introducing feral to new cat shelter/keeping possums out - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 10-15-2015, 03:04 PM Thread Starter
Jr. Cat
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introducing feral to new cat shelter/keeping possums out

Hi all,

My husband just made a nice cat shelter for our feral outside (rubbermaid tub with styrofoam inside, straw bedding).

He'd just like to put it in our outside garage, but I know that along with our feral male, there is a possum, or more than one.

I don't want the the possum to claim the shelter, and I don't know how confrontational our feral is. (neutered male, I trapped him & got him fixed, also accidentally trapped the possum around the same time in the garage).

My idea is to put the shelter outside during the day around his food dish, and once he goes inside & gets his scent in it, then place it in the garage & hope he defends it from the possum?
Thanks for any ideas!


p.s. I could trap the possum & relocate, but they are so common it's possible another would just move in. I doubt our feral would ever get back in a trap after being trapped & neutered
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 10-15-2015, 04:35 PM
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I'm going to have the same situation here this year. We have a lot of possums and raccoons. I'll be interested to read other people's responses. My thinking so far is the possums already have a nice daytime burrow somewhere. They are not aggressive and will try to flee or play dead before biting (though bites cause infection within hours in humans almost 100% of the time). If your shelter has two openings the possum will probably just leave. There is also a chance that they will just buddy up and share if they both can fit. My friend had her colony accept a possum in winter. Body heat is body heat I guess.

How far is your feeding location from your garage? You might try putting the shelter in the garage and putting some nice stinky wet food in the tub. If you are feeding far from the garage take a week and gradually move the location of the food dish closer and then into the garage.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 10-15-2015, 09:25 PM
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Wow! We don't have possums here but we do have other wild creatures and I am so impressed by Marmoset's answer.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 10-15-2015, 11:32 PM
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We have possums here also and I have seen the cats get quite close to them without fear. A possum comes regularly to my yard to look for stray bits, since I feed my house cats outside in nice weather (I don't like the smell of wet food.)

I would put the shelter up on a table or bench if you have room. The cat would prefer it for the security and the possum wouldn't be able to jump up.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 10-16-2015, 12:58 PM
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Possum might not jump up, but they can sure climb. I had one in my oak tree that fell on my roof. It sounded like a bomb (metal roof) so I roared out to see what hit us - and there was Possum looking a bit surprised, checking out how to get to ground... toddled across the roof and climbed down some shrubbery near the back porch.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 10-16-2015, 01:14 PM
Tom Cat
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Originally Posted by Greenport ferals View Post
The cat would prefer it for the security and the possum wouldn't be able to jump up.

Yes, this. Oh boy those Opossums can climb! Table w/ skinny, metal legs, tall enough it requires a jump.
Opossums are nocturnal, I keep anything and everything that could be food picked up at night. Yet I had to relocate 3 of them lately. I have horses and Opossums carry EPM (a horrible brain infection) and I can't take the chance. Most horse people just kill them immediately.

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I am The Cat Lady!

Last edited by marie73; 10-16-2015 at 02:55 PM.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 10-18-2015, 10:30 AM
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We put feral cat houses up on a table or bench. Put the squirrel guards on the legs if the possums or raccoon's try to climb it. the guards fan out so the animal cant climb past it. A lot of people use these on bird feeders to stop squirrels from climbing up the bird feeder poles. Work on table legs too for your feral house.

Your husband sound like a good guy to build this for you. Bless him.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 10-24-2015, 09:12 PM
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Ooh, thanks to all for the information and ideas. I had issues with both opossum and raccoons at my old place, but here, less than 1000 feet away, I've only seen opossum. Mr. Casper, my stray, had a little house on the covered deck at my old place, and he has two here in the screened-in porch. I've seen young opossum come into the screened-in porch for food, but as far as I know, there have never been any issues about shelter.

I have heard that opossum will avoid light. Does anyone know if that's true? If so, you could try leaving an outdoor light on. I am thinking of having a motion-sensor light installed at the rear of the porch, where there's an opening for Mr. Casper (and other critters) to get in and out.
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