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Cats are using the underside of my porch for their bathroom. How do I get rid of the smell and stop them from using that area?
By Lynn from Alvaton, GA
Hi Lynn. As Lorelei implied, you need to make this area as inaccessible to feral and wildlife creatures as possible. These critters aren't going to abandon a partially sheltered retreat without such and who could blame them? (They need safe places!)
Lattice work is good for larger animals, but plywood, poly-vinyl or cement block, solid siding will make it more difficult for stray cats, other small mammals, and rodents to find free rent under your porch.
Honestly, these wild critters don't understand human boundaries as shelter is shelter is shelter to them so it's our job to be clear about where we don't want them . . . and I'm not talking about deadly poisons or traps, just obvious boundaries.
We have two porches of which the base is enclosed with cinder blocks. I'm sure the occasional mouse gets under such on occasion, but anything larger would have to dig a very visible hole. I keep an eye on these areas specifically because I don't want to "eliminate" an inadvertent invader: I'd rather put up a "no vacancy" sign - another cinder block or additional barriers. :-)
Find a good clerk at a local or box home improvement store or business to learn of options and ideas, or do some DIY internet searches, or check out a few books on the subject at your local library. I'm sure you can find at least a few solutions that will help you alleviate this problem without harming the inadvertent invaders. Good luck!
The lattice does not have to be permanent. My husband put door hinges on mine so we can get under the porch when necessary. Ask your vet for suggestions. That smell is horrible. Make sure to use the garden sprayer hose under there to wash the soil. Use a weed sprayer type attachment with bleach in to clean the underneath and helps to remove the smell. Using vinegar will help too NOT together as that is toxic. Anyway, you have to close it off to their entrance. My neighbor had this issue as well as they peed in her window wells to her basement. O M G! The same bleach or vinegar washes was all she could do. It smelled into the bedrooms in the basement.
I bought a house, and it had a small trailer attached and there were cats staying under the trailer. Well I threw rags with ammonia under the trailer, that kept the cats away and I blocked their entrance, but I have that terrible smell, and my dogs are going crazy running from place to place smelling the odor, and it sometimes smells up my house. I have to light candles all the time. How can I get rid of that odor?
Cat urine odor is very difficult to permanently neutralize. There are some products at pet stores, Walmart etc., that can help neutralize the smell if the problem area is small, however, from your description, you most probably need a pest control service to spray/soak the entire area several times over several weeks.
I have a cat that is not fixed yet. I smell cat urine from outside, at least that is what I think I am smelling. I would like to know what I can put around the windows to take away the smell.
By ladyhawk13 from Guelph, Ontario
Please get your cat fixed, for more reasons than the smell. He's marking his territory and so other tom cats will come along and mark it also. Cat urine is very hard to get rid of. If you get your cat fixed (many areas have low or reduced fees available), this marking process will stop as will the cycle of your cat having fathered hundreds of kittens, many of whom end up being euthanized.
I live in a trailer, I have cats outside that live under the trailer. They just moved in within the last few months. I have noticed an ammonia smell coming through my vents.
How can I get rid of the smell without hurting or poisoning my cats or running them off? I want them to stay, to keep the mice away. Anyone with any good ideas?
By Darlene from Dallas, TX
This can't be a good situation for you. If you are smelling ammonia it means they are urinating, and if they are urinating they are defecating too... and if you can smell the ammonia, then you are breathing it in and that means you are also -most likely- breathing in very minute particles of fecal matter, and that can set up a whole range of health problems .... the least of which not being Toxoplasmosis.
In humans, Toxoplasma gondii, may affect many different organs of the body, causing many different types of clinical signs. The respiratory system is commonly involved and pneumonia may result. The most common finding is a mild, flu-like illness that lasts a few days. Most people recover uneventfully, but repeated exposure to the lungs can cause scarring and lung damage.
Even if the patient sees a physician, the illness may still be attributed to the flu unless special blood tests are run. If ingestion occurs you could become infected and a carrier.
If I were you, I wouldn't worry so much about the mice as I would my respiratory system and my health. You could always build some sort of cat house and set out food/water to entice them to stay there, and then place barriers to prevent them from going under the trailer again.
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How can I remove cat urine and feces odor from outside in the dirt? A neighbor's cat uses the dirt outside my window as a litter box. Homemade would be great, but will also use ideas for store bought items. Thanks!
By AJ from CA
Well, eventually the product and the odors will degrade and disappear due to sunlight. However, the real problem is to stop the cat from going there, which keeps the problem ongoing. I would pour something they might not like in large quantities there: strong vinegar solution, or a bleach solution. You wouldn't need much. I'd do it every day until the cats conclude it is a bad place. Once they are discouraged for long enough time, they probably will pick another area.
Or put down oyster shells. That will definitely discourage them; you can find them at feed stores for a few dollars for a bag. You will not be able to work in the dirt either as it will cut your hands. I am assuming, perhaps wrongly, that the cat will put it's paws on the shells only one or two steps before concluding it isn't for them; I don't think they would actually dig in it.
Or you could put down tin cans for a week or so, that you normally would put in recycling. Or weighted down, wet newspapers. It might look bad, but only for a while.
Just ask yourself what would a cat never go to the bathroom on, in, or dig in. (07/26/2010)
I would put down undiluted vinegar where they go which should discourage them. Please don't use any bleach or chemicals harmful to animals. Vinegar is very odorous and unpleasant to animals, but it won't hurt them when they lick their paws. It is also unlawful to use anything harmful to animals.
If you have a dog, you might try putting some of his hair around that spot also. Most cats don't want to risk having a dog in the area. (07/31/2010)