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Best Ways to Protect Cats from Mosquitoes in 2023

  • 9 min read

How to protect cats from mosquitoes?

Mosquitoes are insects that most people dislike or even despise. When they bite, they truly sting, triggering a terrible urge to scratch ourselves, which is counterproductive as it only worsens the situation. But what about our furry friends? Do they also experience itching?

The reality is yes. In fact, mosquitoes can transmit severe diseases such as filariasis to them. Suppose you are planning a fun hiking trip with your cat, you must keep in mind the mosquitoes that will try their best to ruin this adventure for your feline friend. Let’s see how to protect our cats from these unwanted insects.

Stagnant water, such as pools, ponds, buckets, and so on, act as a breeding ground for mosquitoes during all warm months, especially when the temperature reaches 20º or higher. They reproduce rapidly and in such quantities that it can become a pretty worrisome problem for us, particularly for our furry companions, as they are only protected by the layer of fur they may have.

sleeping cat bitten by mosquito

Mosquito-borne diseases in cats 

Although only a few diseases can be transmitted to cats by mosquitoes, they can be very severe. The following are some of them:

Filariasis: Also known as heartworm disease, affects the lungs and heart. The symptoms include coughing, difficulty breathing, tachycardia, weight loss, and, in severe cases, cardiac arrest.

Leishmaniasis: Leishmaniasis is a disease that primarily affects dogs but is increasingly seen in cats, especially those with weakened immune systems. It mainly affects the liver and kidneys, leading to symptoms such as loss of appetite, lethargy, apathy, and fatigue.

West Nile virus: This disease, native to sub-Saharan Africa, causes symptoms such as fatigue, weakness, seizures, paralysis, loss of appetite and weight, and high fever.

How to protect cats from mosquitoes? 

Currently, several measures can be taken to prevent our friend from becoming a victim of these insects. In this blog post, I will discuss some effective ways to protect your cat from mosquitoes so that you and your feline follow witness no discomfort in enjoying the outdoors. 

Spot-on treatments – Mosquito repellents

Spot-on treatments help repel and eliminate fleas and ticks and deter mosquitoes. Consult your veterinarian to determine which one is suitable for your cat.


If you prefer natural remedies, there’s nothing like citronella spray. Spray it on the cat’s entire body, avoiding contact with the eyes, nose, mouth, and ears. This spray will keep the mosquitoes away from the cat. 

Use mosquito nets

To protect your furry companion and the whole family, consider installing mosquito nets on windows. This will prevent mosquitoes from entering the house.


Cats are drawn to catnip, which acts as a natural mosquito repellent. They display excitement by rubbing against, rolling around, and chewing the leaves. This behavior not only induces a euphoric state but serves a practical purpose as well. When chewed or crushed, the plant releases iridoids, specific substances that repel mosquitoes.

Mosquito bites and your cat 

Along with the hot and humid summer days, mosquitoes make their appearance. Although cats seem protected from mosquitoes by their fur, they can easily be bitten by a mosquito around their ears and nose.

Similar to humans, a mosquito bite can cause anything from annoying itching to more severe parasitic diseases. Hypersensitivity to mosquito bites and heartworm disease are the main concerns for cats.

Cat’s hypersensitivity to mosquito bites 

mosquito bite hypersensitivity results from the cat’s immune system reacting to a mosquito bite. In cats, it manifests as raw lesions, peeling, or ulcers in the bite area. Hair loss and changes in pigmentation in the affected area are also typical.

Often, the footpads may become thickened, swollen, tender, and red. Swollen lymph nodes and fever may also occur. Severe hypersensitivity to mosquito bites is treated with oral or injected corticosteroids. Milder cases often resolve independently when the cat is protected from additional bites.

Mosquito Control

Both conditions mentioned above can be partially addressed by keeping your cat indoors and controlling the mosquito population in your surroundings. The following preventive measures help to protect your cat from mosquitoes:

  • Eliminate standing water sources around the house and garden. Mosquito larvae breed and thrive in stagnant water.
  • Change water bowls frequently. Install window and door screens with mosquito nets to prevent mosquito entry.
  • Use insect repellents with caution. Chemicals are not recommended for cats, and many essential oil repellents have not been tested for effectiveness or safety. Thus, they may cause problems for cats. 

Treatment for Mosquito Bites in Cats

Treat mosquito bites in the ears and nose with an antibacterial cream to prevent infection. Consult your veterinarian if the bites do not heal or seem to worsen.

What NOT to Do to Prevent Mosquito Bites in Your Cat 

Mosquitoes have a natural affinity for skin oils, carbon dioxide, and lactic acid, which accumulates and is abundant in pets and humans. This means they are attracted to all of us, including furry pets.

While the dense undercoat that most of our pets carry may seem to prevent mosquito bites, these insects are cunning. They quickly find the least exposed areas and can bite there more effectively than you imagine. (The skin above the bridge of the nose, ears, and legs is most commonly affected.)

Sensitivity to mosquito bites can lead to allergic reactions to mosquito saliva, ranging from mild to severe. This is most commonly seen in cats. Dogs can also acquire an impressive range of diseases from mosquitoes.

