10 Surprising Smells That Cats Hate

Contributor: Mychelle Blake

Smells Cats Hate


Did you know there are smells that cats hate? Cats have very sensitive noses, and even a slightly unpleasant smell can cause them to recoil in distaste. Also, remember that cats do not like the same smells that people do, so while you might really love that expensive perfume that you bought at the local boutique, your cat's sensitive nose might not be able to handle your intense scent.

The Litter Box


Perhaps one of the smells that cats hate the most is a dirty litter box. If your litter box hasn't been cleaned in a while, your cat might rebel and start using the restroom in another place that is less appropriate. Make sure that the litter box is clean if you want your cat to use it!

Other Cats


While cats don't necessarily mind the smell of cats they are familiar with, the smell of a new cat in the household can send your feline into a tizzy. Worse yet, the "new cat smell" can cause your original cat to spray the house. That's a smell no one likes!

Bad Fish


While cats and people are very different, one thing they can agree on is that the smell of bad fish is unpleasant. Do not try to feed your cat fish - or any other meat for that matter - that has spoiled. He won't like it, and even if you do manage to get him to eat it, it might make him sick.

Certain Fruits and Vegetables


While fruits and vegetables might smell good to people, cats have another opinion altogether. Some varieties of produce, such as tomatoes and onions, can send your cat's olfactory system reeling.

Cats Don't Like Bananas


Cats really dislike the smell of bananas and it may be due to the potassium in bananas. It can mimic the smell of medications made with potassium chloride. Try rubbing banana peels on furniture that you want them to stay away from.

Citrus Fruits


Another type of fruity smell that cats hate is any type of citrus fruit. In fact, one way to keep cats out of certain places is to spray a citrus spray around the area to discourage their presence!

Fresh Mint


Mint is another naturally occurring scent that cats avoid in all of its forms including menthol. Cats can find inhaling this scent very irritating to their noses. Mint can also be toxic to cats although a cat has to eat quite a lot of it to become ill.

Household Cleaners


Aside from most being toxic if ingested, cats do not like the odor from common household cleaning chemicals. This includes soaps and air fresheners. The chemicals in these cleaners are too much for your cat's sensitive nose and he will avoid areas where they have been sprayed. This is why it's important to use gentle cleaners for your cat's litter box.

Spicy Peppers


Cats are not fans of spicy food or scents, so anything with a "kick" to it will not please your kitty. Peppers in fresh and ground form are avoided by cats. Cats can eat sweeter varieties of peppers though like bell peppers.

The Smell of Lavendar


A cat's sensitive sense of smell is irritated by many floral scents. Lavender, while lovely to humans, is very unappealing to cats. You can use it as a deterrent but be careful as too much lavender can be toxic for cats.

Cats and Smell


Cats noses are very sensitive, but with a little forethought, you can make your house a pleasant olfactory experience for the both of you. Remember that your cat is close to the ground, so avoid using strong smelling chemicals to clean the floors. Also, avoid spraying strong perfumes or chemicals anywhere near your cat; if you can smell it, it's one hundred times worse for him! Help keep your furry friend's nose happy.

Now learn how you can turn a cat's sense of smell to your own advantage by making your own natural cat repellent.

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10 Surprising Smells That Cats Hate