ducks and outdoor cats?


11 Years
Jul 10, 2010
southern AL
Hasn't been an issue so far, but easily could be.
A kitten adopted our neighbor sometime last spring/summer. Like everything else, they feed it, but it stays outside. Well, it was not spayed, so little kitten found herself pregnant. She had a litter late last summer and now there are lots of those getting older kittens that hang around their house. So far, I've not seen any of those cats come into the yard, they seem to stay over there. And I'm sure those kittens will be having kittens soon..... so I'm seeing a feral colony of cats living near us. Do I need to worry about them if they do decide to check out our yard (way dumb idea with 3 large dogs that will just chase them and likely kill them if caught - no idea if they will see it is cat outside do not eat - either way, not smart for a cat to hang out over here. But if they are dumb enough to go over/through the fence, will I need to worry about the ducks and a cat (cats)?

If there are more litters, I'm thinking about taking one to use for rodent/snake control (and have that one spayed/neutered at least)
i have had a stray cat kill one of my pekins before and have seen a few stalking them but there nothing a .22 doesnt fix. im sure a cat raise with them will be no problem though because then that cat will mark the area around your ducks as it's territory.
I would be concerned as we have stray cats at the lake who kill animals there. Fortunately (or unfortunately), stray cats don't last too long before they are eaten themselves, unless their owner wises up and keeps their cat at home. Perhaps it might be best to make it harder for the cats to get into your yard. The more cats there are, the more likely one will try it and do something before your dog can take care of it.

ETA: One raised with your ducks will probably be OK, just keep it away from your ducklings.
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I think it would be more of an issue with ducklings than full grown ducks. My ducks give my cat a run for his money, and he is a BIG, well fed boy. But, he doesn't have an entourage of other cats to rile him up & gang up on them back.

Do you have a good relationship with your neighbors?
(I doubt it ,as they sound like irresponsible pet owners & you are worried about a small nation of feral cats in the yard next door.

Maybe there is a way to turn the tide. Are they planning to re-home or at least spay/neuter the cat & kittens? If not, maybe they would like some help removing some of them before they become a nuisance to the neighborhood.
I would call Animal Control (for the sake of the kittens as much as my ducks) if they do not re-home or at least provide protection for & care to the kittens. But I would try to speak politely with them first & ask to help them. Sometimes people get in over their heads & need an outsider to offer some guidance.
Best of luck to you. This sounds like an awful situation.
I think I read somewhere that a tom cat will chase off other cats and strays/ferals. If you neuter him you won't have to worry about spraying and hopefully he won't cozy up with a lady.
My ducks and cats get along just fine. You could adopt out the kittens. I have fixed some of my neighbors cats at my own expense. It is worth it. A fixed cat of your own will run off other cats at least mine do.
The neighbors are fine pet owners. But these aren't their pets. They just leave food out for all the neighborhood strays that camp out at their house. A beagle called their yard home for a while and was pregnant. They brought her to the vet when she was delivering because she was having issues. Their "pets" (the ones indoors) are fine. But other than the horses outdoors, they are strays that stick around and if they stick around, they get some food. I don't have a clue what they are doing with the litter of cats - there were quite a few little ones when the husband was in the hospital last fall and we were helping with yard work and the heavy lifting the wife and MIL couldn't do on their own (horse feed into the horse feed bins). At Thanksgiving, they were larger and still a few cats sticking around, but I didn't see that all of the little ones were still there. I just can't imagine they'd bring them all into the vet to be fixed - unless they found a program that will reduce the fee greatly to get that done.
So far, I've not seen any cats in the fenced back yard. See some in the front yard now and then though. I do think there was one by the duck house and something else to go with it as there are distinct cat prints and something else prints on the duck house roof LOL But nothing back there since then.
I think it depends on a few things, the size of your ducks.. smaller breeds would be more susceptible and whether the cats are being fed at all, don't get me wrong fed cats will still hunt but the motivation changes, if they are starving they will for sure me very inclined to hunt down everything that moves .. kwim?

I have a fairly large breed of duck so that helps a bit, we do have cats that wonder in here now & again.. BUT i also have 2 barn cats of my own... the older one is pretty territorial... so usually removes any stray cats... my cats do not bother my ducks at all and one is still a kitten(under 1yo) however i still leave all my birds full flight 'just in case' my hens are my greater concern since they are on the smaller side..

If they are not really your neighbours though, short of animal control i am unsure how you can fix the problem..
I have feral cats near me, about half a mile up the road in an abandoned barn. One of the big boys sometimes comes and sleeps in my nesting boxes but has never bothered the chickens.. he's Very scared of people though. My chickens are used to my mousing cat(who ignores them) & the newer kitten who likes to play with them, they pretty much hold their own and will thrown a peck on the kitten if he gets out of line.

ETA: My Muscovies huff & puff at the cats or poke them(the kitten) and the cats run away, so i am not the slightest bit worried about them.
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If the cats are living in the neighbor's yard and the neighbor is feeding the cats, then those cats belong to the neighbor. If the neighbor claims the cats don't belong to him, then set up a live trap at the fence line (on your own property) and haul them all off to the pound.

Cats are very capable of killing ducks. Whether or not they will depends upon how hungry they are and how much they like to hunt. Some cats never bother poultry, some cats kill poultry. All cats are capable of killing poultry if they decide they want to. I suspect that all cats will kill poultry if they get hungry enough.

It sounds like the cats have not yet bothered your birds, so keep your fingers crossed and hope it stays that way.

I get a lot of dumped-off cats here, but the coyotes eat them all before they get to be a problem.

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