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Do Mothballs Keep Rabbits Away? (Answered)

There is a conception that mothballs keep away pesky insects, rodents, snakes, and plant-eater animals because the scent of mothballs is intolerable to them. 

Since rabbits are also plant-eater animals, upon their invading your garden and destroying plants, you might wonder if you can use mothballs to keep rabbits away. So, let’s together learn about it.

Do Mothballs Keep Rabbits Away?

Mothballs are not designed to be used as a rabbit repellent, so they don’t work effectively in keeping rabbits away. Besides, it’s illegal to use mothballs as an animal repellent because upon vaporization they release toxic fumes in the air which are lethal to humans, animals, and the environment.

Your curious mind still can wonder if mothballs are effective enough to keep rabbits away from your precious plants, flowers, and garden. So, to end your curiosity, shortly these topics have been explained below.

From Plants: 

Mothballs are ineffective in keeping rabbits away from plants because mothballs are designed and manufactured for repelling different types of fabric pests, they are not intended as an animal or pesky insect and bugs repellent. 

So even if you decide to use mothballs for repelling rabbits, it won’t be any use of.

Besides, mothballs contain highly lethal concentrations of naphthalene or paradichlorobenzene that shouldn’t ever be disposed of. 

It is because disposing of in the ground they can get into the soil and contaminate both the soil and groundwater which eventually will harm the plants that you are trying to save from rabbits.

From The Garden: 

You just can’t use mothballs in any open area like a garden or yard to repel rabbits because it’s illegal to use mothballs in an exposed environment

Secondly, mothballs are made using concentrations of naphthalene or paradichlorobenzene which is a highly toxic pesticide and hazardous to humans, wild and pet animals, and the environment. 

When you’ll be using mothballs outside, instead of keeping rabbits away mothballs will mix into the soil and groundwater which eventually will cause harm to your garden plants and soil by contaminating them.

Most importantly, using mothballs will never repel rabbits from your garden, instead it can be proven life-threatening if any rabbit, children, pets, or other animals mistakenly eat them.

From Flowers: 

Mothballs can not keep rabbits away from the flowers in your garden either because mothballs are incapable of keeping rabbits away from any plants regardless of vegetable plants or flowering plants.

The urge to use mothballs around flowers may even end up harming the flowering plant by getting into the soil and contaminating it. 

So, instead of protecting flowers that you want to save from rabbits, mothballs will cause irreversible damage to the flowering plants which eventually will either make the plant to expire early or production of flowers to lag.

Will Mothballs Harm Rabbits?

Mothballs definitely will harm rabbits because the ingredients mothballs contain are lethal and have high chances of harming any living creature regardless of rabbits, any other animals, or human beings.

Mothballs are manufactured with the concept of repelling moths from clothing items, beetles from carpets, and other fabric bugs. Thus, it contains concentrations of naphthalene or paradichlorobenzene, and not to mention, both of them are highly toxic pesticides. 

As a result, if any rabbits mistakenly eat mothballs, they will be consuming either of these poisonous pesticides which eventually will harm a rabbit’s overall health, and sometimes can even push its life to the edge of the end.

Moreover, not only consuming mothballs can be proven severely harmful to rabbits’ health but also if they are not exposed to the fumes released upon vaporization of mothballs, the fumes can harm them too.

For instance, consuming mothballs, the fumes of mothballs are equally toxic to a living creature’s overall health and can cause many diseases too.

So, it’s evident that mothballs surely will cause danger to rabbits’ health that can be proven life-threatening too.

3 Reasons Why Mothballs Don’t Repel Rabbits

Wondering why mothballs don’t repel rabbits? Go through the reasons explained below to find out the answer.

Not Designed As A Rabbit Repellent:

Mothballs are manufactured with the concept of using for repelling pests from clothing items, they aren’t meant for use as any pesky animal repellent, so they are not useful to deter rabbits either.

Contain Harmful Ingredients:

Mothballs have concentrations of severely toxic pesticide naphthalene or paradichlorobenzene, and using anything containing either of the pesticides is very dangerous not only for the living beings but also for the environment. 

