How to Keep Cats Off Your Car: 6 Proven Methods

Video how to keep cats off of your car

Cats on car

Whether you adore them or despise them, no one wants a cat wandering all over their car. The aftermath of tiny paw prints, paint scratches, or tarp tears can be quite frustrating. Even worse, cats may seek shelter near your car engine in the winter, risking serious injury or even death if they are there when you start the motor. Luckily, there are simple measures you can take to deter cats from lurking on your vehicle at night. Here are six proven methods to keep cats off your car.

1. Use Mothballs

The simplest and most affordable way to keep paws off your car is by placing mothballs in, on, and around your vehicle. Cats despise the scent of mothballs and will avoid your ride at all costs. However, it’s essential to note that mothballs can be toxic to cats. They contain high concentrations of insect repellent, which, if ingested, can cause digestive issues, neurological problems, and even liver damage. Therefore, using mothballs should always be your last resort when deterring cats from your car.

Mothballs naphthalene balls on wooden scoop
Image Credit: Faizal Ramli, Shutterstock

2. Keep Things Spicy

A less pungent and safer alternative to mothballs is sprinkling cayenne pepper around your car. You don’t need to apply the pepper directly onto your vehicle, just in the vicinity. It may take a few days, but cayenne pepper has been proven to be an effective cat repellent.

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3. Water Works

As most people know, cats generally dislike water. If your lawn has an automatic sprinkler system, set it to go off during the night. Motion-controlled sprinklers are also excellent for deterring cats from approaching too closely. If you don’t have sprinklers or they fail to deter the cats, a spray bottle filled with water can do the trick.

Lawn sprinkler spewing water
Image Credit: ariesa66, Pixabay

4. Sound the Alarm

To send pesky cats scattering, activate your car alarm. The sudden blaring noise will immediately make even the most confident cats run away. However, it’s best to avoid blaring the horns in the middle of the night or repeatedly throughout the day, as loud noises can be annoying to your neighbors. Another effective but less noisy option is using ultrasonic pet alarms. Their ultrasonic frequencies are too high-pitched for human ears, so there’s no risk of disturbing your neighbors. These alarms are useful for warding off various intruding creatures, including cats.

5. Natural Cat Repellents

You can easily create your own natural cat repellent at home. Cats detest certain odors, so grab a spray bottle, some water, and add a few drops of lavender, peppermint, orange, or rosemary essential oils to the mixture. Spray this solution on every inch of your car and reapply weekly, especially after rain.

Glass bottle of Lavender essential oil with fresh lavender flowers
Image Credit: Halil ibrahim mescioglu, Shutterstock

6. Have a Heart-to-Heart

If you know the owner of the mischievous cat, have a conversation with them about the issue. Ask them to keep their pet indoors or trim their cat’s claws to reduce the risk of surface damage to your vehicle.

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While employing these methods, it’s essential to consider the well-being of cats and adhere to pet-friendly practices. Remember, we share this world with our feline friends, and we should strive to coexist harmoniously.

To explore more tips and tricks for your daily life, visit 1mquotes.

Preventing Claw Marks


Dealing with cat-related damage to your car can be extremely bothersome. Consider trying the water, pepper, or natural DIY solutions mentioned above to keep cats away from your vehicle. If all else fails, have a chat with the owner of the cat or try parking your car in a different spot.

Related Read: 7 Reasons That Cats Hate Car Rides (and How to Make Them Like It More)

Featured Image Credit: Piqsels

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