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What kind of animal would kill cats by biting their throats?


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#1 Jeanne in MN

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Posted 30 August 2010 - 12:39 AM

My folks have a number of outdoor cats and have lost seven to something biting them in the throat and and leaving them. One cat lived to tell the tale, but had a big chunk of hair hanging from it's throat. I've been googling, but my search is getting me no where. Any experience with this?:confused:

#2 3littlekeets

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Posted 30 August 2010 - 12:44 AM

My folks have a number of outdoor cats and have lost seven to something biting them in the throat and and leaving them. One cat lived to tell the tale, but had a big chunk of hair hanging from it's throat. I've been googling, but my search is getting me no where. Any experience with this?:confused:



Wolf or fox?

#3 hornblower

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Posted 30 August 2010 - 12:46 AM

Honestly, I'd guess dog.

We have lots of coyotes here but they usually eat most of it (except the head :glare:. They often leave those behind......).

Raccoons (have those too) can kill cats but don't seem to do it often. They're more likely to go after cat food.... They kind of fit the pattern b/e I think coons are not too interested in eating the cat but I've never heard of them really hunting for cats repeatedly, kwim?

Dogs are the only common animal (apart from humans) I can think of that will chase & kill but not necessarily consume. Most will kill with that predatory shake which will break the neck but I'm thinking a smaller dog, like a terrier, would also bite down on the neck.....

#4 Audrey

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Posted 30 August 2010 - 01:01 AM

I'd kind of need more info. That's kind of bizarre to just bite and leave them. Are these smaller cats? Because I'm thinking weasel or fisher if they're smaller cats. I'm thinking fox if they're adults. But a fox would be more apt to maul the cat more than that.

But, there's a chance, given your location, that it could be badger or wolverine looking for a meal, but if the cats fought at all, they'd get shredded by one of those, unless the throat bite killed it quickly then the badger or wolverine were going to drag if off, but still that would be unusual, too.

Racoons, woodchucks, or muskrats might kill a cat like that if threatened, then take off when it got a chance to escape. If forced into a corner, skunks go for the throat, but you'd smell the first line of skunk defense on the cat or the area, obviously.

Were they attacked while they were sleeping then dragged off? Or attacked and fought back and left there? Have you seen any stray dogs around? Dogs will often kill and leave the prey if they aren't looking for a meal.

The repeated nature of the incidents is so strange. Quite the puzzle. If you do figure it out, please pm me or post because I'd really like to know what it was. We deal with an odd assortment of wild animals around here, but only rarely have any trouble with them. You've got me very, very curious.

Edited by Audrey, 30 August 2010 - 01:06 AM.


#5 creekland

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Posted 30 August 2010 - 04:24 AM

We had one killed that way about a year ago. She was an outdoor cat - pregnant at the time - and likely to have been looking for a place to have her kittens in our barn when she died.

Our best guess is she was looking for a small cubbyhole and found it already occupied by an opossum or perhaps ran into a weasel. It certainly wasn't a dog and wasn't likely to have been a fox.

It was sad, but she's the only one it happened to. We still have four other cats here all of whom patrol the barn, but none of whom are ever pregnant (they're all fixed), so for us, it was a happenchance sort of thing.

#6 Carrie12345

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Posted 30 August 2010 - 05:45 AM

Dog.

My aunt's Golden Retriever used to chase down woodchucks, grab 'em by the neck, give a hard jerk, then walk away. Most of the time there would be no open wound, but it did get ugly on occasion.

If he did that with woodchucks, it wouldn't surprise me to see a dog do it with cats.

#7 Leanna

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Posted 30 August 2010 - 05:59 AM

There have been reports in the news here about coyotes mating with dogs and having pups that are growing up to cause more problems than the coyotes. Many of them are killing cats and small dogs. Your killer may be a canine, but not tame.

#8 Catherine

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Posted 30 August 2010 - 06:23 AM

If it hasn't eaten them I'd wonder about a weasel.

#9 Shelly in IL

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Posted 30 August 2010 - 07:32 AM

The great chicken massacre of 2005 happened just in that way. Lots of bodies all with neck wounds. Darned weasel!!

#10 Jeanne in MN

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Posted 01 September 2010 - 01:02 AM

Hmmmmm, will investigate weasel killing habits.

These cats have all been killed or attacked over a year's time or so. We have a lot of coyotes in the area, but can't picture how they could get a cat in the throat area only. It seems like it would have to be something low to the ground to attack the throat?

Thanks for the help and ideas! I'll let you know if I come up with anything.

Just checked-weasels tend to kill by attacking the back of the neck, but they can go for the throat. But would they kill and then leave the animal behind? They are ferocious attackers and aren't afraid to go for something bigger than itself.

Edited by Jeanne in MN, 01 September 2010 - 01:06 AM.


#11 LaissezFaire

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Posted 01 September 2010 - 01:13 AM

Possibly Bobcat. But they generally eviscerate and leave the front and back end.

#12 Audrey

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Posted 01 September 2010 - 01:25 AM

Hmmmmm, will investigate weasel killing habits.

These cats have all been killed or attacked over a year's time or so. We have a lot of coyotes in the area, but can't picture how they could get a cat in the throat area only. It seems like it would have to be something low to the ground to attack the throat?

Thanks for the help and ideas! I'll let you know if I come up with anything.

Just checked-weasels tend to kill by attacking the back of the neck, but they can go for the throat. But would they kill and then leave the animal behind? They are ferocious attackers and aren't afraid to go for something bigger than itself.



Start looking for tracks if they find anymore cats like that. Surely the culprit will leave a tell-tale print behind.

#13 Porch Swinger

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Posted 01 September 2010 - 03:58 AM

I'd guess dog, too.

Most dog-like (or even some other types of) animals will go for the throat for a kill.

#14 creekland

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Posted 01 September 2010 - 04:08 AM

Just checked-weasels tend to kill by attacking the back of the neck, but they can go for the throat. But would they kill and then leave the animal behind? They are ferocious attackers and aren't afraid to go for something bigger than itself.


They will if they aren't hungry. My guess with our cat is that she surprised the critter and the critter just wanted to do her in, then get out of our barn. We've only seen the weasel around twice in the past year, and even then, in different areas. I hate to pass a death sentence on him/her as they tend to be good groundhog killers, but if it kills any more cats or starts to go after our chickens it's going on our most wanted list.

In your case, I might google how to catch/find/kill weasels. Seven cats in a year is way too many.

#15 Alison in KY

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Posted 01 September 2010 - 06:27 AM

Asked a friend and she said possom.


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