will a feral cat eat my chickens?


12 Years
Jul 18, 2007
Sevier county, Tn.
We have 3 adopted cats and they saw the chixs arrive,
then they saw the hatching peeps. so now after 3 months they sit and watch them run around the yard and we think they even herd them to the coop when they see them running away from the back. .area.
Our hens and roos have never left.
hens are now locked up on their fenced
run and I have 8 roos out back, and the cat is sittting and watching them.


10 Years
Mar 2, 2009
central ohio
It is unlikely ANY domestic(yes,ferals are domestic)cat would actually catch an adult chicken(even banties) but better safe than sorry. mine are amused by the chickens but given as they are fed there is no reason to risk their necks trying to catch a 5+ lb bird. they go for very small pests. once again-better safe than sorry and I would wait until chickens are visably as large as cats and make sure cats are fed(they still hunt the small pests tho)


12 Years
Sep 14, 2007
NE Alabama
My cat is scared of my chickens. She was raised with them and has been flogged by a mother hen also. However, a neighbor's Siamese cat shows up from time to time and gets more brave each time-- so I went & told the neighbor I was concerned her cat was going to cross the line and try & take one of my chickens (She promised to try & keep "Victoria" at home.). The other cats around, both "friendly pets" and the "feral ones," don't bother my chickens.

It is not common at all that a cat will mess with a full grown chicken, but I have heard of it happening on an occasion or two [i.e. a feral cat killing a full grown (large fowl) hen].


Aug 12, 2016
I heard a ruckus this morning coming from our chicken tractor, and when I went outside to check, I spotted a large cat trying to figure out how to get inside the tractor. I scared it off, but now I've got to consider my next step. Obviously, our six foot wood fence is no deterrent. We enjoy letting our chickens out every night for about an hour while we watch them, and every day we have to move them from their coop to their tractor. I can't imagine how awful it would be to see one of our precious bantams picked off by a cat right in front of our own eyes.

I've seen this cat in our neighborhood before, but I don't know whether it's a stray or somebody's pet. It doesn't have a collar.  Now that it knows we have chickens in our yard, it will keep coming back.

I know if I trap the cat and take it to the humane society, it will be euthanized. I'd like to try some other options first. I'm think of trying a product called Shake Away (made from dried predator urine) and also something called the Scarecrow, which is device that blasts water when its sensor is tripped. Both of these things might also help deter raccoons and possums.

I know this is an old post, but Google doesn't care.

I to have had this just happen this morning. But I don't care if the cat lives. It's already eaten a ton of our song birds and God knows what else. And this morning it was trying to get into our chicken run to our chickens.

I love my chickens, they are family. I know this sounds stupid, but they love the attention and are so friendly. I DO NOT ONE OF THEM BECOMING A MEAL. That would be truly devicestating.

I'll will take every measure that I need too, to protect my girls. Period!

I'm sorry if I've offended some of you, but think of what you would do to protect your family.


5 Years
Jul 8, 2014
We have had chickens for about 3 years now and had not really had any issues with predators. A couple of months ago, something got after our chickens (they free range when we are home) less than 30 yards from the house, just inside the tree line. My husband caught sight of the predator running away & he said it had a long, black tail like a cat. Not too long after that, we saw a feral/wild cat near our garden that had a long, black tail. Last week, something went after the chickens again and killed one. We are 99% sure it was the cat and don't plan on letting it happen again. Our neighbor has also lost three birds in the last couple of months, so it seems pretty likely that this cat is the culprit.


Dec 17, 2016
Yes. I won't say the cats would actually eat your chickens, but they probably would attack them. Especially feral cats (whom you clearly intend to live outdoors) that have learned to be tougher and more resourceful than tame pet cats. Especially with 10 week old chicks, I wouldn't take the risk.

I have had chickens completely scalped (down to the skull), had their spines snapped, and suffered permanent scarring and injuries, limps etc. from feral cats...those weren't the worst, that's just those that survived. I am talking about adult birds, and not bantams -I have a medium size Barred Rock hen who still limps and has a twisted tail that healed wrong after her back was broken by a feral cat. My friends gave her to me after feral cats killed their other three chickens.

If you know people who have outdoor cats that don't bother chickens, don't get them mixed up. Most outdoor cats have still been socialized and tamed in a way most ferals have not. My neighbors have a big white outdoor cat that probably would kill my toy poodle given the chance, but doesn't bother the chickens because they intentionally socialized it with chickens as a kitten (and make sure it's never hungry). And I still know of supposedly tame, friendly outdoor cats that have attacked chickens. I would not trust a cat around my chickens (especially young ones) unless I had personally raised the cat. And even then...it would be very restricted.

Bottom line: don't do it. Previous posters are right, my chickens have caught mice themselves...and anyway, it's not worth having your animals mauled and killed and finding your lawn covered with blood and feathers.
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