Flopsy, Mopsy, and Cottontail may be awfully cute, but they also wreak havoc on the garden, nibbling away at vegetables, flowers, and shrubs. While Mr. McGregor’s solution of baking them into a pie is one option, rabbit repellents are more humane ways of keeping these pests out of the garden.
Rabbit deterrents include sprays that use foul-smelling organic material such as rotten eggs and garlic to ward off rabbits as well as granules of dried blood and urine from predators to scare them away. There are also physical options, including motion-activated sprinklers that spray unsuspecting rabbits with water and plain old chicken-wire fencing.
This guide will explore all the safe, eco-friendly ways to protect a garden from rabbits while reviewing some of the best rabbit repellent options on the market.
- BEST OVERALL: Nature’s Mace Deer & Rabbit Repellent 40-Ounce Spray
- RUNNER-UP: Liquid Fence Deer & Rabbit Repellent Concentrate
- BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Safer Brand Critter Ridder Rabbit Repellent
- UPGRADE PICK: Plantskydd Animal Repellent
- BEST TASTE-BASED: Ortho Deer B Gon Deer and Rabbit Repellent
- BEST SCENT-BASED: Enviro Pro 11025 Rabbit Scram Repellent
- BEST MOTION-ACTIVATED: Orbit 62100 Yard Enforcer Motion-Activated Sprinkler
- BEST PHYSICAL: Amagabeli 48 by 50 Hardware Cloth ½-Inch Chicken Wire
- BEST FOR PETS: Bonide Repels-All Animal Repellent Ready-to-Use Spray
- ALSO CONSIDER: Shake Away 2852228 Fox Urine Granules
Before You Buy Rabbit Repellent
Before purchasing any type of rabbit repellent, confirm that rabbits are actually the culprit and not squirrels, mice, or other rodents. Rabbits are more active at dawn and dusk, so keep an eye out for them at those times. Look for gnaw marks on the edge of leaves; oval, brown-colored fecal pellets; and rabbit hair in the yard.
Once it’s confirmed that rabbits are definitely responsible for the damage, there are various steps that can be taken to deter them. Conscientiously maintaining the yard is a good idea since these critters like to hide in tall grass. Create harmless disturbances like wind chimes, solar-powered LED lights that flash or blink on a timer, and spinning pinwheels. Also consider growing what rabbits don’t eat. While rabbits love beans, carrots, lettuce, parsley, peas, and spinach, they avoid produce in the nightshade family and plants with fuzzy leaves, milky sap, thorns, and strong scents.
When it is time to choose an effective rabbit repellent, consider the ingredients to make sure they are sustainable and not harmful to people, animals, or the environment. Some brands contain toxic chemicals, which are important to avoid. The top choices on this list have been vetted to ensure both their effectiveness and safety.
How We Chose the Best Rabbit Repellents
We researched the most sought-after rabbit repellents in their respective categories and discovered that the best options are determined by their type, ingredients, quantity and coverage area, longevity, ease of use, and other special features included by top brands.
We looked at a range of products to repel rabbits that rely on odor and taste, motion sensors, and physical barriers. The most effective options were able to repel a range of animals: deer, racoons, and more, as well as rabbits. The options that rely on odor and taste use ingredients like garlic, peppermint oil, dried blood, clove, white pepper, and meat meal. Other options use water or metal, which are also natural, nontoxic, and effective ways to deter pests.
To suit a variety of property sizes, we included options that offer 50 to 10,000 square feet of coverage with 28.5 ounces to 25 pounds of repellent that are easy to apply or install in minutes. Plus, select options can keep working from 30 to 90 days while withstanding weather conditions including heavy rain.
Our Top Picks
The list below narrows the field to some of the best rabbit repellents by type. They include both bunny repellent spray and physical options. Any of the products below will help keep those rascally rabbits out of the garden.
This simple rabbit spray option from Nature’s Mace combines the simplicity of a ready-to-use spray bottle with a low price, making it an affordable and easy-to-use remedy for rabbit problems. It uses a mix of garlic, putrescent egg solids, white pepper, and peppermint oil in a formula that repels using both taste and scent.
