My cute cat is the guardian of my home who keeps the little rodents away. Sometimes she also eats those small animals, so it made me curious, do cats devour squirrels?
Cats don’t eat squirrels every day, but if they manage to catch one once in a while, they might devour it. Many pet cats catch and eat baby squirrels because adult squirrels are usually quicker than most cats.
Alright, let’s talk about cats eating squirrels, why cats chase squirrels, and answer some common questions about it.
Is It Normal For A Cat To Eat A Squirrel
Yes, it’s totally normal for a cat to chow down on a squirrel.
Although cat owners may view their cats as gentle and sociable companions, cats are natural predators. Any animal smaller than a cat is considered prey and can become a meal for them.
It’s totally normal for a cat to chow down on a squirrel, and it’s recommended not to suppress a pet cat’s innate hunting instincts.
Is It Safe For Cats To Eat Squirrels
Usually, it’s not a good idea for cats to munch on squirrels. You might worry about the negative consequences of your cat eating squirrels since cats usually catch fewer squirrels compared to other small critters.
Some wild prey animals can be quite aggressive and may resist when being chased. They can also carry poisonous bait or harmful substances that could potentially harm your cat.
Squirrels have fleas and parasites that can harm your cat if they eat them. So, I wouldn’t immediately contact my vet if my cat ate a squirrel, but I would definitely watch her closely to make sure nothing bad happens.
Why Do Cats Go After Squirrels
Here are six reasons why cats chase squirrels and why you shouldn’t worry about it.
Cats are natural hunters and have a strong instinct to chase. They will go after anything that runs away from them, and squirrels with their fluffy tails are especially tempting prey.
When your cat sees her prey, her natural hunting instincts will kick in and she will immediately jump on it once she feels sure about the hunt.
Your cat will relentlessly pursue the squirrel, but once it scampers up a tree or retreats into its burrow, your cat will shift its focus and search for its next prey.
Some cats in homes playfully chase squirrels instead of hunting them for food. Even if your cat catches and kills a squirrel, you may observe that it either leaves the dead animal or presents it to you as a gift. It may also eat the squirrel if it finds it tasty.
Cats frequently become bored when they’re stuck in one place and search for activities to keep themselves amused. One of their preferred pastimes is chasing after small rodents.
The Squirrel’s Bushy Tail Is Enticing
Cats, when they are bored, are often drawn to interesting things to entertain themselves. The fluffy tail of a squirrel is particularly appealing to cats, and they will chase after squirrels simply for the fun of it.
Like how we can’t figure out why a baby is so fascinated by a ceiling and keeps staring at it, it’s also difficult to understand why a cat is so drawn to a squirrel’s tail.
Squirrels Are Frequent Visitors In Your Area
Cats typically target the most common prey available in their vicinity during that particular season.
This means that squirrels often come to your area and your cat will probably chase them to eat. If you live in a city with lots of trees, squirrels are probably the main thing your cat hunts.
Your Cat Appreciates The Flavor Of A Squirrel
Cats that are kept as pets are usually well-fed by their owners, so it is unlikely for them to actively pursue squirrels as a food source unless they have a particular preference for the taste of squirrel meat. Due to the small size and agility of squirrels, it is not common to find a cat with a squirrel as its prey. However, on occasion, if a cat comes across a squirrel, it may devour it as a tasty meal.
Cats are natural predators who enjoy the excitement of chasing and hunting. It is their instinct to pursue and capture small squirrels, finding satisfaction in their successful kills. Cats are clever and employ various tactics to enhance their hunting adventures.
Do House Cats Hunt Squirrels
Cats enjoy hunting squirrels for different reasons, such as for fun and as a source of food.
Cats may not frequently hunt and consume squirrels, but they will definitely seize the chance for a delicious snack if it arises. Squirrels are difficult to locate and even more difficult to capture, so if your cat discovers one, it will undoubtedly pursue it.
Because domestic cats are not as fast and skilled as wild cats when it comes to hunting, they tend to target young squirrels. Adult squirrels, being faster and more intelligent than most pet cats, are able to easily evade them.
How Do I Stop My Cat From Killing Squirrels
While you can’t change your cat’s natural hunting instincts, there are some actions you can take to discourage your cat from hunting squirrels.
But don’t attempt to punish your cat for hunting because that’s not only ridiculous but mean. Cats are naturally inclined to hunt, just like they are to eat, sleep, and scratch.
Redirect Your Cat’s Hunting Instincts
To prevent your cat from hunting and killing squirrels, you can increase the amount of playtime you have with your cat. By engaging in regular physical and mental activities, you can fulfill your cat’s natural hunting instincts and reduce the likelihood of it going after squirrels.
If you don’t want to stop your cat from hunting, you can buy toys that mimic hunting. These toys will help improve your cat’s hunting abilities and reduce its urge to kill prey.
Offer Enough Food To Your Cat
If a cat has a full stomach, it is less likely to hunt for food. Cats that are hungry will likely try to catch prey to satisfy their hunger. As a cat owner, it is your responsibility to make sure that your cat has a nutritious and satisfying diet that meets its nutritional needs and keeps it full.
If you’re concerned about your cat being overweight or lazy and don’t want to give them more food, you can try giving them smaller meals throughout the day instead of just two big meals.
Get A Collar With Bell For Your Cat
By putting a bell on your cat, you can let other animals know that they are in danger. Additionally, it will make it easier for you to keep tabs on your cat’s whereabouts. Just ensure that the collar you choose can be easily released to prevent any risk of strangulation if your cat gets caught.
Keep Your Cat Inside At Night
The reason why cats become more interested in hunting during the night is because that’s when squirrels and other animals come out to eat. If you keep your cat inside until morning, it won’t be able to catch any prey.
Things To Consider
There are a couple of things you should know about cats and how they act when squirrels are around.
Why Do Cats Prefer Eating A Squirrel’s Head
Cats enjoy eating the heads of squirrels because they are nutritious, particularly their brains. By consuming a squirrel’s eyes and tongue, cats can obtain proteins and other beneficial nutrients. However, it is important to monitor your cat’s health because squirrels’ mouths can harbor germs.
A cat won’t miss the chance to eat a squirrel because squirrels have tasty heads from eating nuts. However, when a cat eats a squirrel’s head, it also consumes the bones, which can be dangerous and cause choking. You can find more information about cats digesting bones at catsaysmeow.com.
Which Cat Breeds Are Better At Hunting Squirrels
Certain types of cats are more skilled at catching rodents than others, but in the end, it’s the cat’s individual nature that determines whether it will engage in hunting or not. Here are some of the cat breeds that excel at hunting squirrels:
● The Siberian cats are surprisingly strong and powerful, even though they are small in size, and they have impressive hunting abilities.
Maine Coon cats are active hunters that catch their prey by using their long claws to immobilize them through the neck.
● The American Shorthair cats have been famous for their excellent hunting abilities ever since they first arrived on the Mayflower.
● The Chartreux breed of cats is owned by farmers who rely on their excellent hunting abilities to keep rodents away from their farms.
Siamese cats are naturally equipped with sharp senses that enhance their abilities to hunt and chase.
● Turkish Angora cats are independent street cats that are capable of hunting and killing their prey when their survival is at stake.