6 Working Natural Rodent Repellents

How do you keep those rodents away without resorting to toxic chemicals? What can you use before to drive them out without having to kill them? These natural rodent repellents are the answers to those two questions.

Peppermint Oil

Peppermint Oil has a very pungent odor. It is extremely offensive to rats and mice; but quite pleasant for most of us humans and that’s a good thing. The powerful odor it gives off is amplified quite a bit for rodents because of their powerful sense of smell. This fact allows peppermint oil to be so much more effective.

To use peppermint oil to get rid of rodents, just apply the oil all over the house. Give extra attention to areas where you’re noticing a lot of droppings. The best way to apply peppermint oil is with cotton balls. Add a few drops of the oil on a clean cotton ball and place them wherever desired.

Alternatively, you can also place fresh or dried mint leaves in the same locations.

Citronella Oil

citronella torches can be a natural rodent repellent but it's not very practical or cost effective to burn them all the time. stick to the plants and the oils.

Yep, this is the stuff that’s used to keep mosquitos away. Fortunately for us, it works well for keeping rodents away too. Is there anything special about it? Not really, citronella just has a strong scent that aren’t really favored by rodents.

Apply citronella oil the same way you would apply peppermint.

Eucalyptus Oil

A few drops of Eucalyptus oil on a cotton ball works well for repelling rodents (mainly mice and rodents). A study was done, and it was concluded that, when it comes to using Eucalyptus oil for rodent control, less is more.

The study found that a concentration of 5% to 7 7% worked best at keeping rats away. Applying a higher concentration did not work better and was actually found to be slightly less effective. So a couple drops of Eucalyptus oil on a clean cotton ball is all you need.


Hot peppers were also found in a study to repel rodents. Because of the findings from this study, it has lead to many people sprinkling ground black pepper as a means to keep rodents away.

While black pepper works, it’s not as effective as cayenne pepper. Sure, you can sprinkle the pepper powder all over the place, but that gets messy. I prefer to buy a bottle of cayenne extract and use it the same way I would use for any of the other essential oils listed above.

Owl Feathers

Another study concluded that rodents in general were more cautious and less likely to run around when it appears that a predator is nearby. Meaning, they prefer to hide in fear and for safety if there are signs that something is out there to eat them.

The study was actually conducted with owls, natural predators of rodents. I know what you’re thinking—owl pet—but no, that is not the answer in this case. Getting an owl pet is just taking it a little too far. Instead, you can opt for owl feathers.

Keep in mind that rodents have a very powerful sense of smell. If they can smell the scent of an owl nearby, they’ll be a little more reluctant to come around. To get that owl scent, you just need some owl feathers.


Cleanliness is probably the most critical out of this list. In fact, if you don’t attempt to keep the house clean, then don’t even bother to try keeping them away. Regardless of how offensive the odor of the other natural repellents is, they’re going to be overpowered by the drive to survive and live.

Rodents, and any other pest need food to survive, and if there is easy access to food, at the very least, some of them will deal with the pungent odors or risk of a predator to come and eat.

Try to leave no food is the best scenario, but that’s not likely possible. The next best thing is to make it has hard as possible for the pests to find food. Clean any scraps and bits and throw them away in a garbage bin that has a tightly closing lid. Put all your food away where they can’t get access to them.

If you’ve got a mild rodent problem then these 6 natural rodent repellents might be all you need to get rid of them. If your pest problem is bigger, you’ll want to start considering using traps and other more effective solutions. If you do use other solutions, be aware that you shouldn’t use repellents to deter them from trigger a trap, or running into one.