How To Stop Cats Eating Houseplants

There are various ways to make your plants less interesting to your cat if you’re not ready to dedicate one to your feline friend or are simply sick of attempting to save the dead plants.

Top Tips to Keep Your Cat Away from Plants

Make your plant unattractive in #1. Anything citrus-flavored is strongly disliked by cats. To deter any cat invasion, you can spray the leaves of your plant with lemon, lime, or orange juice diluted with water.

Bodhi Dog produces a Bitter Lemon Spray if you don’t feel like making your own concoction. You don’t have to bother about using and cleaning out a regular plastic spray bottle, which is something I’ve found to work extremely well. If your cat determines the fragrance is insufficient to deter them, the taste usually works. They don’t want to go back because of that terrible taste.

2. Make Your Plant Impossible to Reach. You can strategically place your houseplants in a number of locations to prevent any maltreatment. It’s crucial to comprehend your cat and their capabilities whether you hang them or place them on a shelf high enough that even the best leaper can’t reach them.

Think beyond the box and use a huge dome birdcage, a terrarium, or an old fish tank as a planter. Although they are a bit pricy, they are a terrific way to protect your plants and give the space some elegance.

Safety Reminder: Lilies are poisonous to cats, therefore keeping one on a shelf far from your cat does not guarantee their safety. Even small exposures, like when flying pollen gets on their fur and they groom it off, might have lethal consequences.

3. Give your cat a plant of their own. Providing your cat with its own cat grass or indoor cat garden is another technique to divert their focus away from your plants. Usually, the seeds for these kinds of grass are made of wheat, barley, or rye.

Even if this is a safe alternative, you should still keep an eye on how much they are consuming. We urge you to discuss any dietary questions you may have with your vet to see if they endorse cat grass as a secure substitute for your cat.

4. Teach your cats to stay away from your plant. As with dogs, cats can be trained. You can educate your cat to do almost anything you desire, but it does require time, patience, and consistency. Others may leash train their cat so they can spend more time outside, while other people train their cats to perform tricks. With the correct reward, you may teach your cat to stay away from your plants and reroute them to behave differently.

When teaching your cat something new, Feline Behavior Solutions’ Dr. Marci Koski advises looking for their motivation. “Treats are very simple because they don’t require much time to administer if they are little and easily consumed. This allows you to continue the training process and repeat steps repeatedly. It’s love and admiration for some kitties.”

Pet Greens Cat Craves is one choice that I’ve discovered my cats adore. Additionally, these snacks contain Omega 3 Fatty Acids, have meat as the first ingredient, and have recognized ingredients.

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Pro tip: You might want to think about using adhesive putty for the bottom of your planter if your cat’s mischievous behavior only results in your plants ending up on the floor. It’s under the majority of our ceramics, I’m sure (kids included)! The fact that sticky putty may be used again, is non-toxic, and doesn’t dry out is its best feature.

What can I use as a plant spray to deter cats?

I recently saw an article in a magazine that suggested using tomato cages behind bird feeders to deter cats. It made me remember how frequently homeowners contact me for advice on how to prevent their cats from destroying their indoor plants. Here are some ideas I have.

1. Place an orange peel on top of the soil because cats detest the scent of citrus.

2. To prevent cats from digging in the soil around your plants, use mulch made of gravel or stones.

3. Use a homemade solution of water, a few drops of Tabasco sauce, and some cayenne pepper to mist plant leaves.

4. Cats dislike being damp. If your cat approaches restricted areas, have a loaded spray bottle close to your plants so you can quickly spritz it.

5. Attach balloons with tape to your plant pots’ sides.

Your cat will be scared away and taught to stay away from your plants by the sound of a balloon popping.

6. Provide your cat with a lot of toys to play with so it won’t become bored while left inside by itself.

7. Plant scent-neutral plants like rosemary, mint, lavender, and citrus that cats find repulsive.

Of course, cats being cats, some of these ideas may work while others will only serve to embolden them in their intimidating and destructive behavior against your prized houseplants. A visit to a pricy cat psychologist might be necessary.

Aloe (Aloe vera), amaryllis (Amaryllis), asparagus fern (Asparagus sprengeri), avocado (Persea americana), dumb cane (Dieffenbachia), elephant ear (Caladium), kalanchoe (Kalanchoe), peace lily (Spathiphyllum), and swiss cheese plant are some common houseplants that are either poisonous or can cause allergic reactions in cats (Monstera deliciosa). Check out the ASPCA website for a comprehensive list.

Why is my cat stealing plants from my house?

Despite being predominantly carnivores, cats will occasionally nibble on plants in the wild, either for the added nutrients or fiber they provide, or possibly just because they enjoy the flavor. We’re not entirely certain. But they seem to prefer fresh, delicate vegetation.

Cats will occasionally consume houseplants in the home either out of boredom or because they are drawn to the leaves fluttering in the air currents.

Have you ever engaged in a gazing contest with your cat? If the answer is affirmative, we infer that things didn’t go well. Long-term eye contact can be intimidating to your pet because it can be interpreted as a sign of hostility and dominance. The next time you’re at home alone and have nothing to watch on Netflix, it’s probably a good idea to bear this in mind.

14) Cold conditions

Cats don’t enjoy the cold and want to be warm and cozy. Even though they have beautiful fur coats, they mostly wear them to protect their skin rather than to be warm. So turn up the heat in your home and make sure your fluffy prince or princess is kept at a comfortable temperature.

15) Being held in a baby-like cradle

Although we understand that your cat is your baby, they don’t particularly enjoy being carried. Some cat owners hold their cats in the same way they would a newborn, which can be very stressful for them because it prevents the cat from running away. Always allow your cat to come to you for cuddles and give them the freedom to go elsewhere if they choose.


To prevent your cats from approaching too closely, try wrapping orange or lemon peels around the top of your pots. To deter them, you can also spread orange, apple, or grapefruit rinds inside of your potted plants.

Coffee Grounds, Sawdust, and Pine Needles

Additionally, the fragrance of coffee grounds repulses cats. To deter cats, scatter used coffee grounds at the base of your plants.

Pine needles are another excellent choice because they provide a natural appearance for decoration and frequently stop cats from destroying your plants.

To deter cats from visiting your outside compost, try adding some sawdust at the base of your pots.

Vicks VapoRub

Vicks VapoRub, which is composed of eucalyptus and camphor oils, is a fantastic natural insect repellent. In fact, my grandma swore by this old strategy to keep cats away from her potted plants.

Cat Repellent Sprays

There are more traditional methods of keeping cats away if you don’t want to go the natural route.

It’s a two-in-one solution that you can use to clean your home, and cats don’t like the orange-coconut aroma it left behind.

Your cats will keep away if you clean the outside of your plant pots with your preferred household cleaner.

Avoid Cayenne, Black Pepper, Red Pepper Flakes and Cinnamon

Cats are poisoned by cayenne pepper, black pepper, and cinnamon oil. Therefore, if you want to have your cats around for a longer period of time, it is best to avoid these.

If your cat chooses to stroll on top of these spices while being unaffected by them, they risk damaging their eyes if they rub them with their paws.