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Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by dragracer, Jan 18, 2009.

  1. dragracer

    dragracer In the Brooder

    Jul 25, 2008
    Do cats bother chickens? My neighbors cat has been hanging out lately and last night I went to lock the girls up and the neighbors cat had just gone into the coop as I was getting out there. Should I be concerned?

  2. mbrown

    mbrown In the Brooder

    Jul 17, 2008
    North Florida
    My cats seem "interested" in my chickens, but have never actually bothered them. I keep my brooder in the laundry room, and a couple times my cats have followed me in there and just sat there and watched. And they have gotten pretty close to the big chickens outside while they were free-ranging, but again, they haven't attacked. However, I think if my cats were to attack my chickens, my chickens would win! [​IMG]
  3. Buster

    Buster Back to Work

    I would watch close just to be sure. They are deadly to chicks (my grandpa had one that would reach in the turkey brooder, pull their heads through and chew them off at the neck) and even bantams may be in trouble for a determined cat. That said, I watched a stray cat walk around the flock yesterday and two of my big Orpington roosters were standing at attention sounding the alarm while all the hens gathered to their favorite man. The only one extremely distressed was my silkie rooster who really raised a racket. The cat never looked like it intended to harm anything but after a couple of minutes I chased it off just to let it know it wasn't welcome there.
  4. truckerswife

    truckerswife Songster

    Aug 20, 2007
    SW Washington
    Cats are curious and usually harmless. HOWEVER, it depends what size your birds are. I had a Sebright Banty that was followed/stalked by a neighbor cats and I think chased. Since she passed that cat is no where, he lost interest . I do have an outdoor that "watches" the girls as they free range and he walks with me when I go to the coop to let them out and in.

    Be cautious but most likely he is just curious.
  5. antlers

    antlers Songster

    Jun 20, 2008
    East Cent Minnesota
    depends on the cat. Some are not good mouse'ers but others kill everything. I have gotten a phesant dinner or 2 from wild adult roosters casue one of the mother cats caught them in the swamp below the house. Darned if I was going to let the cat have it!
  6. My housecat came into the brooder with me all the time, but I wouldn't trust her alone with chicks. The barn cats are generally ambivlent about the hens, but they are segregated. You could use the neighbour's cat to patrol the coop so long as the cat can't get to your birds. Providing a little cat kibble for surrounding cats is not always a bad thing, it encourages them to patrol but keeps them from being ravenous. Even a well-fed cat will hunt rodents. I have 18 cats who are regulars around the barn/coop at this time. No losses, but they don't have direct contact either.
  7. asher

    asher Chicken Enabler Extraordinaire

    Jan 26, 2007
    Mountains of NC
    I've never had a problem with cats and chickens. Just cats and chicks. Something about that peep drives them crazy and makes them want to eat them!

    My full grown cats would go in the cages with us when we fed and watered and were just fine with them. We had one in particular that enjoyed napping in the chickens pens. [​IMG]

    A hungry stray or tom, on the other hand, may be something to watch out for!

    My feral cat rescue is fine with our birds, but will catch and kill wild birds (small ones).
  8. Buster

    Buster Back to Work

    I've seen a RIR rooster give a cat a beating it barely lived to regret. [​IMG]
  9. CovenantCreek

    CovenantCreek Chicks Rule!

    Oct 19, 2007
    Franklin, TN
    My hens will peck at the cats if they get in the way. The cats don't like it and move on. As long as you don't have defenseless chicks I wouldn't worry about cats -- they're more interested in the mice and small birds that are eating your chicken feed. [​IMG]
  10. ORChick

    ORChick Songster

    May 20, 2007
    My three big, "tough" (but neutered) male cats are curious - when the chickens are in their run. When they are free-ranging (and no fencing between them and the cats) the cats stay out of their way. One got a little too close once, and the SSH rooster stared him down [​IMG]. None of mine are banties (though the SSH hen isn't very big), and I would not trust the cats around chicks. But the big chickens? I don't worry.

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