Roses forum: Repel dog and cat repellent

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Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
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zuzu
Feb 22, 2012 4:11 PM CST

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Last fall I cleaned up one of my rose beds and dusted it with Repel dog and cat repellent because I knew the clean new spaces between the roses would be irresistible to the cats. Now I have a million bulbs coming up in only that flower bed. They're either garlic or onion -- something with a horrible smell. They're taking over the entire bed. Did that stupid repellent have little bulbs or seeds in it?
Name: Toni
Denver Metro (Zone 5a)
Whiskey Tango Foxtrot.
Charter ATP Member Irises Salvias Xeriscape Birds I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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Skiekitty
Feb 23, 2012 10:06 AM CST
I think Repel has only peppercorns or cayenne peppers in it. I tried it 5 years ago, Wolfgang would lick it up. He loved Repel. Didn't repel ANYTHING. Looks like Repel II has more chemicals in it, though.
Roses are one of my passions! Just opened, my Etsy shop (to fund my rose hobby)! http://www.etsy.com/shop/TweetsnTreats
Name: Andi
Pocono Mountains, PA (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member I helped beta test the first seed swap
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GardenQuilts
Feb 23, 2012 2:31 PM CST
Coffee grounds and marigolds seem to keep the cats away. If you need some marigold seeds, I have TONS. I deadhead them and turn the plants over in the fall to fight nematodes.

I use pepper spray (diy with liquid, dry and flaked peppers from the $store) to keep the bunnies away from my dahlias. I also put hair - combo of mine and my pets hair- near holes in the fence to keep the groundhogs away. It seems to work.

If that doesn't work, try burying a few mothballs where the cats like to dig. I bury some near my lilies to keep the skunks from digging for grubs. Grubs are not my friends, but I don't want my lilies decimated either. I am planting any new or relocated bulbs in cages made from gutter mesh - I forget the technical name for it. It is sold in the hardware store.

Winston the pug is crazy for bone meal, but he isn't interested in pepper spray or coffee grounds. He is also not interested in rodents. He sits and watches the bunnies and chipmunks scamper around the yard. I am tempted to get a terrier to keep Winston company, but I am not sure if he would like the idea. He likes having me all to himself.
Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
Forum moderator Plant Database Moderator Charter ATP Member Region: California Cat Lover Roses
Clematis Irises Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier Garden Sages
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zuzu
Feb 23, 2012 2:49 PM CST

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Marigold seeds could be a bigger problem than the little bulbs, Andi. I don't want anything overwhelming the little roses in that bed. It's one of my "hospital" beds, where the fragile and ailing plants go. Most are frail simply because they were surrounded by larger plants and never got enough sun or water, so I want to give them a chance in a bed where they don't have to compete with other plants for nutrients and such.

Moth balls are highly toxic to pets (and humans). I used to sprinkle them by the back door to keep the skunks away, but I stopped when I learned of their toxicity. I never meant to kill the skunks, just to keep the smell a little farther away from the door.
Name: Porkpal
Richmond, TX
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Keeper of Poultry Farmer Roses Raises cows
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porkpal
Feb 23, 2012 3:06 PM CST
Perhaps your cats digging in the rose beds have been discouraging the little bulbs, and now they are undeterred.
Porkpal
Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
Forum moderator Plant Database Moderator Charter ATP Member Region: California Cat Lover Roses
Clematis Irises Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier Garden Sages
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zuzu
Feb 23, 2012 3:16 PM CST

Moderator

Interesting theory, Porkpal. Smiling
Name: Toni
Denver Metro (Zone 5a)
Whiskey Tango Foxtrot.
Charter ATP Member Irises Salvias Xeriscape Birds I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Procrastinator The WITWIT Badge Region: Colorado Enjoys or suffers cold winters Cat Lover
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Skiekitty
Feb 23, 2012 3:31 PM CST
How about ammonia? That's how my neighbor got rid of skunks in his back yard. Smelled for a few days, but dissipated and no skunks. Smiling I wish there was some way I could keep the neighbor's cats out of my yard.. I've tried everything including yelling at her, but she keeps telling me that it's too hard to keep her cats inside (she has 3, I have .. uh, more than 3 and mine NEVER get out except for 100% accidentally like a window screen that pops out of the window due to a microburst). They're terrorizing my poor birdies I feed outside...
Roses are one of my passions! Just opened, my Etsy shop (to fund my rose hobby)! http://www.etsy.com/shop/TweetsnTreats
Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
Forum moderator Plant Database Moderator Charter ATP Member Region: California Cat Lover Roses
Clematis Irises Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier Garden Sages
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zuzu
Feb 23, 2012 5:13 PM CST

Moderator

Ammonia's also very bad for cats.

