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How do I Cat-Proof my Garden?

Birdbath hanging from a tree

Cats are not always desirable visitors to your garden. Below you will find information on how to protect your own cat, how to discourage roaming cats and ideas on how to protect the local wildlife from cats.

Read our advice on how to be a responsible cat owner.

Recipe for a Cat Proof Birdbath

Provide a cat-proof birdbath or water container where birds can drink and bathe safely. Cats very quickly become aware of bird-feeding and drinking times and lay in wait. Birdbaths should have:

  • Clean and shallow water.
  • Non slip surfaces.
  • An overhanging perch (branch).
  • Protection from cats.
  • Shade from midday and afternoon sun to keep both water and birds cool.
  • Dense, prickly bush near the birdbath where birds can quickly hide from cats or hawks.

Following are some ideas on how to make your own cat-proof birdbath.

Alternative 1
You will need the following:

  • A second-hand terracotta pipe (or something similar) about 1.5-2 metres tall with a flange at one end.
  • Star picket(s).
  • Bowl large enough to sit comfortably at the flange end.

Dig a circular hole wide enough and deep enough to accommodate the opposite end of the pipe from the flange. Hammer a star picket (or several if necessary) into the hole to ensure the terracotta pipe cannot topple over. Place the pipe over the star picket(s) with the flange clear at the top of the star pickets. Finish off by placing a terracotta dish on top of a size that the flange can support comfortably.

Alternative 2
You will need the following:

  • A wooden post 1.5-2 metres tall, wide enough for a water bowl to sit on.
  • Water bowl at least 20cm wide.
  • Araldite.

Dig a hole deep enough to accommodate the post and ensure stability. Glue the bowl to the top of the post.

Alternative 3
You will need the following:

  • A small, shallow bowl about 3cm deep with rope or wire attached to allow for hanging.

Suspend the water bowl within the foliage of the prickly thicket. This provides security to small birds whilst they drink and bathe.

Cats vs Wildlife

Did you know that cats are responsible for killing 211 million species of wildlife in Victoria each year? Cats not only hunt for food but also do so for leisure. Studies have found that cats bring home <25% of kills, they consume only 29% and leave a staggering 49% to rot. De-sex your animals as they can breed and produce feral offspring that will continue to hunt our endangered wildlife.

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