Do Foxes Attack Cats?

May 8, 2023

London is home to a large population of urban foxes, which can lead to concerns for pet owners, particularly those with cats. It's natural to wonder if foxes pose a threat to your beloved feline friends. In this article, we'll explore the behaviour of foxes and cats, the likelihood of a fox attack, and how to keep your cat safe.

Foxes in London

Urban foxes have become common in London, with an estimated 10,000 foxes living in the city. They're attracted to urban areas by the availability of food and shelter, and they can thrive in even the smallest green spaces. While many residents generally consider them a nuisance, foxes are a natural part of the urban ecosystem.

Fox Behaviour

Foxes are generally shy and avoid human contact but can become more aggressive if threatened. Regarding cats, fox behaviour can vary depending on several factors. In general, foxes will avoid adult cats, which are too large to be seen as prey. However, foxes are known to attack kittens, elderly cats, and sick or injured cats. They may also see a cat as a territorial threat and become aggressive.

Cat Behaviour

Cats are natural predators and may view a fox as a potential threat. However, most adult cats are too large for a fox to see as prey, and they will generally avoid each other. Cats sick, injured, or very young may be more vulnerable to attack and should be kept indoors to prevent interactions with foxes.

Risk of Attack

Factors that Increase the Risk of an Attack

While the risk of a fox attacking a cat is relatively low, certain factors can increase the likelihood of an attack. These include leaving pet food outside, allowing cats to roam freely, and having a cat flap that allows foxes to enter the home. Leaving food outside can attract foxes to your property, and roaming cats may accidentally stumble upon a fox's territory, triggering a territorial response.

Factors that Decrease the Risk of an Attack

On the other hand, some factors can decrease the risk of a fox attack. Keeping your cat indoors at night and supervising outdoor activities during the day can significantly reduce the likelihood of an encounter. Securing all pet food and waste can also help to deter foxes from your property.

Impact of Season, Territory, and Food Availability

It's important to note that fox behaviour can vary depending on several factors, such as season, territory, and food availability. During mating season, foxes may become more aggressive, so it's important to be extra cautious. Additionally, foxes are territorial animals and may become more aggressive if they feel their territory is threatened. Finally, if food is scarce, foxes may become more aggressive in their search for food.

Minimizing the Risk of an Attack

To minimize the risk of an attack, taking precautions such as keeping your cat indoors at night, supervising outdoor activities, and securing all pet food and waste is important. In addition, installing motion-activated lights and making loud noises can help to deter foxes from your property. Consider installing a sturdy fence to keep foxes out if you have a garden or yard.

By being aware of the factors that can increase or decrease the risk of a fox attack, you can take steps to keep your beloved pets safe. Remember, while the risk of a fox attacking a cat is relatively low, it's still important to be prepared and take precautions to minimize the risk.

Red Fox

What to Do If You Encounter a Fox

Keep Your Distance

The first and most important thing to remember is to keep your distance from the fox. Foxes are wild animals and should be treated with caution. Never approach a fox; always give them plenty of space. Do not try to feed or touch them. Foxes can become more aggressive if they feel threatened and may attack if they feel cornered.

Make Noise

If a fox approaches you or your pet, make noise to scare them away. This can be done by clapping your hands, shouting, or whistling. You can also use a garden hose or water pistol to squirt the fox with water, which can be an effective deterrent.

Remove Attractants

Remove all attractants, such as pet food, from the area to discourage the fox from returning. This also helps to reduce the risk of future encounters. Keep your trash cans securely closed and ensure compost bins are inaccessible to foxes. If you have fruit trees, pick up any fallen fruit promptly.

Secure Your Property

If you have a garden or yard, ensure it's secure, and your pet cannot escape. Foxes can jump high and climb over fences, so ensure any fencing is tall and secure. You may also consider installing an electric fence to keep foxes out of your yard. If you have a pet door, ensure it's securely closed at night to prevent foxes from entering your home.

Contact Authorities

If you notice aggressive fox behaviour or see a dead cat in your area, you should contact your local pest control service or the RSPCA for assistance. They can help remove the animal or advise on how to deal with the situation. If a fox bites you or your pet, seek medical attention immediately.

Close up of red fox

Contact Us for Fox Pest Control in London

If you're concerned about foxes and want to protect your pets, contact us for professional fox pest control services in London. Our experienced technicians can help identify potential risks and provide effective solutions to keep foxes away from your property.

We offer humane and effective fox pest control services, including trapping and removal, exclusion techniques, and repellents. We'll work with you to create a customized plan that meets your specific needs and helps keep your pets safe from harm.

In addition to our fox pest control services, we offer a range of other solutions to help keep your home and property free from unwanted pests. From rodents to insects, we can help you address any pest issue you may be experiencing.

Don't let foxes in your area put your beloved pets at risk. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and learn how we can help keep your home and pets safe from foxes and other pests.

Conclusion

while the risk of a fox attacking a cat is relatively low, it's important for pet owners in London to understand the potential threat. By taking simple precautions, such as keeping your cat indoors at night and supervising them when they're outside, you can help keep your pet safe. And if you notice aggressive fox behaviour or find a dead cat in your area, report it to the appropriate authorities. With a little awareness and preparation, you can help ensure the safety of your furry friend.

FAQ

Do foxes attack cats?

While the risk of a fox attacking a cat is relatively low, it is still possible. Foxes will generally avoid adult cats, which are too large to be seen as prey. However, foxes have been known to attack kittens, elderly cats, and sick or injured cats. They may also become aggressive if they perceive a cat as a territorial threat.

Do foxes eat cats?

Foxes do not typically eat cats. In general, foxes will avoid adult cats, which are too large to be seen as prey. However, foxes have been known to attack kittens, elderly cats, and sick or injured cats. Sometimes, a fox may kill a cat but not eat it, which can be due to territorial behaviour rather than a desire for food.

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