Therefore, using mothballs may cause the demise of a rabbit rather than repelling them.

Illegal To Use:

Mothballs don’t repel rabbits because it’s illegal to use mothballs as an animal repellent, so in the first place, you can’t even use mothballs in any exposed spots to repel rabbits.

What Smells Keep Rabbits Away?

You may know that rabbits despise certain scents and don’t tend to go near a place if they smell any of those scents. Thus, here is a list of some of those smells that keep rabbits away have been added so that you can use them to keep rabbits away.


The pungent scent of garlic may smell delicious in your cooked foods but it highly turns off rabbits as they despise the smell of garlic in any manner whether it be crushed, whole cloves, or garlic plants. So using garlic will surely keep rabbits away.

Hot Pepper:

The spicy scent of hot peppers irritates rabbits’ noses so they absolutely dislike the scent of hot pepper and avoid going to places where they smell hot pepper. Thus, sprinkling hot pepper would be enough to deter rabbits.


Even though rabbits happen to eat almost all flowering plants, they just dislike the scent of lavender as the scent of lavender is too strong for their noses so they feel irritated. Growing lavender will certainly make rabbits avoid your garden.


All of these herb plants are equally disliked by rabbits due to their powerful aroma. Growing any of these herb plants will help to keep rabbits away.

Predator’s Urine:

Predators such as coyotes, wolves, lynxes, etc. animal urine work most effectively in repelling rabbits because the scent of predator’s urine makes rabbits feel the presence of predators around them. Thereby, they get scared and run away.

How To Keep Rabbits Out Of Your Garden?

To help you discourage rabbits from creating nuisance in your garden, the below 5 effective methods have been listed and described that will help you keep rabbits out of your garden.

Install Physical Garden Barrier:

Adding a high physical barrier/fence is the most effective way of keeping rabbits out of your garden. To install a fence around your garden, you can either use wire mesh or chicken wire mesh.

After getting your preferred mesh, build at least a 2 to 3 feet tall fence all around the perimeter of the garden to keep rabbits out because rabbits can’t jump at a 2-3 feet height. 

Also, make sure that you bury the foot of the mesh barrier at least 6 inches deep in the soil so that rabbits can’t sneak under the fence.

And if you want to protect any individual plant from the rabbits, use a circular fence of 27-30 inches high and 60-72 inches wide.

Use Rabbit Repellents:

Apply commercial rabbit repellents, as most commercial rabbit repellents contain ingredients like predator’s urine, blood meal, putrefied eggs, and other stinky items that make the rabbits feel the presence of predators near them, so they run away.

Spraying homemade rabbit repellents such as hot pepper spray and garlic spray on your garden plants will effectively keep rabbits away as well, as rabbits can’t stand the scent of hot pepper or garlic.

Clear Potential Hiding Spots of Rabbits:

Rabbits mostly hide or nest closer to their food source, and overgrown grassy spots in a garden are their favorite spots for hiding or nesting, thus, you must remove such spots and keep your garden clean to discourage rabbits from nesting or hiding. 

And this will keep rabbits away from your garden.

Grow Plants That Rabbits Despise:

There are some plants they truly despise due to their strong scent and those plants include lavender, sages, mint, basil, garlic, onion, hot pepper, catmint, rosemary, lamb’s ear, thyme, oregano, daffodil, crocus, and others. 

You can grow any of these plants and deter rabbits by taking advantage of the strong scent of these plants.

Employ Your Pet Dog:

If you have pet dogs, employ them in your garden because rabbits are scared of their bark so upon knowing there’s a dog in your garden, rabbits won’t enter your garden.

Final Thoughts

Mothballs don’t keep rabbits away from a garden or from eating plants because mothballs aren’t any rabbit repellent, they rather work as a fabric pests repellent more effectively. Besides, it’s illegal to use mothballs in open places, so they shouldn’t even be used to repel rabbits from gardens.