What Smells Deter Cats From Peeing And What Can I Spray


“I love my cat, but I hate that it pees everywhere!”

We know how much cat owners love their little feline friends and tolerate their swinging moods. Yet, pesky cat behavior like scratching, spraying, and peeing everywhere could drive anyone crazy!

Cats usually don’t like to pee indoors, and they’ll go out to pee or defecate. If your cat has abandoned its litter box, there’s probably a reason for that. It might be something that has to do with its wellbeings like stress or a medical issue that requires a vet’s intervention.

Until you figure that out, you need to keep your cat away from your carpet.

Cats’ smell sensitivity is 40 times that of humans.[Source] You can imagine how their olfactory senses affect their behavior. Thus, the best way to deter cats from peeing everywhere is to use their incredible sense of smell against them. Using a mix of scents, they hate like citrus, and herbs will get them back to their litter boxes!

How? This is what we’ll be covering in today’s article.

Read on.

Essential Oils

Essential oils do a great job of deterring cats. However, they’re double-edged, due to their high concentration, they might be toxic to some cats. In fact, if cats directly inhale a significant amount of them, they might be subjected to plenty of diseases.

This doesn’t mean we can’t use essential oils in our homes or for the purpose of repelling our cats. Actually, most scent repellents rely on essential oils. The trick is in how to use them.

A common practice is to mix one part of essential oils with three parts of water to make sure you won’t be harming your cat. You can put the mix in a bottle and spray your carpets every now and then, or soak some cotton balls in the mixture and put them in the target place, but out of your cat’s accessibility.

Back to business, here are the essential oils that your cat hates the most. These will serve as perfect deterrents!

Peppermint

Unlike us, humans, cats don’t enjoy the fresh tingly smell of peppermint. Their nervous systems don’t respond well to mint oil. In some severe cases, they might develop respiratory diseases.

No need to worry, though. This only happens if your cat directly ingests an ample amount of peppermint oil.

Our advice here would be to use diluted peppermint oil mixed with other oils as a cat deterrent. To be on the safe side, only use it in areas where your cat is unlikely to pee in, just to keep it away.

Lemongrass Oil

Your cat might love to nibble on some lemongrass. That’s okay as long as it doesn’t get too much. Give it lemongrass oil and you’re in a pickle!

Cats hate the smell of lemongrass oil, which makes it an ideal candidate for the spray you’re preparing to stop your cat spraying. Just like peppermint oil, the pure essential oil form can be harmful to cats and might lead to stomach problems. We recommend you use a hydrosol or diluted oil to lighten the effect.

It won’t be 100% safe, but it’s a lighter form that you can mix with other non-toxic oils to repel your cat.

Citronella

Citronella is obtained from a species of Cymbopogon, or lemongrass. It belongs to the citrus family that doesn’t appeal to cats.

Like most essential oils, direct contact with citronella can mess with your cat’s nervous system and might lead to digestive tract problems.

To use citronella as a repellent, you can use its scented candles. Just make sure to put it out of your cat’s reach and don’t keep it lit all the time. Another alternative is to mix dilute citronella oil with other oils and spray it on your carpet so your cat won’t approach.

[Related Article: Do Cats Like The Smell Of Apple Cider Vinegar]

Cinnamon & Curry

Cinnamon, curry, and pepper don’t appeal to cats. The same applies to strong spicy aromas. You can use these. Beware that some types of pepper might harm your cat, though. Cinnamon and curry are safer to use.

Rosemary

Cats hate rosemary! You can plant it in your garden or balcony in a pot to keep them away.

For indoors, you can make a rosemary water solution in a bottle and spray it wherever you have a problem with your cat. Repeated a few times, your cat won’t approach!

The best thing about this solution is that it doesn’t stink or stain so that you can use it on furniture too. You can also add it to the essential oils mix if you want.

Herbs

Like rosemary, herbs are natural cat deterrents. What we love about them is that you don’t need to make a solution to spray and shrink, but rather plant them.