Unfortunately, I seem to have a skunk graveyard under one of my decks. They go there to die. They climb too far under to be pulled out with a rake, so they have to keep smelling until they decompose completely. Ick!
Silver Spring, MD (Zone 7a)
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ssgardener
Feb 23, 2012 6:45 PM CST
Andi, that's very interesting about marigolds. I didn't realize they were cat repellants. I'll try to plant them this year in some of the neighborhood cats' favorite digging places.

Coffee grounds help for a little while for me, but the cats come right back once the smell dissipates.
Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
Forum moderator Plant Database Moderator Charter ATP Member Region: California Cat Lover Roses
Clematis Irises Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier Garden Sages
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zuzu
Feb 23, 2012 7:05 PM CST

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I gave up on growing marigolds after I realized they attract every snail within 5 miles. I've given up on Hostas, Crinum, and Calla Lilies too. Even a weekly dose of snail bait doesn't keep them looking nice, and the price of snail bait has skyrocketed in recent years.

I tried growing Hostas in containers with copper tape around the lip of the container, but the snails climbed up the leaves of nearby Irises and dove into the Hosta containers to get at them. They're so resourceful!
Silver Spring, MD (Zone 7a)
Sedums Container Gardener Bulbs Vegetable Grower Hummingbirder Region: Mid-Atlantic
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ssgardener
Feb 23, 2012 7:19 PM CST
Agh! Snails! Blinking
Name: Toni
Denver Metro (Zone 5a)
Whiskey Tango Foxtrot.
Charter ATP Member Irises Salvias Xeriscape Birds I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Procrastinator The WITWIT Badge Region: Colorado Enjoys or suffers cold winters Cat Lover
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Skiekitty
Feb 23, 2012 8:58 PM CST
Don't have snails or slugs. But I saw a garden tip a couple of days about beer & slugs.. Put a dish of beer out & the slugs go for the beer & drown
Roses are one of my passions! Just opened, my Etsy shop (to fund my rose hobby)! http://www.etsy.com/shop/TweetsnTreats
Name: Porkpal
Richmond, TX
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Keeper of Poultry Farmer Roses Raises cows
Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
porkpal
Feb 23, 2012 9:24 PM CST
I have heard that citrus rind repels cats, but I've never tried it. At any rate it ought to be pretty harmless...
Porkpal
Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
Forum moderator Plant Database Moderator Charter ATP Member Region: California Cat Lover Roses
Clematis Irises Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier Garden Sages
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zuzu
Feb 23, 2012 9:38 PM CST

Moderator

Can't use beer. Beer's not good for cats.
Name: Cindi
Wichita, Kansas (Zone 7a)
Charter ATP Member Plant and/or Seed Trader Permaculture Roses Ponds Peonies
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CindiKS
Feb 24, 2012 4:02 PM CST
Toni we have a neighbor who takes in feral cats, catches them, gets them neutered. At one point she was feeding 70. (She has a 5 acre yard.)The other neighbors complain bitterly about all the cats around scaring off the song birds. We have loads of song birds in our yard...and no cats. Our two dogs love cats, but they love to chase them. so the cats stay clear of our property. Maybe you should borrow a dog from someone!
I've noticed the past few months that numbers of both cats and rabbits have decreased. I used to see dozens of them if I drove in after dark. Now I hardly see any. Wonder if the packs of coyotes I hear each night are feeding on them? could also be a hawk, eagle or wild boar.
Zuzu, can you buy predator snails where you are? What about diatomaceous earth? Or a hungry chicken?
Remember that children, marriages, and flower gardens reflect the kind of care they get.
H. Jackson Brown, Jr.
Silver Spring, MD (Zone 7a)
Sedums Container Gardener Bulbs Vegetable Grower Hummingbirder Region: Mid-Atlantic
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ssgardener
Feb 24, 2012 5:30 PM CST
The cats in my neighborhood are terrible hunters. Rolling on the floor laughing The squirrels and birds don't seem deterred by them much.

