What Smells Do Cats Hate

What Smells Do Cats Hate?+ How to Detect Them?

As we all know, a cat’s sense of smell is completely different from human beings; it’s not surprising that they also have different tastes when deciding what is pleasant and annoying. Some scents are pleasing to humans but considered unbearable to cats. 

For example, the smell of feces and urine that repels us most is somehow informational for your cat, which is of great interest to them. Many of the fragrances that cats hate are usually found in our kitchens or at home. You already have many things in your home capable of producing a discomforting smell that is unpleasant to your cat’s nose. 

If you want to keep your cat away from your backyard or a designated area, you should look at 7 smells cat hate or best essential oils oil smells cats hate. Therefore, we have done extensive research on your behalf and came up with this article where we will address the question of what smells cats hate. Without wasting time, let’s talk about what smells cats hate. 

What Smells Do Cats Hate?

Just like humans, cats also have a taste of their smell that is pleasant or unbearable. The scent of citrus fruit is unpleasant to cats. In addition, the pungent odor can also overwhelm your solid feline sense of smell, leading to your cat avoiding areas where the smell is present. Plus, cats can’t stand the scent of herbs even though we love it. 

The smell of some fresh Herbs like Rosemary and thyme is also unpleasant to a cat’s sense of smell. You can also use mustard or banana, as both are a big no-no. Many cat repellents have lemon and Eucalyptus oil, which also irritates the feline sense of smell. 

However, there is no exact science behind it because you will find one cat running away from lavender or eucalyptus smell while others do not. It varies individually from cat to cat. In conclusion, we can always find anything that causes citrus or chemical-type aroma, which cats usually avoid. 

To keep cats out of certain areas like your Garden, lawn, or home, I recommend using a strong spray or planting herb plants like lavender to dissuade them. You can also use your cat’s aversion to overwhelming sentience to prevent her from playing or going where she shouldn’t.

What Smell Do Cats Hate To Pee On?

If you’re looking to keep your cats from peeing on anything, use citrus fruit peels there. You can also use a diluted solution of vinegar mixed with water or solution or diluted citronella oil mixed with water. Both will have the same effect in repelling cats from peeing on anything.

What Smell Do Cats Hate To Poop On?

The smell of Ammonia is overpowering enough to keep your cats away. Additionally, citronella oil, cayenne pepper, or vinegar smell will also keep cats from defecating in your yard. A spray of Ammonia makes a great deterrent in keeping a cat from pooping in your yard.

7 Smells Cats Hate   

Below are seven smells that cats hate and cannot bear it. 


Yes, the ammonia smell irritates your cat’s sensitive nose. You need to spray it on objects you want to keep from your cat. You can also soak cotton balls or rags into Ammonia and keep it in well-ventilated areas. Since Ammonia has a powerful scent, it can also irritate you.


Just like Ammonia, cats are sensitive to vinegar. Vinegar makes excellent repellent in keeping cats away from anything. The smell turns a cat’s nose even more than some humans. You need to place vinegar in a small open container and soak it into a cotton Ball. You can alternatively spray it around areas or furniture where you don’t want a cat to be around.


Mothballs are also good at keeping cats away from anything. Cats don’t like the smell of mothballs. Mothballs are very effective in keeping cats from an entire area but use them with precaution. Mothballs are poisonous to cats & humans and should be placed out of reach of kids and pets.

Chilli powder. 

Just like Ammonia or vinegar, you can take the help of capsaicin, which irritates a cat’s sensitive nose. Most cats will avoid anything that smells like Chilli pepper. It is advised to sprinkle the cayenne powder on areas or objects where cats are not wanted. You can also Sprinkle dry chili powder directly.


Nearly all cats and dogs dislike the smell of citrus fruit. Whether it is lemon-lime or Orange, all kinds of citrus fruit produce a scent unpleasant to your cat’s sensitive nose. As it is not dangerous, you can use it around your yard and house where cats are unwanted.

Fresh Herbs. 

As I said earlier, you can plant some fresh Herbs nearby to keep your cat Away. Fresh herbs like Rosemary, mint, or basil are few that cats usually like to ignore playing around them. Cats are not exactly fans of fresh Herbs smell, and placing 1 of these plants in a strategic place will keep your feline away.


If you can, you should rub alcohol on objects or areas where cats are not allowed. All the people seem to love or hate the smell of alcohol, but cats always stay away. I recommend you soak cotton balls in alcohol to make them last a little longer and place them where you want cats to avoid. In addition, you need to make sure alcohol-soaked Cotton balls stay out of your kid’s reach.

What Smell Do Cats Hate The Most?

Our research taught us that citrus fruit smell is highly unpleasant to a cat’s sensitive nose. In addition to the citrus fruits smell, vinegar and Ammonia smell are a few that cats hate the most.

9 Essential Oil Smells Cats Hate

  1. Wintergreen oil. 
  2. Ylang Ylang oil. 
  3. Lemongrass oil. 
  4. Tea tree oil. 
  5. Peppermint oil. 
  6. Citrus oil. 
  7. Pennyroyal. 
  8. Cinnamon oil. 
  9. Sweet Birch oil.

Smells That Cats Hate: FAQ

Do Cats Hate The Smell Of Vinegar?

