By nature, cats are predators. They have an instinct to hunt, that has been inherited from their ancestors. This is a need that will not go away, even if they’re domesticated. However, if your kitty routinely places the carcass of a garden bird in front of you—in the interest of preservation—you may want to consider ways of protecting garden birds from your cat.

There’s basically two ways to help protect the bird population from a cat that likes to hunt. You can either attach a signal to your cat’s collar—so that it warns her prey—or don’t let your cat go outside.

Bells

Bells are commonly used as a way to warn birds that a cat is nearby, which can give them enough time to escape. This method is generally considered effective. If this is a solution you’d like to try, be sure that the bell is attached to a quality, quick release, breakaway collar. In case the bell gets stuck on something, the collar is designed to quickly open, allowing your cat to freely escape. 

Below are a few other things to consider

  • If your cat is susceptible to anxiety, she may not respond well to the jingling 
  • Try the bell for a short time. Pay attention to how your cat responds 
  • If it seems like the bell is an irritant, then maybe another solution is in order

Common Concerns About Bells

Although most cats aren’t considered to be adversely affected by the sound of bells, if you’re concerned about your cat’s hearing being affected, it’s worth it to research a little further or contact your local veterinarian for advice.

Another concern that cat owners may have, is that the bell may alert larger predators to the presence of their cat. However, if you live in an area, where a large and dangerous predator is lurking around, then a better deterrent would be to keep your cat indoors. 

Note: Once again, if you are concerned that the bell may get snagged or caught on something, make sure to attach it to a Quality Breakaway—quick release—Collar. These collars are designed to automatically open, when pressure is applied. If your cat gets stuck, a breakaway collar can make it easier for her to get free.

Cat Bibs

As an alternative option to bells, consider looking into cat bibs. Cat bibs are collars that are made with bright, flag like colors, that are designed to catch the attention of the birds your cat will potentially attack. Cat bibs are quiet, made with a quick release clasp for your cat’s safety and are considered to be just as effective as bells.

Sonic Collars

Sonic collars are basically created to do the same thing as a bell. It uses an alert sound to warn your cat’s prey, that they are in potential danger. 

Keep Your Kitty Indoors

If neither a bell or a cat bib are options you would like to consider, then the easiest, common sense option, would be to keep her indoors. Your cat will be free to roam within the confines of your home, without the risk of her being a danger to others or herself.

A few more suggestion that can help

  • Try to keep your cat well fed
  • Consider understanding bird routines and habits
  • Avoid letting your cat out when birds are vulnerable
  • Ideally your cat should be inside one hour after sunrise and one hour before sunset
  • Consider taking feral cats to a shelter

Note: Garden birds are out and about one hour before sunset and one hour after sunrise; so consider keeping your cat inside and feed her around these times, to avoid predation.

In conclusion, cat’s preying on birds is definitely an issue to be concerned about—all life is precious. In the hopes of keeping a balanced ecosystem, it’s not a bad idea to deter your cat’s predatory advances. Hopefully, the above article, has given you enough ideas to think about in this regard. Thanks for reading.