Rats have a powerful sense of smell. You can repel rats in your home and garden with scents they don't like, such as clover, garlic, onion, hot peppers containing capsaicin, household ammonia, used coffee grounds, mint, eucalyptus, predator (cat) scent, white vinegar and citronella oil. Because of their highly developed odor, mice and rats are very susceptible to certain odors. Cotton balls soaked with peppermint oil, castor oil and citronella oil could migrate outside the house or from less spicy environments around the property.
Sometimes using crushed red pepper and onions can work, but it can be dodged. When it comes to rodents, one of the most natural ways to get rid of mice and rats is with odor repellents. These types of repellents use essential oils, such as peppermint oil and cinnamon oil, to naturally scare away rodents. While pleasant to us, these powerful scents are known to be very unpleasant to rodents.
When faced with these odors, mice and rats often seek refuge elsewhere. Some people have reported that ammonia is effective in keeping rats and mice away because it smells similar to urine. However, many others report that ammonia is not actually an effective rat repellent, and the potential dangers of ammonia can outweigh any rat-repellent properties it may have. Ammonia can be dangerous if children or pets are nearby, or if you use certain products that may have a chemical reaction with ammonia.
In addition to peppermint and citronella oil, eucalyptus oils are some of the most common remedies for repelling rodents. Many homeowners who have children or pets are particularly interested in more natural rat repellents, as they are concerned about exposing their loved ones to any potentially harmful ingredients or other common but dangerous means of controlling rodent populations.