Cats are one of the most popular pets to have in America. The population of cats, just in the United States, tops out at over sixty million. The reason for such an explosion is that cats breed quickly and there are not controls in place to limit breeding. Feral cats, which are wild cats, are estimated to be in the hundred millions. These stray and wild predators will feed on small mammals, amphibians, birds and fish. It is known that a stray cat can be dangerous when confronted or if trying to be captured. In fact, out of ten animal bites one of them will be from a stray cat. People can catch diseases from these cats such as cat-scratch disease, rabies, and salmonellosis. In addition, most also carry the Toxoplasma parasite.
There are many discussions about what is the best way of getting rid of strays, most being controversial because often they aren’t humane. There are groups that capture, neuter, and return all kinds of cats as a way of minimizing the reproduction of the cat population. Felines can damage yards that they wander in by digging in garden boxes to use as a litter box, scratching on trees, and leaving their mark throughout the yard. Along with strays come cat fights, new litters, and the bothering of domesticate pets. It is possible that if you try and befriend a stray cat by feeding it and giving it water that you will soon have a whole tribe of stray feral cats looking for a handout.
Do Cat Repellents Really Work
Many have different opinions on whether odor repellants really work. There are commercial brands as well as homemade repellants available. It is believed that these are just short term fixes, because either the cats get use to the smell, or you get tired of replenishing the repellent every few days. In either case, it is true that cats have a very sensitive nose and that they will stay away from certain odors such as cayenne pepper or citronella candles. It is also thought that they do not like the smell of citrus fruit or lavender. More pungent odors maybe used such as vinegar, moth balls, or coyote urine. Probably the best defense is a cat’s natural repellant, water.
Water - A Natural Defense To Stray Cats
Cats reportedly hate water so using water as a repellant makes sense. One of the most effective water repellents is the motion detector sprinkler system. The sprinkler system will come on anytime that there is a motion within a specified area scaring the cat and chasing him away. These sprinklers can be placed in areas where the stray cat travels and if it is continuously set off, the cat will get the message and avoid your yard. These can be placed in garden areas which will also have the benefit of being watered, near ponds especially those that have fish, and in paths where the cats search for food and water.
Motion Detector Sprinkler Systems
The sprinkler system works on an infrared sensor and when it detects movement it will spray a long stream of water along with a swishing sound. The best type is the ones that can be adjusted to different patterns and lengths so that the cat does not get familiar to a set pattern. By adding several sprinklers in different areas the cat will begin to get the picture. Most sprinklers only use about two to three cups of water each time it is activated and now many come with remote control and the ability to set a timer. There are also those that are solar powered.