To use, simply spray it around the base of plants. The 40-ounce bottle is enough to treat up to 1,400 square feet. Its nontoxic ingredients make it safe to use around pets and children. After two applications 1 week apart, the spray works for up to 30 days and won’t wash off with rain or irrigation.
- Type: Odor and taste
- Ingredient(s): Garlic, egg solids, white pepper, and peppermint oil
- Quantity: 40 ounces
- A 100 percent biodegradable, nontoxic, and easy-to-use formula
- Made from natural and plant-based ingredients; it’s safe to use around produce, pets, and people
- Provides year-round deer and rabbit control that lasts for 30 days at a time
- Weather-resistant; will not easily wash away in the rain
- Some users have reported poor or defective packaging
- Some users said the spray nozzle did not work properly
Get the Nature’s Mace rabbit repellent at Amazon.
Spray repellents offer one of the easiest ways to keep rabbits out of the garden, and this Liquid Fence product is one of the best. It uses a mix of egg solids and garlic, two ingredients that rabbits can’t stand, to drive them away. Once dry, which takes about 6 hours, the scent is no longer detectable to humans but remains pungent to pesky animals.
Liquid Fence resists rain and works for about 3 weeks before reapplication is required. A versatile option, it will also deter deer, another common garden intruder, from munching on the veggies or flowers. This concentrated formula comes in a 40-ounce bottle, which is enough to cover about 6,000 square feet.
- Type: Odor and taste
- Ingredient(s): Egg solids and garlic
- Quantity: 40 ounces
- Concentrated formula covers 6,000 square feet, starts working immediately, and is resistant to rain
- Each application deters rabbits and deer for about 3 weeks, yet is harmless to plants and animals when used and stored as directed
- Rabbit and deer’s natural aversion to the scent/taste of these active ingredients will never diminish
- May have a strong, unappealing smell when initially applied
- The formula can take up to 6 hours to dry
Get the Liquid Fence rabbit repellent at Amazon, The Home Depot, or Lowe’s.
This natural rabbit repellent is budget-friendly but a total turnoff to rabbits, so it’s a great penny-pinching way to keep pests out of the garden. Its main ingredients are garlic, which tastes foul to rabbits and deer, and putrescent egg, which emits the scent of a dead animal, indicating to rabbits that a predator may be nearby. Though the spray’s smell is noticeable when applied, after a few hours, it dries and is undetectable to humans.
The weather-resistant formula works for up to 90 days, so as one of the longest-lasting repellents on the market, it’s also among the most affordable. It’s available in a 32-ounce ready-to-use spray bottle that covers up to 500 square feet.
- Type: Odor and taste
- Ingredient(s): Garlic and putrescent egg
- Quantity: 32 ounces
- The all-natural formula consists of putrescent egg and garlic
- Fast-acting, weather-resistant, long-lasting repellent works for up to 90 days and provides season-long control
- Once it has dried, the formula is odorless to humans
- Unpleasant odor may bother some people when the product is first applied
Get the Safer Brand rabbit repellent at Amazon, The Home Depot, Lowe’s, or Tractor Supply Co.
If rabbits aren’t the only uninvited guests in the garden, consider this repellent that also helps to banish deer, elk, squirrels, and chipmunks among other creatures interested in nibbling on flowers and produce. It relies on dried cow and pig blood to trick rabbits and other animals into believing that predators are near, causing them to flee. Yet it’s made of all-natural ingredients and is listed by the Organic Materials Review Institute (OMRI) for organic use, so it’s safe to sprinkle freely in fruit and vegetable gardens as well as on flowers and shrubs.
Plantskydd is easy to apply thanks to its handy 3.5-pound shaker-style bottle, which is enough to treat 1,750 square feet (also available in an 8-pound size to cover up to 4,000 square feet). Simply shake the product around the base of plants that are 2 feet tall and shorter. This repellent is water-resistant and lasts up to 8 weeks before needing a reapplication.