However, they do pee and poo in my garden. In the summer, I can smell their spray as soon as I open the front door. Angry And I can smell their poo when I go in the beds to weed. Angry Angry

I would pay good money for a cat deterrent that really works. I'll give up 1 or 2 weeks pay. Totally serious!
Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
Forum moderator Plant Database Moderator Charter ATP Member Region: California Cat Lover Roses
Clematis Irises Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier Garden Sages
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zuzu
Feb 24, 2012 7:13 PM CST

Moderator

I used to have chickens, but they never ate the snails. They used to eat the sowbugs, though, so that was cute and useful. What wasn't cute was their habit of digging up and pulling out all of the little bedding plants as soon as I planted them. They would walk up and down the front of a border and pull out every single baby aquilegia plant.

I've never heard of predator snails. Diatomaceous earth might work, but I have half an acre of plants that attract snails. Any solution is going to be costly. For now, I just apply snail bait weekly and avoid the plants that are particularly appealing to snails.
Name: Andi
Pocono Mountains, PA (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member I helped beta test the first seed swap
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GardenQuilts
Feb 26, 2012 12:42 AM CST
Spraying hostas with 10% ammonia/90% water keeps the slugs away. I read that it also kills slug eggs. I have read mixed reviews of slug bait like sluggo. Besides, ammonia is cheaper. Ammonia can encourage mold growth, so I don't spray the wall behind the hostas. I don't mind a few nibbled leaves on my established green monster hostas (I don't know the cultivar, so I call them "Hulk"). I have a couple new 'fancy" hostas that I don't want bothered.

Any plant that does well for me in PA could easily get carried away in Ca, zuzu. Marigolds are annuals here, but the African variety can get over 1' tall. Would creeping thyme harm the plants in your "hospital bed"? My cat doesn't like thyme, but she loves garlic chives. She is an indoor cat, but she loves her potted plants - and usually leaves mine alone. If you brush your cats frequently, you can save the hair and put it in the garden.

The xbf/bff had troubles with a groundhog digging near his house. He tried all sorts of things. Eventually, he started peeing in the spot. The groundhog moved on. He has also been known to "water the hostas". Whatever. Anything that keeps the bathroom clean is fine with me. This could be complicated for those of us without y chromosomes.

I realize that moth balls are potentially carcinogenic and harmful to animals, but I still bury a few among my bulbs and keep a closet sachet in the outdoor utility closet to ward off chipmunks and mice. I also bury a few near the gutter where chipmunks used to get into the house. I had troubles with rodents getting inside when I first moved here. One little box of moth balls lasts me a couple of years. It has made a difference with the voles and skunks by my bulbs. Of course, I don't use it where I grow veggies or strawberries.

Zuzu, you could always find a young dog to keep your cats company - assuming they don't mind. My late Westie, Tiffany, liked cats and chased rodents. A Jack Russel, Westie, Cairn, etc may help get your rodents under control. Tiffany would chase them to ground and start scratching, barking and digging. It was a terrible racket, but you knew where the rodents were and how they were getting inside. She left the garden alone (except for soybeans for some reason). The only time she would damage plants or potted plants was when she was in pursuit of a rodent.

Winston ignores the rodents, but keeps the evil Pomeranians away. For some reason, he HATES Pomeranians.

I hurt my shoulder again. I have spent the week visiting doctors and resting. Winston didn't mind. He likes snuggling and reading or napping.
Name: Cindi
Wichita, Kansas (Zone 7a)
Charter ATP Member Plant and/or Seed Trader Permaculture Roses Ponds Peonies
Lilies Irises Daylilies Dog Lover Beekeeper Garden Ideas: Master Level
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CindiKS
Feb 26, 2012 12:18 PM CST
Seriously, ssgardener, the Humane Society posts descriptions of dogs up for adoption and some say "needs a home without cats" or something to that effect. Meaning this dog will chase the cats away! Or worse, I suppose. Can you use a 'have a heart' trap? Some places have nuisance laws for cats as well as dogs. Our area has a friendlier tactic--they have "sales" on neutering. Thumbs up
Remember that children, marriages, and flower gardens reflect the kind of care they get.
H. Jackson Brown, Jr.
Silver Spring, MD (Zone 7a)
Sedums Container Gardener Bulbs Vegetable Grower Hummingbirder Region: Mid-Atlantic
Butterflies
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ssgardener
Feb 26, 2012 3:31 PM CST
Thank you, Cindi. I actually have a cat, who can't go outside because of the aggressive neighborhood cats. Glare

The cats "belong" to a neighborhood cat lady. We have an ordinance against letting cats roam wild, and the police have been called on numerous occasions. But they won't do anything but give her a ticket, since the cats are healthy.

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