Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Are Cats Good For Rodent Control

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Top Cat Breeds For Catching Mice

Stray cats go to work for rodent control in Kern County

People welcome cats into their households for a variety of reasons. Some just want a fluffy companion to share a couch or bed with, while others have small children who desire a low-maintenance playmate.

Other cat owners choose the domesticated cat for an altogether different purpose. These people appreciate cats for their natural gifts, namely, their hunting instincts. Cats have walked alongside human beings since time immemorial as valued assets for controlling the rodent population. On farms, in port cities and even on the decks of ships, cats have proven themselves worthy business partners for thousands and thousands of years.

Different Behaviors Within Similar Species

The cat’s numbers don’t hold up very well with people’s expectations. You may well imagine a building full of very frustrated cats who continually pined for their opportunity to strike. However, in reality the cats mostly ignored the rats. This runs contrary to almost everyone’s expectations about a cat’s role in rodent control.

Why were the cats so ambivalent about the rat colony? After all, pet owners commonly see their cats bring home mice they’ve successfully hunted down. Why were feral cats, who should be better hunters than house cats, so uninterested with the rat colony? It’s probably a matter of size.

People often forget just how much bigger a rat is than a mouse. Adult mice typically weigh about 30 grams. But an adult rat can weigh up to 650 grams. Even the smallest adult female rat will seldom weigh less than 350 grams. This means that the smallest adult rat weighs over ten times as much as the average adult mouse.

It’s little wonder that a cat would find himself intrigued by the smell of a rat. The mouse and rat are both rodents. The two species look and smell quite similar to each other. But a cat looking for a mouse would be in for quite a surprise after he catches sight of a rat. Imagine looking for your cat and instead finding a lion in his place. This isn’t too different from what a cat finds when he goes looking for a mouse and instead finds a rat.

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Are Birman Cats Good At Rodent Control

Most people think of cats as mice and rat hunters born and bred, but this is not true for all cat breeds. Some people have been asking recently, are birmans good for rodent control in my house? To answer the question simply, no, there are terrible preditors. That is not to say that they are completely useless, however they have been domesticated to the extent that they are not the best hunters. Birmans have been described as ditsy, and I would say that is a very accurate description. They will usually have no interest in chasing mice, so if you have a problem with rodents, you are going to have to call in the professionals.

What Cat Is Best For Rat Catching

How to Use Cats for Pest Control: 8 Steps (with Pictures)

There is nothing on the internet to help us. This is no surprise because, in truth, you wont know which cat is the best for rat catching because it comes down to the individual personality of the cat. Some cats will be excellent and some relatively uninterested.

Both champions mentioned above were tabby cats. That does not mean that tabby cats are good rat catchers. It just means that there are more tabby cats than any other sort of cat.

If I was adopting a cat for the sole purpose of keeping rodent populations down Id use these guidelines:

  • Adopt a rescue cat from the local shelter.
  • Choose a cat that was semi-feral or stray and brought in. Most often these cats are deemed unsuitable and euthanised but I would have thought they would have more finely honed hunting skills. However, youll have to do a bit of domestication.
  • Chose a red tabby cat. I feel that these cats are a little more alpha type and also well behaved. This assessment is anecdotal and completely unscientific.
  • Ask the shelter people for their advice. They should know the character of their cats or have an idea about their individual personalities. This is important because, as mentioned, it comes down to individual cats. You cant brand one type of cat better than another.
  • Dont bother about adopting a purebred, pedigree cat . They will be no better and possibly worse. However, the Maine Coon evolved as a barn cat in the USA. Perhaps rat catching is still in her blood?
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    No Cat We’ve Got You Covered

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  • Chances are good you dont ferry spices and silks on ships from the Old World to the New, so maybe you dont need a cat to keep your lower decks free from pesky mice. Still, no matter where you live in the United States, youre bound to encounter one of our smaller mammalian friends at one time or another. To catch them, you need a qualified hunting cat.

    How to choose the right one? There are many cat breeds out there almost too many to choose from, if were being honest. Still, several breeds rise above the rest when it comes to sharpness of wits and claws!

    Were going to take you on a tour through the top 10 cats for catching mice. First, lets have a look at the basics.

    How Cats Can Deter Mice From Your Home

    Mice fear the smell of cats If you have mice nearby and you have a pet cat, chances are the mice can smell their presence. Cats emit a chemical that deters mice away from your home, this chemical can be found in your pets saliva, which triggers the sensory organs inside a mouse and causes terror. Even if your cat is not a killing machine, they will be able to passively defend your home.

    Cats see it as a game From the first day we bring back our pet cat, we owners dangle string and other toys that resemble the shape and behaviour of a mouse, simply to get their attention and amuse them for a while. This helps us to create a bond with them through play, aiding mental stimulation and thus, combating potential boredom and anxiety. So as you can imagine, when your cat sees a live mouse, its likely to trigger their playful side and they will be tempted to catch it.

