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Like dogs, domestic cats are one of the most human-friendly and beneficial creatures on Earth. They exude a natural charm and they represent much of what we fear and respect about the animal kingdom while remaining largely amicable and harmless.

However, like any other animal, when cats are wild and feral, they can be a nuisance and can even be dangerous through their natural aggressive instincts and their ability to carry infectious diseases.

When to Remove Feral Cats

Cats that live out of doors near human habitations are as likely to be taken in and become house pets as they are to remain wild, becoming a burden to families and homeowners. Like raccoons, wild, feral cats can live as scavengers and infest tertiary living spaces like garages, sheds, barns, under houses, and other structures.

In most cases, even a wild, feral Felis domesticus will rarely pose a danger to an adult human. Still, they can pose a serious threat to small children playing out of doors or to other animals and pets in the area. Worst of all, wild cats are likely to carry infectious diseases that will remain in an infected animal population for generations or until that animal population finally dies out.

If you have wild cats, stray cats, or any cat population similar to that described above, it is in your best interest, and that of your neighbors, to have them removed as soon as possible.

Tips on Dealing With Feral Cats

While it may not be practical for you to remove the cats immediately, there are a number of things you should keep in mind if feral cats live near or around you.

Do not feed the animals

Just as with a wild, predatory species, feeding wild cats will only increase their number and make them more likely to become a nuisance to anyone who feeds them and to their neighbors. More often than not, these animals can never be domesticated safely and they will cause property damage as well as posing a threat to children and pets.

Remove potential nesting spots

Like raccoons, feral cats will try to make their homes in spaces under and around houses and other buildings. By removing and closing off potential shelter areas, you can make the location much less attractive to these animals. In many cases, they will move on of they cannot find shelter.

Motion-activated sprinklers

Cats don’t like to get wet, and the sound of sprinklers is always startling to these creatures. By installing motion activated sprinklers in strategic locations, you can prevent feral cats from trafficking areas where you do not want them.


There are many effective repellents that cats will retreat from. Many of these are simple oils that will not harm the cats or anyone else, but simply deter cats from lingering where the deterrents are sprayed.

Scare tactics

Often, just having a dog inside your house will be enough to frighten feral cats away. Another tactic that works with cats is rubber snakes. Cats have very acute vision and are naturally afraid of snakes. The sight of an object the looks like a snake seen from a distance is often enough to make any cat turn tail and flee.

The urine of predatory animals

If you own a large dog, you can use the dog’s urine as a natural deterrent to feral cats. By the way, this is a big part of the reason dogs “mark their territory.” In fact, if your dog is so inclined, you may encourage him or her to urinate on objects around your yard. This will act as a natural repellent for wild cats.

Wild Cats Other Than Feral Domestics

As it happens, there exist wild, predatory cats that look a lot like domestic cats but that are as naturally wild as a mountain lion or bobcat. Oftentimes these wild cats are only slightly larger than ordinary domestic cats. Typically, house cat-sized wild cats have pointy ears and bobbed of short tails.

You should never try to tame of befriend these animals as they do not have the domestication instinct that house cats have, and they can turn on a human without warning.

If you believe any cats of this kind are living near or around your home, you should take special care to keep children and pets safe while outdoors. What’s more, you should contact animal removal at the earliest opportunity.

In some cases, these smaller wild species of predatory cats can be trapped using an ordinary cat trap. However, if you do manage to trap one, take great care when handling it.

As always, there may be local ordinances protecting certain species. If you believe you are dealing with non-domestic wild animals, it is always best to call on a professional cat trapper. They will remove the animals with no risk to you and ensure the safety of your children, pets, and property.