even a few drops of peppermint or eucalyptus oil.

10. Curry

13 feral cats on a sidewalk
Curry powder is a strong spice that can cause irritation to cats.

Curry is a spice that comes from the leaves of a plant. It is often used in Indian, Thai, and Chinese cuisine.

Curry has an odor that feral cats do not like, which is why it’s here on our list of what smells do cats hate. If you sprinkle some curry powder on your garden or around your yard, cats will stay away because the odor is strong and can be bothersome to their noses.

You can also make your own spray by mixing small amounts of water with curry powder in a spray bottle and spraying it around your yard where feral cats tend to frequent.

Curry works well for many other pests besides feral cats. It will repel rats and mice, squirrels and rabbits as well as mosquitoes, gnats, and other insects so you can use it all around your house if you want to keep these pests at bay.

If you want to plant curry in your garden or yard to repel feral cats then choose a spot that gets plenty of sun but not too much shade or water because these plants need plenty of sunlight to thrive.

You can plant this herb directly in the ground or start it indoors first before transplanting it outside after all danger of frost is over.

Best Tips For Keeping Feral Cats At Bay

Feral cats can be quite problematic, so it’s important to take steps to control them.

When it comes to feral cats, it can be difficult to keep them away from your property. Knowing what smells do cats hate can help, but remember that using what smells do cats hate will not help to repel feral cats alone. The good news is, there are a few other things you can do to discourage feral cats from returning.

The best way to repel feral cats is to remove their food source, which includes pet food and water as well as other sources of food that might attract them like rodents, insects, garbage, and bird feed. You should also try to eliminate any wildlife in the area so they don’t have other options for food.

You can try using repellents like peppermint oil or citrus spray as we mentioned above to keep them away from certain areas of your property as well.

Unfortunately, some areas are more overrun with feral cats than others. If you find you are struggling with an especially pesky feral cat problem, it would be best to contact your local animal control agency for assistance.

Best of luck and thanks for reading!

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