How to Get Kittens to Stop Digging in Your Houseplants

Giving your kitten her own digging area can keep her out of trouble.

Giving your kitten her own digging area can keep her out of trouble.

If your kitten mistakes your houseplant for a litter box, the constant mess you're left cleaning can become a nuisance. Cats are natural-born diggers, but because certain plants are poisonous, it's best to correct their behavior when they're young, so you don't have to deal with it when they're adults.

Create a digging area for your kitten so she's less likely to mess with your houseplants. Grow kitty grass seed in pots and place them in an easy-to-clean area of the house.

Obstruct your kitten's access to the soil she likes to dig in. Cover the soil with rock mulch, smooth stones or mesh wire so she can't get to it. Alternatively, crumple up pieces of aluminum foil and place them over the soil.

Place orange peels on top of the soil of your houseplants. This might keep your cat away from your plants, because cats dislike the scent of citrus. Alternatively, use a commercial repellent spray that's safe to use on plants.

Arm yourself with a water-filled spray bottle, hide behind a corner or couch and squirt your little digger with water the moment she starts messing with your houseplants. Thereafter, place her in a nearby crate for five minutes. The sudden spray of water and the time-out can help teach your pet companion that your houseplants are off-limits. Be consistent and repeat this disciplinary action each time your kitten gets in your houseplants.

Move your houseplants to a spot where your pet companion can't get to them. Because kittens can climb, place the plants high on a shelf or hang them up.

Items you will need

  • Kitty grass seed
  • Pots
  • Rock mulch, smooth stones, mesh wire or aluminum foil
  • Orange peel or cat repellant
  • Spray bottle
  • Crate

Warning

  • Certain houseplants are poisonous to your kitty and can potentially be fatal. Ensure they're out of your kitty's reach, or better yet, replace them with non-poisonous plants.
 

Photo Credits

  • Martin Poole/Digital Vision/Getty Images