I am a first time back yard chicken owner is happily growing her first flock. Currently I have a dozen chickens in a backyard coop with attached run. The only predator I was really worried about were hawks, so I have a roof over my run as well as the coop. They've been outside for about 3 weeks now and this week we've had our first run in with the neighbors' 'predators'. Problem #1: I have one neighbor right next to me who has a large standard size poodle. He's not the problem, it's that the neighbor has a little yappy dog owning friend that comes over often. The dog has run into my house when I've had our back door open, and I frequently find dog poo all over my yard from the yappy dog. I've talked to them about it, but since the friend doesn't come over often and the neighbor has fenced their entire yard nothing has happened. Monday I suddenly hear a bunch of chicken screaming and dog barking and I run out to find the yappy dog chasing them around and around the coop. I picked him up and put him back in the nieghbors yard. 15 minutes later he was at it again. This time I picked him up and he cried and struggled a great deal before I got him back in his yard and the minute his feet touched ground he ran back over to our yard. The good news is that I now know how he's getting in to our yard, the bad news is that it's between a shared fence with rasberry bushes planted on each side. I think I've figured out a way to fix it with a concrete paving stone or two and some chicken wire, now to get in there with out getting scraped up.......I did tell the neighbors again and they seemed concerned and made sure that none of my chickens were harmed, and then kept the dog inside for the rest of the visit. So I *think* this problem may be solved. Problem #2: a neighbor across the street has a large cat. It's been over in our yard all the time, ever since we moved here 5 years ago. In fact, I'm not even sure if the cat is tame or if they just set food out for it because I've never seen a collar, and it runs away as soon as it catches sight of anyone in our family. When we first moved here the neighbor asked me if it bothered me (she was the post office worker so I saw her frequently, but she's since retired and any time I knock on their door there is no answer) and it wasn't a problem. This is the 3rd time I've seen the cat out in front of my chicken coop just watching chickens. The chickens seem less frightened of the cat than of the dog and of our lawn mower. I guess I don't have to worry too much, because I'm pretty sure that the cat can't get in at all. So I guess my question is: Do I need to worry or do more to protect my ladies (and man)? I'm pretty vigilant about checking the coop several times a day incase some of the chicken wire comes loose or if there's any digging going on. I think there's some sort of granuals or repellant of some kind that supposed to repel neighborhood dogs and cats that I can get at our hardware store. But I don't want to spend $20 on something that won't work. I can't do an electric fence of any kind because we have a 6, 4, and 1 year old that play outside frequently. Suggestions?