Yes, cats hate the smell of vinegar. Vinegar’s pungent smell seems to be one of those things that drive cats away. As it contains an acrid smell that is not appealing to cat-sensitive noses and also humans, it will naturally repel cats from areas where they are unwanted. 

You need to spray or Sprinkle some diluted solution of vinegar with water on objects or areas where cats are not welcome.

Do Cats Hate The Smell Of Citrus?

Yes, cats dislike the smell of citrus fruit. It doesn’t matter what type of citrus fruit it is; all cats dislike it. Fruits like Orange, lemon, lime, or grapefruit smell are unbearable to cats. As citrus fruit is not dangerous to your cat, it can be used to propel them from areas where they are not allowed.

Do Cats Hate The Smell Of Peppermint?

Yes, cats hate the smell of herbs like peppermint as it is unpleasant to their sensitive nose. Even though peppermint oil can relieve inflammation or reduce stress, it is never safe to use around cats as it is toxic. If your cat is vomiting, lethargic, or passing loose stool, get it checked by your nearest veterinarian.

Do Cats Hate Ammonia Smell?

Yes, the pungent smell of Ammonia is not pleasant to your cat. Using it in any area will keep cats away. You need to place Ammonia soaked cotton balls around the site you wish to keep the cat out from.

Do Cats Hate Lavender Smell?

Yes, the lavender smell is not pleasant for cats. This lavender floral scent can irritate a cat’s keen sense of smell. Even though lavender smells pleasing to humans, it is unappealing to felines. You can use it to deter cats from areas where they are not allowed.

Do Cats Hate The Smell Of Alcohol?

Although some humans hate or like the smell of alcohol, they were rubbing it on surfaces will keep the cat away from it. You can either soak a ball in the alcohol or rub it on objects you want untouched by cats. Cats hate this because they have an ultra-sensitive nose, and the smell of alcohol is intense.

Do Cats Hate The Smell Of Bleach? 

You might see a cat getting attracted to the smell of bleach, but these are very sensitive and toxic to your cat. If your cat accidentally ingests bleach, it can cause severe life-threatening health issues. Although bleach can be used in deterring cats, it is not recommended.

Do Cats Hate The Smell Of Cinnamon?

Yes, cats hate the smell of cinnamon. The cinnamon ground spices have the potential to produce an overwhelming pungent odor that is sensitive to your cat’s nose. Other common household spices that can deter cats include Ginger, Chilli pepper, mustard, and nutmeg.

Do Cats Hate The Smell Of Eucalyptus?

Yes, cats hate the smell of Eucalyptus oil. Geranium and Eucalyptus oil are the most used ingredient in cat and dog deterrent products. You can use a few drops of Eucalyptus oil on objects or areas where cats are not allowed. In reality, eucalyptus is also toxic to cats when ingested, so be careful and mindful.

Do Cats Hate The Smell Of Lemon?

Yes, cats hate the smell of lemon or any other citrus fruit unpleasant to their sensitive nose. You can peel off the lemon or chop it & place it in an area where you would like to repel cats from. The bonus: you will enjoy the pleasant smell of fresh citrus fruit.

Do Cats Hate The Smell Of Mothballs?

Yes, mothballs are very unpleasant to smell for Cats. But, mothballs are also very toxic to your cat if ingested. Make sure to keep the mothballs away from your kid’s and cat’s reach. If eaten, the cat may also die.

Do Cats Hate Garlic Smell?

Yes, cats don’t like the smell of garlic and will naturally keep away from it. The smell of garlic is very intense, which felines cannot bear. Therefore, because of the cat’s instinct for self-preservation, cats will stay clear of it.

Do Cats Hate Pine Smell?

Yes, Pine smell effectively deters cats from areas where they are not allowed. In addition, it is repulsive to many other animals making it a bonus. You must make a 50 -50 solution of warm water and full-strength pine sol.

Do Cats Hate The Smell Of Coffee Grounds?

Coffee Grounds are very effective in keeping cats off of areas & objects you want to protect. Even though coffee grounds have many medicinal uses, it has become an all-natural detergent for keeping your cats out of your yard.


In this article, you get to know many smells that cats hate. If you find your cat roaming around where it shouldn’t be, try feeling that room with one of the above smells to repel them. We have covered more than 15 types of smells that cats hate. Essential oils and citronella oil, including citrus and spicy pepper, effectively deter cats. 

Using the ingredients mentioned in this article, you can also use a specific scent prepared at home to deter cats naturally. I tried my best to not only help you learn about what smells cats hate but how to use it. If you like this article, then consider sharing it. 

Your one share will help many people in keeping cats out of their backyard, Garden, or specific room where cats are not allowed. Sharing is caring. Therefore do check our other articles, till then take care and goodbye. 

15 Surprising Smells Cats Hate

  • Citrus Fruits: Including orange, lemon, grapefruit.
  • Eucalyptus, Lavender and geranium
  • Rosemary and thyme
  • Mustard and Banana Combo
  • curry, and cinnamon.
  • Wintergreen,Mint, and menthol.
  • Pines.
  • Hot peppers 
  • Essential oils 
  • Herbs and plants 
  • Vinegar
  • Strong menthol smells
  • Ground coffee
  • A dirty litter box

In Summary

In order to protect them from this, you will need to find out what scents are toxic to them and what detergents are not harmful to them.

You can also find out what they react to by spraying them with a non-toxic detergent before you even try to feed them.