- Type: Odor and taste
- Ingredient(s): Dried blood of cows and pigs
- Quantity: 3.5 pounds
- The 3.5-pound shaker jug covers up to 1,750 square feet and remains effective for up to 6 to 8 weeks during the growing season
- It’s easy to apply straight from the container by sprinkling liberally on the ground
- All-natural ingredients; safe to use on fruit and vegetable gardens
- Repels a variety of animals, including rabbits, deer, elk, moose, voles, hares, chipmunks, squirrels, and other small herbivores
- OMRI listed for organic use
- Fairly expensive choice compared to other rabbit repellents
Get the Plantskydd rabbit repellent at Amazon.
With a recipe that includes clove oil, egg solids, and cinnamon oil, this spray creates a taste and smell that is unpleasant to rabbits, deer, and other animals. And while people may consider the odor unpleasant when first applied, once dry, humans can no longer smell it.
This Ortho product is one of the more versatile repellents on the market, as it comes in a concentrate, granules, and a hose-end sprayer. The spray comes in a 32-ounce bottle that covers 10,000 square feet and will last for 30 days before requiring reapplication. This product is a natural rabbit deterrent but should not come into contact with vegetables or other edible plants.
- Type: Odor and taste
- Ingredient(s): Clove oil, egg solids, and cinnamon oil
- Quantity: 32 ounces
- The versatile product is available in concentrate, granules, and a hose-end spray as well as the spray bottle
- The 32-ounce bottle offers 10,000 square feet of coverage
- Rabbits and deer hate the smell and taste, but the odor is undetectable to humans after the spray dries
- Cannot be used on any edible plants
Get the Ortho rabbit repellent at Amazon.
This granule-based repellent boasts a combination of ingredients likely to banish even the most determined rabbits. The formula includes dried blood, white pepper, clove, meat meal, and garlic, all of which produce an odor that drives rabbits away. Simply sprinkle it around shrubs and gardens where pesky rabbits are prone to invading.
The rain-resistant pellets do not give off a harsh odor to humans, and they will not harm animals or the environment. Rabbit Scram comes in 25-pound tubs, which is enough to cover about 28,000 square feet, making it an ideal option for those with a big rabbit population to contend with or who need to treat a large area.
- Type: Odor
- Ingredient(s): Dried blood, white pepper, clove, and garlic
- Quantity: 25 pounds
- This product is 100 percent all-natural, biodegradable, and organic
- Environmentally safe; won’t harm animals, people, or plants
- Easy to apply and quickly establishes a band of protection
- Works during all seasons and is rain-resistant
Get the Enviro Pro rabbit repellent at Amazon.
A motion-activated water sprinkler is perhaps the most humane wildlife deterrent available. This sprinkler detects encroaching critters and gives a strong burst of water to startle rabbits and other pests, driving them away. It pairs a powerful sprinkler with a motion detector that scans the yard day and night. When it senses motion, it unleashes the sprinkler, hosing down the intruder and causing it to flee.
With a 120-degree viewing angle and range of 40 feet, this sensor can pick up movement over an area of 1,600 square feet. The motion detector, which has an adjustable line of sight, can also discern between movement from animals and blowing trees and plants, eliminating false triggers. A long spike keeps the sprinkler firmly rooted to the ground. The Yard Enforcer uses four AA batteries and attaches to a standard garden hose. In addition to repelling animals, this model also doubles as a sprinkler with a programmable 30-minute timed watering cycle.
- Type: Motion activated
- Ingredient(s): Water
- Quantity: N/A
- A 120-degree viewing angle plus an adjustable line of sight helps drive pests out of areas where they may hide
- The motion-activated sprinkler, which attaches to standard garden hoses, covers 1,600 square feet
- Programmable 30-minute timed watering cycle and setting controls allow for daytime, nighttime, or 24-hour activation; it can also be manually turned on and off
- Protects trees, plants, flower beds, and veggie garden from deer, rabbits, squirrels, mice, rats, and birds
- Produces noise when activated
- Requires 4 AA batteries, which are not Included
Get the Orbit rabbit repellent at Amazon or Ace Hardware.
Sometimes the best way to keep rabbits out of the garden is by placing a strong physical barrier between them and the plants. With its small ½-inch holes, this chicken wire is ideal for creating a fence around a garden, keeping even the smallest bunnies out.
