Do Orange Peels Deter Cats?

There are several home remedies that can be used to deter cats. Let’s look at one and determine whether orange peels deter cats or not: 

Yes, orange peels do deter cats as they dislike the strong smell of citrus fruits. The same can be said for lemon peels too.

Do Cats Like Oranges?

Cats have very sensitive noses, similar to dogs, and they appear to dislike the smell of any citrus fruits, including oranges strongly.

Therefore, the smell of oranges is said to repel cats and keep them away from certain areas in your garden. 

It’s worth noting that, unfortunately, although most cats dislike the smell of orange and citrus fruits, there are still a few that seem to love the smell.

It’s going to be a case of trial-and-error to determine whether the cat you’re having trouble with hates or loves it. 

What Does Orange Peel do to Cats?

Provided that cats don’t consume the orange peel, it won’t have any physical or medical impact on them. Instead, cats will simply wander through your garden, sniff orange, decide they don’t like the smell and move to another area of your garden.

Therein lies one of the issues with using orange peels – it will only deter cats from a small area of your garden.

This works particularly well if you find that a cat is using one area of your garden as their personal litter tray but doesn’t work so well if you’ve got a widespread problem in your garden. 

How to Use Orange Peels to Deter Cats

Using orange peels to deter cats is actually a very simple process. Keep the peels from your oranges, slice them up into thin pieces and place them in the soil around your garden.

If you want to keep them away from your garden entirely then spread the pieces around all areas. Otherwise, if there is a particular area that you want to keep safe, put a high concentration of the peels in this area.

It will work to deter the cats and orange peels also contain some healthy nutrients that will help your plants to grow once they begin to degrade. 

If you do not have oranges or they do not seem to be working, there’s a quick fix. Using lemon and lime peels has the same effect as cats do not like citrus of any kind. That being said, oranges and lemons appear to be more effective than limes. 

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Are Orange Peels Safe for Cats?

When using any deterrent, you need to be careful of any dangers that could affect the animals you are trying to repel.

Cats can actually get citrus poisoning from ingesting orange peels; this is because of the oil limonene that is found in the orange peel.

It is this oil that also causes the orange peels to act as an insecticide. They can get citrus poisoning from any kind of citrus fruit.

Dogs cannot get this same kind of citrus poisoning but they can get peels lodged in their stomachs which can cause upset to their digestive systems. 

If you think your cat has eaten any orange peels, then you should contact a vet as soon as possible to make sure that they do not have citrus poisoning.

To prevent this, if you are using orange peels as a deterrent, make sure that they are places where the cats cannot access them but can smell them.

Or, alternatively, keep them covered with some kind of netting. They should deter the cats anyway, meaning that it is likely that cats will not go near them but since they can be quite dangerous it is always better to be safe rather than sorry.

Disadvantages of Using Orange Peels

Unfortunately, orange peels (and other citrus peels) will lose their smell fairly quickly when used in the garden. The sun will dry them out and the rain will wash aware the oils that smell.

This means that you’ll have to replenish the peels fairly regularly for them to have any effect. 

The other disadvantage, as mentioned previously, is that they will only work in a small area. The peels won’t give off a strong enough smell for it to be picked up across the garden. Instead, it will only work in a small localised area. 

This is why it is essential to determine where a cat is either entering your garden or regularly pooping. You should then focus your attention on these areas and place the orange peels here. 

Do Other Citrus Fruits Work?

It’s not just orange peels that deter cats but any citrus fruit peels will work. If you’ve got leftover lemons, limes or grapefruit then don’t toss away the peels and, instead, use them in the exact same way as you’d use orange peels. 

Again, you may find the occasional cat actually enjoyed the citrus smell in the garden. If this is the case, you’ll have to abandon using citrus peels and instead try one of the many other ways of getting rid of cats in your garden


Still have questions about cats and citrus fruit? Then these FAQs might help you out:

Do Cats Like Lemons?

No, cats do not like lemons. Lemons zests and the scent of lemon can both work to deter cats from your garden.

Do Cats Like Limes?

Limes are not as acidic or sour as lemons so won’t be as effective as deterring them. However, having said that, limes still do deter some cats.

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