Cat attack?

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Stewart P

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Cat attack?
« on: November 29, 2013, 22:20 »
Would a moderate sized domestic cat attack/kill a chicken?  We have 4 ex-bats and for the last week have been free-ranging in the garden during the day when we're at work.  They take themselves to bed so that when we arrive home at 5:30 they are asleep and we just have to close the coop door.

Our own two cats seem to be frightened of the chicks but there are a couple of neighbour's cats which we've noticed showing interest and wonder whether they'd pose a serious risk during the day when we're out.

Also, living in London suburbia there is a large urban fox population locally though have seen no evidence of fox in the garden which is pretty well enclosed.  As the winter approaches and foxes get hungrier are we putting the chicks at risk of a day-time fox carnage.

Don't like the thought of them shut in the run all week (though still better than their previous life) but are the risks too great.

Any thoughts would be helpful



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Re: Cat attack?
« Reply #1 on: November 29, 2013, 22:44 »
We've never had a problem with cats, they seem too scared of the noise the chickens make when they see one gingerly walking across the fence tops. Of course that doesnt mean that would be the case for everyone and it might be a different matter with bantams.

We had a fox in our garden this week at 5pm. It doesnt come around often and usually much later at night. Ours are locked in as soon as they go in which is around 4-4:15pm.
Our fences are well over 6 feet high and the fox has no problem clearing it.
The only time we had a fox in the garden in daylight was 3 years ago. We had snow (unusual for us) and the ground had been really frozen for weeks which i guess means the food the foxes has buried previously was frozen in and they were getting desperate.
The chickens made lots of noise in time for us to see it and they were locked in the run after that for a few days.

How big is your run?



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Re: Cat attack?
« Reply #2 on: November 29, 2013, 23:14 »
One of my cats is continuously trying to hunt my exbatts but he doesn't go near my posh girls maybe he can sense their weakness? I have also had problems with a eight ours at in the sat who woul terrorise my girls.  One night I got in a one was missing, my neighbour told me they had heard a commotion and saw the cat chasing one of my girls. It took me hours to find her completely traumatised behind a neighbours shed.  In the end we had to attack this cat with a water gun every time we saw it, it runs away when it sees us next. I wouldn't underestimate a cats nosiness.



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Re: Cat attack?
« Reply #3 on: November 30, 2013, 09:32 »
I spent he money and fox proofed the garden - then a neighbour cut some shrubs back making it easy for cats to get in so had to do more work.  Cat and foxproofing isn't impossible and the peace of mind is so worth it.
There is some great stuff on the market to stop cats getting onto walls and fences....

I've not heard of cats killing a full grown chicken but mine get upset if there is one prowling...

We don't have a run - they have the whole garden and are exploring different parts of it every time I look out - happy girls.
One grandma and 4 baby Pekins.



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Re: Cat attack?
« Reply #4 on: November 30, 2013, 11:04 »
In urban areas such as London foxes are not as frightened of us and backyard chooks are easy prey. Generally cats do not pose a problem but there will always be exceptions and precautions should be taken. do not underestimate the ability of a fox to get into your garden!! :)
Experience is what you get when you didn't get what you wanted!!



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Re: Cat attack?
« Reply #5 on: November 30, 2013, 11:34 »
have you thought of a run extension? remember to roof solid or chook wire.
alternative hang a cabbage for fun



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Re: Cat attack?
« Reply #6 on: November 30, 2013, 21:41 »
don't feel guilty to cage them in a run

mine go in the run whenever I'm not there to keep an eye on them - it is even covered on top

if a fox gets in it will kill them all - I saw it happen to a friends chooks and believe me its not a pretty site  :ohmy:

and cats are predatory creatures too so there is always a possibility they may attack - even lost one of mine to a buzzard once

make sure the run has caging buried underneath the edges of the run as a fox will even dig under to get his free meal

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