Do Cats Like Mothballs?

Do cats like mothballs?

It’s a question that has puzzled cat owners and curious minds alike. The answer is not straightforward.

Although some cats may be attracted to the nutty odor of mothballs, they can also be toxic if ingested or inhaled. This blog post will explore why cats are drawn to mothballs in the first place, as well as the potential health risks they pose.

Mothball chemicals are designed to deter insects, making them an interesting discovery for cats. But these chemicals can also be harmful if your pet inhales or swallows them.

Your cat may also experience skin irritation from contact with mothballs. If licked or swallowed, it could result in vomiting, diarrhea or even seizures.

It’s important to remember that mothballs don’t really protect against moths and other insects; they simply mask their scent temporarily. While your cat may find them appealing in the short-term, they won’t provide long-term protection from pests in your house.

So do cats like mothballs? The answer is complicated: felines’ use of them has both potential benefits and risks.

Let’s start now.

The Dangers of Mothballs for Cats

Mothballs may seem like a good way to keep cats away from certain areas of your house or garden, but they can be extremely dangerous for our feline friends.

The chemical naphthalene, which is found in mothballs, is poisonous to cats and can cause serious health issues or even death if ingested. Cats are often attracted to the small size and shape of mothballs, which look like toys or playthings.

Unfortunately, this curiosity can lead to serious injury if they try to eat or play with them. In addition, elevated levels of naphthalene in the air can cause eye irritation, respiratory problems, and anemia in cats.

Natural deterrents such as citrus or vinegar can be used instead, while physical barriers such as fencing or netting can be erected in areas where cats are not wanted.

The Attraction of Mothballs for Cats

Cats may be attracted to mothballs due to their curious nature and fascination with new scents, but they can be deadly.

Mothballs are small white balls made of naphthalene or paradichlorobenzene, and they contain toxic chemicals that can cause respiratory problems and even death when inhaled or ingested. The chemical composition of mothballs is similar to that of catnip, which cats find irresistible.

Also, the pungent smell of mothballs can mimic the scent of prey, stimulating a cat’s hunting instinct. Unfortunately, this attraction can lead to dangerous consequences for cats if they try to ingest or play with the small, toxic pellets.

To keep cats safe from mothballs, it’s important to keep them out of reach. Natural deterrents like citrus or vinegar can help discourage cats from your garden or other areas around your house.

Alternatively, physical barriers such as fencing or netting can also be effective in keeping cats away from mothballs.

Symptoms of Mothball Poisoning in Cats

Mothballs may be a common way to ward off moths and other pests, but they can be deadly for cats.

The small size and round shape of mothballs make them look like toys or playthings, but they contain a chemical called naphthalene which is highly toxic to cats. If your cat ingests even a small amount of mothball, it can result in severe health issues such as respiratory distress, liver damage, and even death.

Do Cats Like Mothballs-2

It’s essential to keep mothballs away from cats and store them in an inaccessible container. If you suspect your cat has ingested mothballs or is exhibiting symptoms of poisoning such as vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, tremors, or seizures, please contact your veterinarian immediately.

You can take simple steps to avoid mothball poisoning in cats by keeping them away from areas where you have used mothballs and disposing of them properly after use. It’s also important to provide your cat with plenty of safe toys so that they don’t mistake the noxious smell of mothballs for something exciting and novel.

Treatment Options for Mothball Poisoning in Cats

Mothball poisoning in cats is a potentially deadly situation that requires prompt medical attention.

Treatment options will depend on the severity of the poisoning and the symptoms displayed by the cat. The veterinary team may induce vomiting and administer activated charcoal to absorb any remaining toxins in the digestive tract.

In severe cases, hospitalization and supportive care such as oxygen therapy or IV fluids may be necessary. Symptomatic and supportive care is usually provided since there is no specific antidote for mothball poisoning.

The vet may also administer medications such as anti-seizure drugs or anti-inflammatory drugs as needed, and surgery may be required in extreme cases to remove any blockages or lesions caused by ingestion of mothballs. The best way to prevent mothball poisoning in cats is to keep them out of reach altogether.

Store them in a secure location, such as a locked cabinet, and avoid using them in areas where your cat has access. Consider using natural alternatives like cedar wood chips instead of mothballs to repel moths.

How to Keep Your Cat Away from Mothballs

Cats are naturally curious creatures, but it is important to keep them away from dangerous items like mothballs. Mothballs contain a chemical called naphthalene, which is highly toxic to cats and other animals.

