The Q&A Archives: Cat Is Ruining My Yard!

Question: My Neighbor Refuses To Control Her Cat And The Cat Is Ruining My Yard!

I read all your tips on Cats in the garden, but for this cat - nothing has worked so far, except for laying chicken wire all over. Now he uses the lawn instead and we have to worry about stepping in his mess. Instead of trying to clean up after my neighhbor's cat in my flower beds, I now clean it up from my lawn.

I read some place that pregnant women should stay away from cats and specially their poop and stuff, so what am I to do the day I get pregnant? Nothing works on this cat except for an ugly layer of chicken wire that cost time and money, and I am afraid that the wire one day will hurt my plants.

Also, if the cat cannot get to our flowerbeds, he uses the lawn. Is there any law or anything that can be done with neighbors that do not want to control their cats - I do not think it is fair for other to have to deal with their pets at all. There are laws for dogs - is there any laws for cats?

I am looking for anything that will get this cat away for good, and I wish that someone could come up with something one day that would keep the cats away forever. I like animals, but this is so agrivating that I sometimes see "red". Please, help if you can!

Answer: Apart from being a nusiance and in some cases outright destructive, there are also some health risks associated with handling cat feces (your doctor should be able to clarify these for you). In some areas there are indeed ordinances about controlling pet cats. You might check with your local authorities (including the animal control officer) to see what might be available in your local area. You could also try talking to your neighbor about it. Or maybe a lawyer. I'm sorry I don't have a magic answer for you.

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