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Does Lemon Keep Cats Away? (Quick Answers)

Lemons are well known for their natural repellent properties. Some people believe that putting lemon in the cat’s water dish keeps them away. Does it actually work on cats? Here are answers to your questions about using lemon around cats and the effectiveness of repealing cats.

Lemon to keep cats away:

Lemons are widely believed to repel cats. The sense of smell of cats is very strong, and they will often avoid areas where there is a scent that they are unfamiliar with. Citrus scented deterrents or lemon-scented sprinkling may deter cats from entering your house or garden.

The use of lemon as a repellent is supported by some evidence. According to one study, cats were 30% less likely to enter an area scented with lemon. Although this is only one study, more research is needed before we can say for sure that lemons keep cats away. 

Try out this natural deterrent if you have problems with your cat wandering around uninvited if you’re experiencing problems.

There is some speculation that this is due to the scent’s acidic properties. Cats are generally hesitant to venture into areas with a sour smell or taste. Lemon may make them feel uncomfortable, so they may leave the room if lemon is added to their environment.

Lemon water:

Lemon water can help keep cats away. Whenever cats are exposed to a sour odor or flavor, they may recoil in fear in response. 

In addition to the sour taste and smell that lemon juice has, it has a strong smell that may make your cat feel uneasy and may cause him or her to stay away from the area. 

You may be able to prevent your pet from drinking water from a particular location if you add lemon slices or lemon concentrates to your water dish.

Lemon juice:

The use of lemon juice can also be used as an effective deterrent to keep cats out of certain areas. When a cat encounters a lemon scent, it may cause the animal to become wary of the area and stay away from it. 

You can use lemon juice to repel cats from your home or garden by pouring it around. Cats dislike a sour smell, which is why lemon juice can be used to create that unpleasant smell.

Lemon spray:

You may want to consider purchasing a lemon spray if you are looking for a more permanent deterrent. These citrus fruit-scented sprays make cats feel uncomfortable and unwelcome in the area. 

You should purchase one that contains minimal harmful chemicals or additives, and you should use it in areas where your cat tends to wander frequently.

What smell do cats dislike the most?

Due to their strong sense of smell, cats may become upset if a particular scent constantly invades their senses. Garlic, onions, mint, citrus fruits (such as oranges or grapefruit), and avocado are among the scents cats dislike the most

If your cat is rejecting certain smells in your home, you should avoid these ingredients until your pet becomes accustomed to them.

These scents are pheromones – chemicals produced by animals to communicate their physiological condition or location – and they perceive them as danger signals. 

You will likely see your cat react aggressively when it encounters one of these odors near its territory or while chasing prey.

Some cats dislike the smell of other animals, specifically dogs. A cat may have to compete with a dog for food or territory when it is around a dog. Some cats may also feel uncomfortable when they smell dog odor.

How to use lemon to keep cats away:

Lemons are natural deterrents for cats. The smell of lemon will make your cat associate it with the unpleasant experience of being repelled by it. Here are some tips on using lemon differently to repel cats.

Place a bowl of water:

Place a small bowl of water near the door where your cat likes to roam. Toss a lemon into the bowl when your cat comes in. As your cat learns, lemon smells mean that there is something unpleasant waiting for it.

Try placing a towel:

Try placing a towel on the ground near where your cat spends most of its time if you are having trouble getting them to leave with only lemon. Pull up the towel quickly and throw a lemon at them once they step on it. 

You will startle them and they will associate the smell of lemon with getting away from you quickly. You can use lemon in other ways as well.

Cut a lemon in half:

Alternatively, you can cut a lemon in half and place one half near the door where your cat likes to roam. Stepping on the lemon will release a sour smell that repels them.

Leave the other half outside the enclosure as a lure:

To keep cats away, leave the other half of the lemon outside the enclosure as a lure. Cats will associate the smell of lemon with going into their enclosure, where they won’t be able to find food or toys.

Give them a treat if they leave:

The next time your cat decides to leave, give them a treat as a reward for leaving. By doing this, the positive association between leaving the company and receiving a reward will be reinforced.

Use diffuser:

Place a diffuser near the door where your cat likes to roam to use lemon. It is likely that if they step on the diffuser, it will release a sour smell that will repel them away from the room.

7 homemade cat repellents for your garden:

You can keep cats out of your garden by making homemade cat repellent. There are a few simple ingredients you can use to make a homemade cat repellent for your garden. Here are some of the best cat repellents for your garden.


Your garden will be protected from cats if you use lavender as a repellent. Cats dislike the smell of lavender, so it is an effective deterrent. You can keep your cats away from your garden by placing lavender sprigs nearby.


Lemongrass is another effective cat repellent for your garden. Lemongrass has a strong smell that cats dislike. Put a few sprigs of lemongrass near your garden where you want your cats to stay away. Lemongrass, however, can also irritate the skin. 

If you decide to use this repellent in your garden, use caution.


Basil is one of the most popular cat repellents for gardens. Besides deterring cats, basil is an effective deterrent against rabbits and rodents as well. You can keep your cats away from your garden by placing sprigs of basil nearby. 

Combine basil with other herbs, such as thyme or mint, to enhance its scent.

Peppermint oil:

Peppermint oil is one of the most effective cat repellents that you can use in your garden to keep cats at bay. There is a strong scent of peppermint oil that cats do not like due to its strong smell. 

The best way to keep your cats away from your garden is to place a few drops of peppermint oil near the area where you want them to stay away.

Ground ginger:

The use of ground ginger in the garden can be an effective method of deterring cats. Cats do not like the smell of ginger and will avoid areas where ginger is present in high concentrations since they dislike the smell of ginger. 

For a natural cat repellent, add small amounts of ground ginger to potting soil or around plants to make them more resistant to cats.

Diatomaceous earth:

Diatomaceous earth is one of the best natural cat deterrents that are often used to keep rodents away from your house. It is recommended that you mix one tablespoon of diatomaceous earth with two cups of water and spray the mixture around the plants. 

Cats will likely avoid areas sprayed with this mixture in the future.

Essential oils:

Using essential oils is one of the best ways to keep cats out of your garden. Essential oils can be used in the garden to repel insects. Spray your plants with a scent you think will repel cats and mix it with water before spraying.

Final Thought

To summarize, lemon juice serves as an effective deterrent against cats. Citrus scents discourage cats from visiting your garden. Water, juice, and spray are all effective methods of repelling cats. You can use peppermint oil, lemongrass, lavender, and other natural cat repellents in your garden.