Peaceful co-existence: hens and cat

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by PatinOxford, Jan 14, 2015.

  1. PatinOxford

    PatinOxford Chirping

    Feb 27, 2014
    I have to say I didn't know quite where to put this. It's less than a question, more than an observation. But here goes.

    I have two hens, ages unknown, a RIR and a silver-laced Wyandotte. Both have just started laying after a two month hiatus while they moulted and got over the winter sulks.

    I also have a cat. Well, I have four cats, but only one who counts for this story. She is a rescue, not super tame, and intended to be a barn cat but we know how that goes. Her name is Morag. She was about six months old when she came to us and full of fun and energy, and she thought the chickens were toys invented just for her. She didn't try to catch them, but she would lurk and go pouncy pouncy, and they would squawk and flap, and that was soooo much fun.

    Then one day she decided to follow the RIR hen into the coop. A few moments later there was a blood-curdling screech-squawk-flap and Miss Morag came out of that coop like she'd been shot from a cannon. Red stomped out, snaking her head and mantling like a hawk, uttered a few remarks (rude, I'm sure), and went about her business. Morag has stayed well away from the hens since then -- wise kitty!

    Except it got cold. Really cold. And our coop has these nice laying boxes, lined with straw, just the right shape and size to keep a little cat very cozy on a nasty rainy snowy icky day.

    They seem to have worked it out. Morag snoozes in one of the six laying boxes. The girls use one of the other boxes to lay, unless Morag is off on cat business. Then they use her box, and Morag ... ummm ... seems to be brooding their eggs. We don't have a rooster, so I collect the eggs, which Morag keeps from freezing.

    And the lion shall lay down with the chook. [​IMG] I do shut her out of the coop at night. No sense asking for trouble.
  2. AnnieE

    AnnieE Chirping

    Dec 17, 2014
    Southeast Michigan
    I have an outdoor cat. Adult male that took us a while to train. No attacks that i know of, but definitely stalking. But hes gotten in the coop for a nap when the runs open. Yours sounds so cute!
  3. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    Morag the egg warmer - that's earning her keep. All Scaredycat does is catch mice.
  4. krista74

    krista74 Songster

    Jun 4, 2014
    Victoria, Australia.
    That is so cute! Would love to see a picture of Morag in the nesting box if at all possible.

    - Krista
  5. toddo

    toddo In the Brooder

    Mar 21, 2012
    Robinson Illinois
    We have 4 cats one "Holy" likes to do the fake attack on the chickens, but I have caught "Orangey" sleeping in the box that the girls have never used. We also don't allow the cats in the coop at night.
  6. krista74

    krista74 Songster

    Jun 4, 2014
    Victoria, Australia.
    My cat 'Lil Puss loves the chickens.

    She is a hunter by nature and we live in the bush, so she regularly brings home dead mice, lizards, birds, snakes and baby rabbits.

    When we first got the chickens and the rooster she showed interest immediately. They were full grown though, so when she did venture a little too close one day the rooster put her back in her box and there hasn't been a problem since!

    Now, she spends her day following the flock around the yard. She stays about 6 feet behind them, and just commando-crawls along the ground behind them, watching them all day.

    Not creepy at all, lol.

    The other cat, Mackie, couldn't care less about them. Mackie says "....Meh...."

    - Krista

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