Unfortunately, protection from mosquito bites is often inferior to its associated risks. Using the wrong product on pets is dangerous. That’s why it’s essential to follow your veterinarian’s recommendations. These recommendations can also be considered in addition to the ones mentioned above. 

Here’s what NOT to do to keep mosquitoes away

  • Do not use products with chemical elements in their composition. 
  • Do not apply mosquito-killing sprays to your cat’s body, as it is toxic to their health. 
  • Do not use dog products on your cats. 
  • Do not use any product containing pyrethrin or permethrin on cats or, if your household includes cats, on your dogs. 
  • Do not use non-branded, questionably labeled products you can buy online, at the grocery store, or the pet store, regardless of their claims, ratings, or other testimonials.

Final Thoughts: Protecting Cat from Mosquito Bites

In a nutshell, keeping our kitties safe from mosquitoes is pretty doable. Catnip and Citronella are Mother Nature’s gift – they entertain cats and ward off bugs. Just keep an eye on your fur-friend’s reactions. Besides natural stuff, there’s cat-friendly sprays and the good old indoors to consider. Our cats rely on us to keep them safe and comfy – so let’s make their environment a no-fly zone for mozzies!

Frequently Asked Questions

Why should I be concerned about mosquitoes around my cat?

Mosquitoes can cause discomfort to your cat and in some cases, they can transmit diseases like heartworms.

Can natural remedies help in protecting my cat from mosquitoes?

Yes, certain plants like catnip and silvervine can repel mosquitoes due to compounds they release when chewed or crushed.

Is there any evidence supporting the use of catnip for mosquito protection?

Yes, research has shown that iridoids released by catnip and silvervine can help protect cats from mosquito bites.

Q: How can I use these plants to protect my cat from mosquitoes?

A: Let your cat interact with these plants. When they chew or crush the leaves, the plants release mosquito-repelling compounds that stick to the cat’s fur.

Q: Are there other ways to protect my cat from mosquitoes?

A: Yes, besides using natural remedies, you can also consider commercial products like mosquito repellent sprays made specifically for cats, and keeping your cat indoors during peak mosquito times.

Q: How do I protect my cat from mosquitoes?

A: You can protect your cat from mosquitoes by using cat-safe mosquito repellents, keeping your cat indoors during peak mosquito activity, and eliminating standing water where mosquitoes breed. 

Q: Can mosquitoes harm my dog or cat?

A: Yes, mosquitoes can transmit heartworm disease to dogs and cats, making it important to protect your pets from mosquito bites.

Q: What are some safe mosquito repellent options for dogs and cats?

A: There are mosquito repellent sprays and essential oil-based repellents designed specifically for dogs and cats that can help keep mosquitoes at bay without harming your pets.

Q: Is DEET safe to use on dogs or cats to repel mosquitoes?

A: No, DEET can be toxic to dogs and cats, so it should never be used on pets. It’s important to use pet-safe mosquito repellents and avoid products with DEET when protecting your dog or cat.

Q: How can I keep my pets safe from mosquitoes?

A: Keeping your pets indoors during dawn and dusk when mosquitoes are most active, using pet-safe mosquito repellents, and eliminating standing water in your yard can help keep your pets safe from mosquitoes.

Q: What are the dangers of mosquitoes to dogs and cats?

A: Mosquitoes can transmit heartworm infection to dogs and cats, which can cause serious health issues. Protecting your pets from mosquito bites is essential to prevent these risks.

Q: Can cats get mosquito bites?

A: Yes, cats can get mosquito bites just like dogs and humans. It’s important to take steps to protect your cat from mosquitoes to prevent bites and potential health risks.

Q: How can I avoid mosquitoes around my dog or cat?

A: You can avoid mosquitoes around your dog or cat by using pet-safe mosquito repellents, keeping your pets indoors during peak mosquito activity, and maintaining a mosquito-free environment by getting rid of standing water and using mosquito control products.

Q: What should I do if my cat gets bitten by a mosquito?

A: If your cat gets bitten by a mosquito, monitor for any signs of irritation or allergic reaction at the bite site. You can also consult with your veterinarian if you have concerns about mosquito bites affecting your cat.

Q: Can essential oils be used to repel mosquitoes from cats?

A: Yes, certain essential oils are safe for use on cats and can act as natural mosquito repellents. However, it’s important to use them in diluted and cat-safe formulations to protect your cat from both mosquitoes and potential oil-related health risks.

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Anum Basit

Anum Basit

Anum Basit is the founder of PurrfectJourney, a cat travel blog that provides expert insights and advice for cat owners who love to travel. As a lifelong cat lover, Anum has gained extensive knowledge and experience in the field of cat travel. She understands the unique challenges that cat owners face when traveling with their feline companions and is committed to providing informative and engaging content that helps them navigate these challenges with ease. Anum's passion for cat travel has inspired her to create a platform where cat owners can find valuable information and resources for traveling with their furry friends. Follow her on PurrfectJourney for the latest insights and tips on cat travel!