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Cannibalistic Cats
I've recently discovered a good blog named The Rambler that delves into a lot of hoaxy material. Recently Mark (who writes The Rambler) posted a disturbing entry about some relatives of his who let their cats run out of control:

They never cleaned the litterbox so the cats defecated all over the house. They particularly liked shoes and closets so getting dressed must have been like camping in Africa. My wife's cat makes so much noise when he's hungry that I can't imagine anyone not feeding one cat let alone 11, but they frequently let them go without food. The mother cat eventually turned cannibalistic and would wait behind furniture or random piles of crap for a kitten to walk by. When one was unlucky enough to do so, she leapt out, killed and ate it.

A cannibalistic mother cat? I'm assuming Mark isn't pulling our leg, but I've never heard of such a thing. Though I should add that my understanding of cat behavior is mostly shaped by the behavior of the one plump and lazy cat who lives with me.
Categories: Animals
Posted by The Curator on Mon Nov 29, 2004
I have a Mommy cat and three kittens and the kittens are about six weeks old. They have been missing for two days now. There has been two Tom cats fighting close to the house lately and I am wondering if one of the Tom cats had somethig to do with the kittens disappearing. We live in a remote area and it would be unlikely that anyone came while we were gone and took the three kittens. I would like to hear more from those persons who has had experiences with the Tom cats killing kittens of this age and size.
Posted by Marcia  on  Wed Jun 22, 2005  at  02:08 PM
Male lions in the wild will kill and eat the cubs if the other male backs off and goes away. This willthen cause the lioness to become ready for mating.

As for domestic cats I'm not sure but it is known more rabbits to kill it's own kittens in a litter and eat them if they think there is not enough food tog o around for all of them.
Posted by RTL  in  England  on  Thu Jul 14, 2005  at  08:55 AM
Cat cannibalism is actually a common phenomenon. In fact, one of the primary causes of kitten death is being eaten by its mother. Check out the following:

http://www.animalhealthchannel.com/felinepregnancy
Posted by Robert  on  Thu Nov 24, 2005  at  08:48 PM
Another good website that looks at feline cannibalism is here, which discusses "kitten mortality complex"

http://www.rapidvet.com/fading.html
Posted by Robert  on  Sat Nov 26, 2005  at  03:06 PM
today my 4-weeks old kitten, an adorable ginger that had been rescued , was snatched and killed by a huge tomcat in front of me. I am still shaking. I never expected anything so cruel to happen. I guess the tomcat felt that his territory had been 'invaded'...and i didn't know that he regarded my terrace as his territory.
I feel terribly sad, and blame myself for letting the kitten out. My flat looks so empty now, Drago's toys are still scattered around, and i cannot even bring myself to throw his food away. I thappened so quickly, it was almost unreal.
Beware if you have kittens, CATS DO EAT KITTENS.
Posted by laura  in  hong kong  on  Sat Dec 31, 2005  at  01:37 PM
Male cats do kill kittens, but rarely eat them unless the cat is starving.
What gets me about this whole topic is the failure of Mark to stop this sh*t. There, right in front of him, animals abused & killed because his cousin thought it amusing.
What else is his cousin guilty of?
Does he/she have access to children?
Posted by catshere  in  USA  on  Sun Mar 12, 2006  at  08:29 PM
I witnessed a mother cat eat her kitten. There was a cat that had kittens in our backyard. She had kittens about a week ago; 3 kittens. It was a really by storm yesterday and my wife and I was very worried about the week old kittens surviving. I told my wife that if the cat and kittens survive, I will bring them into the house. When morning came, I got up and went to find that they made it through the storm. I remember seeing 3 cats yesterday but today saw 2. I was about to turn and head into the house to get abox when I looked down and saw the other kitten laying about 2 feet from the others it was wet but still moving. The mother cat came near me and started meowing. I pointed to the kitten and she started licking it and then picked it up and took it back with her to where the others were. This next part is graphic...

When I came back with the box to put them all in (it took about 5-7 minutes), I took some cloth so that I could grab the kittens and not touch them. I put the first 2 in the box and I was waiting to get the last 1. At first, I thought the mother cat was licking and cleaning the kitten but then I saw blood on the side of the cat's face. I moved more of the weeds that were coving the cat's nesting; I saw the half eaten kitten. The mother cat ignored me and continued to eat her kitten. The mother cat was not hungry because I feed her yesterday before the storm and she eat regularly. I took the other kittens into the house. I called my wife to let her know that 1 kitten did not make it. I could not tell her since it would hurt her and most likely disgust her. I went back out to try to call the cat away but she would not leave. I looked again and saw that only the head of the kitten remained. Next, I heard a loud crunch and saw the mother cat finishing the kitten.

