You know that small volcano that erupts inside your brain every time you find cat scratches on the surface of your car? Trust me, I understand just how annoying and frustrating it can be. But to be completely fair and honest, it is not entirely the cat’s fault. Those furry little creatures are naturally curious and for some reason find car surfaces super comfortable.
The trouble is when they have to come down as their natural instincts tell them to use their sharp claws to slide off safely; good for the cats but horrible for your paintwork. So what do you do when your truck’s hood or your salon car’s roof becomes your cat’s favorite new napping spot? Below are 6 answers in the form of tips and guidelines on how to keep cats off your car.
What You Need For This DIY Project And How Much It Will Cost You
First thing’s first, you need to stock your arsenal before you go out to battle the menace of cat scratches on your car. Below are a few tools and items that may come in handy for the 7 different steps described below. We have also included a price estimate on some of the items to allow you to efficiently factor them into your budget.
- Moth balls- If you have some in your garage or closet, they will be free. If this isn’t possible, you can buy a packet for $3 to $10 depending on the brand and amount.
- Cat repellent scents/odorants- Usually homemade and therefore free.
- Ultrasound pet alarm systems- $20 to $30.
- Static alarm mats- $40 to $70.
- Car covers- The prices range from $10 to $70 depending on a variety of factors including car design and where you buy the cover.
6 Steps You Can Take To Keep Cats Off Your Car
1. Using cat repellent odorants
As with all other animals with a sense of smell, cats tend to avoid certain odors. One of the most effective of these is the moth ball odor. To make this work, place them in a cloth bag and hand the bag anywhere on your car. The odor will keep the cats away for sure. Below is a link to a video on how to use mothballs to repel cats.
Other repellent odorants that work on cats include natural scents and mineral oils. Of these, lavender and orange are considered the most effective. All you have to do is sprinkle water infused with concentrated amounts of these scents on and around your car.
2. Setting up pet alarms
Pet alarms are probably the most effective as far as keeping cats off your car is concerned. These are usually available in pet supply stores as well as general stores and online markets. More often than not, they use motion detectors or ultrasound systems to detect presence of the cat on or near your vehicle.
Once the cat is detected, the alarm goes off scaring the cat away. Once the cat leaves, the alarm goes off and peace is restored.
One of the best pet alarms in this case is the Tattle Tale Sonic Pet Training Vibration alarm. It uses a motion sensor to detect the presence of the animal on the car and sounds an alarm. This works not only for keeping your cat off the car but also off furniture and any other off-limit locations in your house.
3. Using static mats
Truth be told, this is probably one of the more expensive steps on this list. However, it is one of the most effective on a long term basis ensuring that the cat learns to stay away from the car. The mat is designed to release low frequency static charges to scare the pet away from the car. The best place to set up your static mat is on the hood as cats usually climb onto the car from the front.
A great example of such a mat is the Scat Mat Pet Proofing Mat line .The mats function as described above and are meant to train cats and other animals to stay away from restricted areas including your car’s surface. The mats are available in different shapes and sizes for you to choose from.
4. Using pepper
Using pepper is the easiest and cheapest way to keep cats off your car.However, it takes time and a lot of patience before the cat finally gets the point and stays away. Cayenne pepper and black pepper are the most commonly used in this case. All you have to do is to sprinkle some on the car hood or roof.
As the cat climbs onto the car, its fur and paws will pick up some of the pepper. And when the cat is cleaning itself later on, the irritating taste of pepper will discourage them from climbing back onto the hood. This also works if you sprinkle some of the pepper around the car instead of on it.
5. Covering your car
Another trick that is bound to work is simply covering your car. This doesn’t necessarily keep cats away but it instead helps by preventing direct contact between the cat’s claws and the surface of your car. That way, you protect the paint job from cat scratches without denying your furry buddy their comfort.
This would be perfect if you don’t use your car very often as it is cheap, manageable and highly efficient.
6. Cat training and conditioning
Finally, good old fashioned training should go a long way in ensuring that your cat stays off your car. There are many ways to do this with the alarm system and static mats being very useful. However, you can use positive and negative reinforcement tactics to let your cat know that what they are doing is unacceptable.
Different methods work in this case with everything from simple shooing away to more extreme measures such as spraying them off using a water hose.
Negative reinforcement is without a doubt the most effective method in this case. This is where the cat gets some form of punishment when they get onto your car. The best way to do this without being cruel is simply spraying them with some cold water. Cats are intelligent animals and it shouldn’t take long for them to realize that they are not welcome onto your car surface.
Whether it is your house pet or strays, you will not have to worry about unsightly scratches on your car anymore with the 6 steps described above. The best thing about each and every one of these steps is the fact that in addition to being super easy and effective, they are cheap with some actually requiring absolutely no monetary investment. So try any of them out today and let us know how things worked out.
Did you find our tutorial informative and useful? We hope so. Let us know in the comments down below. And if you really like the instructions, feel free to share the article with friends and family in the same catty predicament.