I live in the UK, in an urban terraced street where all of the back gardens are next to each other with fairly low walls.

Recently what I believe to be an urban fox has started using our lawn as its own personal toilet (it's not a cat - the faeces are definitely non-feline). I've purchased some of the scented granules that are meant to prevent animals from visiting but they do nothing.

It's getting to the point where my lawn now has many bald patches as removing the very unpleasant piles involves yanking out a handful of grass to get rid of it all - and then the bare earth encourages cats to come and use it as their toilet.

Are there any preventative methods that actually work?

6 Answers 6


With great difficulty I'm afraid. You could, though, stop making the problem worse by not tearing out grass in your attempts to clear the poop - better scoop up what you can and then flush the area with the hose.

Anecdotally, I hear that male urine around the borders of the garden, or certainly where you know the fox is entering, is a deterrent, never tried it myself, I'm female. Whether you try this out is up to you... but bear in mind, wherever you put any urine (however you do that), it's rich in nitrogen, so any plants in the vicinity may well start growing bigger and stronger, and that's not something you want at this time of year, when the growing season is coming to an end, so its best to spread it around a bit and not concentrate in one area.

There used to be a good fox deterrent on the market called Renardine, but although it kept the foxes out, it also kept us out, because we couldn't stand the stench either, so it wasn't particularly useful.

Some suggestions in the link below which you might consider:


  • Many thanks for the response - I'm trying not to pull up the grass, but this stuff is runny and sticky and I'm perhaps being a bit over-zealous just to get it off my lawn asap. I'll try the male urine suggestion - I'm sure my wife will be amused by it at least! Aug 21, 2015 at 10:49
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    Sand - buy some silver or play sand, sprinkle that on the poop, then try scooping it up, then flush with the hose. Don't use builder's sand though, it may contain salts which your lawn won't like at all.
    – Bamboo
    Aug 21, 2015 at 10:50
  • Ah, brilliant idea! Hmm, I wonder if cat litter granules would do the trick as well? Aug 21, 2015 at 10:53
  • Possible, might be worth a try. Best way to pick it up really is wearing a thick pair of rubber gloves...
    – Bamboo
    Aug 21, 2015 at 11:15
  • What about pouring wolf urine around the area?
    – Evil Elf
    Aug 21, 2015 at 13:08

I've got two solutions. One is to call animal control and have them set out a live trap. They'll catch and relocate whatever it is. The second is to get a scarecrow. By that I mean a sprinkle that is motion activated. The fox, cat, neighborhood teenagers, etc... walk onto your lawn to make a deposit and shhhh, chka, chka, chka, shhhhhh. (sprinkler sounds). Problem solved. I know I don't like to be sprayed with a hose when I'm doing my business.

Scarecrow knock off


I use diatomaceous earth. My urban fox poops in the same place. I put heavy amount of diatomaceous earth in area on his spot. It took a couple of times for the fox to get it. They lick/clean their feet it's very irritating to tung and feet. It worked for me BUT I stopped putting it there and it took 3 weeks and he came back. He didn't poop anywhere else in the Garden all that time so he was checking it out until he new it was safe.


Oh good grief...it isn't the poo it is the urine on a well-fertilized lawn that causes browning. Are you sure it is a fox? Shoot, I'd feel priviledged...there are formulations you could feed your female fox that stop this. Flushing spots with a hose is the best way to stop browning which is actually over-fertilization burning. Try mixing a bit of baking soda into water to water the spots and use less water. I'd find some BIG CAT urine to spray a few spots on the periphery. That WILL keep them away. Know any friends with bobcats or cougars? A zoo? Don't do the cat litter' thing as it will make...concrete. There are motion activated water squirters that would work very well to discourage any animal staying a bit too long!! Very inexpensive!!



I have used my own urine collected in a plastic milk bottle and spread on and especially around the borders of the lawn. I recommend a pint or 2 of beer or lager to improve the volume. One application and they did not come back. This also works for dogs. It does work.


The best deterrent I have found is cayenne pepper which I buy a large bag of from my local asian grocer. It stops everything just sprinkle some on the spots they have been ( I use a large sugar/chocolate sifter, a can with a fine mesh top) Remove the faeces after a day or to if they do this regularly.The pepper does no harm but the sneezing might keep you awake.

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