Your Cat Is A Predator, Whether You Believe It Or Not

Ecologist says that owners completely underestimate how many kills their cats make.

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Indoor-only cats live longer and don't present any danger to wildlife. Gina Cioli/I-5 Studio

Your cat is a hunter who kills prey. That’s the cold truth, whether you want to believe it or not, and — according to a recent study — most owners don’t. Ecologist Jennifer McDonald and her team studied the behavior of 86 cats in two towns in the United Kingdom, examining the amount of prey the animals killed (whether or not they delivered it to their owners’ doorsteps) and comparing those numbers to the owners’ perceptions of their sweet widdle kitties.

McDonald discovered that people underestimated their cats’ kills, partially because cats only bring home about a third of their trophies and partially because they were largely unwilling to believe that their cats were harmful to the ecosystem (even though in Canada, for example, cats are the No. 1 killer of birds). McDonald noted that nearly 98 percent of the survey respondents were opposed to keeping their bloodthirsty pets (sorry) indoors, which is exactly what the American Veterinary Medical Association suggests, for the cats’ sakes, as well as for their potential victims.

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Comments

  • I myself do not let my cats outside. But it is for their own safety that i do not. There are coyotes, fishers, and lots of traffic on weekends. And also the idiot who said he was going to catch one of the local feral cats in a leg trap because it kept getting into his basement.

    ML July 1, 2015 6:14 am Reply
  • As an animal communicator, I have talked to my cats in depth about hunting. My cat Spike and I went round and round about him being allowed to hunt pack rats but not rabbits. In his mind it was I either kill or I don’t kill. However he easily saw that birds were different, and immediately quit hunting them as soon as I asked. I feed my birds, enjoy them, and even though I have 3-4 cats at all times, I have not had cats that killed a bird in over 15 years. So talk to your cats & give them rules. It makes a gigantic difference.
    Also, I know it is contraversial on whether or not to let your cats outside. I live where it is 1 house per acre, with many coyotes. However, most of the cats I have owned have wanted to go outside. I walked the property and put spiritual protection around it, and taught my cats how to get up on the fence so they were protected if chased. I realize how hard this is for some people to believe, because I never believed that psychic interaction was possible either. But it is. I had the same two indoor/outdoor cats for 17 years, and my cat Speedy lived to be 26, even though he went outside. It adds a dimension to their lives that isn’t possible in the house. Now I have a pet door, and both cats & dogs use it. It is a case by case decision on letting your pets outside. Just look at all the options, and take your cat’s feelings into account. It is THEIR life, we are merely stewards of it.

    Ann Marie Hoff July 1, 2015 11:51 pm Reply

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