How can I stop my cat from hunting?

How can I stop my cat from hunting?

 

It is not unusual for cats to bring dead birds, rodents and other small animals into the house and, as unpleasant as it may be, your cat is only displaying its natural instinct to hunt, and is bringing their prey back to their safest place. It is not often that your cat actually wants to kill the animal, as most pet cats are well-fed, meaning the hunt isn’t out of a survival instinct, but it is in their nature to simply carry out the process of a hunt.

As a result of this, it can be very hard to stop your cat from hunting and killing these animals altogether. However, there are some things you can do to prevent them from bringing them into your home.

Get Them a Collar with a Bell

As successful hunters as cats are, they rely on their speed and silence to catch their prey. Replacing your cat’s normal collar with one that has a bell means that their prey will hear them coming in advance and is therefore more likely to make a successful escape. If your cat can’t catch it, it can’t bring it home! However, when choosing the collar, ensure it is one that will come undone if caught on a tree or bush to prevent any injuries to your cat.

Keep Your Cat Home at Sunrise and Sunset

Cats are independent animals, which means that it can be difficult to monitor their every move when they are out. However, you can control when your cat goes outside, and this may make a difference to the number of animals they catch and bring home. Small animals are most vulnerable at sunrise and sunset, so preventing your cat from going outside at these times means they are less likely to get an ‘easy catch’.

Play With Your Cat More

Reducing the success of your cat’s hunting attempts may mean you have to face fewer dead animals, but it could mean that your cat becomes bored or frustrated, and it is important to offer a replacement for their hunting. You should aim to increase the amount of time you play with your cat each night, and invest in more toys that can mimic the activity of hunting, such as fishing-rod style toys.

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Quickly Dispose of any Dead Animals Without Fuss

If your cat does bring back any dead animals, it is best to make as little fuss as possible, otherwise, your cat will associate these ‘gifts’ with getting attention and might encourage them to continue to bring them home. Ideally, you should quickly dispose of the dead animal, and replace it with a catnip-filled toy instead. This means that your cat is likely to forget about the animal, and associate fun with the toy instead.

Pesky Parasites

Remember to give your cat regular flea and worm treatments to help prevent any infestations and keep your cat healthy. If your cat is hunting there is a strong possibility they will have been exposed to worms via an infected animal. It is recommended that you treat your cat for worms at least once every 3 months, however a cat that loves to hunt, may require more treatment. Speak to your vet and they will advise you how often you should treat your cat.

 

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