Cat problem, I need a fix

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Navi723, Sep 4, 2014.

  1. Navi723

    Navi723 Out Of The Brooder

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    Firstly, I know it's cats, I've seen them myself, so I'm sure it's not skunks, coons or any other creature. :)

    There are three or four neighborhood feral cats (that my neighbors claim and feed) that are coming onto my property, attacking my full grown hens during the day, not killing them, but there has been significant feather loss. At night, they manage to get into my coop and actually attack the hens in there as well, but again, can't kill the hens, but are doing a lot of feather damage, and now the egg production has been seriously affected. One larger neighborhood cat did manage to kill a hen a few weeks ago.

    I'm not interested in live trapping, as most of these cats "belong" to my neighbor and they won't take kindly to my trapping and rehoming their barn cats. My opinion is that these cats need to die. I know that sounds brutal, and I'm not normally an animal killer, but they're threatening my chickens! And keeping food out of my family's bellies.

    My coop is predator proof, if I go out every night to close the pophole. The pen is mostly predator proof, apparently the cats can get in. It's impossible at this point to do anything further to it to cat proof it. It's very large and finances will not allow modifications at the scale that would be necessary. The girls free range outside the pen during the day, and I can't protect them at all during the day from these crazy cats.

    Thoughts? Suggestions? Thank you!
     
  2. ChickyGirl12

    ChickyGirl12 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have heard of cats killing chickens, but have never owned one that did. All my cats are terrified of my chickens, they just look at them and you can see them thinking, "Thats a big bird, i would feast for days," then the chickens chase them away. Anyway, about your problem. Are the cats hungry? Or just looking for a good time? If they belong to your neighbor, they are probably well fed, but i thought i would throw that out there.I know what you mean, I have a dog problem with chickens (he is actually my dog) and i just pen him up while i am gone, as he does no damage as long as i am home. But, seeing these are not your cats, that would not work. Is your neighbor very agreeable? Could you ask them to control their cats? (If that's possible, cats are not very controllable.)
     
  3. Navi723

    Navi723 Out Of The Brooder

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    I actually have talked to the neighbors and they're concerned that I'm going to shoot their cats, since I said I was going to shoot the larger cat that DID kill one of my hens (he belongs to someone else). They can't control these cats because they're barn cats and not tame. They have to live trap them to take them to the vet.

    I have one cat myself, and I've caught him jumping the hens in the past, but he's inside 99% of the time now. He was well fed at the time, so I guess he was looking for a party. I imagine that's what's these other cats are looking for, too, and I know they're well fed. I've thought about putting a bowl of cat food out to give them an easy option, but I really don't think it's food they're after.

    In the past, my hens would chase off cats, but we had several large scale massacres last year (one by coons, and one by dogs) and now the hens are scared of their own shadows. We had 38 chickens last year, and now only 7 remain. [​IMG]
     
  4. Ponyfeather

    Ponyfeather Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 26, 2014
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    A rooster? Or live stock dog, to keep the cats away.

    I'm sorry you are going threw this. Our cat is kind of scared of my own chicken.
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2014
  5. Ol Grey Mare

    Ol Grey Mare One egg shy of a full carton. ..... Premium Member

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    My Coop
    I'm not sure what sort of thoughts of suggestions you want since you have discounted all possible suggestions of trapping, reinforcing your structure, etc and asserted you are only interested in killing the cats - are you wanting suggestions as to how to kill the cats?
     
  6. Navi723

    Navi723 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 13, 2011
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    Yes, pretty much. Unless there's something else I haven't thought of. I'd prefer not to have to kill them, but I can't think of anything else to do. We may be moving in a year or so, and I didn't want to add to my flock just to have to move them, but maybe I'll have to consider the rooster. (Our beautiful roo was killed in the dog attack.) Even if I do manage to get rid of these killer cats, more will come, I'm sure.
     
  7. ChickyGirl12

    ChickyGirl12 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    A rooster could be a good idea, they can get very aggressive at anything bothering the hens. When i still had mine he attacked my goat! (she was eating food from the chicken house, she was not supposed to.) And another pro to having a rooster is if you ever experience hawk problems, and your chickens are out, and your rooster sees a hawk, he will make this weird noise and all the chickens will run into the pen! Its cool to watch. My rooster was a Rhode Island Red he was a good rooster until..... He started thinking I was a predictor. But if you never bother the hens and just mind your own biz they wont bother you. And they can be very good to have around in this type of situation. Do you think this would be a good option?
     
  8. Papas Chickens

    Papas Chickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My Mang Koon (barn cat) never messes with my chickens and my chickens dont mess with him, I think my chickens know that if he messed with them my two protector dogs would get him lol but I doubt it because they were raised together. IMO I would get a BB gun and pop the cats in the rump everytime I see them in my yard after a few times they should get the hint that thete not allowed in your yard or you could put up a electric wire ontop of your fence to keep them out.
     
  9. Navi723

    Navi723 Out Of The Brooder

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    Sigh. I've had several roosters. The aggressive ones did just as you say, but they also attacked me and my kids, so we ate them. The last one we had was a sweetheart, and he was pretty good about alerting the hens to hawks, but he did nothing when the coons came and then the dogs ate him. We never lost a hen to a cat during the time we had him though. I'll consider a rooster. I'd have to get a grown one to help the situation immediately, and I've never added a full grown rooster to my flock, so not sure how that will work out. If I get a chick to raise, it would probably be next Fall before he was any help, so I've got to wait and still deal with the situation at hand. Ugh.
     
  10. goatgaaga

    goatgaaga New Egg

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    Have you thought about or would you consider getting a goose? On two different occasions that I can recall over the years a goose has been good protection and watch dog for us with our chickens and ducks.
     

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