* Prices may differ from that shown
* Introduction - I wish my neighbours read this. I know you love your cat and try to keep it active by letting it outdoors, but please think of your neighbours. We have 2-3 cats in our neighbourhood and:
1) they don't wear collars with bells, which is very inconsiderate towards wild birds (we try to increase their numbers by spending quite a lot of money on wild bird food) and
2) they foul everywhere in our freshly dug gardens.
This can be very frustrating and I actually consider it anti-social behaviour (on behalf of the owners, not the cats obviously). Although I love animals, I try to be hostile towards the cats, so that they don't get encouraged to visit our front and back gardens and I am afraid I don't feel inclined to get to know and have a friendly relationship with their owners either. You may think this is unfair / tough but believe me, when you have worked for 3-4 hours on your garden during the weekend and you find a lot of smelly cat poop covered with horse flies on Monday morning, you get infuriated.
* What is this product? - The product comes in a simple plastic bottle and it is a cat and dog repellent. Its smell is designed to discourage cats and dogs from fouling lawns and gardens.
Its full name is "Vapet Get Off my Garden" and the label looks like the dooyoo picture. On Amazon.co.uk however, you can find the same product under two different pages, titles and labels. The one page features the product as shown in dooyoo, with the title "Get Off My Garden Scatter Crystals". Its weight is 450g and its price is currently £3.11. The other page shows a smaller bottle, 249g, with the title "Vapet Get Off My Garden Crystals", a darker green product in it, a different label and the much higher price of £5.06! It's interesting that this label is in German, so the product seems to be a German import. I have no idea why Amazon.co.uk sells it, but it shows how important is to shop around and not to trust retailers. I used to be able to buy a small bottle (225g) from Poundland, but now they seem to only sell an imitation product.
The product is in the form of soft jelly-like green crystals which have a very strong lemony-citronella smell. Because the smell is so strong, cats and dogs won't want to foul that area and "over a period of weeks" they will be trained to foul somewhere else, i.e. on your neighbour's garden who doesn't apply Get Off >:)
Using the product is a simple task: you remove any poop and clean the area with water - and vinegar, I add - and then you scatter the crystals on the soil, avoiding contact with soft stemmed plants, grasses and leaves, as some discolouration may occur. I haven't experienced any serious side-effects by using this close to my plants. You must, however, keep it away from fish ponds. It can also be used on concrete, paving and around lawns and plant beds. A 225g bottle covers 25 m2. I noticed that in our case, a single use at our small front garden almost empties the whole bottle, as you must put plenty of it out there to get even some temporary results. Vapet also produces Get Off sprays for outdoor and indoor use.
*Does it work? - Not much. The principle behind Get Off is very basic really: it tries to eliminate previous fouling odours, so that the animals foul somewhere else. But cats, especially, can be very persistent and they love freshly dug soil. Even if you remove the whole fouled soil area and replace it with fresh soil, if they love the feel of your garden they will return! Get Off works for 2-3 days, but then the smell goes away and the cats return. It seems that it is sensitive to frost and heat, and after it rains, the gel becomes a transparent slime which is completely ineffective. Ideally, you need to keep treating your garden every 2-3 days with it to have any effect, but it gets considerably expensive because it is not a cheap product. This is its biggest disadvantage: to have to use it week after week and being expensive.
* Conclusion - I think this is a short term quick fix. Personally, I'm fed up spending my money on it. I recently tried alternative methods, like a combination of lots of bamboo skewers (although they don't look particularly nice and the cats will try going round them) and a mixture of finely chopped lemons, oranges, onion and garlic spread around. It's not a perfect solution, but it works as well; the citrus fruits, onions and garlic are more easily available, last longer (about 5 days) and are cheaper.
Some people put down pepper and powdered mustard to punish the cat after it licks its paws, but I think this serves no purpose apart from revenge, because the animal won't be able to associate this pain with having fouled in a garden earlier. Others say that some plants deter cats, such as coleus canina, rue, lavender, and geranium. I had geranium and lavender in the garden and they did not deter them at all. I've even heard that lion (!) poop completely scares cats off, but it's rather difficult to get hold of, and would you really like your garden to smell of it?! Ultrasonic devices get good reviews, but if you have other pets or a pond with fish you must check with the manufacturer. In our case they are no good, as the fouling mostly happens in the front garden and such a device would get stolen. I am seriously thinking of covering areas around the plants with slate, but why should I compromise the looks of my garden because of somebody else's cats??
