Community Cats Provide Natural Rodent Control (Post 26/30)
When a community cat is found to be feral or semi-feral because they have had little or no contact with humans, they have, most often been considered unadoptable, but there is a new approach gaining foothold within the world of cats. Generally it’s called a working cat, or barn cat program and there are a number of them that have reached the news in recent years.
It works on one simple premise. When you add a predator, the prey will make all attempts to vacate that location. To be clear, the cats usually do not “hunt” the rodents, although they might. Instead, just the scent of the cats’ presence is enough to make the affected mice or rats leave the area. Barn, church, flower market, police station and even schools and warehouses are among those potential locations who have formerly faced issues with rodents, but are now finding an “all natural” solution to their rodent problems by using these community cats to their advantage. This offers new hope to cats that previously would have had none at all.
The benefit to those working cats, as well as the people caring for them, is multiple. The cats have shelter in whatever building they are patrolling. They are also fed and cared for, although rarely seen, by the humans they serve. They are out of the dangerous lifestyle of living on the streets with all the potential dangers that territory holds, and they live longer because of it.
The people choosing to use working cats benefit in the fact that they face less disease frequently carried by rodents, as well as less chance of accidental poisoning of either people, or other animals, that weren’t the intended targets.