My conclusion to what happened is that some how the kitten must have gotten away from the nesting area during the storm and layed out in the rain. The mother must have sensed that her kitten was sick and was not going to live long. I guess I'm still a bit shocked. Its been about 3 hours now and kittens and mother cat are sleeping in the box comfortably.
Posted by hitsquad14  on  Mon Mar 20, 2006  at  01:18 PM
My tortoiseshell calico, Sunshine, had a litter of four kittens Sunday. Unfortunately, she had gone outside without us realizing it, and didn't make it back in to the house before she went into labor. She hid under a rose bush to have her babies. I didn't even know she was outside, when I opened my front door just in time to see my dog run out of the bushes with a new kitten in her mouth. I made her drop the kitten, but it was badly wounded and didn't live for long. My husband came out to help me retrieve Sunshine and the remaining (2) kittens. We brought her in the house and put her in a box where she soon after delivered her fourth kitten.
Two days ago, I noticed that one of the kittens was weak and unable to nurse on its own. I planned on bottle feeding her, but she died just a little later. I had taken the kitten out of the box to examine it, when a very disturbed Sunshine came to take it back. I thought maybe there was an ounce of life left in it that the she could sense, so I let her have the kitten. I planned on removing it later when Sunshine went out for fresh air. A short time later, I went over to the box to investigate some odd noises, and found that Sunshine was eating the dead kitten.
I knew that cats would discard/dump sick or dead kittens to eliminate odor from the nest and guard against predators, but I never heard of them eating them before. I was shocked and I felt bad for Sunshine. She felt she had to dispose of the body to keep her other kittens safe. If I had known there was a chance of that happening, I never would have let her take it back to the box.
Sunshine is a very protective mother. I know she would never hurt one of her live kittens. When there was something obviously wrong with her kitten, she kept grooming her and trying to nurse her. Even after it appeared that the kitten was dead Sunshine kept licking and moving it and doing her "mommy" meow. It was very sad. Sunshine was very careful and protective of herself while she was pregnant. About two weeks ago, she adopted an empty cardboard box in my living room. She moved right in and got it ready for having her babies. Unfortunately only one of them was born there. It's sad that two of her kittens are dead now. The good news is: the remaining two kittens are doing very well, as is Sunshine, and she is taking very good care of them. They are getting big and fat.
I love my cats. Sunshine is my spoiled house kitty. Besides her and her kittens, I have a lot of outside cats, (pets and feral.) They are all so pretty and sweet, each with their own personality. And they do wonders to keep the mouse population down. Cats are wonderful creatures!
It's a shame that Meagan thinks cats are gross. I think if she really got to know a cat, she couldn't help but love it. Cats can develop some really bad behaviors when they're not properly cared for. But when given all the love and attention they need, they thrive. Even if you can't recognize it, they return your affection.
Posted by ima_catperson  in  California  on  Thu Aug 31, 2006  at  02:59 PM
My cats have eaten their kittens before, but I have come to believe it may be that the dogs were playing the the kittens, and killed them, left them there, and the mom eats them so as to get rid of any contamination to her other kitties.
Posted by Humblestumble  on  Thu Oct 05, 2006  at  12:02 AM
MY cat ate one of her babies yesterday. I have looked around and this is not normal. The kitten looked fine to me but there may have been something wrong with it or her. The sight of the kittens head in the area that the others were in was goulish. This cat has already had two litters of kittens (this is her third) and she has never killed and eaten one of her kittens before. The sight will haugnt me for a very long while. The kitten was not ever two weeks old. They were born on Easter.
Posted by Ashley  in  Arbuckle  on  Thu Apr 19, 2007  at  02:41 PM
Continuation.....

The mother cat would not get away from what was left of her kitten. I poured water on her and it did not fase her. The kitten was just as healthy as the other four. moments after she was done she acted as if nothing out of the ordinary had happend. The sight of the kittens blood on the grass was vry disturbing. My conclusion to this is that either the baby was sick the mother was sick or the mother is psycho.
Posted by Ashley  in  Arbuckle  on  Thu Apr 19, 2007  at  02:48 PM
Yea, my cat turned cannibal on me also. I was just looking on the net to see if this is some freak accident or a normal phenomenon. My cat had a litter of four, one gray and three the moms color, black. A few days ago I walked in and saw her chewing on a headless gray kitten :( and thought that it didn't like the color of it or something. But now, from reading other's comments, I think that its a pretty natural process. My cat still grosses me out, but I feel kind of better now.
Posted by Anonymous  on  Mon Jun 04, 2007  at  12:58 AM
I unfortunately discovered that one of my females ate 3 of her four kittens a few weeks ago [she delivered two one day and the next two 3 days later, which is also somewhat unusual]. The illustrated story may be found at http://www.kardas.net/gcBO.html

They are home raised Sphynx cats, NOT ferral, live in a nice clean environment and have readily available food always in their dishes. Most curious is that another female had 5 kittens at about the same time, and dracula mommy [under my watchful eye] has been helping to care for them since then without getting hunger tantrums.