The best solution is for cat owners to keep their cats indoors for parts of the day/night and encourage them to go to a litter tray in their house or garden, before they go out. I'm fed up with our neighbours leaving their cat outdoors 24/7 in heat, frost or snow. It's not better than a stray.
At the back of my garden I have a long row of fir trees, which tend to separate my garden from my neighbours. They are nice to look at and they give us our privacy however over the past few months these trees have become a bit of a problem.
Recently I have noticed a very unpleasant smell whenever I have been in the garden, at first I blamed the dogs but after searching the garden many times I found nothing and put it down to the country air.
We noticed the problem when my husband was trimming back the trees a few weeks ago and local cats had been using the ground underneath the trees as a big litter tray. I cleaned the area only for it fouled in again by the same cats.
This was a problem that was not going away, the cats kept on coming back and nothing I could do seemed to deter them.
After researching I found this Get Off my garden cat and dog repellent, which seems to be doing the trick and we are now mess free in the garden.
VAPET GET OFF MY GARDEN
Get off its basically a garden chemical which is used to discourage cats and dogs from fouling on your paving, concrete, lawns, flower beds and areas which are disguised by trees and plants.
This Get off my garden is a Bright green jelly crystal product, which comes with a very potent smell that is designed to confuse dogs and cats sense of smell, therefore forcing them to go to the toilet elsewhere.
Over a few weeks these bright green jelly crystals will train the cats and dogs and you will be foul free in not time.
I found as soon as I scattered the crystals under the trees, I was hit with a very strong overpowering smell similar to a very strong washing up liquid that even made me want to vacate the area straight away, so I can understand how this repulses the cats and dogs.
I was very worried about using this when I have the two dogs, as I did not want it to harm them in any way when they were actually running around in the garden. This is not harmful to pets so you don't need to worry about them eating the crystals, as the smell that is emitted from the crystals alone keeps any animal away.
HOW TO USE GET OFF
Firstly you need to clean up the area where the cats and dogs have been doing their business, which is not pleasant but if the muck is not removed the crystals will not be as effective and you may find that the animals will continue to foul in that area.
Once you have cleared all of the animal muck away you need to hose down the area, if it is a paved area you can bleach the area. I find that I need it under trees so I don't bleach the area I just soak it down with a hose and then apply the crystals to the area.
For the best results generously scatter the crystals around the most affected areas and surrounding areas, you don't need to completely cover the area in the crystals just place them in tiny little piles around the area. You will find that the small piles will be more than enough to discourage the animals for fouling again.
If you use this on flower beds then do not place the crystals on the flowers as it will kill and discolour them, you can apply them to the flower beds but make sure they do not go in direct contact with the plants and flowers.
These crystals start off like large pieces of jelly, however after a few days they shrink as the sun and ground absorb the moisture in the crystals. You will need to repeat the process every 3-4 days for the first few weeks and then this should be enough time, for the cats and dogs to have found somewhere else to mess.
It is strongly recommended that you wash your hands after use and that this is to be kept away from children, so you need to store it in a cool safe place where kids can't get hold of it.
PRICE / AVAILABILITY
You can buy this in a 225g plastic bottle, which allows you to squeeze out small amounts of the crystals at a time. Each squeeze will give you enough crystals for one small pile.
This bottle says it will cover a 25 square meter area, but I personally feel that you will only cover half of that if you are treating the area for the first time, as you do tend to put down more rather that less of the crystals.
You can by this in Wilkinson's for as little as £4.95, however I managed to get a few bottles in Home bargains last week for 69p a bottle, which is a great saving.
These can look unsightly on flower beds as they look like slimy slug pellets, however I think I would prefer looking at these and not a little present the neighbour's cats have left for me.
I find the smell if very potent and can be stomach turning so I strongly advise that you apply the crystals at night or when you don't intend to use the garden, as you will need to be away from the smell until it soaks into the soil or ground. I find that 8 hours is enough time for the smell to completely go, although they no longer smell after that period they still seem to work effectively.
I am very surprised as these have even stopped my two dogs playing in the trees, which is something they did all the time and it used to annoy the life out of me when I had to go hunting for them, so Get off has also stopped them playing in the trees.
The Get Off my garden crystals come highly recommended by me as it seems to have stopped the neighbouring cats from pooing at the bottom of my garden, so if you have a similar problem then give this a try.