Gardens are meant for relaxing and enjoyment. What better way to enjoy the yard than with your cat or dog?
I have an article on a Dog Friendly Garden, which you can view here. http://thegardenersrake.com/pet-friendly-gardens-for-dogs-organic-gardening
Cats are so unique that although the Dog Friendly Garden ideas apply there are a few areas that relate only to the independent cat.
My two cats are indoor cats. I live by a busy road and don’t feel comfortable letting them run free. But they do walk on a leash, which they love. (The vet recommended training them for leash walking. She said it’s a great way to bond with your pet plus the fresh air and exercise is good for your pet.)
I also get stray cats in my yard so it’s important to have my garden pet-friendly. I have also found that some of the pet friendly tips help with other small animal control.
A few more basic pet friendly tips
If you’ve planted vegetable seeds in your garden, keep the seedbed moist. Cats prefer to dig in dry, loose soil. I use a straw mulch to cover the soil in between rows of vegetables or individual plants such as tomatoes.
- A permanent enclosure, such as an attractive picket fence is good idea for an herb or vegetable garden where you don’t want dogs or cat digging and using the area as a pit stop.
- Provide an outdoor litter box and outdoor scratching post for your Cat. They will have a place to take care of their duties without damaging your yard and plants. You can also put your litter box and scratching post in the yard in such a way that it is garden art. For example a sculpture scratching post and pool look-alike kitty litter box.
- Cats love catnip (Nepeta catoria). They will roll around on the plant and get very playful. Why the plant affects cats is a mystery. They also enjoy catmint (Nepeta faassenii and related species.) Both are tough plants that seem able to withstand cat abuse. If you want to discourage cats in your yard, avoid these plants or plant them in hanging baskets only.
- Massing shrubs or ornamental grasses can help keep pets out of certain area of your yard. They will also follow paths, particularly if they are running and chasing something
- Avoid chemicals in your yards and on plants if possible. They are toxic to the pets, other wildlife and the environment.