If you don’t own a cat and all of the sudden you end up with a whole litter of kittens chances are that the litter came from feral cats, or cats that don’t have a home. Feral cats are homeless cats that are now wild and the offspring are usually wild too. There are over one million feral cats in the United States. These cats are excellent hunters and survive without humans.
Preventing The Feral Cat From Taking Up Residence At Your House
Most feral cats will live under porches and decks, and in sheds. They survive by eating pet food whether it is given to them, or they find it lying out. They will also find ways to enter the home or attic if there is accessibility to those areas. Many times pregnant mothers will find an area in a garage or barn to have their kittens. The best way to prevent them from living at your house is to remove all access to shelter and food.
Dumpsters are also a good source of food, not only for the garbage that is in the can but also for the small critters that it draws to it. Since these cats also feed on small animals such as squirrels, chipmunks, and mice, it is also necessary to prevent these animals from infesting your property in order to control the feral cat.
Closer To Your Residence
It is a good idea to close off and screen any areas that are below or under porches and decks. This area is usually out of sight on a daily basis, but once the cats start howling then you know that something is amiss. Another area where they may have access is the crawlspace under your home, or the attic, if there is a large tree that is close to the house. It is necessary to see where they are going and how they are entering their impromptu den inside your home for you to know what to close off. Block all accesses to these areas
The older stray cats are dangerous and vicious. They will claw, bite and hiss just to try and escape so trapping them is much more difficult than the little ones. Although they can be trapped there is an extreme possibility that you will get scratched and or bitten in the process. Feral cats can carry serious and deadly diseases that can be transmitted by this kind of attack, so it may be a good idea to have someone with experience trap and remove the cats.
Techniques And Exclusions
Little kittens are cute and we all have a tendency to want to cuddle up to them if we see one, but unless you want to keep the kittens do not touch or try and take care of them. If you see kittens wandering around and you know that they are not yours or your neighbors, then do not feed them and remove all food sources. Feral cat kittens are tamable up to the age of ten months so if you are going to capture the little ones it is best to call animal control to handle them and assist in finding them a new place to live.
One technique that may be used to keep the feral cats out of your yard is to have a motion detected water sprinkler system. Cats hate water and with this device as soon as the cat walks into the yard or area that you determine, the sprinkler will go on spraying water on the cat. He won’t stay around long after a few showers.
One of the most effective repellants for the feral cat is the pepper spray. Stray cats have a very sensitive smell and the spray can be used in the areas that inhabit. This can be sprayed in flower beds that they use as a litter box or other areas they sleep and rest.
We are the Pest Education Network, a non-profit organization that focuses on wildlife and pest removal education. Our approach utilizes Integrated Pest Management, a strategy advocating prevention and humane methods.