If your cat ingests mothballs, it can lead to serious health problems or even death. To protect your cat from harm, here are five effective ways to keep them away from mothballs:

Use Natural Repellents

Cats are naturally repelled by certain smells like citrus, lavender, and eucalyptus. You can use these natural scents as a deterrent by placing a bowl of citrus peels or lavender flowers in the area where you want to keep your cat away from mothballs. Alternatively, you can mix water with essential oils like lavender or eucalyptus and spray it around the area.

Secure Storage

Make sure you store all mothballs in an airtight container that is inaccessible to your cat. This could be a small plastic container with a lid or a glass jar with an airtight lid. If you have to use mothballs in certain places, make sure they are hidden from your cat’s sight and scent.

Use Deterrents

If you have a particularly persistent cat who won’t stay away from the mothballs, you can use deterrents such as motion-activated sprays that release a burst of water when the cat comes close or double-sided tape or aluminum foil which cats dislike the texture of.

Provide Alternative Entertainment

To keep your cats occupied and away from dangerous items like mothballs, make sure you provide them with plenty of toys, scratching posts, and comfortable spaces for rest and relaxation. Regular playtime and exercise will also help prevent destructive behaviour in cats.

Seek Veterinary Care

If your cat has already been exposed to mothballs, take him immediately for medical care and monitoring for any adverse effects of exposure such as vomiting, difficulty breathing, seizures, or even death in extreme cases.

Natural Repellents to Keep Cats Away from Areas Where Mothballs Are Used

Natural repellents can be a safe and effective way to keep them away.

Citrus, cinnamon, eucalyptus oils, black pepper, vinegar, lavender, and pennyroyal are all natural alternatives that can help create a scent barrier to deter cats from entering. Mix citrus or cinnamon oil with water and spray it around the perimeter of the area for an instant scent deterrent.

Sprinkling black pepper in the vicinity is also a great way to repel cats – they just don’t like the smell. For an even stronger odor barrier, mix equal parts water and vinegar in a spray bottle and spritz it around the affected region.

Rue and Pennyroyal plants are also disliked by cats, so planting them outside of the affected areas will discourage them from entering.

Physical Barriers to Keep Cats Away from Areas Where Mothballs Are Used

Physical barriers may be the answer.

From simple mesh screens to complicated fences and walls, these barriers can create an obstacle that cats cannot easily overcome. For outdoor areas such as porches or gardens, netting or mesh screens can be used to create a physical barrier that cats are unable to bypass.

Fences and walls can also be effective in keeping cats out of specific areas, like flower beds; just make sure they are tall enough and properly secured so cats cannot jump over or dig under them. For indoor spaces, such as closets or storage spaces, lidded containers and storage bins can help keep mothballs out of reach.

Alternatively, simply closing off the area is also a great way to prevent cats from entering it. When selecting a physical barrier system, it’s important to consider factors such as the size and agility of the cat, the geographic location of the area, and the type of barrier being used.

Additionally, you should always inspect the area regularly to ensure that cats are not able to circumvent your chosen barrier in any way.

Alternatives to Using Mothballs Around the Home or Garden

If you’re looking for an effective way to keep moths and other pests away from your home or garden without the use of harmful mothballs, you’re in luck.

There are a variety of alternatives that are both safe and effective. From cedar wood chips to essential oils, these natural options can help discourage pests without putting your pets at risk.

Cedar wood chips or shavings are a great option for keeping moths away. Cedar wood has natural insect-repelling properties, so simply placing them in drawers and closets throughout your house will do the job.

If you prefer, you can also use cedar wood essential oil as a natural moth repellent. Herbs such as lavender, rosemary, and mint can be used to repel moths and other pests as well.

Hang them in sachets or bundles around your house, especially in closets and drawers where moths might be attracted to clothing products. Essential oils like peppermint, lemon, and eucalyptus can also be used as natural insect repellents; just add water to a spray bottle and spritz around the home or garden for an effective pest deterrent.

Sticky traps are another great alternative that don’t involve any harsh chemicals. These traps work by attracting insects with a scent before trapping them on a sticky surface – no harm done.

Plus they’re easy to dispose of afterward, making them perfect for pet owners who want to keep their furry friends safe from potential dangers posed by mothballs.

Also Read: Will Moth Balls Keep Cats Away? –


In conclusion, mothballs can be a safe way to discourage cats from certain areas of your house or garden – but only if used with extreme caution.

The chemical naphthalene present in mothballs is poisonous to cats and may cause serious health problems or even death if ingested. Cats are often attracted to the small size and shape of mothballs which look like toys or playthings, so it’s important to keep them out of reach by storing them in an inaccessible container and refraining from using them in areas where your cat has access.

If you suspect your cat has been exposed to mothballs, seek medical attention right away for proper treatment and care.