Wildlife and Pets: Keeping Our Animals Safe From Predators
Depending upon where you live, even some suburban areas can have pesky critters and predators that can cause problems for our pets. Think about living in the city and you’ll still encounter rodents from time to time, even skunks, possums and raccoons are sometimes seen in the suburbs. All of these critters have the potential of carrying dangerous and deadly diseases.
Threats From Above
We often think of cats chasing and catching birds, but in some cases, smaller cats and kittens can be carried away by a bird of prey, while the same can be true for toy dog breeds and puppies. The obvious solution is to keep them indoors, but there’s also some visual deterrents that help to keep birds away from our yards and property.
Often used at weddings to keep problem birds away from an outdoor venue, mylar tape or strips cast reflections into the sky that interferes with a bird’s navigational system. When hung from trees, they put off a gentle humming noise and combined with the light display, birds will seldom come into this area due to these distractions.
Scarecrows are still being used by some farmers to potentially frighten birds away from their crops, but many homeowners are also using lifelike representations of owls, falcons and other birds of prey to scare other flying predators away from their homes. These work on territorial birds, but they can also be effective on rodents, snakes and other pests.
Another way of keeping rodents at bay is the use of music or other background noises in and around your property. Mice, rats and other nocturnal creatures like skunks, raccoons and possums don’t like to be disturbed when they’re trying to sleep and a radio playing outside or a TV set on indoors is often enough to deter them from nesting near your property.
In Your Own Backyard
Be sure to keep fenced areas like yards and gardens safer from critters by regularly checking these enclosed areas. Look for loose boards, faulty hinges and failed latches that could be a source for outside entrance. Keep compost piles covered, pick up fruit underneath trees, clean areas beneath bird feeders and never feed your animal or store pet food or treats outdoors. Don’t give wildlife bait or a free meal that will make their presence more prevalent near your home.
If you do happen to come across a possible threat from a predator like a coyote, remain calm and never turn your back on a possible threat. Keep in eye contact with them and if you have a smaller pet, pick them up to better protect them. Make yourself appear as large and loud as possible, which can often be enough to scare them away.
If they do get too close for comfort, don’t be afraid to fight back, grab a stick, rock, dirt, whatever is handy and throw it in their face. Again this should be enough to frighten them away and make them retreat to seek smaller and less threatening prey.
Be aware of your surroundings at all times, even in the city and suburbs. Take some extra precautions when it comes to protecting yourself and your pet from possible dangers when it comes to threats from wildlife.