How to deter cat from lapping refrig. door?

One of my cats is a chamption lapper. He licks my hands, doors, tables, baseboards and lots of other stuff.

Problem One is that our refrigerator doors are stainless steel, and he really loves to to lap those. It leaves ugly marks all over it that only polishing will remove.

Problem Two is that we worry that the residue of the polish possibly would be toxic to him over the long term.

At first we just taped cardboard over the doors, but my wife found that so ugly she could not stand it. Then she got the idea of placing large sheets of Saran Wrap over the lower parts of the doors.

That was better than the cardboard, but still looked weird, as could not get it on without wrinkles. It was fun when visitors asked why the heck it was there.

Anyway, is there anything we could spray on the doors that would deter the idiotic cat from lapping it? As they sleep at night in the kitchen, don’t want to use anything that would emit possibly dangerous and/or annoying fumes. Or anything that would be toxic if he ignored the stuff and lapped it anyway.

“Bitter Apple” spray is commonly sold in pet stores, to deter chewing. It’s non-toxic and just tastes yucky.

I was going to suggest painting the bottom foot of the fridge with a solution of habanero peppers and water, but Bitter Apple would probably have less chance of side effects.

Double sided tape until he learns not to do it?

We have a lapper (she chews, too), and we use this stuff. It works well, though after awhile she’ll forget that her “licking posts” taste bad, and start up again. It only takes one re-application for her to remember again.

Many cats hate the taste and odor of citrus juices. Some don’t. If some lemon juice or Lemon Pledge doesn’t ward off Muffy, I’d go with hot sauce as Mike S said, though you probably don’t need the heavy artillery. Just some Cholula or Frank’s Red Hot Sauce will suffice. Any critter that needs to be dissuaded by Dave’s Insanity Sauce is probably psycho, and might enjoy the pain.

Well, you see, there you have it: many (most) cats, including mine, are psychos. That’s the trouble. :smiley:

Anyway, thanks for the tips. I’ll try Bitter Apple, but the chances are about even he’ll absolutely love the stuff and lick it all off.

Yeah, one of mine (not the licker) likes hot peppers :rolleyes:

He probably won’t like the Bitter Apple, it really is offensively bitter. I accidentally tasted it once when some got on my hands after spraying it.
better than the time I accidentally got pepper spray on my hand, then took out a contact lens, though

Don’t laugh. I had a cat who licked bitter apple off of houseplants (she was a plant chewer) like it was salad dressing.

Idiotic cat?

The cat ain’t the one who paid extra for stainless steel doors on a refrigerator, when most of the commercial style refrigerators perform worse that the much cheaper standard refrigerators. And the cat doesn’t have a wife whose big concern is the appearance of cardboard on the doors.

Tell me again who’s idiotic here?

[Moderator Warning]

t-bonham, you’ve been around long enough to know that insulting other posters is not permitted in GQ. Don’t do this again.

General Questions Moderator

If the bitter apple and/or hot pepper ideas don’t work, there’s a product called “sticky paws.” It’s basically oversize sheets of double-stick tape intended to prevent cats from clawing things. I have these on the corners of upholstered chairs. That tape would not be a pleasant thing to lick.

I was just popping in to suggest something like this. 20+ years ago we had a cat who had a spot on his own side, that he licked raw and actually necrotic. We had to have a patch of skin surgically excised and the minute the metal stitches came out, he went right back to it. He wore an elizabethan collar for a bit - then someone at the vet’s suggested we use a spray they provided to keep animals from licking bandages.

One spritz, the cat tried licking, and wound up foaming at the mouth and making the biggest yucky-face expression I’ve ever seen on an animal (it was funny, really).

He tried licking again the next day. Once.

Never tried it again.

I don’t know that it was bitter apple, but certainly the moral equivalent.

Good news (so far). Sprayed the bitter apple on the fridge two days ago, and it seems to be working. I didn’t catch him sniffing it, or doing a trial lap, but perhaps just the smell has deterred him.

Maybe now I’ll try it on the counter tops to keep the other cat from jumping up. Heh, lots of luck there. :smiley:

Mama Zappa, that is an amazing story about that cat wirth the compulsion to lap his side raw. Glad the stuff worked, but very funny about him foaming at the mouth. I’ll have to carefully watch Zubin to see if that happens, then I will know he tried the stuff.

Thanks again to all who posted suggestions. If the bitter apple doesn’t work, will try the pepper solution.

Yeah - my fellow had feline leukemia when we got him, and had some health problems the whole 2.5 years he owned us. When his health took its final decline, there was a definite atrophy of the muscles in the shoulder near that spot. Our theory is that he had some involvement of the spine - tumor or whatever - that was triggering weird sensations, and that led to underuse or damage to the muscles in that area as things worsened. It baffled the vets, for sure, and I remember the bandage spray was suggested as sort of a last-ditch thing to try - almost a joke - and damned if it didn’t work magnificently.

If your guy tries it, and it’s truly the same stuff we used, you may not see him actualy foaming but, well, you’ll find petrified slobber clumps. Ick!

Oh great, now you tell me.