fox in garden

Cat or Fox Poo: How to Tell the Difference?

Last Updated on April 5, 2022 by Real Men Sow

There’s nothing worse than walking into your garden and finding something you shouldn’t be. You might be visited by a variety of animals during the day and at night. They may use your flower beds or lawn as a latrine.

These little gifts could be left behind by dogs, badgers or rabbits as well as hedgehogs and other animals. However, cats and foxes are the main culprits.

Cat Poo or Fox Poo

Even though cat poo and Fox poo are often the same sizes, you will be able to tell which animal left you special gifts by noticing the differences. It is usually easy to tell if it’s cat poo or not by looking at its smell, shape, colour, and content.

Recognizing Other Poo in Your Garden

Cat 

Usually 3 – 10cm in size with deep brown color, it looks cylindrical and it may be firm or soft. It should only have a mild odor without undigested content.

Fox

Usually 5- 20 cm in size with dark brown, almost black color. It looks twisted with a pointy end and it would look rough due to its content and the undigested contents such as bones, fur, and berries would be visible. The poop has a strong and musky scent.

Badger

Its size and color varies but you would often find it in a hole and piled together. The poop would be wet and has a sweet and musky scent without undigested content. 

Hedgehog

Usually 1.5 – 5 cm in size with black color, it would appear shiny with a tapered end. It would seem squidgy and has a mild odor with undigested content such as berries and insects.

Rabbit

Usually less than 1cm in size with green or brown color. It would appear spherical and firm with a mild scent. You may see undigested grass content along with it.

How to Stop Cats Pooping in Your Garden

Cat poop can cause severe pain. It is also known to contain diseases like toxoplasmosis, which can be deadly for pregnant women or those with lower immune systems. If you notice a problem with your cat’s poop, it is best to get it fixed immediately.

Remove Cat Poo From Vegetable Plants ASAP

Toxoplasmosis may also be in the soil. If your cat takes a dump near your vegetables make sure you get rid of some of the surrounding soil. Many tried-and-true ideas have been proven to work, but they may not always be successful for everyone. It is possible to try different solutions depending on your situation.

1. Chicken Wire

Cats will search for the right spot to poop, so it is a smart idea to cover your flower beds with chicken wire. When laid correctly, chicken wire can be hidden under the soil to prevent cats from going to their usual place.

To ensure that your plants and flowers can grow normally, it is best to lay chicken wire prior to the first spring shoots.

2. Electronic Devices

A variety of electronic devices are available that emit a high-pitched sound that is barely audible by humans. Some devices stay on continuously while others go off when they sense motion.

These devices  and their efficiency is still a matter of debate. However, if you do own one, place them directly at the entry/exit points to your garden or the area you want to protect.

3. Smells

There are several homemade remedies to keep cats away because of their sensitive senses of smell. Peppermint, Lavender, and Citrus are all things cats hate. You can spray your garden with peppermint to stop them from pooping in your prized begonias.

Remember to re-spray your garden after every rainfall if you use natural remedies. Otherwise, the odour won’t last.

4. Motion Activated Sprinklers

Yes, motion-activated sprinklers will send water jets around your garden whenever they sense movement. We know that cats don’t like water spraying. This keeps foxes, and other visitors away. A motion activated sprinkler system will keep your flowers and plants well-watered.

5. Dummy Cats

Dummy cat ornaments can be purchased that have glowing eyes and can be placed in the garden. The best way to use dummy cat ornaments is in combination with other methods, such as odors cats don’t like. Keep the ornament moving around in the garden or the cat will soon realize that it isn’t real.

6. Dog

Last but not least, a dog can be a great deterrent for cats who want to drop droppings in your flowers. A cat will not see your garden as its territory if you have a dog. However, getting a dog means having another mouth to feed. Dog owners will still have to clean up after their dog but it will be on the lawn, not near your carrots.

The final difference between cat and fox poo

There are many ways to tell the difference between cat poo and fox poo, and now you should be able identify the culprit. The appearance of cat poop will be consistent throughout. Fox poop will be smaller and more uniform. Fox poo will be larger and contain more bones and fur than cat poop.

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