Chicken & Cats?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by kira782, May 19, 2011.

  1. kira782

    kira782 Out Of The Brooder

    May 18, 2011
    Littleton, Colorado
    I'm considering getting 3-4 chickens, the coop would have a run but I'd like them to be able to run around the yard at least a couple hours a day. However just about all the houses surrounding our and us included have cats. Would an adult chicken be able to deal with a cat or is it a risk I shouldn't even think about?
  2. Momto3

    Momto3 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 1, 2011
    Northern Idaho
    Oh I cant wait to hear what others have to say. I was going to post this exact post tonight. We have 5 chicks and want to free range them when they get older & we have neighborhood cats as well as our own.
  3. naughtyhens

    naughtyhens Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 9, 2011
    San Francisco
    Kira, I have two cats that like to hunt. I got chicks about one year ago. The cats were very interested when the chicks were small, but within a few weeks the chicks were old enough that three against one was too scary for the cats. I think that as long as you keep the cats away while the chicks are small you should be fine. Now the full grown hens are about the size of a cat, the cats like to see what the chickens are up to but are not a threat to them.
    I'm always stunned when people post pics of 2 day old chicks with cats. I don't trust my cats that much. To them, a day old chick must look a lot like a half grown songbird. Came home to a small dead rat today, thanks kitties. Worry about hawks and raccoons.
  4. emvickrey

    emvickrey ChowDown Silkie Farm

    Mar 5, 2009
    Hornbeak, Tennessee
    My cat doesn't bother the chickens at all. chicks either. I have open brooders, well partially open anyway and she don't bother them at all. Don't even get up on the tables to have a peak and her litter box is in the same room. The only time she has bothered anything is when some of the quail got loose and I couldn't find them all. She was stalking them while I was trying to catch them and I just told her now and she went and laid down on the porch and watched. I'm sure she was taking notes on where they where hiding at for a late dinner. She did find some but I couldn't so I didn't hold it against her. When she had kittens they would lay around with the chickens in the dirt. My cat even sat on top of a cage that I was using when I was putting aprons on the quail and she just sat there and watched. It was actually a big help because when they saw her they stood still and it was much easier to get the aprons on them.

    There is a stray around here that has killed several quail and forced me to have to cover them up at night to keep the cat out before I put smaller wire over the existing wire cages.
  5. galanie

    galanie Treat Dispenser No More

    Aug 20, 2010
    My neighbors have cats too, in fact there are even feral cats around here. They don't bother the chickens once they are a certain size; for mine, that is around 2 months. I worry about my little polish though, she's smaller and might look tasty. I am depending on the others to keep a lookout, I've already seen them run off a cat or two lately. It's really funny to watch a perplexed cat with 5 or so "prey animals" coming at it.
  6. Keltara

    Keltara Chillin' With My Peeps

    Let me ease your mind. We have 2 outdoor cats. They are huge hunters. Let me stress that....they are HUGE, HUGE hunters! So successful in hunting that they very often like to share their catches with me, leaving baby bunnies, chipmunks, birds, etc. on the garage floor. I got 4 day old Buff Orpington's this past April and was EXTREMELY worried. Here is what I did. On days where we brought the chicks out to "play", the cats both immediately got into hunt and pounce posture. My children would stay near the chicks to keep them safe and if the cats got close, I would walk up and bop them on the nose with my finger with a very firm "NO". It all wound up not being necessary though because as soon as the chicks got bigger in size (around 5 weeks), the cats realized that they were too big for pray. Now, the chicks will walk right up to both cats (the chicks never feared the cats) and the cats are more annoyed than anything and most times will walk away and watch from a distance. Sometimes my children will put a chick on the back of our short haired black cat and she will walk away till the chick falls of and hide in a bush. I can tell she's disgusted with the indignation of it all. I am extremely over protective and feel comfortable in telling you that even with an outdoor hunting cat, your chicks will be safe when they are bigger. [​IMG] Here are a few pictures of the cats and chicks together.

    Last edited: May 19, 2011
  7. florasbell

    florasbell Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 1, 2011
    when i last had chickens my cats were very amused by them until the chickens worked out that it was great fun to chase the cats about then the cats dint get to close in fact one of my chickens attacked my pitbull which was very funny my pit was very confused
  8. ams4776

    ams4776 Chillin' With My Peeps

    We have alot of feral cats here (live in the barn amd even hunt big rats) they look but thats all. My kitty (who lives outside and does also hunt rats and bunnies i clean leftovers off my porch alot) even got into my coop. She got some meat i left in there and never bothered my chickens. Adults are just to big and a rooster would help with them anyway. I watched my roo keeping an eye on the cat. It was pretty amusing but we did fix that part of the run cuz if she can get in.....
  9. heatherindeskies

    heatherindeskies Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 23, 2010
    SE Minnesota
    I would supervise chicks while outside until they are young adults.... do you really want to take the chance that a cat that has never been around these small birds wouldn't kill them? While young, chicks have that fast moving way about them that would catch a cats attention.....
    good luck!
  10. Chickenaddict

    Chickenaddict Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 19, 2008
    East Bethel MN
    I have 2 cats of my own who spend most of the day outside with the birds who free range in the yard. We also have tons of stray cats or neighbors cats lingering around as well as baby chicks being raised by hens. Only one of the neighbors cats I am concerned about due to the fact that she tried going after the chicks. My cats have been exposed to the birds at a very young age therefor don't bother them one bit, in fact my oldest cat thinks she is a chicken and can often be found in the coop in a nest on top of eggs! The other cat will not hesitate to kill anything else running wild around here but leaves the birds alone too. It's the loose dogs that worry me the most.

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