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Outdoor antagonizer

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Over the past few weeks, I've found myself being awakened by the most horrible sounding cries and wails, accompanied a couple of times by very large, very loud *thud* sounds.

As it turns out, Striker, our 2 y.o. neutered male, has been getting riled up by a neighborhood street cat. We have a big picture window in our basement family room that overlooks the back yard. The street cat seems to come, plant itself on the patio and just lie there. Meanwhile, Striker gets himself into a tizzy, huffing, pouncing, crying, etc.

My question: How can I harmlessly discourage this street cat from coming around?

In the 2 years we've had Striker, this is the first time this has gone on. The street cat bolts immediately when I turn on the light. Well, I'd like hear your thoughts and opinions.

post #2 of 9
This past summer I used mothballs to discourage animals that kept digging in my flower garden. The animals weren't harmed by this and the smell kept them away. This worked much better than the commercial repellents I tried in the past.
WARNING: Do not use mothballs outside if there are small children around who might get into them.
post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 
Lorie D.: Thanks for what appears to be the one-and-only solution to such a problem. Its been quiet for several days now, and I'm wondering if the colder weather here (southwest PA) will stop this. But...I will file away your advice for future use, if need be.

Thanks, again.
post #4 of 9
Hmmm I don't really have any good suggestion Bill (as usual.. haha) If the light coming on scares him away, would leaving the light on help?? I dunno.... I'm useless!!! :laughing:
post #5 of 9
I think that leaving the light on at night is the best ides. I recently received a newsletter from the ASPCA saying that mothballs can be very harmful to animals. I have pasted it below:

Traditionally used to prevent clothing from being eaten by moth larvae, mothballs are also scattered in backyards to repel deer, raccoons and other wild animals. But unfortunately, that hasn't stopped domestic animals from getting into this toxic household product. According to the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center (APCC), the ingestion of just one mothball can cause serious problems in dogs and cats. Symptoms include vomiting, lethargy, seizures and blood disorders. Kidney failure and coma can develop in severe cases.

"Mothballs are supposed to repel animals, but they don't always," says APCC's Jill A. Richardson, DVM, who remembers an emergency call from a pet owner who reported that her cat had bluish gums and seemed very depressed. "The owners mentioned that they had sprinkled some mothballs around an open closet, and their son said he saw the cat lick some of them," says Richardson. The owners were instructed to bring their pet to the local animal hospital, and the veterinarian there consulted the APCC for recommended treatment--which included, in this case, medication, blood transfusions and oxygen therapy, "as the cat's blood was not carrying oxygen well," explains Richardson. Treatment continued for several days, and the cat was later released to her owner.

To prevent this from happening in your home or backyard, always keep mothballs in areas that aren't accessible to pets or other animals, and keep in mind that the most dangerous mothballs are the old-fashioned type, which contain 100-percent naphthalene. "Paradichlorvos is a safer type to use," says Richardson. And if you suspect that your pet has ingested a mothball--or any other potentially dangerous substance--call your veterinarian or the APCC's emergency hotline at 1-888-4-ANI-HELP for round-the-clock telephone assistance. For more information on poison prevention, visit APCC online.
post #6 of 9
Bill, With the chilly nights we've had and will have this week, your visitor will probably stay in his house soon, if he has a home. The light is probably good, if it doesn't keep you up all night. I know that there are sprays, but the great outdoors is not a confined area, so I don't know if the odor will be concentrated enough.
post #7 of 9
I read the newsletter from the ASPCA and I now agree with the others about using a light to keep the visiting cat away. Maybe a motion activated light would work best?
post #8 of 9

Hmmm....well Bill I'm not sure how much of a help I will be....

There is a plant that I've heard of that keeps cats and dogs away. I've even seen it in nurseries but I can't remember the name. Maybe a few of those may deter the visitor. Or perhaps plant a little catmint in an area of the garden where Striker can't spot the cat to lure the visitor there.
post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the helpful responses and the mothball warning. Looking back, I realize I forgot to mention that this visitor isn't a stray that we're neglecting to help. Its someone's pet who just happens to be an out-and-about kinda cat.

Jeanie: Yes, the weather has made a difference. Not only do I think its deterred these visits, but our basement stays much cooler and Striker has "rediscovered" how snuggly Mom & Dad's bed can be on cold nights. Sassy never gave a care; she'd just rather sleep.

Thanks, again, to everyone. It looks like I need to head to Lowe's or Home Depot.

[edit}Oh, yeah...thanks for the planting ideas. Unfortunately, our concrete patio is the "scene of the crime."
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