Squirrels In Garbage Cans?

Does anyone out there know what I can use to keep the squirrels from eating out of my garbage can... and yes, I do have a lid but that doesn't work.


Adele from Belford, New Jersey

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March 19, 20070 found this helpful
Best Answer

We use hot red pepper in our bird feeder. Since birds don't have salivary glands, they can't taste it. But, boy-oh-boy, the squirrels can! They leave the bird feeder alone. Once in a while, one will try to see if the pepper is gone, but quickly leaves! Only problem with the pepper would be if the trash collectors "get wind" if it.

Another trick would be to put a metal nut on each side of the can and bungi the lid shut. Never have known a squirrel who can figure out a bungi cord!

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June 28, 20180 found this helpful

Would they chew through it? I have a problem squirrel that keeps chewing through back of garbage and getting in my aluminum garbage can

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March 16, 20070 found this helpful

We had dogs in our garbage and nothing was stopping them. I finally got fed up and sprinkled hot sauce over the bags, they never touched it again.


I don't know if it will work for squirrels, but i hope this helps. You could also try putting out some corn to keep them occupied.

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March 19, 20070 found this helpful

You can use the Old Style Toliet Deodorizer. The kind that hang on the side of the toilet. We had the same problem with Squirrels and Raccoons. It kept them out, but try to remember to take them out when putting garbage out for pickup. They are very inexpensive to use and does the job.

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March 19, 20070 found this helpful

Not sure if the smells stay in the garbage cans or not, but didn't have any problems with them after I started using the deordziers. Give them a try and let me know what happens. Good Luck



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November 23, 20170 found this helpful

I just moved in a house and it's the holiday so no garbage pick up but I.have stray cats neighbor what can I spray on my garbage to keep them.from tearing it open

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By kstatter (Guest Post)
March 20, 20070 found this helpful

Why not put out sunflower seeds to keep them occupied. Most likely it's opossum, not squirrels. If it's squirrels, they prefer nuts of any kind, and vegetables. I rescued 2 orphaned squirrels, and they even loved my begonias,----to eat! I now leave out nuts nearly every day, peanuts to pumpkin seeds, and walnuts to pecans. I leave out fruits and veggies in nice weather. I made a small platform and hung it on side of a tree.

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By LRP (Guest Post)
March 21, 20070 found this helpful

try leaving mothballs or flakes in bottom of can.

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Bronze Request Medal for All Time! 65 Requests
December 12, 20070 found this helpful

Hi Adele,

I don't know if this will work for you, but I use mothballs in my attic to keep all kinds of critters away. I have had very good luck with this.


Maybe this would help you. However, for me, it would be a pain to have to keep replacing mothballs every time the trash man comes to collect the garbage every Monday.

But I did buy my mothballs at the Dollar Store and got a box of them.
Good luck and Merry Christmas to you!
Smoochie :)

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By (Guest Post)
January 1, 20090 found this helpful

Nice idea to bungee the lids shut - but the squirrels around here CHEW RIGHT THRU THE LIDS! We have gone thru 6 cans in 3 years. They go thru them in a couple days. Any ideas to make them not so TASTY?

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May 6, 20090 found this helpful

Glad to hear we are not the only ones with this problem. We just had to buy two new garbage cans because the squirrels destroyed the lids and handles and cans on three others we had. We also bought one of those heavy-duty, outdoor plastic enclosers for our garbage cans. I read that Cayenne Pepper is supposed to keep them away but we haven't tried that yet.


This problem didn't start until we started putting out corn for them. When we didn't keep the corn stocked fast enough for them, they came after our garbage and now we can't get rid of them. I personally advise against providing them any kind of food. --Peoria, IL

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May 12, 20090 found this helpful

Although the clang and bang of metal trash cans on pickup day may awaken you, a metal can with metal lid will insure the little buggers don't ransack your trash cans. We tend to forget they are rodents, and can gnaw their way through just about any material.

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June 25, 20161 found this helpful

I had a old blanket laying around the house I was going to throw out. I drench it with ammonia and cover it over my garbage cans.


Then every week I use a spay bottle with ammonia and spray the blanket to keep the smell strong. No problems!

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November 23, 20170 found this helpful

Go to Walmart and get some bungee cords. Hook the cord to the garbage can handles and over the lid to hold it down so an animal can't get the lid off.

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