Could use some suggestions for the classic stray cat problem please!

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by liz_s, Feb 18, 2013.

  1. liz_s

    liz_s Songster

    May 16, 2010
    Washington State
    So, I don't live in the greatest neighborhood, but at least I get to have chickens! The problem is that there are a lot of people who live around me with "outdoor" cats. Basically cats that they never let inside. There's one in particular that's causing me problems, but there are at least 5 that will come into my yard.

    I let my girls free-range, but this one cat has made them so scared they won't even come out of their coop anymore. Now, *I* know that the cat wouldn't stand a chance against them, but the chickens don't. And honestly, I'm pretty sure the cat couldn't really care less about them. She's never tried to attack them- she used to just sit and watch, but now she brings dead birds and mice into their run. I have had cats in the past that would come hang out in my yard and watch the chickens, and as long as the cats didn't really move, the chickens didn't mind. But like I said, now they're terrified.

    I can't really do anything to keep the cat out of my yard because I know that the owners won't make it an indoor cat. But I refuse to close the run because it's my yard and my chickens deserve to be able to roam. However, I'm reaching the end of my rope. Not only am I upset about my chickens, but all of the dead sparrows and mice is getting disturbing. So I think maybe the cat considers the run her safe place or something.

    Anyway, I'm considering getting an air-soft gun because I don't want to truly hurt the cat, but I've got to find a way to get her to stay out of my yard. Has anyone had luck with this? Or am I just going to need to actually get rid of the cat? Would it maybe help to just keep the run closed for a week or so so the cat might realize that she can't get in there and maybe move on to somewhere else? I would love and appreciate any advice!

  2. liz9910

    liz9910 Crowing

    Apr 8, 2012
    Northern California
    I personally would get a cat trap and get rid of the cat, but that's just my opinion lol. My cat chases the chickens, one in particular who runs from her the others just give the cat the stink eye.
  3. liz_s

    liz_s Songster

    May 16, 2010
    Washington State
    I guess the only problem with physically getting rid of the cat is that the owners would likely just get another one. This one is at least their 3rd, but the other two never bothered the chickens. I think I just need to either scare it bad enough or make my yard undesirable.
  4. Mattemma

    Mattemma Crowing

    Aug 12, 2009
    You are right in that there is nothing you can do to keep a cat out of your yard.

    Buy a trap.Catch the cat.Call the pound.Repeat.

    Why waste time hoping to get in a shot,or sprinkle chemical deterents? Roamers disappear all the time.Pets should not be allowed to roam,and this includes cats who love to spray up your yard.

    Since you are dealing with pets and not strays I would suggest you never speak about trapping to neighbors.It will just create a NFH situation when they find out you have been trapping kitties and calling the pound.

    Shooting cats will get you a fine,and a spot on the local news.Stick within the law.$46 havahart and the number for the local poundTry a variety of baits.Put in some catnip too.Well fed cats can be hard to trap.

    Cats cause property damage and kill native birds. I have cats and dogs. People need to be responsible for their pets.

    You can take the cat to a neihboring pound if you don't want locals to get wind.You ARE within the law to trap on your property,but it won't stop a neighbor from going all NFH on you if they found out you got their cats euthanised.Even if they are able to bail them out,you may be hounded to repay the fine.Some people are nutters.
  5. Dee Dee 2

    Dee Dee 2 Songster

    Jun 8, 2012
    Tomball, Tx.
    You truly have a real problem ! It would be very hard for me to take someones pet to a pound where I know it will be euthanized. There are some sprays that are supposed to deture animals from areas. You might want to try that and spray it around the perimeter of your run. There is also a natural herb that is supposed to deter snakes. Don't know if it works on kitties and can't for the life of me remember what it is. (Google) Just speaking for ME I would try all I could before trapping. If possable a good spray of water from the garden hose might work also. Good luck !
  6. Dee Dee 2

    Dee Dee 2 Songster

    Jun 8, 2012
    Tomball, Tx.
    p.s. You might want to try garlic. Get some MINCED garlic, cheapest you can find, (do you have a $ store near by?) Pour come hot water over it, then strain throught something like cheese cloth. Put liquid in hose in sprayer and spray around area where cat likes to be. If the cat is not chasing or killing any chickens it should be easier to deter. If it is bringing you presents, birds, mice etc. it wants your approval.
  7. jbs

    jbs Chirping

    May 23, 2011
    I feel your pain with the cat problem. People dump cats on my farm and after 9 cats, I had to start taking them to the shelter. The only thing I've found to deter a cat is another more aggressive cat to chase it away. There's a motion activated sprayer you can hook up to a hose, but you'd probably end up scaring your chickens with it. Or maybe string up an electric wire. Unless you can fence your yard in a way to keep the cats out, I think you'll have to trap the cats and take them to the shelter. If the owner retrieves the cat and pays the fine a few times, they might start keeping it indoors. But I doubt it.

    I agree with Mattemma about creating a bad neighbor situation by trapping cats, but I've tried talking to neighbors about roaming dogs and such, and being direct created much worse problems for me than had I trapped/called Animal Control. People really are nuts.
  8. Mr chicken dude

    Mr chicken dude Songster

    Nov 7, 2009
    1) You could try hitting it with an airsoft rifle but that really wont do much( I tried it before with one but it continued to come around) it might get the message and leave you alone eventually though

    2) Call me a cruel SOB but kill it.....Their are so many stray cats around here its unreal( my neighbor found two litters of kittens just in his old falling down barn this year) you can literally go walking around here and see one.Around here their not just a stray cat their a nuisance
  9. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Free Ranging Premium Member

    Apr 3, 2011
    southern Ohio
    I tried a raccoon trap last year to get rid of a pesty raccoon, and all I caught were my 3 cats over and over--they never learned, poor things. You could just borrow one, put a little tuna in a can inside, and then take the cat away.
  10. stefan333

    stefan333 Chirping

    Nov 5, 2012
    Tylenol works wonders getting rid of headaches -AND CATS.

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