    Cats will defend their home Your fluffy friend will not want to share their home with mice, regardless of whether or not theyre natural hunters its likely your cat will chase after them to get them to leave.

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    The Home Inspection Requirement

    In an average home there can be over 20 holes that mice chew out and use to go in and out of.

    Theyre usually quite secluded, hard to find, and they lead into a whole other world where the population easily grows.

    Working cats as they are called, can occasionally catch and play with the mice they find but they cant find all their entry holes. Cats arent looking for mice holes.

    If you rely on a cat to solve your mice and rat problems, you should basically expect your cat to never be able to retire.

    The only way youre going to permanently stop mice and rodents from entering your home is by hindering them at their source of entry i.e. example exclusion prevention on the home.

    To do this a full inspection of your home is required. Once the inspection is complete, and the locations in the home they are residing in is determined, removal of the mice can take place.

    From there we move onto the next step applying permanent preventative measures.

    Certain Breeds Of Dogs

    Are Cats Good Rat Control?

    Many homeowners are surprised to learn that certain breeds of dogs were actually bred to catch rats. This is especially true of terriers, who are fast, full of energy, and skilled at digging holes to chase down rodents. They were even bred to have short, thick tails so their owners could easily pull them out of a deep burrow if they got stuck. In addition to terriers, dachshunds and German pinschers are also well known for being great ratters.

    However, the same words of caution about cats apply to dogs. In our modern households, dogs are pets, not workers, and relying on them to take care of a rodent problem isnt exactly safe. Again, if you already have a dog, be sure to keep your dog food safely stowed away otherwise, youll simply be inviting more rodents to come visit.

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    Will Spaying Or Neutering My Cat Kill Its Killer Instinct

    The idea that spaying or neutering your cat will reduce its desire to hunt is a myth. Unaltered cats can produce two to three litters of kittens a year, and those kittens will soon be bearing litters of their own. With that many cats around, you’ll have to bring in the bears to control the cats. To avoid replacing your rodent problem with a cat problem, spay or neuter your cat!

    If you can’t afford to pay to have your kitty spayed or neutered right away, look for a free or low-cost program rather than putting it off. You can find an excellent list of local and national spay and neuter programs at

    Best Air Rifles For Pest Control Faqs

    • What is the best Air rifle for a beginner?

    A PCP is more recommended for beginners as well as experienced shooters since it does not have recoil.

    • Can you dry-fire an airgun?

    It is not recommended especially with spring piston variety.

    • How far will an airgun shoot

    This is a common question but does not have a specific answer as it depends on the type of gun, the age, type of pellet, and weather condition.

    • What pellet should I use for pest control?

    Most shooters prefer hollow point pellets but if you are close to the target any pellet will do.

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    How Good Are Cats At Catching Rats

    We all know that cats are good at catching their prey. A study in 2017 found that domestic cats have played a part in the extinction of at least 63 species worldwide.

    Despite this track record as being efficient killers, new research suggests that cats arent actually very good at catching rats.

    A group of researchers tracked the effects of a group of 5 feral cats on the rat population in a waste management facility for over 2 months. The researchers took 306 videos which showed that showed that at least three of the cats were active beside the rats every day. Even though the cats were around the rats daily, the cats stalked them 20 times and tried to kill them just 3 times. They only managed to kill them twice!

    The researchers did say that for every cat sighting, rats were 1.19x more likely to seek shelter and hide. This might be the reason that people have traditionally thought that cats are very good at controlling the rat population they just dont see them anymore!

    There is evidence, however, that the scent of cats can reduce the ability of rodents to reproduce which can help to slow the speed that an infestation takes hold.

    Cats are much more likely to kill small birds and mice which are smaller and less likely to injure them! Small birds weigh around 15g and mice weigh 30g whereas a rat can weigh up to 500g.

    More Subtle Aspects Of Cat And Rat Interactions

    Cats And Chemical Pest Control

    In the end, it appears that cats catching rats is more myth than reality. Cats are quite good at hunting mice when the opportunity arises. And cats are certainly intrigued by the presence of a rat colony. But a cat investigating a rat is probably hoping to find a mouse. When they instead discover a rat, they know it’s a whole other type of hunt. Instead of a weak and nearly defenseless mouse, the cat has found a larger animal who can fight back. Most cats simply won’t find it a worthwhile gamble if they have any other option for food.

    This doesn’t mean that cats are entirely useless for rat control efforts. The researchers found that the feral cats weren’t very interested in hunting any given rat. However, the cats were attentive to their environment. A rat would almost certainly see these large predatory animals on the hunt. The cats didn’t want to risk a fight with the rat population. But at the same time a rat doesn’t want to risk a fight with a cat either. The researchers noticed that as the cat population increased the rat population was becoming more wary. Every cat sighting resulted in a rat being about 1.19 times more likely to seek shelter.

