Does Vinegar Stop Cats From Pooping?

Yes, vinegar is an effective deterrent that can stop cats from peeing and pooping in certain areas.


Cats don’t like the strong smell of vinegar so will avoid areas that smell of it.

Vinegar is a great as it is safe, non-toxic, and effective thanks to it’s strong smell.



Do Cats Hate The Smell Of Vinegar?

Overall, the smell of vinegar is disliked by the majority of cats. It can’t be said that all cats hate vinegar but it’s true that most of them seem to.

This almost universal dislike is what makes it such a great cat deterrent tool.

A lot of cats seem to avoid vinegar, this is probably because the smell is too strong for a cat’s sensitive nose.


However, not all cats react the same and some may show interest or indifference to the smell.

The strength and type of vinegar can also cause different reactions.

more vinegar

One type of vinegar may be completely avoided while another type could be interesting to the same cat.


The best vinegar for deterring cats seems to be distilled white vinegar as this has a very strong smell.


Another good option is apple cider vinegar as this is also a strong smell that cats seem to find overpowering.

How Effective Is Vinegar At Repelling Cats?

Vinegar is an effective natural cat repellent due to its strong smell. It is also non-toxic and is a great cleaning tool.

As a cat repellent, vinegar can be used neat or diluted. It’s best to start off with a diluted mixture first as this is going to be less acidic and won’t be as harsh for the surface it has been sprayed on.

cat running

Using diluted vinegar also allows you to test the effectiveness of the mix and the solution can be adjusted as necessary from there.


Is Vinegar Toxic To Cats?

No, vinegar is not toxic to cats.

Although vinegar is safe to use around cats, cats tend to keep away from vinegar because of the overpowering smell it has.

Vinegar is low-cost and popular as a pet-safe product for cleaning and it makes an excellent non-toxic deterrent.

If a cat ingests a small amount of diluted vinegar it should not be a problem but the acidity can have an effect on a cat’s stomach.

The acidity of the vinegar will also interact with any food or medicine the cat has eaten which could cause further problems.


Therefore, it’s best not to let a cat ingest vinegar.

Fortunately, it is unlikely for a cat to want to eat vinegar because of its smell.

Will Spraying Vinegar In An Area Keep Cats Away?

Yes, spraying vinegar around an area is an effective method of deterring cats. The strong, acidic smell of vinegar is overpowering for the sensitive nose of cats.


cat spray

If cats come near an area that smells strongly of vinegar they will likely keep their distance.


The vinegar smell will not linger for too long so it is necessary to respray the area a few times in the first day or two so the cats don’t return after a few hours.

How To Use Vinegar To Stop Cats Pooping In Your Garden

Spraying vinegar is a good way to deter cats from pooping in the garden but it is best for short-term use.

The strong smell of vinegar will soon fade away when applied outside meaning it is most effective within the first few hours of applying it.


To stop cats pooping in your garden, first, clean any poop from previous visits and then give the area a thorough spray with a vinegar solution.


ginger cat in a garden, looking for a place to poop

Using a spray allows you to cover a larger area with ease and is good for use in the garden. However, the spray won’t last very long, particularly in bad weather.

Reapplying the vinegar solution is necessary to keep cats away.

Once you’ve sprayed the area, leave it for a few hours and then spray again.

We recommend spraying the vinegar a few times over a couple of days to stop cats from pooping there and ensuring they aren’t going to return.


It’s important to consider what you’re spraying the vinegar onto. The acidic solution can damage plants and negatively impact soil so it’s best to spray it onto walls or fence panels instead.

Vinegar is low-cost and is worth a try but it isn’t the most effective solution for use outdoors, for more options check out our list of the.

How To Use Vinegar To Deter Cats From Pooping Indoors

Vinegar is ideal for deterring cats from pooping indoors.

It’s best to use vinegar in a spray form for this and be prepared for the house to smell like vinegar for a couple of days.

Once the cat has begun pooping in a new place, you can stop using the vinegar and the problem shouldn’t reoccur.


Step 1. Clean The Area Well

The first thing to do is clean any urine and poop from the area and use a cleaning product to remove any bacteria and smells.

Step 2. Prepare 2 Litter Boxes

Before you spray vinegar in the area where the cat has been pooping, make sure you prepare a couple of in the house.

empty clean litterbox

Position these away from the area with the vinegar. If you aren’t going to be using litter boxes, make sure your cat has access outside.


Step 3. Spray The Vinegar In The Area

Now, use the vinegar spray in the area you want to deter the cats. As cats are very sensitive to smells the vinegar will encourage them to find another area to do their business.


This is why it is vital there are well-positioned litter boxes/ an open door or cat flap around.


The vinegar is great because it will not only deter your cat but it will also neutralize and remove any lingering smells that may have encouraged your cat back to the area.

Step 4. Reapply The Spray Regularly Over The Next Few Days

In order for this to be effective, the vinegar spray needs to be used over a couple of days.

This ensures your cat does not return to the area the next day to do their business.

Using the deterrent for a couple of days also gives your cat time to find a new place to do their business and helps them to start developing better habits.

Step 5. Reduce The Usage When The Behaviour Is Rectified

After a couple of days, your cat should have started using the litter box or garden to do their business.


If this is the case, you can reduce how much vinegar is being sprayed and how often until it is no longer needed.

Can You Spray A Cat With Vinegar Water?

No, vinegar water can be sprayed in areas you want to deter a cat from but should never be used to spray the cat.

Does Vinegar Deter Cats From Peeing?

Another common use of vinegar is using it to deter cats from peeing indoors or in certain areas of the garden.

Vinegar is an effective, natural solution that is ideal for this.

It will take a few days of applying vinegar to the necessary areas but once cats find another spot to do their business they shouldn’t keep coming back so you can stop using the vinegar.


Vinegar is great for dealing with pee problems because it neutralizes the alkaline salts that are found in dried urine.

Neutralizing this helps to get rid of the lingering urine smell and will stop cats from returning to the same spot time and time again to urinate.

Other Scents That May Help Deter Cats From Pooping

Vinegar is an effective option but there are some other scents that cats don’t like including:

  • Citrus
  • Mint
  • Lavender
  • Eucalyptus

but take care as some essential oils are toxic to cats.

Be aware using products like is not advised because failure to sufficiently dilute the solution can cause serious health issues and in extreme cases can cause death.


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