Chicago, Illinois is a city that has experienced a severe rat problem. For six years running, it has made the top of the list of the rattiest cities in America. This is a disturbing situation, however, there has been a solution right in front of them. According to WGN TV, the Tree House Humane Society had s solution. Although the rat problem is unsettling for Chicagoans, most of us are also aware that there is a nationwide epidemic of feral cats. This means that there are two problems in the city, but would you believe that one problem can help alleviate the other? Cats are natural enemies for rats because they prey on them for food as well as for sport. Since 2012, the TreeHouse Humane Society has been placing feral cats in strategic locations in the city to help combat the rat problem. Although cats don’t usually eat rats, they don’t mind killing them. It’s an instinct that kicks in with most felines, particularly those that are feral and live on the streets.
Feral cats are a safer alternative for rat control
The rat problem is difficult to deal with. Poisoning is dangerous for the environment. It can expose both humans and pets to dangerous substances. Animals that do eat rats may ingest the poisons if they eat a rat that is sickened or has died from poisoning. The poisons may also get into ground or water supplies, leading to issues that are just as dangerous as the potential for disease that rats bring with them. Feral cats offer a safer solution to poisoning or dangerous traps that can also injure curious pets.
Cat’s don’t need to kill rats to get rid of them
We learned that cats produce pheromones that are deterrents to rats. Sometimes just the presence of a cat is enough to clear out an infestation of rats. According to Terminix, there are a few different ways that cats help to get rid of rats. Rodents can smell a cat from a long distance. They instinctively know that this is one of their greatest enemies and rats prefer not to live under hostile environmental conditions. When there are cats in the area, the rats are more likely to leave an area where a predator has taken up residence. The pheromones that are produced by a cat are easy for rats to pick up with their sensitive noses and keen sense of smell. This sends a danger signal directly to their brains and they’re likely to pack up and move to another location where there is less danger of predation.
Another way that cats deter rat infestations is that they love to chase them. If for any reason a rat isn’t deterred by the scent of a cat in the area, you can bet that any time a cat sees a rat, they’re going to chase them. This sends a clear message that rats are no longer welcome or safe in an area and it makes them leave a neighborhood in search of a safer place to live. Cats and rodents have a long history of enmity and it’s a biological response for cats to kill rats and for rats to fear the presence of cats.
Feral cats as a solution to Chicago’s rat problem
According to the VFTA Foundation, feral cats are known to minimize rodent problems. They’re becoming a more popular means of keeping rodent problems under control. Research confirms that there are proteins found in the saliva of a cat that strikes fear in the hearts of rodents. This is why the presence of a cat is such a powerful deterrent for rat populations. Cats not only make rats want to leave an area, but they can also help to prevent new rodents from moving into a neighborhood.
The fact about feral cats
Feral cats are a green alternative to controlling rodents. They reduce the populations of rats in neighborhoods. Although some people may believe that leaving food out for feral cats may draw more rats into the area, this is a myth. It’s just the opposite. Rats may smell the food but if they detect the presence of a cat they’re going to leave the area instead of feasting on a cat’s food. The smell of a cat creates discomfort, fear, and anxiety in rats. Saliva from a cat that is left around a feeding station is a powerful rat deterrent so leaving a bit of uneaten food isn’t going to create a worse rat problem.
Feral cats are less dangerous than poisoning or trapping rats. They’re effective in creating an environment that is the least friendly to rats. A colony of feral cats can do more for a neighborhood than any other type of rat control method. The Tree House Humane Society has the right idea about how to make the feral cats of Chicago an asset instead of a social issue. These cats do serve a useful purpose in Chicago’s society. Residents of the city may call the Society to make arrangements for federal cats in their neighborhoods when rats have moved in and are a problem. Using feral cats to resolve rat infestations serves a dual purpose. It gives the cats an area where they’re going to have access to food while creating an environment that makes rats so uncomfortable they move out in droves. This is a brilliant idea that has been put into action in Chicago, but it’s a model that can easily be replicated in other areas. Residents of the neighborhood benefit from having colonies of these furry critters in the area so rest assured that leaving food out for feral cats will only help to drive out the rats.