[NAFEX] The squirrel pressure is just too intense

list at ginda.us list at ginda.us
Mon Jul 5 11:21:11 EDT 2004


On Jul 5, 2004, at 9:11 AM, road's end farm wrote:

> On Monday, July 5, 2004, at 07:55 AM, list at ginda.us wrote:
>
>> From: list at ginda.us
>> Date: Mon Jul 05, 2004  07:55:11 AM US/Eastern
>> To: North American Fruit Explorers <nafex at lists.ibiblio.org>
>> Subject: Re: [NAFEX] The squirrel pressure is just too intense
>> Reply-To: North American Fruit Explorers <nafex at lists.ibiblio.org>
>>
>> My cat occasionally brings home an intact squirrel.  It's been 
>> suggested to me that I should clean and eat them.  Do you think it 
>> would be safe?  (I know he throws up if he eats them three days 
>> later, but they look fresh when they arrive at my doorstep.)
>>
>>
>
> I wouldn't. It's difficult, though not impossible, for a cat to catch 
> a healthy squirrel. He may have caught a sick one. If you didn't see 
> the catch, you don't know whether the squirrel was behaving and moving 
> normally right before its death.
>
> I don't know whether rabies is common in squirrels. Your cat, 
> presumably, has been inoculated; and you, probably, haven't. I don't 
> know what else squirrels can carry that people can catch. If you do 
> try this, I would clean it with intact fluid impervious gloves on, and 
> cook it well before tasting. You might also ask a veterinary in your 
> area.
>
> I'm surprised he eats them three days later, by the way. My dog does 
> this (many dogs seem to prefer their woodchuck well aged, yuck) but my 
> cats eat the prey fresh or not at all. I would have thought that only 
> a very hungry cat would eat carrion. But then most cats will do at 
> least one thing atypical of cats (not the same thing, of course, or it 
> would then be typical . . . )
>
> --Rivka
> Finger Lakes NY; zone 5 
> mostly_______________________________________________
> nafex mailing list
> nafex at lists.ibiblio.org
>
Thanks.  The painter saw one kill, and thought the squirrel looked 
healthy, but you make an excellent point.  There are lots of things 
other than rabies that local wildlife carries (the cats also get 
treated for worms from time to time, for instance.)

I have two hunting cats.  The girl usually eats her prey within a few 
hours of the kill, if she bothers at all.  The boy doesn't.  My husband 
thinks he finds it easier to open the skin of "mature" meat.  I think 
he just has gross table manners.  He gets plenty to eat -  as much dry 
catfood as he wants, although he has to come indoors for it.  I think 
you are right that cats are quite variable in behavior.

Best,
Ginda

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