The "white picket fence" is a classic home enhancement that has been around for decades.…
Do the neighborhood cats use your fence as a highway for their daily shenanigans? Are your dogs going nuts every day because they’re being taunted by cats on the fence? This is a common issue in many areas, and there isn’t always an easy way to safely relocate the cats. However, there are techniques you can use to keep cats off your fence and encourage them to move elsewhere. Check out these simple cat deterrents to see which option works best for you.
Citrus essential oils are natural cat deterrents. If you have a wood fence, you can sprinkle this along the top of your fencing to keep the cats at bay. You’ll need to reapply this after a rainstorm, but over time, the cats should designate your yard as a “stinky” one. They’ll find another route to take to avoid the smell.
As an alternative, you could light citronella products in your yard. Cats are also opposed to this odor, and the citronella could double as mosquito repellent in the summer.
Depending on the type of fence you have, you could use a fence topper to keep cats off your fence. Some of these are spiked, while others have a sticky surface that cats do not like on their paws. Of course, these fence toppers come with their drawbacks. The sticky toppers are likely to collect bugs and debris. The spiked toppers may be harmful to any animals that accidentally step on them. Proceed with caution before applying any of these options to your fence.
If you have a wood fence, you could put a tight string along the top of the fence pickets. This should sit slightly above the pickets like a tightrope. Wrap some string around some strategically placed nails, and create a line that cats won’t be able to cross. Just be careful not to damage your fencing in the process.
Motion Activated Sprinklers
Spraying water on a cat is a known trick for reversing unwanted behavior. You may not be around to squirt the cats every time they get on your fence, but you can get a sprinkler that does the work for you. Position motion activated sprinklers so that the water hits the fence if something runs across it. This could also keep squirrels and other critters away, if those are a problem in your area. Just make sure you test the sprinklers ahead of time to see if they are spraying water in the right places.
This is a little more farfetched than the other ways to keep cats off your fence, but it could work. Cats often dislike shiny elements, so they could be deterred by aluminum foil on the top of the fence. Securing the foil and making it look presentable are two big challenges with this option, but it is worth a try if you have some foil on hand.
Other Ways to Deter Cats from Your Yard
Have you thought about why the cats are attracted to your fence? Is there something in your yard or on your property that is making them stick around? Eliminate the source of the problem, and the cats will go away on their own. Here are some potential changes you can make:
- Don’t keep pet food outside, even for your personal pets. Feed them inside if you can, or make sure their food is only out while you are there to supervise.
- Keep freestanding water to a minimum. This is a breeding ground for mosquitos that doubles as a potential water source for neighborhood cats.
- If mice are a problem in your area, consider getting an exterminator to reduce the population. Stray cats may go elsewhere to find a new food source.
- Ask local rescues if they have a trap and release program. Many rescues will trap stray cats, spay/neuter them and then release them after surgery. This may not get rid of the cats, but it will prevent them from breeding.