A 19-gauge thickness makes it durable while still being thin enough to cut with wire cutters for installation. The 4-foot height is tall enough to keep out even larger rabbits. It comes in 50-foot and 100-foot rust-resistant galvanized rolls. For best results, bury the fence 4 to 6 inches into the ground to prevent rabbits from burrowing under it.
- Type: Physical
- Ingredient(s): 19-gauge galvanized steel wire
- Quantity: 50 to 100 feet
- The 19-gauge galvanized material is rust-resistant and durable
- Easy to install; cut following the marker lines and hammer into place
- Between the 4-foot height and the ½-inch holes, the chicken wire is well sized to keep rabbits and other small animals out of the garden
- Installation is required, so it’s more difficult to use than sprays or granules
- If not installed deeply enough into the ground, rabbits could burrow underneath
Get the Amagabeli rabbit repellent at Amazon.
Those looking for an easy way to keep rabbits and other pests out of the garden without harming pets will want to consider this spray. It contains all-natural ingredients and can remain effective for up to 2 months. Since it comes ready to use in a convenient spray nozzle bottle, there’s no extra prep work involved.
All the ingredients are biodegradable and will not harm ornamentals, edibles, or other desirable plants in the yard or garden. Although the odor is strong and may be off-putting to humans, it does the job to repel animals causing a nuisance.
- Type: Odor
- Ingredient(s): Clove oil, garlic oil, and putrescent whole egg solids
- Quantity: 32 ounces
- The repellent is easy to use in a convenient spray-nozzle bottle
- Natural formula deters a wide variety of garden pests including rabbits, deer, mice, chipmunks, squirrels, and more
- This dog-safe rabbit repellent is appropriate to use (as directed) around people and pets
- Biodegradable ingredients will not harm plants in the garden and yard
- Pungent odor
- Some customers have complained that it doesn’t last 2 months
Get the Bonide rabbit repellent at Amazon or The Home Depot.
Foxes are one of rabbits’ greatest predators, so it makes sense that the scent of their urine would send bunnies hopping quickly away. The formula of Shake Away relies on fox urine in time-released and rainproof granules. It comes in a shaker container that makes it easy to apply with no messy mixing.
Shake Away granules are also versatile. In addition to repulsing rabbits, they’ll also repel other pests, including groundhogs and opossums. Shake Away granules are available in a 28.5-ounce container or 5-pound tub.
- Type: Odor
- Ingredient(s): Fox urine
- Quantity: 28.5 ounces
- Composed of a porous, swellable, inorganic mineral that is rainproof and works in various weather conditions
- Easy-to-apply time-release formula protects gardens, flower beds, and other landscaped areas of up to 10,000 square feet for up to 6 weeks when applied as directed
- The nontoxic organic ingredient takes advantage of the natural predator-prey relationship to banish pests
- Some users complained that the product was ineffective
Get the Shake Away rabbit repellent at Amazon, Ace Hardware, or Overstock.
Or, DIY Your Own Rabbit Repellent
Although there are several effective rabbit-repellent products on the market, creating a natural homemade rabbit repellent saves money and cuts down on product packaging waste. One simple homemade recipe suggested by Wilson Bros Gardens includes the following ingredients: an empty 1-gallon container (such as a milk jug), five garlic cloves, 1 teaspoon of crushed red hot pepper (such as cayenne), and 1 tablespoon dish soap (choose a natural, nontoxic brand). Fill the container with water. Crush the garlic cloves into the water, add the remaining ingredients, and shake well. Leave it outside in direct sunlight for 2 days. To use, shake well and pour immediately onto the base of plants or pour into a spray bottle and apply by spraying. Use once a week until the rabbits stop visiting.
What to Consider When Choosing the Best Rabbit Repellent
Rabbit repellents range from sprays to motion-activated sprinklers to fencing. Learn about all of the options available for repelling rabbits as well as the important factors to consider when shopping for one.
Types of Rapid Repellent
Rabbit repellent comes in a variety of forms that scare rabbits away using the smell of predators.
- Odor and taste: Odor- and taste-based repellents come in sprays and granules that emit a smell and taste that is either unpleasant to rabbits or that mimics the scent of a predator. When a rabbit smells or tastes the repellent, it hops away. Odor- and taste-based repellents typically work with deer as well as rabbits.
