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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Does everyone keep barn cats?
I just had to get rid of ours. We found 4 young cats eating our first lamb of the year. We had been feeding them all they could eat to avoid this problem. We have one tom left (because I couldn't catch him).
I have mixed feelings about the barn cat. They urinate in the barn in winter, which I can't stand. However they keep the mice down. We saw the first mouse in the barn tonight in a year or so. However when the cats eat your income they must go. How do you keep the cats under control, or how do you farm with out them?
 

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You think cats killed a lamb?

I think maybe the lamb died and the cats decided to have a snack.

I've never heard of a domestic cat killing something that big.
 

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I'm sorry about your lamb. I can't imagine cats killing a lamb, though. Could it have been still born?

There are programs in our area to get outside cats neutered for free or very close to free. A great way to limit cat population growth!

We actually just adopted a pair of feral cats from a feral rescue group. For $20 we got 2 healthy, vet-checked, up to date on shots, fixed cats. Hoping that they stay around at least a year and that our kids don't move them into our home.

Try a litter box for the cats.
 

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I have a friend that this happened to with their baby pigs. She had to get rid of every single one of the barn cats...she said once they start, they don't stop. Since then she has adopted a whole new "herd" of cats and has not had a problem. I think it's a fluke.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The cat took the throat out of the lamb. Much like a larger cat would do to a deer. I have seen cats take out full size meat rabbits. A lamb would not be a problem. I have a friend who lost 15 kid goats to 6 cats in one night.
 

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One of our neighbor's house cats killed my MIL's full grown leghorn chicken. Yup, it happens.

Causes bad neighbor problems, too. Especially when said neighbor is a cousin.
 

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I started a thread a couple weeks back asking about "Rat Terriers" & got some very good feedback about them. Sounds like one rat terrier is worth 5 cats & they don't bother livestock. I'm going to get one.
 

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New one on me. Maybe you have a Fisher killing for fun and the cats were just clearing up. Seems to me Fishers move around and come back in about a week to ten days.
 

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were your cats fixed? I have tons less problems with fixed barn cats then unfixed ones. I've had cats take a chick, but never a half grown or full grown bird. The cat that did is pretty lazy, but the chick got out and was trapped in a corner so very easy pickings. I don't let the little ones free range until they are fully feathered. I found out where the chick had gotten out and fixed the problem.

My cats also don't like to urnate in the barn, but an unfixed male will spray all over the place and that is horrible! They even come and spray the house because I have house cats inside.

Though my cats are fixed, we have a feral population (primarily due to one neighbor 3 miles away) and usually get 2 - 3 younger males trying to move in each year. They will start fighting with the resident cats and marking territory - Once we are certian they are trying to move in the are taken out.

Cathy
 

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I had 1 cat show up 3 yrs. ago. Counted 18 last time I put food out. Last night I saw 4 more big toms stealing food. Now I need to do something. Also have had possums come to eat their food. I simply don't want any cats.
 

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I have 6 barn cats. Really only one is really "barn". They all but 2 started as outside cats and with weather and time have learned to come in at night for warmth, food and companionship. My cats are fed free choice inside and out, and they hunt, so there is no reason for them to pursue anything and kill it other than for sport. I have chickens which free range and they don't bother them at all. All my cats are spayed/neutered.
 

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Nope, I have no barn cats and I have no truck with folks that will let a cat run wild. I keep my barn clean and do not want cat-stench all over it. I also enjoy songbirds and feral cats (and housecats that are let outside to play) kill them by the hundreds of millions each year (not an exaggeration, check it out for yourself).
 

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I have the opposite problem, I had 5 barn cats, but two have been "stolen" by family members and are living in houses. My cats run from the chickens, as do all dogs who like their noses the way god made them. BIL's dachshund was obsessed with getting into the chickens till I let him in, the chickens ran at him in a circle and pecked his nose and chased him around the chicken yard until I rescued him. Last time he ever ran their fenceline. lol
 

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I have 6 barn cats. Never had them take a lamb! Have found them curled up under the chick's heat lamp! Chicks were fine.

Kathie
 

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We had 2 feral cats appear on our property last summer. The black one was killing chickens. nasty cruddy cat. :mad: Somewhere along the line he disappeared. I suspect he tried killing something over at the neighbors...bad move. The dogs there hunt REALLY well. ;)

We've now inherited someone's drop off cat. He appeared in the barn one day. Nice enough cat. keeps the mice population down well. He doesn't get any extra attention. I'm hoping he eventually goes elsewhere, but in the meantime, he's fat and happy, and the grain bins aren't being raided by mice :)
 

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i really can't see also how a barn cat could kill a lamb or a pig. Sorry. Unless I actually see them taking it down I wouldn't blame the cats. I have seen new born or small goats that have died during the night with eiyes eaten out of their heads and their little hoofs nibbled on but I blame rats in the barn for that. I have several barn cats that all have shots and are "fixed". Of course, during the coldest winter nights on the homestead I usually find several of them waiting to get into the laundry room to sleep for the cold night. But, a few never leave the barn. Our cats are also fed cat chow water and plenty of milk during the spring. I would think they would have to be pretty hungry to eat a dead animal. A barn cat can not have a healthy life just eating mice and rats and the occ. saucer of milk. I have never even seen the cats take down a chicken. They will stalk a chicken but as soon as the chicken sees them ..the cats run. I would set up a few rat bait traps or if you think you are overrun with rats..take a 22 and sit up there at night and have some target practice. Way back in the "olden" days when we first began homesteading I would see rats sleeping with my goats and that was the clue to get a few barn cats and we had come target practice for a while also. Of course, the farmer down the road doesn't seem to bother with his rat population so I'm sure some of "his" rats find their way up to our barn too. That is just part of the adventure of country living. There are more rats in the country than the city...you just don't see them when the lights go out. Good Luck !!
 

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Considering the horrible carnage and waste that cats make I cant see a reason to let them live and breath on my farm. Your mileage may vary.
 

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Lambs can be stillborn, but often they live a full day, even a week before they die from a breech delivery.
 
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