Do Raccoons Kill Cats?

Yes, raccoons do sometimes kill domestic and feral cats. What I mean is that they sometimes kill small cat species which in this instance might mean an outside domestic cat. It doesn’t take long to realise this fact when doing research on the internet.

Raccoon and cats

However, my research also indicates that raccoons can also mind their own business when in the vicinity of outside domestic and feral cats. It appears to depend upon the situation and circumstances.

If a domestic cat is interrupting a raccoon in a nesting area then perhaps a raccoon may attack the cat. There is a disturbing story on the internet in which a gang of raccoons marauded around a neighbourhood attacking cats. They killed 10 domestic cats in one area apparently.

Another story told a gruesome tale of the killing of a Siamese cat who defended his ground. He was attacked by two raccoons and dragged away. He has not been seen since. An attempt by the cat’s owner to scare the raccoons away failed.

Another report recounts the death of a 14-year-old cat whose name was Avro. The raccoons were hanging around and neighbours chased them away but they returned. The cat’s owners ran out to protect their cat but it was too late. Why did they let their cat outside at this time?

They say the attack was horrifying. A pack of raccoons simultaneously attacked their cat. The cat had no chance at all of surviving. They attacked him and ate him on the hoof. They backed away when the cat’s owners approached them with part of their cat in their mouths. A few tufts of fur were left behind and that’s about it.

Apparently, Avro had been attacked and injured. He tried to make it home but was unable to jump up onto the fence surrounding their backyard.

However, wildlife experts say that it is rare for raccoons to hunt down a large animal to eat. That said, raccoons can be considerably larger than domestic cats. They are, incidentally, omnivores.

During the breeding season there are many more raccoon nests which makes the animal more territorial than they would normally be at other times of the year. If a cat is outside and finds the nest he may be attacked.

Clearly, a potential attack on a cat by a raccoon, although rare on my understanding of these conflicts, is a good reason to keep a domestic cat indoors. It is one reason quite clearly why Americans will frequently keep their cats indoors full-time. There are no raccoon is in the UK and there are far fewer predators in the UK which might attack a domestic cat. In fact, at the moment, I cannot think of one except the human!

It would seem that suburban raccoons are becoming bolder in America which make them more of a hazard to the domestic cat. I would very much like to hear from cat owners as to whether they have had to deal with a potential attack by a raccoon on their cat.

P.S. It appears, though, that it is not all one-way traffic. Sometimes a domestic cat will kill a raccoon while defending himself. Raccoons can also attack people under certain rare circumstances. Coyotes are another real danger to outside cats.




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Comments

Do Raccoons Kill Cats? — 7 Comments

  1. YES, YES, YES!!! Especially kittens. Many have killed here, leaving only intestines and the skull. I’m aware that folks think they are docile; but, they aren’t.

  2. They’ll not only take down a cat they’ll kill your dog too. And if they attack and don’t kill you’re likely to have some major medical bills. Fully grown they can be 25-40lbs of pure insanity.

  3. So true. And wild animals will attack and kill if they don’t have their regular food source to depend on any longer. Packs of different species will also play follow the leader -unfortunately-for the unsuspecting prey.

    And our cats are Never allowed outdoors without myself and my husband watching out for their safety. Tragedy only takes a minute to occur. Eva-we know as two of our cats [no longer here] were viciously attacked by a pack of wolf [inbred] German Shepherds years ago. It happened in the blink of an eye and they had to have been stalking before they were seen. We also have coyotes near our property.

  4. ive ALWAYS felt that ALL cats SHOULD remain INDOORS unless their owners r RIGHT THERE, preferably within an enclosed area, for their protection. this is ESPECIALLY true when u have predators around AND humans that THINK its ok(or just good sport)to harm neighborhood cats. like as has been said, ‘it only takes a moment’ for the worst to happen, & once it does u can NEVER take it back. id rather b SAFE than SORRY. thats why MY cats r INDOORS ONLY. i couldnt bear the thought of something happening to them when i could have prevented it.

  5. I’m sad to hear of these cases, but I also have had twenty years experience with cats and raccoons in my yard and adjoining green belt area. Often has been the time that (early on) when I’ve tried to lure strays or street cats to bring them in, I’d found them and raccoons eating side by side, even sharing a food bowl. I’m home all the time and have only heard raccoons fighting with dogs (who first went after them) or each other, and that was only twice and once. The raccoons here have been rascals but haven’t attacked any cats. I’ve read they might fight over food but I stopped putting food outside about 15 years ago, unless in a humane trap or I’m watching it. Everyone else’s mileage may vary as to when or if to let their cat outside. I’ve let my cats exercise free will to decide where they feel safe and secure, and they choose to stay by me indoors even though they’re free to venture outside, and even then they stay in our yard or within earshot. I’ve seen that confining them makes them resentful and wanting to go out, wanting to have the option. One way to test that is to close any door no matter where it goes and they want to get to the other side… leave it open and they relax and take a nap.

  6. There is a very large raccoon that our neighbor has seen sparring with cats and eviscerating bunnies. If I had known that I would have made her come in instead of letting her go when she didn’t want to come in that night. I found her body eviscerated the next day in the backyard. She was not a small cat but not so large as a tom cat. I knew there were dangers to letting her be out there to begin with but with 2 big dogs I thought they’d at least hear something, alert me if something was amiss. The pointer alerts us to every animal within earshot. Never thought of a raccoon this way. The way she was gutted, the size of the teeth marks on her face, barely eaten, etc tells us it was a raccoon. I just hope she wasn’t still alive when it started feasting on her.

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