johan: (Default)
[personal profile] johan
I let Bonadea, our calico cat, out of the house this morning as usual. After having dressed, I caught sight of her through the window. She had a magnificent bushy tail and watched something in the patch of forest that borders our garden. Another cat of course, I thought, but when that cat materialised so I could see it, it wasn't a cat but a fox. I openened the window so that Bonadea would be able to escape indoors, but instead she faced the fox and hissed. Then the two of them trotted off around the corner.

I don't know much about foxes, but I know they prowl at dawn looking for prey, so I ran to the terrace door and opened it. Out there, just off the terrace, the two animals stood facing each other, Bonadea upset, with bushy tail and hissing and the fox next to her, trying to circle her. I beckoned her to come in, but she just turned her head and gave me a look before turning to face the fox again. I made some noise and the fox, noticing me, started to move slowly away. Bonadea made to follow, but was distracted by me and stayed where she was as the fox trotted away.

By now Linnéa was up and managed to entice Bonadea to come indoors.

I don't know how dangerous foxes actually are to cats, but I suspect she was out of her depth there. Linnéa googled some and it seems that it's very rare for foxes to kill cats, but that's mostly because cats are too fast for them. When the cat doesn't understand that she's supposed to run, I don't know. On the other hand, I don't think the cat's claws are nice for the fox.

Date: 2008-11-14 09:37 am (UTC)
northern: picture of two cats, drawn by T. A. Steinlen. One of the cats is sitting up, and the other is crouching down (northern cats comfort pair)
From: [personal profile] northern
Scary. Brave of her though.

Date: 2008-11-14 10:20 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
You know you have our two cats depicted there in that user icon? Bonadea doesn't have that black patch over her eye, though.

Date: 2008-11-14 11:42 am (UTC)
northern: the nose and mouth of a white cat. the cat is licking something. (cat tongue)
From: [personal profile] northern
I love that painting^^

Date: 2008-11-14 09:38 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Cat's fight dirty - I'd back Bonadea over a fox... but it would be better if she learned when to retreat.


Date: 2008-11-14 10:18 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
AFAIK, the main problem with foxes is that they are often infected by rabies (more often than other species, that is; but it's regionally different). So maybe it's a good idea to ask a veterinary if it would make sense to vaccinate your cat against rabies, so that she can roam freely outside of the house.

Date: 2008-11-14 10:23 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
We don't have rabies in Sweden, fortunately. Yet. But there are other infectious diseases that foxes carry.

Date: 2008-11-14 01:02 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Actually I would worry more about mange/scabies, the skin disease, but yes, foxes can and do kill cats.

Date: 2008-11-14 01:17 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Yes, most foxes are infected with mange. But it seems to be very rare for cats to catch it, from what I read on the web.

Date: 2008-11-14 01:14 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Small cat, small brain.

Date: 2008-11-14 03:57 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I do hope she'll learn to back down, because foxes do kill cats sometimes. Fortunately they prefer to kill other things for prey.

Date: 2008-11-14 06:16 pm (UTC)
ext_28681: (Default)
From: [identity profile]
Coyote certainly kill and eat cats, so it wouldn't surprise me if foxes can and do, too, if they can't find anything less troublesome. On the other hand, our rather small skogskatt has been known to bring home both squirrels and rabbits among her prey, so depending on the cat, I wouldn't necessarily bet on the fox. Still, best to keep the two apart rather than risk it.

Date: 2009-02-19 01:46 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Usually the cat will actually win a fight, because cats tend to go for their opponent's eyes. That's why even big dogs can't handle cats - they get their eyes trashed, the cat being too fast for them.

Which is not to say that a fox couldn't kill a cat, but the saying "She was taken by the fox" when a cat has disappeared should be replaced with "No, you motherfucker, the cat left of its own accord because you're such a lousy pet - don't for one second imagine that she is your pet, you are hers - and now she's gone to find somebody a bit more amusing than you."

I absolutely adore cats and usually get along even with cats unknown to me extremely well. I have had cats for more than thirty years of my life, all in all.

All the best,

Date: 2009-02-19 03:48 pm (UTC)
ext_28681: (Default)
From: [identity profile]
Well, both here in Washington, and in California, I've seen my share of scattered cat bits (usually not much, a hind paw here, a collar and some intestine there) after a coyote kill, so there are certainly predators who can take them handily. And coyote aren't that big -- smaller than most people think, maybe as big as a medium dog. But honestly, even in a fairly rural setting, even more likely than predation is having been hit by a car and crawled off to a private place to die.
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