Dear Sun Spots: Thank you for your great column we read everyday – very helpful hints. We have seen it before the question I am asking, but did not need it at the time. Now our neighbors have cats galore and they come under our porch to do their thing. What chemicals can we use to stop them? Waiting patiently for your response. Thank you. – No Name, Lewiston.

Answer:
We have had many responses from readers in the last few years offering suggestions for keeping cats out from under their porches. Here are a few. The following recipe was provided by Lucille L. of Lewiston in the May 24, 2004, column: Take two eggs, two cloves of garlic, chopped fine, two tablespoons of hot chili pepper, two tablespoons of ammonia, two cups of hot water. Mix it all up. Let the mixture sit for three to four days then paint it on a fence or wherever else you don’t want the cats. (From Jerry Baker Catalogue, P.O. Box 1001, Wixom, MI 48393, 800-888-0010, www.jerrybaker.com).

Also, from Elaine in Lewiston, if there is no danger to small children around, you can place mothballs around the opening of the area or simply throw some mothballs underneath your porch. Mothballs not only keep the cats away, but skunks and other animals too. Living in the city, it also works to throw some mothballs in your garbage to ward off those little critters that like to make a mess.

Marilyn Burgess of Leeds suggested fencing the space, noting that it is not really difficult and will last for a good many years. Here’s how to do it: Measure the distance between the porch floor and the ground. Add 4 or 5 inches and purchase chicken wire of that width. Measure the length around the open space. Purchase a roll of chicken wire of that width (or more) and length. Staple one long end of the wire every 6 inches or so, using small fencing staples, to the bottom of the porch all the way around. Use wire cutters to cut the fence to size. Fold up 4 or 5 inches on the bottom at ground level and place bricks or stones to hold it down. Staple the ends to the building to make a tight fit. You should have an animal-proof barrier that really doesn’t look bad. If you want to hide it, you can plant in front of it.

Dear Sun Spots: If any of your readers is interested in reducing the amount of unsolicited mail: you can eliminate unwanted catalogues you receive. The Web site is http://catalogchoice.org. It’s very effective. – No Name, No Town.

Dear Sun Spots: We are writing to you in hope that you will print our note. We at the Livermore Falls Church of the Nazarene Youth Group are trying to raise money for the 30 Hour Famine. Let us tell you a little about the 30 Hour Famine, it is a program designed to help end world hunger. You see, 29,000 children die from hunger and poverty related issues every day, and $1.00 a day would help provide enough to keep one child alive.

Our goal is to raise $29,000 before April 24, 25, 2009. We are selling paper bracelets for only $1.00. We are hanging them in our church. Help us save children who have nothing to eat at all.

If you would like to receive more information on the 30 Hour Famine or would like to sponsor us please send your request or donation to: Miranda Silver, 145 Park St., Livermore Falls, ME 04254. Thank you for all your help in the fight to end world hunger. – The Nazarene Youth Group, Livermore Falls.

This column is for you, our readers. It is for your questions and comments. There are only two rules: You must write to the column and sign your name (we won’t use it if you ask us not to). Letters will not be returned or answered by mail, and telephone calls will not be accepted. Your letters will appear as quickly as space allows. Address them to Sun Spots, P.O. Box 4400, Lewiston, ME 04243-4400. Inquiries can also be posted at www.sunjournal.com in the Advice section under Opinion on the left-hand corner of your computer screen. In addition, you can e-mail your inquiries to [email protected]


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