The Q&A Archives: Keeping Cat Damaged Plants Healthy

Question: I have tried everything to keep my cats out of my houseplants. I have alot of houseplants. I don't want to get rid of the two cats I have if it's possible. I just want them to leave my houseplants alone. If you can give me any advice I would greatly appreciate it.

Answer: I too have a cat who likes to nibble on and swat at and shred houseplants, sometimes she would even knock them off the table. This frightened me because so many houseplants are toxic to cats -- not to mention being rough on the plants.

I eventually came up with the following solution as the safest, which is keeping the plants in a room where the cat is not allowed. I have also moved plants into lidded terrarium planters, into protective wire cages (look like ornamental birdcages), and crowded them completely covering a table so there is no room left for the cat to sit by them. If your cats are not climbers, you might be able to use hanging basket planters to keep them out of reach also.

There are some products on the market that are said to repel cats by their scent, you might look for them at the garden center. Maybe one would work for you.

Another group of products is sold at pet stores and is intended to stop pets from chewing on things by making them taste terrible, for example Bitter Apple, but this did not work for my cat.

I hope this gives you some ideas.

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