Cats are one of humans favourite four legged furry companions – until they start causing havoc in our back gardens.
They are naturally curious and adventurous creatures who can travel up to half a mile a day[i], often leaving unpleasant gifts for the neighbours of their owners before they return home. Of course, this is a complete pain for people who don’t own cats, and another well-known issue is that they tend to go after small creatures like insects and garden birds, making them a natural enemy of bird lovers across the country.
Do you need cat deterrents for your fences?
If you’re here, we’d imagine you have been having issues with cats on your property. One of the easiest ways to keep cats away is to install cat deterrents for fences and walls around your front and back gardens. We’ve compiled a list of the best deterrents that we have come across.
1. Attach Spike Strips
Spike strips are strips with rubber or plastic ‘spikes’ on them. They can be placed on the tops of fences to make them uncomfortable to stand on and navigate. They should always be blunt – your aim is to deter, not to harm the cats (which is against the law[ii]). They are relatively effective, but cats are smart, and may learn how to avoid the spikes to get into your garden.
The downsides to this method are that spike strips don’t look great, and they could prevent birds from coming into your garden (fences make an excellent perching spot).
2. Stick Down Some Double-Sided Tape
Double-sided sticky tape is an easy, cost-effective cat deterrent for fences around your property. Cats can’t stand anything sticking to their paws as they walk, so a line of double-sided tape could be enough to keep them off your fence.
Pick a strong, branded variety. There are also a few ‘anti-scratch’ tapes on the market that are designed for pet owners to apply to anything they don’t want their cats scratching. We haven’t tried this ourselves. But it could be a durable alternative to standard tape.
A drawback of this method is that you will need to spend time re-applying the tape, which can quickly lose its stickiness.
3. Set Up Motion Sensor Sprinklers
Motion sensor sprinklers are an ideal solution for keeping cats away and keeping your flower beds hydrated at the same time! They can be tricky to configure to target the exact places where cats are coming into your garden – but once you’ve got it right it should work like a charm.
If water from the sprinkler goes over a fence that you share with a neighbour, speak to them to ask if they are okay with this as it might damage property on their side.
4. Ultrasonic Motion Activated Device
There are a number of pet deterrent devices on the market that are a humane, easy way of stopping cats and other pests like foxes from entering your garden. This is a great, hands-free solution to keep them away from the birds and other wildlife you want to protect. The Pestfree+ Pet Deterrent is a favourite of ours; it covers a large area, isn’t audible to humans, and when triggered, an LED light and bursts of ultra-sonic sound come on.
Protecting birds from cats in your garden
We must remember that cats only follow their natural instincts and although it’s upsetting, there is no scientific evidence that cats are responsible for population declines[iii]. However, if your goal is to protect birds from cats, there are a couple of additional measures you can take.
- Position nest boxes and feeders out of the way – be mindful of where you put nest boxes and bird feeders. They shouldn’t be close to anywhere that cats can perch and jump from, but there should be ample places for birds to dart and hide if they spot a predator.
- Make climbing difficult – install bafflers on the poles of feeders or get ones with metal poles which are slippery. Attaching cut plastic bottles to them is also very effective.
- Create more cover – birds will feel more secure in gardens that have thick vegetation for them to hide in. Re-wilding is one way you can create natural
Effective ways to stop cats walking on fences
As you can see, there are plenty of answers to the question of ‘how to stop cats walking on fences’. To re-cap, the best cat deterrents for fences that we’ve come across include:
- Attaching (blunt) spike strips to the fence
- Sticking down double-sided tape
- Setting up motion sensor sprinklers
- Installing a motion-activated, ultrasonic sound device
Putting up barriers to stop cats entering your garden if the most effective way to keep your property safe and prevent birds from being attacked on your land. If you have any alternative suggestions, we’d love to hear from you.
Gemma Sharp is the resident writer for Love Garden Birds, a supplier of premium bird food and accessories. She has had a genuine love for our feathered friends from a young age, and has dedicated a lot of her time to learning all there is to know about them. If you’re struggling to pick the right bird feed for your garden, need help identifying a type of wild bird, or can’t decide where to put a nesting box, Gemma is the person to go to! She is passionate about sharing her years of learnt knowledge with the public. In her free time, she can be found feeding birds at home with her three young boys.