Keeping Outdoor Pets Safe From Predators

Many people keep pets outside, either they are out only during part of the day, or they are out all the time. There are many dangers to outdoor pets, while traffic is a common concern, we cannot forget that our outdoor friends are also easy prey wild animals.


Some people keep pets outside, either the pets are out only during part of the day, or they are out all the time. Many dangers face outdoor pets, while traffic is a common concern, we cannot forget that our outdoor friends are also easy prey wild animals. These risks also extend to livestock, as we must remember some people keep livestock animals as pets.

The Predators

Of course different areas have different predators, a person living in Africa will have different threats than one living in North America. Knowing what the different predator types are in ones area is important.

Wolves, Bears, and Cougars – These large predators are threats for animals in some areas and will prey on livestock and outdoor pets when their natural food source is hard to come by. Most are fearful of humans and are more likely to prey on pets when people are not present. The cougar is a stealthy solitary hunter, bears are also usually solitary, whereas wolves often work in packs. These animals are not usually threats except in remote, or forested areas. If extremely hungry these predators can take down an outdoor pet such as a horse.

Coyote hunting by lostinfog.

Coyotes – Coyotes are smaller than wolves and may hunt as individuals or in packs. They are more accustomed to people but can easily be scared off. Coyotes are often a threat to animals in farming areas when they cannot find wild prey or road kill.

Feral Cats and Dogs – These are animals who were living as pets but were turned loose or somehow became lost. As they do not have a fear of people they often prey on animals in cities as well as rural areas. Additionally these animals pose threats to our pets because they can spread diseases.

Birds of Prey – It is not unheard of for a bird of prey to snatch a kitten or small dog and carry it away in front of its owner. These birds can be owls, hawks, eagles, and so forth.  Keeping a small pet close to you, or on leash is important. 

Foxes – These are very smart smaller canines and often snatch every chicken out of a coop in one night. They will take as many birds as they can, kill them, and hide their bodies for further feasts.

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Published in: Pets


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  1. We just recently found out there’s a black bear and a least one cub in the woods right behind our house. My brother found the cubs tracks in the snow today and I found tracks of a grown bear. We’ve also caught glimpses of a bear in the woods and I’ve heard it growling several times. I’m just hoping our horses will be safe from them, especially the large mama bear.

  2. I love reading your country life articles about animals. I am such a city person. My cats say thank heavens they live where they do, where they are the predators of smaller creatures. Thanks for all your enjoyable articles about a life so different from mine.

  3. Very thorough, important article. I’ve lost indoor/outdoor cats to dumped dogs. I must be agonizing to lose a beloved pet to a predator while watching and unable to help. It happens down here too often to northern emigres who allow small dogs to wander to water’s edge at lakeside.

  4. I normally dont think about the dangers that our pets may have. Thanks for the article, now I will be more attentitive to my surroundings

  5. Man o’ man – - thanks for sharing.



    -Liane Schmidt.

  6. Those with pets should always look into the possible dangers around. Thanks for the infos :)

  7. I enjoy reading your animal articles athough I live in the suburbs in a apartment. Makes me feel like I’m roaming in the woods and pastures. Which we do walk in the state and national parks and we see small animals and deer in the wild. We love the outdoors.

  8. Great article Brenda. I really don’t think people think too much about animals when they let theirs out and they should.

  9. Excellent tips!! In my area north of Seattle, we have problems with coyotes attacking small dogs for food.

  10. Your animals were lucky having you as a protective master. Well done, Brenda. My prayers for a happy Christmas for you and your family.

  11. What a wonderful article and I as well agree with deep blue.

  12. What a wonderful article. I wish everyone would care for their animals the way you and I do. It is going to freeze tonight and my dogs will be sleeping in bed with us and an electric blanket. Do you think they are spoiled?

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