You can plant rue, clove, rosemary, or even garlic. Just having their pots in the room will drive your feline friend away.

Dish Soap

Another unusual recipe that you can try is dish soap. This might get a bit messy, so make sure to clean up the area afterward. It also means that it’d be more suitable for small target areas, rather than spraying it all over your carpets.

The recipe goes as follows:

  • Add a few drops of non-stain dish liquid to a bottle
  • Fill up ¾ of the bottle with water
  • Add ten drops of lemon oil to the mix
  • Shake well

The dish liquid here acts more like a binding element or a mixing agent between the oil and the water. It helps break down oil as well, so it won’t be so potent.

Vinegar

Vinegar is another nice option to repel cats. Its only downside is that its smell is unpleasant to us. If you want to give it a try, mix equal parts of vinegar and water and spray in the area. You can add a few drops of liquid hand soap for a more consistent mix and an improved smell.

Adding a few drops of lavender oil can also help with the smell.

Lavender & Geranium

Lavender and Geranium are two components that are usually used in skincare products to give a nice soothing effect with a calming smell. Cats hate them.

You can plant them or either use them in their diluted essential oil forms. Just like other essential oils, they can be dangerous when ingested. Use in moderation and add water to them.

Citrus Mix

We’ve already established how much cats hate citrus. What about a citrus mix to drive them away?

Here’s the recipe:

  • In a bottle pour two cups of water
  • Add 2-4 teaspoons of lemon juice
  • Add to this mix a cup of orange, lime, and tangerine peels

You can add a few drops of liquid dish soap to the mix and you’re done.

Motion-Activated Repellent

PetSafe SSSCAT Spray Dog and Cat Deterrent, Motion Activated Pet Repellent Keeps Areas Pet Proof, Battery-Operated and Environmentally Friendly Sprayer – Protect Your Pets and Furniture

You can purchase an already made cat repellent with a motion sensor. It gets activated when it senses the cats’ motion within three feet. Then, it sprays automatically. One of the most famous and top-rated products for that is PetSafe SSSCAT Spray Dog and Cat Deterrent, Motion Activated Pet Repellent.

This spray is odorless, making it a convenient option for people who are sensitive to smells, like their cats. Those who won’t be tolerant of any specific smells to deter cats.

You can place PetSafe’s spray on a countertop and let it do all the work for you. The bottle has 80 to 100 sprays, and it’s easily refillable.

[Related Article: Do Cats Go Into Heat In The Winter]

Why Is The Cat Peeing On The Carpet

Treating the cause, not the symptoms, is key to longtime treatment. Here are some reasons why your cat might not be peeing in its litter box.

Why Is The Cat Peeing on The Carpet

We’re looking into two major types of causes; a behavioral problem or a medical one.

Behavioral Problems

  • Your cat might be stressed out, usually because of fear. It might be a new home or a new pet introduced to the home. Check out your cat’s mental wellbeing.
  • Persistent urine odor. Cat’s urine smell is potent due to its protein metabolism. If you don’t clean up well your cat’s litter box, it might not use it.
  • Dirty litter boxes repel cats as well. Your cat won’t go pee in the litter box if it’s not clean.

Medical Problems

  • Bladder stones
  • Urinary tract infections
  • Metabolic diseases
  • Age-related problems

If you inspect any of these, you should check your veterinarian.

Wrap Up

There you have it, all the smells that’ll annoy your cat and make it go pee outside!

Remember, getting your cat to follow your orders and pee in a litter box isn’t rocket science. You only need to be patient and attentive to your cat’s needs and triggers to be able to solve its problems.

It won’t hurt to use any of the sprays we mentioned above to defer your cat from certain areas, as long as you use them wisely and in moderation. If you realize any bad influence on your cat due to any of these smells, stop using them immediately.

Sarah Jones

Sarah is a passionate pet lover who owns several pets on her own. She loves to share her experience doing part-time writing to impart some useful tips to other pet owners.

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