BB Gun or no gun at all? (I'm an idiot, bare with me)

Discussion in 'Countryside Families' started by asher, Dec 14, 2006.

  1. asher

    asher Well-Known Member

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    I know basically NOTHING about guns and such so keep that in mind when reading this and please be nice. ;)

    I have never considered getting a gun. Never. Never had a reason to, never felt safe with them, etc. Well, we have (expensive) chickens now and although we do not have many predators, we do currently have some stray cats stalking our run. I am fairly sure it cannot get in the run during the day and they are all locked with lock and key in the barn at night.

    My aunt suggested a bb gun, just in case. Would this hurt a cat, stun it, kill it or what?

    How dangerous are bb guns? Are they considered firearms or not? Are bb guns even worth having for the purpose that I intend them for (scaring away small predators)? If not, I'll just forget the idea all together as I won't have anything more dangerous here. (I do have a sword, but am guessing the predator would be way faster than me and wouldn't hang around for me to "take care of it"! ROFL)

    Okay, I think that's all. Oh, should mention I do have 4 small children under the age of 10, but they would not be allowed to use one if I did get one.
     
  2. jen74145

    jen74145 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    From the oh-so-wonderful teenaged boys who lived in my old neighborhood, I can tell you a BB will kill a cat if you hit it in the right spot. If you hit it, say, in the leg or something, it can wind up with a nasty infection and suffer for days before it dies.
    I'd get something you know will kill it, better that than the critter suffer. Not against shooting animals that are where they shouldn't be, just for doing it humanly. ;)

    Or, have you thought about a dog? Wouldn't have to even be an LGD to chase cats off, most dogs of any breed will chase off a cat with a lot of barking and charging...
     

  3. asher

    asher Well-Known Member

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    Yup, I would love a dog, but really not enough property to be fair to a dog, IMO.

    Okay, I wouldn't want to just wound an animal so I think not. Maybe paint ball gun? ROFL j/k
     
  4. NCGirl

    NCGirl Well-Known Member

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    I would suggest a .22

    I just sold one for $50 in the local classifieds or I would offer it to you. I am sure you can find a decent on for $50-$75 if you look around.
     
  5. moopups

    moopups In Remembrance

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    As kids we would have 'war games' in the woods with BB guns, we all wore goggles, nothing more protective than that. Pellet rifles are high powered BB guns, but will bring down small critters. A .22 is an efficient killing weapon. A sling shot can also deliver deadly force if aimed correctly.

    The repelling of the cats seems like the avenue to explore, fences? Chemicals?
     
  6. asher

    asher Well-Known Member

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    Unfortunately, I can't afford to fence in the entire yard. As I said, the entire run IS secure and we don't free range. We do occasionally let the chickens play on the yard while we are outside playing, but I'm not terribly worried about that. I guess I am more worried about IF they find a way to get in or IF we get a worse predator (we've seen foxes last year and smell skunks around here, etc.)

    Thanks for letting me talk it out and educating me on this more. :)
     
  7. Iddee

    Iddee Well-Known Member

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    A bb gun is the most dangerous gun you can own. It is not taken seriously like a real gun is, thereby causing careless handling and many acidents.
    First, take a gun safety course.
    Second, get someone to teach you to shoot a .22 rifle and a .410 shotgun. Mostly to show you the power of each.
    Thirdly, learn enough about all the choices to determine what is right for you, not taking advice from strangers that may well kill or maim you or a loved one.
     
  8. caroline00

    caroline00 Well-Known Member

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    a lot of people use paintball guns for stray dogs. It lets the dogs know they arent wanted there and tags them so the owners know (if they care) that they are going where they dont belong.

    I would be more worried about what you dont see than what you do see. Possums, raccoons, snakes and foxes can really tear up a house full of chickens.
     
  9. MWG

    MWG Well-Known Member

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    I would suggest a .22. Once a raccoon finds out that you have chickens they will kill them all... Get an automatic, with a 10 round clip. Sometimes those things are hard to hit at night when they are bouncing around your coop...
     
  10. caroline00

    caroline00 Well-Known Member

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    I love my marlin 22

    It loads 14 bullets at a time. When it is empty the bolt stays open. It came with a bolt action safety lock.

    When I have a question, I take it to the gun shop... he taught me to aim depending on distance, where to shoot an animal, how to clean the gun etc...
     
