Cats in the Coop!

jeremy

CA Royal Blues
12 Years
Mar 23, 2008
8,123
159
336
Oakland, CA
Well, almost.

I've noticed 2 large cats cruising around my coop and run lately. They've kept their distance but I always know when they're around because my hens go nuts. They squawk and squawk until I come chase the darn things off.

Until lately they haven't been much more than a nuisance, but I caught one this morning in the run, crouched down with the girls all cornered and squawking for dear life. Mind you I've got pretty large hens, Delawares and Silver Laced Wyandottes, but this doesn't seem to deter the cats.

Does anybody have advice? As far as I know they're strays, so I could call the pound to come pick them up but I don't know how easy it would be to catch them. I have two cats of my own that actually go out and sit in the sun with my girls, so I'm wondering if maybe these strays are carrying some kind of disease, if that's what's making them so brazen. What should I do?

Thanks,
Jeremy
 

Enchanted Sunrise Farms

Crowing
12 Years
Apr 26, 2007
4,255
54
274
Fair Oaks, California
i would trap them and take them to the pound. Get one of those Havahart traps, put in some cat food, stinky stuff like tuna. Catch them one by one and get them out of there. It's only a matter of time before they kill your hens.
 

mrbstephens

Songster
10 Years
May 25, 2009
1,785
4
161
Long Island, New York
Where I live we have a huge problem with feral cats. They commonly have feline lukemia which is contagious through saliva and feline AIDS. You need to trap them to protect YOUR cats. The pound will test/treat them for any diseases if curable and will spay/neuter them before putting them up for adoption. In the mean time, keep your hens safe by surrounding the coop with 2 foot high 1/2" hardware cloth and make sure it's covered with bird netting or something similar. Cats only need to bite once to kill a hen, because they know just where the weak spot is, aka the top of the head or neck. Good luck!
 

jeremy

CA Royal Blues
12 Years
Mar 23, 2008
8,123
159
336
Oakland, CA
Quote:I've got a Marans rooster that is almost big enough to be tossed into the mix with the older hens, I'm hoping he does bring some security to the flock.
 

jeremy

CA Royal Blues
12 Years
Mar 23, 2008
8,123
159
336
Oakland, CA
Quote:Thanks for the advice, as bad of an animal owner as this makes me seem, I hadn't even thought about the well-being of my own cats! I was just concerned about my chooks. But this definitely makes me want to be more cautious.
 

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