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Have Cats? Their Favorite Treat Could Repel Roaches

White and gray tabby cat sniffing a jar of dried catnip

The idea of having cockroaches in your home is enough to make anyone squeamish. And, even if you see one roach, there are bound to be more lurking around. While sprays and repellents can do the trick to get rid of them, not everyone is keen on having chemicals around—especially if you have pets. Thankfully, if you do have cats, their favorite treat could be the natural roach repellent you’re looking for.

Catnip can work as an all-natural solution to any interior roach problem.

While it won’t kill any roaches you’ve seen, it will be an effective way to keep them from coming in.

Why is catnip such a great roach repellent? It contains a chemical called nepetalactone. This same chemical is what causes a “reaction” in your cats when they sniff or rub their faces in catnip. The chemical binds to their nose receptors and impacts neurons within the brain.

The same chemical that can cause your cats to experience a “natural high” is a deterrent for cockroaches. The smell is too strong for roaches, so they tend to stay away so they won’t be overwhelmed.

It should come as no surprise—catnip is a member of the mint family. Cockroaches don’t like mint for the same reason—it’s too strong, and can essentially create a sensory overload. So, people tend to use mint to keep away roaches, beetles, fleas, and other pests. A few drops of mint essential oil go a long way.

Speaking of essential oils, you obviously aren’t going to find a catnip variety. While you can find catnip sprays, they’re likely to fade quickly and the scent won’t be as strong. Using real catnip leaves is the best way to go.

If you want to get the most out of your cat’s favorite plant, leave small bags of it around any areas of your home where you’ve seen cockroaches. It’s also a good idea to leave some at the entrances of your home, so they’re not tempted to come in.

This solution works best when you’ve already gotten rid of any cockroaches in your house. Again, catnip won’t kill them. So, if you see roaches running around, don’t expect satchels of catnip to make them disappear.

But, once you’ve eliminated them from your house, you can keep them out for good by utilizing this natural solution.

Plus, let’s face it—your feline friend is going to love that you’re bringing more catnip into the house.

Stacey Koziel Stacey Koziel
Stacey Koziel is a news writer at LifeSavvy. She's worked as a freelance writer for over ten years, focusing on family and lifestyle content. She also has a background in marketing and social media, and is always eager to talk (and write!) about the latest TikTok trends. Read Full Bio »
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