- Motion-activated: Motion-activated rabbit repellents consist of a garden sprinkler with a motion sensor. When pests trip the motion sensor, the sprinkler comes on, spraying the animal with water and scaring it away. The motion sensor uses batteries or a solar cell for power and is typically sensitive enough that only small animals can trigger it.
- Ultrasonic: Ultrasonic repellents consist of a small box attached to a stake that sticks in the ground. The repellent periodically releases a tone that is inaudible to humans but irritating to rabbits, driving them away. These repellents typically have a solar panel that charges the device’s battery. The manufacturers of these devices also claim they work against other four-legged pests, including moles. However, there is no scientific evidence showing that ultrasonic pest devices for residential applications are effective. Therefore, we cannot recommend using ultrasonic repellents to treat common pest problems.
- Physical: Sometimes, a good old-fashioned fence is ideal to keep rabbits out of the garden. Chicken wire is one of the best fencing options because the tight holes prevent rabbits from squeezing through. Rabbits can burrow, however, so a fence typically must be buried in the ground at least 4 inches to prevent rabbits from digging their way into the garden.
Taste- and odor-based deterrents come in various forms, including sprays, granules, and concentrated liquid repellents. Sprays present the most convenient option since they are ready to use and don’t require mixing. Simply point and spray to treat the area. Granules typically come in shaker bottles that make them also easy to apply. While both sprays and granules are water-resistant, granules typically hold up better under wet conditions. Concentrated repellents require mixing; however, they offer much greater coverage and typically are a better value than ready-to-use granules or spray products.
Common ingredients for liquid and granule pest repellents are garlic, putrescent egg solids, white pepper, and even the urine of pests’ predators. Ingredients such as garlic and white pepper are foul smelling and foul tasting to rabbits, causing them to look elsewhere for a meal. Other ingredients play on a rabbit’s primal fears. Solid egg ingredients emit the odor of a decaying animal, signaling to a rabbit that a predator may be close, triggering its instinct to flee. Granules work similarly, using dry animal blood and urine that smells like predators to keep rabbits away. Be sure to avoid any product that includes such toxic ingredients as glyphosate, atrazine, simazine, and/or paraquat, which can harm the environment, pets, and people.
Natural rabbit-repellent products are designed to be humane and environmentally friendly. The substances used in spray, concentrated, and granule products consist of natural ingredients from plants, such as pepper and garlic, and animals, such as dried blood and urine. While these repellents should not be sprayed directly on edible foods, they are nontoxic, which makes them safe to treat the ground around these plants.
Nonchemical products such as sprinklers may cause distress for an animal, but they do not hurt rabbits, making them a humane as well as an environmentally friendly option for repelling these floppy-eared invaders.
If you have questions about how to apply rabbit repellent or when to use it, then read on for answers to these and other commonly asked questions about these products.
Q. Can I use rabbit repellents in the winter?
Yes. In fact, rabbits remain active during the winter, which means they may still be chomping on trees and shrubs even after they have lost their leaves. Most rabbit repellents will work in cold or warm weather.
Q. Do ultrasonic devices work to repel rodents?
Ultrasonic pest devices are tools that emit sound to repel, deter, or kill unwanted animals such as insects, rodents, birds and large mammals. Despite manufacturers advertising how their products effectively deter pests, there is no scientific evidence to support these claims. For example, a 2015 study conducted by the University of Arizona concluded that commercially available ultrasonic pest devices were not an effective way to address pest problems.
Q. Do I have to reapply repellent after it rains?
Most repellents are resistant to rain. However, that resistance is limited. Spray and granule repellents may begin to lose their efficacy after a heavy rain, requiring reapplication.
Q. What’s the best time to apply rabbit repellent?
Most rabbits do their feeding at night, so apply repellent toward the end of the day when rabbits are getting ready to emerge and feed.
Q. Are rabbit repellents harmful to animals?
Since rabbit repellents have no synthetic additives, they won’t harm rabbits or other animals, including pets. That said, avoid applying the repellent to edibles as it may negatively affect the taste.
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