Introducing a kitten to the farm?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by MetalFarm, Jun 22, 2016.

  1. MetalFarm

    MetalFarm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 1, 2013
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    Saw in the paper they have a huge need to adopt kittens at the local shelter. We have some mice. Is it a huge pain to teach the kitten to not eat the chickens? I have an area I can keep them seperated for a while. I don't remember it being a huge pain to teach the dogs to leave the chickens alone. I don't know that I can keep the dogs from terrorizing the kitten lol.
    I read the shelter only keeps them 3 days. I figure they have a better chance on the farm than 3 days.

    any suggestion? If I go look I'm sure i'll come home with one. What age should I look for? I think they're the $85 fixed fancy cats. Which is good because we do get ferrels around from time to time. Then again we also get cyottes. But I guess the cat could live with the chickens which are coyotte proof.

    Thanks
     
  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    Snakes are better mousers. Just sayin'.
     
  3. write2caroline

    write2caroline Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Where I live, we had a lot of feral cats - Which I caught, had fixed and released. For the most part they left the chickens alone unless it was raining and I noticed the cats would go into the coops on cold or rainy days. Sometimes the chickens would lay eggs right next to the cats and they got along fine. The only problem I ever had was one time I put put my newly feathered chicks and I thought they were big enough to not be bothered by the cats - they were as big as my bantams but the cats hunted them. I saw them stalking the chickens. The older chickens did not put up with the stalking but the chick ran making the cats give chase so I locked the chicks back up for two more weeks and then it was all fine. The younger pullets were now old enough not to be spooked by the cats and the cats left them alone.

    Really depends on the cats. None of my cats bother the chickens. Nor do my dogs.

    Caroline
     
  4. MetalFarm

    MetalFarm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Any other benifit to having them around besides saving a life?? How old should I be looking for? Doesn't matter? Can a young kitten take care of itself out there if i leave it food?
     
  5. Folly's place

    Folly's place Chicken Obsessed

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    Older kittens will take less time to raise. They will need a safe place to live, in other words locked in a building or something, with food, water, and litter. Time to get to know you and the farm, and locked in safely at night. Name tags, good food, and time to learn their jobs. Kittens who have a hunting mother will do especially well. I feed meals rather than leaving food out in the barn to attract other critters! The big hens will scare them, not a bad thing. My broodies protect their chicks from the barn cat, who would take little chicks otherwise. One or two barn cats will really help with the mice, and some will take on rats too. They will need to be vaccinated, neutered, and have good food, just like any other pet dog or cat. Mary
     
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    My Coop
    If you want it to live in the barn, you'll have to cage it in there for awhile, until it learns to stay put for food and shelter.
    Kind of like you keep new chickens in the coop for a week or so, until they feel safe there, before free ranging them.
    I've read a couple good articles on assimilating a new barn cat, try googling.
     
  7. chickens really

    chickens really Overrun With Chickens

    Cats can learn to not look at your Chickens as prey. My cat hangs out with us as my chicks free range. She is a barn cat but seems to know that if she attacks a chicken she will be punished for it. She is still a cat and pops out to get them scattering or slaps them and then goes off on her own. Its the cats you dont know you have to watch out for.
     
  8. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    If you want to save its life, why not keep it in your house? Hence the term housecat.
    Outdoor cats kill an awful lot of native wildlife - not just mice.

    I've heard the best way to have cats learn to keep chickens alone is to introduce them to a broody hen with chicks.
     
  9. chickens really

    chickens really Overrun With Chickens

    That would also work! Haha!
    Silly cat would learn fast then.
     

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