  11. asher

    asher Well-Known Member

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    Actually, I am really glad I posted this. I'm thinking no gun...and go buy a hav-a-heart trap. LOL
     
  12. Peacock

    Peacock writing some wrongs Supporter

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    I'm a pretty peace-loving softhearted kind of gal, but I think everybody who owns a home outside a subdivision ought to at least own a .22 rifle. You know, just to HAVE it, and know how to use it, because you never know when you'll have to put down a rabid raccoon or a dangerous stray dog. Or protect yourself against animals of the two-legged variety, for that matter -- the best deterrent to those kind, I've found, is frequent target practice in the yard. :)

    For the cats, though, unless you're a good shot and know you're just going to fire warning shots, please don't use a BB gun or a rifle. Paintballs are good options, as are SOME pellet guns (some can be as serious as BB guns) but I think the best protection, as some have said, is a dog.

    If you do use a BB gun, you can make it a little less dangerous by not pumping it up all the way. For example when the kids are doing target practice 4 or 5 pumps builds up enough pressure to reach a target 30' away but not cause a threat to anyone or anything that happened to be in the field behind it or to cause any damage by ricochet. 1 pump wouldn't move the BB out of the chamber. 2 or 3 and it probably wouldn't hurt anything or anybody it hit by accident. DH and his friends used to shoot them at each other when they were kids! As long as you know BB guns are not toys and take the time to learn it.
     
  13. comfortablynumb

    comfortablynumb Well-Known Member

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    you are not practiced enough to use a gun... buy a few box traps.
     
  14. DocM

    DocM Well-Known Member

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    I vote for no weapons, if you're not used to them. But if you trap the pests, be prepared to take them FAR away, and not just where they'll be someone else's problem.
     
  15. donsgal

    donsgal Nohoa Homestead

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    I love cats but I draw the line when cats are messing with things they have no business messing with.

    I also vote for a .22 rather than a BB Gun. Injuring or maiming a cat is cruel. You are kinder just to kill it (please make sure your aim is good enough to do the job). This is why I keep my cats inside exclusively so that they do not wreak havoc in the neighborhood (and also wild birds), but most people do not keep their cats in, unfortunately.

    SSS, I'm afraid. The world will not miss a few cats that are causing problems in the neighborhood.

    There are dogs you can get that don't need 10 acres, you know. Small dogs can keep cats away as well as large dogs. I knew a Scottie that was murder on cat once. Hunted them for sport, he did. What a character.

    donsgal
     
  16. frazzlehead

    frazzlehead AppleJackCreek Supporter

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    What about a motion activated water sprinkler? I've seen those advertised - might chase them off!

    (Frazzlehead, who hasn't yet gotten brave enough to get firearms training - but figures she probably needs to, given where she lives ....)
     
  17. Trixie

    Trixie Well-Known Member

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    Do you know how to handle a gun?

    Are you a good shot?

    How far are your nearest neighbors or their aimals?

    This is just my own personnel feelings and I am sure some will disagree - but ---

    A .22 seems like such a small gun - but they are very dangerous. The bullets can travel a long distance and still be fatal. So if you are not a cracker jack shot with one - I would not recommend it.

    Of course, I fear a BB gun almost as much as a .22. As someone has said, people don't respect them.

    My recommendation would be a shotgun, (.410) if you want to kill the animal. You have less chance of offing some neighbor and a better chance of hitting the critter.
     
  18. Macybaby

    Macybaby I love South Dakota Supporter

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    I'd ask first, are these stray cats our your neighbors cats just being curious. I have lots of chickens and lots of cats. Though I have to be very careful with chicks, the adult chickens seem to run the cats out of the pen when they decide to wander through. Though I have heavy breeds, and two large roosters.

    Even with the stray cats, I've not had problems with them and the chickens. Had a serious feral cat problem back in WI, but it was the possum, coons and dog that caused problems with the adult chickens.

    If these are neighbor's cats, they will probably never get real serious about your birds, if it would take a bit of work to get at them. If they are stray, you do everyone a favor by dispatching them. We have a rule, the first few times we see a strange cat, we let it be. If it keeps hanging around, and especailly if it starts fighting with our cats, then it is done for. However, we have no neighbors within a mile in any direction, and the closest neighbor does not have any pet cats.

    If you can get pretty close, a super soaker works good on cats too.

    Cathy
     
  19. farmergirl

    farmergirl Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Trapped stray cats can be delivered to the closest animal regulations office.
     
  20. tinetine'sgoat

    tinetine'sgoat Luvin' my family in MO

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    If you are leary of a weapon then it is best not to get one until you are comfortable with one. Some people take to guns and shooting very well. I am one of those that has been raised with them, shown how to load, shoot, had all the hunter safety courses, shot trap for years and am very comfortable going and getting down the .410 or 22 to take care of a problem animal. Some people aren't that comfortable and it is a respectable attribute to be able to accept that and get the trap instead. Don't do anything you aren't comfortable with. I would rather see someone confidently setting a trap than nervously trying to figure out what to do with a gun!