Will Bleach Keep Cats Away?

Yes, bleach may occasionally keep cats away. However, it does not work all the time. Regardless if it works or not, using bleach is an inhumane way to keep cats away. 

There are better alternatives to keep felines off your porch, home, or yard. Cat experts recommend that bleach should not be sprayed in places where cats drink, sleep, or scratch since it may hurt them. 

Why should you not use bleach to keep cats away?

Bleach is toxic for cats and other animals like dogs. Although the bleach that you have at home is not the corrosive kind, it may still irritate cats that are exposed to it. Commercial bleach used by professional cleaners can cause wounds and lesions on a cat’s skin, throat, and stomach.  Non-chlorine bleach can cause vomiting and tissue irritation. 

Meanwhile, bleach can have an opposite effect on some cats as they tend to be attracted to the chlorine found in most commercial variants. Some felines may even rub themselves and drool over it just as they would with catnip. There are other ways to keep cats away that are humane and won’t result in health risks. 

Bleach is the generic name of any chemical products that remove colors from fabrics or clean and remove stains in a process called bleaching.  The products are used industrially and domestically. Bleach is a diluted solution of sodium hypochlorite or liquid bleach. It is used to disinfect and sterilize pools to control bacteria and viruses, to kill weeds, remove mildew, and increase the longevity of cut flowers. 

Bleach is toxic to living things and the environment. Its fumes are very strong. When inhaled, it can cause health problems for living things. It is irritating and corrosive to the skin, lungs, and eyes.  

Repellents that work better than bleach 

For indoors 

  • A solution of apple cider vinegar and water can be used as a cat deterrent spray. 
  • Citronella, lavender, peppermint, or lemongrass essential oil mixed with water can be used as cat deterrent spray. 
  • Aluminum foil will help keep cats away from kitchen counters. 

For outdoors 

  • Plant lavender, peppermint, or citronella plants around your yard or garden.
  • Place odor barrier powders in the garden and within the parameters of your property. These organic powders mimic the smell of a cat’s predators like coyotes and foxes, but won’t harm the plants in your garden.
  • Use motion-activated sprinklers. 
  • Sprinkle brewed coffee grounds on the soil.
  • Lay chicken wire or plastic fencing on the soil. 

Do cats hate the smell of bleach?

Some cats hate the smell of bleach but there are also cats that find its smell appealing. Cats have a superior sense of smell, so the smell of bleach could be connected to their pheromones, triggering a biological and hormonal reaction to the scent. Some felines tend to rub, sniff, and roll over on mops and areas that smell of bleach. 

What smells do cats hate the most?

Here are some of the smells that cats hate the most:

  • Lavender, eucalyptus, and geranium 
  • Citrus: lemon, lime, orange, and grapefruit
  • Rosemary, rue, and thyme
  • Curry, pepper, and cinnamon
  • Banana and mustard 
  • Pine and cedar 
  • Mint, menthol, and wintergreen 
  • Dirty litter boxes

Conclusion 

Keeping feral and stray cats away from your property can be daunting. However, you can effectively keep them away using homemade or commercial cat deterrents. Some homeowners use bleach to keep cats away from their property. While this may work for some, it is not highly recommended since it is inhumane. It can fatally hurt cats since it is toxic and can lead to poisoning and skin lesions. 

Image: istockphoto.com / Voren1