Does Cinnamon Keep Cats Away?

If you have an unwanted cat problem, you may be looking for solutions. And you might be wondering – can cinnamon deter cats and keep them away?

The short answer is: sometimes.

Cinnamon can repel some cats. But it doesn’t work for every feline.

In this article, we’ll cover:

  • Why cinnamon may or may not deter cats
  • How cinnamon interacts with cats’ senses and behavior
  • Safety tips for using cinnamon around cats
  • Understanding cat behavior problems
  • Natural cat repellent alternatives

While cinnamon isn’t toxic to cats, its effectiveness varies. And it can cause stress with its intense aroma.

Keep reading to learn why cinnamon only repels certain cats. And discover gentler, safer ways to steer kitties away from off-limit areas.

Can Cinnamon Deter Cats?

Cinnamon has a very strong smell. This is why some people think it will keep cats away. But does it really work?

The short answer:

Cinnamon may deter some cats. But it doesn’t keep all cats away. Some cats actually like how cinnamon smells!

Why it may work:

Some cats hate strong smells like cinnamon. The smell may be too overpowering for their sensitive noses. So these cats avoid anything with a cinnamon scent.

Why it may not work:

Not all cats dislike cinnamon. Some cats are totally fine with the spicy aroma. A few even enjoy it! For these kitties, cinnamon won’t deter them at all.

So while cinnamon isn’t harmful to cats, it’s not a surefire way to repel them. You’ll need to try other options too.

How Cinnamon Affects Cats

To understand cinnamon as a cat repellent, let’s look at how it interacts with kitties:


Cinnamon has a powerful, spicy fragrance. When cats smell it, there are 2 possible reactions:

  • Some cats can’t stand the strong scent. The smell overwhelms their sensitive noses, so they avoid it.
  • Other cats don’t mind or even enjoy the smell. The fragrance isn’t unpleasant to them.

So cinnamon can deter cats who hate the scent. But cats who tolerate it won’t be bothered at all.


While cinnamon is non-toxic for cats, that doesn’t mean it’s 100% safe. Anything with a strong smell can put off felines. The overpowering scent stresses them out.

Here are some other smelly things that may deter cats:

  • Pepper
  • Curry powder
  • Lavender
  • Geranium
  • Eucalyptus

Warning: Spicy stuff like cayenne pepper or red pepper flakes can hurt cats if they eat it. So opt for milder scents to be safe.

The Bottom Line

Cinnamon only repels some cats who despise the smell. It’s not guaranteed to keep all cats away. And it may cause stress with its intense aroma.

For the best results, talk to your vet about safe, effective cat deterrents.

Using Cinnamon Safely Around Cats

Cinnamon is non-toxic for cats. But there are still risks with using it as a repellent. Here are some safety tips:

✅ Use cinnamon sparingly in well-ventilated areas. The strong scent can overwhelm cats.

✅ Don’t let cats access cinnamon in any form. This includes cinnamon powder, sticks, essential oils, air fresheners, etc.

❌ Avoid letting cats ingest cinnamon. This can cause allergic reactions.

❌ Cinnamon may not be the most effective cat repellent. Try other natural scents first.

❌ Never use spicy substances like cayenne or red pepper. These can harm cats if eaten.

It’s important to focus on your cat’s safety and wellbeing. Talk to your vet if you’re concerned about risks.

Why Do Cats Misbehave?

Sometimes cats scratch furniture, poop outside their litter box, or jump on counters. But why do they act out?

It’s usually not to annoy you! Cats often misbehave when:

  • They’re stressed
  • They lack appropriate outlets
  • They have medical issues

Before using repellents, consider:

✅ The root cause of the behavior

✅ Your cat’s needs

✅ A vet’s advice

Humane deterrents are best for redirecting cats. Never use products that will hurt them.

Natural Ways to Keep Cats Out

Want to steer cats away without harming them? Here are some gentle, natural options:

Smelly Sprays

  • Rosemary, lemon juice, and vinegar
  • Citrus peel, citrus soap, and lemon juice
  • Peppermint, eucalyptus, or lemongrass oils

Smelly Plants

  • Rue, lavender, geranium, lemon thyme

Physical Deterrents

  • Motion activated sprinklers
  • Plastic spike mats
  • Closed trash bins

Test different methods to discover what works best for your situation. Be patient and consistent for optimal results.

The key is using cat repellents that are both effective and humane. Never resort to harmful substances. Instead, stick to gentle natural options.

With some creativity, you can find the right balance for you and your neighborhood cats!

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Bill Kalkumnerd
Bill Kalkumnerd

I am Bill, I am the Owner of HappySpicyHour, a website devoted to spicy food lovers like me. Ramen and Som-tum (Papaya Salad) are two of my favorite spicy dishes. Spicy food is more than a passion for me - it's my life! For more information about this site Click

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