Someone suggested that the recent rash of pet food poisoning might cause unusual behavior, but I haven't seen anything specific in this regard.
Posted by Sonny  in  Trenton, New Jersey  on  Sat Jun 09, 2007  at  06:19 PM
My cat just eat 3 of her 6 kittens... They where perfectly healthy and one week old... My pregnet wife is still on the shock!!! :(

Moogly
Posted by Moogly Hamel  in  Victoria, BC, Canada  on  Tue Jun 19, 2007  at  02:31 AM
I have a happy ending to my Sphynx cat story posted above. The entire litter of five that Blinky had are now ten weeks old and ready for adoption. Curiously, Olga helped raise them, and daddy paid regular visits without a problem.

on 4 July I got myself a new Kodak digital camera with video capability and filmed the happy kittys. You can find a link to the video at

http://www.kardas.net/SphAdop.html

Alls well that ends well.
Posted by Sonny  in  Trenton, New Jersey  on  Sat Jul 07, 2007  at  08:40 AM
I had a strange thing happen yesterday. Our cat (about a year old) gave birth to her first litter a little over a week ago. We had a box for her, but she decided to move them into our son's closet. (okay - fine with us).

We were having a garage sale yesterday, and I don't know if all of the chaos, etc. moving stuff from the garage to the front room, etc. upset her...she's in the back of the house and we were working in the front...but yesterday evening, we noticed the kittens were gone. We literally tore the whole house up looking for them. (We have a 1400 sq. ft. home, so not too much searching to do). We conculded that she must have eaten them, because we cannot find them anywhere. We keep all of the doors open and garage access door open, as we want to be able to get where ever they are in the event we overlooked them.

Has this happened to anyone else....another strange thing is that before she was constantly w/ her kittens, lately she's all over the house roaming....and we're assuming not w/ the kittens.
Posted by Hopeless in Katy  in  Katy, Texas  on  Sun Aug 12, 2007  at  03:02 PM
Yest. night i saw the two lil kittens with their mother, they were weak and feeble. this afternoon both the kitten were dead, not sure how they died there were no visible wound marks on them. I am witness to the gorssest thing ever.... the mother cat was feeding on the head of one of the dead kitten while the other dead baby was lying a few feet away.
this is absolutely wierd.
Posted by Siddarth patel  in  Mumbai India  on  Tue Aug 21, 2007  at  02:43 PM
A picture of the remains of 3 kittens of one wild female can be seen at:



The comments are in the diary entry for September 12, 2007 - in sumary, at least one carcass appeared to have been recently drowned and one had dry fur, only the tail and hind legs of the 3rd was found but may have been of a drowned kitten, too. The smartest one was still alive yesterday and is the only one not almost all black like their mother. The black with white spots alpha father is around but wasn't seen around the carcasses like the mother. The mother was seen carrying the first by the nape of the neck and then hovering over the carcass a half an hour later - didn't have the time to see if the first was alive when carried over but assume it wasn't.
Posted by Ben  in  Milwaukee  on  Thu Sep 13, 2007  at  01:55 PM
After reading all these posts I feel very sickened... I hope I never have to witness such a traumatizing event..
Posted by Melissa  in  Malaysia  on  Tue Sep 25, 2007  at  08:32 PM
I know firsthand of a female, spayed, now 1 year old cat that has now killed a total of 6 kittens. She was spayed early (6 weeks old) and has been a marvelous farm cat, keeping the mouse, rat and gopher population to a minimum. However, because people are sometimes mean-spirited or stupid, unwanted kittens or a pregnant queen are dropped off on the property. Unfortunately, we have been unable to catch the kittens before the adult cat kills them and eats selected parts of them. Yes, she eats the soft innards .... it is totally disgusting.

She is a wonderful cat to the two people who feed her, but she attacked a relative that had the scent of hunting dogs on him.

We have read that early spaying could be the reason that this cat kills kittens and eats parts of them, but are not really sure. We hate to put her down, but it may come to that if she continues to attack.

