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DIY Critter Ridder Recipe- Natural Rodent Repellent

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Are critters making a meal out of your home? Do they get into your trash? Your birds go hungry because some varmint eats their seeds? Do deer eat your prized flowers and garden? Then you need to make this DIY Critter Ridder Recipe for Natural Rodent Repellent.

Rodent Repellent: DIY Critter-Ridder Recipe

As contractors, and someone who lives in an all cedar (AKA squirrel-buffet) house, we see critters causing damage all of the time to the exteriors of buildings; eating soffits, boxing, and wood trim.

As a gardener, they eat my: vegetables, flowers, and landscaping before I can even get a chance to enjoy the fruits of my labor.

DIY Critter Ridder Recipe-Natural Rodent Repellent

During bird-watching in the morning with my coffee, it drives me batty that the only animals in my bird feeders have four legs. And let’s not forget having to pick up the trash that has been strewn all over the yard by some pesky raccoon’s, UGH !!!

Peppers Repel Critters

Alas, we are all part of this thing called life and we need to learn to live together. But how do you protect your home without hurting the wildlife? The answer lies within the peppers.

Birds can’t taste them. Deer avoid them. It seems that humans are the only animals on Earth who have a love of red, hot chili peppers.

Rodent Repellent- DIY Critter-Ridder Recipe

This recipe will repel: woodchucks (groundhogs), skunks, squirrels, raccoons, deer, rabbits, dogs and cats.

Safe to use indoors or out but avoid contact with your skin, eyes and mouth.

In addition to body parts, avoid direct contact with furniture as it may affect the finish. 

Rodent Repellent Supplies

  • 1 Tbsp. Cayenne pepper
  • 10 Drops black pepper oil
  • ½ tsp dish soap (I used Dr. Bronner’s Peppermint Castile Soap- the peppermint helps keep away spiders and mice)
  • Distilled Water
  • 16 oz. Spray Bottle
  • 16 oz. Glass jar with lid.
  • Funnel
  • Measuring Spoons
  • Label (you can use masking tape and a sharpie marker)
  • Fine mesh strainer.


Add all ingredients into your glass jar in the following order.

  1. Cayenne Pepper
  2. Tabasco
  3. Black Pepper Oil
  4. Dish Soap
  5. Water
  6. Seal jar with lid and place in a cool dark place (inside a cabinet for example) and wait for two weeks.
  7. Strain ingredients and add to your spray bottle.

Place the top on a spray bottle and shake. The longer you let it soak, the stronger the solution will be and the better it will work. 

Write Critter-Ridder on the label and secure the bottle.

Spray your Natural Rodent Critter-Ridder anywhere you want to keep away the critters.

The soap helps it adhere to things but you will need to reapply after rain or moisture has accumulated.

Natural Rodent Repellent: Red Pepper Flakes

To repel rodents and critters from other areas you can: sprinkle red pepper flakes in your bird seed, around your flower beds, or mix in your suet cakes.

For more information on how to make suet cakes, Fresh Eggs Daily offers a recipe, Coconut Oil Suet Cakes for Chickens and Wild Birds.

Add 1/4 tsp of cayenne pepper to each recipe to help repel rodents from eating them. 

Do Peppers Hurt Birds or Chickens?

Lastly, you want to make sure anything you use around your home won’t harm the other creatures that are roaming the yard.

Rest assured, our Critter Ridder Recipe won’t hurt your feathered friends. 

Birds DO have the TRPV1 receptor like mammals, which is also commonly called the capsaicin receptor. However the bird TRPV1 is insensitive to capsaicin.

Chili seed germination is decreased in the GI tract of mammals but not by the passage through the GI tract of birds.

In this case birds can benefit from the rich contents of the chili peppers by not being sensitive to the capsaicin. The plant benefits by getting the seeds dispersed efficiently.

The second paper has little to do with birds but it is a demonstration that an increase in the amount of capsaicinoids in fruits reduces fungal infection and seed mortality.

The fact that capsaicin does not activate the chicken TRPV1 could mean that this is a general feature for all birds because chickens are rather basal birds.

Universidade Estadual de Santa Cruz

It was interesting to read that hummingbirds avoid chilies but many bird species are neophobic to new tastes and that does not necessarily mean that they do sense the heat in the chilies.

Yard and Garden Pest

Are you dealing with other yard and garden pest? I know the feeling.

Living in the mountains, every wild animal thinks they own the place. And rightfully so.

However, that doesn’t mean I want to share my garden with them.

They can help themselves to the plethora of wild nuts and fruits, the vegetable garden is for us.

Thankfully, we’ve learned a trick or two about How to Keep Deer and Other Pest Out of Our Garden, and share them with you in our article.

Sharing is caring!


Thursday 12th of January 2023

How much tabasco sauce, and how much water? The amounts aren't listed

Amber Bradshaw

Friday 13th of January 2023

1 Tbsp. Cayenne pepper

10 Drops black pepper oil

½ tsp dish soap (I used Dr. Bronner's Peppermint Castile Soap- the peppermint helps keep away spiders and mice)

Distilled Water

16 oz. Spray Bottle

16 oz. Glass jar with lid.


Measuring Spoons

Label (you can use masking tape and a sharpie marker)

Fine mesh strainer


Wednesday 15th of January 2020

Are all of the other ingredients necessary; Tabasco Drops black pepper oil I understand the dish soap, but would Vegetable Oil work?


Wednesday 19th of October 2022

@koa, Vegetable oil would most likely just separate & clog sprayer. Plain glycerin can be used in place of soap, oil. Will mix better, too.

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Tuesday 17th of July 2018

[…] so, you can make our DIY Critter Ridder recipe to stop critters from eating your house and garden […]

Margit Maman

Thursday 14th of June 2018

I have a major chipmunk problem, I have tried all, from the above to traps nothing works they keep digging in my veg. pots and killing everything from tomatoes to peppers parsley etc. Can you advise against the little buggers Thank you Margit Maman

Amber Bradshaw

Saturday 16th of June 2018

I have not had to deal with chipmunks in our area so I can not offer advice from experience. But I've heard using predator urine may help such as, bobcat or coyote- you should be able to find these at your local outdoors store. Hope this helps