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    Do Cats Keep Mice Away Yes And Here Are The Reasons Why

    I mentioned above that we would forget everything we have seen on Tom and Jerry. The relationship between cat and mouse is not the same!

    When writing this post, I thought it would be an excellent idea to take a look to discuss the specific skills that a cat has to help keep your property mouse-free.

    I wanted to take a look at what drives a cat and what they enjoy doing. Then we will know whether or not a cat is good for keeping mice away.

    Cats Have Extraordinary Reflexes

    Have you ever heard the phrase:

    That person has cat-like reflexes!

    For instance, it means a person can react quickly to a situation where they need to catch something.

    Here is something you can try with a cat I do it all of the time for my own amusement.

    Sit on a chair and wait for your cat to stroll past. Quickly move your foot as it gets close. You are likely to see a lightning-quick jump in the air or a quick turn of the head to focus on your foot. It happens immediately.

    When a cat spots a mouse, you can bet your bottom dollar that your cat will react just as quickly.

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    Cats Can Make The Problem Worse

    In rare cases, cats can make your mouse problem worse. Many outdoor cats like to bring their prey home as a trophy or something to play with . If you live near a field or similar area with mice and have an outdoor cat that likes to hunt, you could be setting yourself up for disaster. They could bring a mouse infestation into your home if they let their prey loose. Most cats hunt at night, so you will likely be sleeping if this were to happen.

    Can You Rent A Cat

    Program uses feral cats to battle rodent problem

    There are several places you can rent cats from to catch mice, but why would you want to? Isnt it better to just hire an exterminator? To learn other ways to get rid of your mice infestation, .

    Sometimes mouse exterminator or setting out traps is exactly what you need, but here are several good reasons to rent a cat for your annoying mouse problem:

    • Using a cat is more sanitary than using poisons that can be bad for the environment.
    • If youre looking for a more ethical, humane way to get rid of mice, a cat will do the job perfectly!
    • Cats have over 10,000 years of evolution on their side to make them the perfect mouse-exterminators.
    • Cats make awesome companions! Having a cat is a win-win situation: you get rid of your mouse problem, and a loving kitty gets a new home!

    Which would you prefer to cuddle with? This:

    Or this?

    The answer is obvious! Cats are superior every time!

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    Cats May Have Duped Us About Being Great Rat Catchers

    Breweries, warehouses and waste facilities sometimes turn to cats for rat controlbut do they really help?

    Mice may stare out at chances they dare not take, as the poet Ted Hughes observedbut rats are another matter entirely. When caught in a cats gaze, a rat might stare brazenly back. It may scurry around, apparently untroubled that a hungry predator is looking right at it.

    This happened often when cats moved into a rat-infested recycling facility in Brooklyn, in the middle of Fordham University ecologist Michael Parsons experiment . Parsons had wanted to determine how certain rat pheromones, like those of an alpha male, might influence the animals actions. We wanted to understand behavior based on their own scents, he says. As a behavioral ecologist, I was like, Lets get rid of the cats so we can do our rat research.

    Parsons and his colleagues set up cameras around the Brooklyn recycling facility and fitted as many rats as they could catch with unique radio frequency tags . This was so that we can follow each individual and their behavior, he explains. After that, and analyzing more than 300 videos of cats and rats on the floor of the recycling center, the resultspublished Thursday in Frontiers in Ecology and Evolutionwere clear as day: The cats didnt really bother when the rats were on the open floor, Parsons says. In one video, a rat walks calmly around the floor while a cat watches it from a box a few feet away.

    Are Cats Good At Catching Mice

    Is water wet? Is the sky blue? Are cats good at catching mice? Cats have something called a hunting instinct which is exactly why they lose their minds over a laser light or a string with a feather on the end of it. When cats play, theyre actually honing their hunting skills.

    Believe it or not, not all cats are naturally born mousers. Its something that they learn as kittens from their momma cat. While theyre naturally curious and playful, their momma has to teach them how to kill and eat mice by bringing home wounded rodents for them to eat.

    Here are the steps that momma cat takes to teach her kittens how to hunt mice:

  • She brings home a dead mouse.
  • The kittens get to bat the dead mouse around, and in the process, they develop a taste for it.
  • Momma cat now brings home an almostdead mouse. This mouse is severely weakened by injury, making it easy prey for her kittens.
  • The kittens learn from playing with this mouse how to capture and subdue it, with little risk of it escaping.
  • Momma cat brings home a live, healthy mouse for the kittens to play with.
  • The kittens have to act quickly to bring the mouse down before it gets away.
  • Momma cat takes her kittens with her on her next hunt so they can use their new skills in the wild.
  • Eventually these sweet little kitties grow up to be excellent mouse hunters just like their momma cat.

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