We have always enjoyed having domesticated animals about the house in our family of young boys. Our cats enjoy spending time outside, and we’ve found them lurking about our chicken coop from time to time.
What should I do to protect my chickens from stray or other outside cats in light of this?
Adult chickens are the same size, if not larger, as cats. Therefore cats are more likely to leave their hens alone. But if left unsupervised and unprotected, cats will prey on chicks and teenage chickens, even if it means devouring their eggs. Here are five tips for keeping your young hens secure from predators like cats.
A chicken is what you need.
Make sure that roosters are allowed in your city. If you live in a rural area, you may be able to keep roosters, but if you live in a city, you may be breaking the law. It’s easy to upset your neighbors in an urban setting by bringing home an unruly flock of roosters.
Make sure to ask the opinion of your neighbors before purchasing anything. If you reside in a rural area, you may not be subject to a city ban against roosters, but it’s always a good idea to check.
Consider the proximity of your chickens to your house as well. To avoid getting out of bed early in the morning due to rooster noise, make sure they are not too close to your home.
If you want to avoid this, you can move your chicken coop away from your house, making it more difficult for you to monitor them. However, roosters are excellent guardians for your chickens and are not required for egg production.
Even if it means defending your hens with his life, a rooster will take on any intruders near his flock. Having a rooster around can help keep your chickens safe from predators.
The following are some good rooster breeds for defense:
- Easter Egg Hunting on Rhode Island’s Red Barred Rocks
Ensure your children know how to defend themselves if a rooster tries to attack them while protecting your chicks.
Consider adopting an animal from a farm.
A farm dog will guard your hens against predators in the same way your dog protects your home from the delivery guy.
To keep your chickens safe, these are some of the greatest dog breeds to use
- Kangal is a Great Pyrenees Sheepdog.
It’s good to step carefully if you decide to use a dog to protect your chickens and chicks. To ensure that the dogs are not harming the hens, they must be properly taught and routinely supervised.
Your farm dog must be disciplined immediately if it bites a chicken. Unless you do, your dog will perceive it as a game and continue attacking the hens.
While we’ve had some of the sweetest dogs in the entire world, one of our dogs once went to work right away after a chicken got loose in the yard.
The chicken had no time to ponder its predicament. For more information on training your dog to defend your chickens, see here
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Consider purchasing high-quality fencing.
It’s possible to keep your chickens safe from predators with fencing.
- Fencing for a chicken coop
- Pros and Cons: Both have their advantages and disadvantages
- Secure your flock from outside threats by keeping them completely enclosed.
- Perches and walks are typically included, so you won’t have to go out and get them separately.
- Mobile chicken coops make it easy to move the birds about the yard.
Chicken runs can cost a lot of money, depending on how many hens you have. The cost of a chicken coop for three birds might range from $200 to $500. More than three hens mean you’ll need to buy more space for them. This would have been prohibitively expensive for us, given our flock of 10 hens and 2 roosters.
In most cases, smaller chicken coops do not provide the chickens with adequate weather protection or privacy.
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Fencing for hens
- Building a fence allows your chickens lots of room to go about and explore their new home.
- There are a lot of cheap fencing options out there. Welded wire fencing may be found at most home improvement stores. Fences that range from 5 feet to 50 feet in height and 50 feet long may be purchased at Home Depot for roughly $70 and cover 156 1/8 square feet of land, or 625 square feet in the corner of your yard with existing yard fencing. If your fence is longer than four or five feet, you’ll want to invest in T-posts.
- You’ll need a coop for your chickens, so you’ll need to buy or build one. A $1,000 walk-in chicken coop is not out of reach for most people.
If your hens aren’t completely enclosed, you’ll have to worry about cats, so investing in some nice fencing is good. An adequate fence should be 5 feet or more to keep cats away from your chickens.
Get a 6-foot fence and bury at least 6-inches of it if you want to keep your chickens and chicks safe from other predators and cats.
Other predators might try to dig under the fence, which will help keep them out. It is also important to ensure that the fence you bury is facing outwards underground so that diggers are put off from digging.
Consider keeping your chickens indoors and keeping cats and other predators out. Clipping the wings of lighter breed chickens, capable of jumping up to six feet, should also be an option.
Your brooder should be protected from the elements.
Cardboard boxes have worked well for us in the past as brooders, but not with cats. You’ll need a chicken brooder for this. Every day, you can check on the chicks by opening the top of the brooder.
When the chicks are very young and unable to control their body temperatures, the opening is also utilized as a heat lamp. Chicks are vulnerable to various predators as a result of this hole. Cats love to play with and eat chicks because they are a perfect size.
Covering your brooder is the greatest way to keep your baby chickens safe. You’ll still need the heat from the heat lamp to get in, so you’ll need some poultry fencing over the top of the brooder.
Your brooder should also be thoroughly checked for any other openings. No matter how little, Cats will try to pull a chick out of a hole. If further holes need to be covered up, do so at your discretion.
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Think about trees.
Trees in your chicken coop can be used for a variety of things. The first step is to provide them with cover from the sun and nearby predators.
There are several benefits to growing trees around your chicken coop, including providing birds with food. It is good to plant fruit or nut trees around the chicken coop to provide the birds with a little additional food.
Cats are excellent climbers, so plant trees in the chicken coop area. We once discovered a neighbor’s cat perched precariously towards the top of a large mulberry tree in our garden.
Cats can get into your chicken coop if they can scale your tree. To stay on the safe side, plant trees around your chicken coop. Having chickens around is a fantastic perk. They give you eggs and consume the bugs gathered around your home. So, if you look after your hens, they will look after you.