Feral Cats on Farms

Ah, you humans think you have to go about removing feral cats or saving feral cats.  You assume that we’re miserable, rooting through the garbage behind a hotel, fighting in your backyard, living our life in the great outdoors.  You assume we want to be like you, or worse, your domestic cat.  You think we’d be better off in a warm bed, being hand-fed kitchen scraps or cat food, living a long and boring life.

You have got it all wrong!  We feral cats are wild animals!  We enjoy the hunt, the chase, the free lifestyle.  Sure, if you want to feed us or put a warm bed outside, we’ll take it, but you’re gravely mistaken if you think that means we’re just going to cuddle up to you, purring and grateful you’re “rescuing a feral cat.”  You’re nice and all, but most of us just want to be left alone, free to fend for ourselves and life our life, even if it is a little shorter than your domesticated cats’ lives.

All right, fine, so you don’t want us breeding in your yard, infecting your pets or livestock, fighting all hours of the night, making a latrine out of your garden or throwing your garbage all over the street.  I can accept that, but you’ve got to accept I’m not just some stray, looking for a handout and some love.  I am a feral cat, a wild cat.  I am born to eat rodents, birds, and whatever I can scavenge. I am happy sleeping under a wood pile or finding my way into your shed or garage.

I don’t understand how some people want to force us into an alien environment, taking us in as pets and then expecting us to live up to your happy cat expectations.  Others of you want to get rid of us altogether.  Well, since there are more feral cats in the United States than there are domesticated cats, you’ve got your chore cut out for you if you think you can get rid of us permanently.

So, I think we’ve got to come up with a compromise.  Some of you humans, farmers and ranchers, especially, have lots of property and lots of rodents.  Guess what?  We’re perfectly equipped to handle your problem.  Just relocate us from the city or neighborhood to a nice farm or ranch.  We’ll fend for ourselves, sleep where we want, and keep the rodent population down for you.

And, if we get rid of your rodents, other nasty predators like coyotes, snakes or bobcats go looking for their food elsewhere.  I’m not so naïve as to think we feral cats won’t become part of the food chain ourselves, fighting with other predators for the same food source, but most of us will prevail.  Those who do will help you with your problem and you help us with our problem.  Win-win, right?

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