My Garden » Forums » Gardening » Fruit and Vegetables: Grow Your Own » Cat using intended veggie patch extension as toilet - advice please...
Last post 09-04-2009 8:06 AM by Anemone. 23 replies.
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I am totally new to this forum - over the weekend, whilst preparing the ground, we discovered that cats have been using the intended site for the extension of our veggie patch at home as a toilet, so now we have absolutely no idea what to do...
Is the ground still safe to plant in or should we be doing something to 'clean' it and if so what should we do and how long do we need to wait before theground can be planted?
I hope you can help us!
Horrible, isn't it? Several cats frequently visit my garden for the same purpose and I'm not having a lot of luck detering them.
If it's just the veg patch then maybe you could cover it with twigs (prickly ones if possible) or mesh or netting until the plants get going?
Advise the wearing of gloves - nothing more than getting hold of a still warm poo in my bare hands.
Unfortunately for us, we did that yesterday - grim to say the least...
Our concern was not so much the deterring (we have now removed their cover), but whether or not it is still ok to plant on this site or should we do something to 'clean' the area?
Have a look in your gardencentre there is a product that detects movement and squirts a jet of water at it, I can't remember the name but I think they are about 40 pound to buy. Cats hate water and will soon leave your patch alone!
It works on a battery and only needs a hose connection
Or get a Dog!
Commiserations, we live and learn...
When it happened here I just removed what I could see and we haven't come to any harm [yet] from the plants that grew there. Rake it off and lift what's obvious - I don't think you need to do more.
It needs to be binned and not composted too.
The water thingy that geoff51 mentioned is called a water scarecrow, I have read that they work well in deterring cats. I've also read that if you're walking past it to remember to turn the water supply off first
I use a sonic cat scarer which has helped a lot, combined with our dog and next door's dog that runs up the garden barking as soon as she hears a noise, we are keeping relatively cat free.
As Anemone says, picking any mess out that you find should be enough. Some people use manure on their veg patches which basically has come from the same exit, but from a different animal.
I have two cats and also 'play' with my neighbours 6 cats in the garden. In return they like to poo in my raised bed. Well Id had enough of this so last week I put green netting over the bed and they now avoid it because they dont want their paws getting stuck in the holes in the netting. perfect solution.
As for the safety of growing plants in a poo covered bed. Think about the amount of animals that have poeed on fields and in flowerbeds over centuries. It what makes up a lot of soil. I bet at least 30% of the soil in everyones garden is from animal poo over the years rotted down.
Ye soil does contain excrement from various beasts usually herbivores though, cat and dog crap is unhealthy and also it can contain nasties that have detrimental effects on humnas, especially if the animal that does it's dirty muck in the garden is unvaccinated.
Fortunately cats deficating in the garden are one thing we no longer suffer from, since we moved up to a very rural spot in the North East - BUT, an item we did use to great effect 'down south' was a 'super-soaker' water gun, a childrens toy from Toys R US! It doesn't hurt the cat, but they get a fright and as previously said, they HATE water, you just have to have said weapon ready and waiting.............................
Thanks all for your help on this - our concerns were mainly down to the reasons digger has said, that being cat excrement is highly toxic (cats being mainly carnivores) - excrement from herbivores on the other hand can be used as manure...
We have small children, so whilst of course I would not feed them anything from the garden unless it was washed first, the particular area in question was intended for root vegetables. Our discovery has thrown all that into the air and I am now wondering if it is suitable for growing any kind of foodstuff at all!
not nice, but have you tried citrus, or oranges, as cats detest them! (the smell of the juices that is) and no dont throw them at the poor mites!! all the best little weed!
Growing Success have a cat repellant product. I have 2 cats - one of which is quite old now and despite providing him with his own loo on the patio he still loves a freshly dug patch! I scattered them yesterday morning and off he went and then as I watched he sniffed and walked away! Marvellous. Also, my daughter has 2 cats from next door who keep cr*pping in her freshly dug garden. So she went next door and told the cats owner and said can I dig your cats a toilet in YOUR garden. Which she did and Voila! No more cats (she also uses Growing Success repellant just in case!).
I thought it was cheeky of the neighbour to expect my daughter to go and dig her garden - but hey - if it works you might as well.
They may explain why all the cats use my garden as my neighbours both sides are mainly concrete or patio so basically my garden is a huge toilet!
Oh dear - that will definitely be why then.....