Please let me hear from anyone that has ever heard of this.

Thank you.
Posted by Pamela Stephens  in  Grapevine, Texas  on  Thu Sep 04, 2008  at  09:50 PM
cats do eat cats, see it for yourself:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8eaPnxO0Z2Y
Posted by alan smithee  on  Fri Nov 14, 2008  at  12:40 PM
Our housing society's cat had a litter of 4 kittens last month, of which she ate up 2 downer...so 2 remained, of which one is smaller than the other (the bigger one was calico, the little one is full white)...we met the bigger kitten just 2 days ago, and she would come to our house twice a day (morning and late evening/night; we used feed both the kittens about 3-4 times a day; even gave those kittens our old blankets and rugs to protect them from the cold), and explore our place, like any baby would...yesterday, she spent 2 1/2 hours sleeping at our place, and this morning, played like a true sweet little kitten, with a long piece of string...and then went away...around 2 hours later, we were told that an evil stray cat came and killed her...the white kitten being smaller was spared as she wasn't outside at the time...when I heard of it, I was soooo sad sick ...just hope nothing happens to the white one...I feel it's all my fault as I let the kitten out, if I hadn't, she would've been alive...I'm soooo depressed because of it...
Posted by Divya Narayan  on  Mon Dec 29, 2008  at  07:49 AM
i got a mother cat that had litten here two weeks ago and she did eat one of her kittens but i think it was sick or dead.
Posted by Mary Baker  in  dayton, ohio  on  Sat Mar 28, 2009  at  08:19 PM
Well, one of our cats was caught chewing the dead body of another cat... But I'm actually not too sure if she'd ever *hunt* a cat. It was quite strange, because all of the other cats stayed away from the body while she actually ate it.
Posted by Komoda  in  Canada  on  Sat May 09, 2009  at  10:34 PM
So my mom went outside to feed our cats and came upstairs very disturbed... She said that our momma cat was eating her kitten! I went outside to check and she was! It was not a new born... it was about 7-8 weeks old! I have looked it up on the web and found that it happens more than I thought, but they usually leave the head of the kitten, but that is what she started with! I Saw her as she was gnawing on the spine! It was pretty disgusting. Anyone know why that is?
Posted by Jordan Tickle  in  North Carolina  on  Sat Jun 13, 2009  at  01:32 AM
this is bull
im really doubting that happened
though cats will eat their young but only if they are still born or born with mutations. a mother will not eat its own perfectly healthy children no matter how hungry, and it would of escaped and found mice or things like that before eating its children even if it did happen
Posted by kaaaaait  on  Sat Oct 24, 2009  at  02:39 PM
i have been lookin all over the internet to find out why this happened and i dont understand why. Last week i came home to find my mother cat killed and half eaten by her 8 month old kittens neither have never been outside nor have they ever encountered a mouse or anything that would give them the impression to kili. They were all just fed that mornin before work so i dont know why they would do that iv'e had the mother cat for 4 years and it really tore me up.


Does anyone have any idea why they would do this? ;(
Posted by sherrita  on  Thu Jan 21, 2010  at  12:03 AM
My cat gave birth to 5 kittens 11 days ago. And she has already eaten three of them..... she's sooo confusing... she nurses and cares for them but at the same time wants to eat them... i am so upset... its the first time i've ever seen a mother cat hurt her own baby... why would she do this? =(
Posted by Osama  on  Tue Mar 16, 2010  at  03:33 AM
Okay so yesterday was probably the craziest day ever. We had a pregnant cat (Maggie) so we put her in a big basket with blankets so she'd be comfortable to lay there and nurse her babies. We didn't touch them because I've heard the mother would feel that her babies are unsafe if they come in human contact. They were about 3 weeks old and very healthy. Last night we heard them crying, I just figured they were hungry and the mom was roaming the house or something. About an hour later there was a loud noise at the top of our basement stairs and I went to go check the basket. None of the babies were inside of the basket. I thought maybe Maggie had hid them because she felt they weren't safe but I heard her making noises so I started to look for her. I saw her hunched over something eating it. I figured she had gotten a mouse or a bat, but she was eating one of the kittens, :/ (this gets pretty grusome) Sadie's bottom half was completely gone, it's tail was bitten off by it's head and Maggie was eating the inside of it. So I looked around for the rest to see if they were alright. Max was in the middle of the stairway, with a bloody neck that was barely attached to it's head. Missy, at the bottom of the stairs, stomach torn to shreds. There was a fourth, so I had a little bit of hope that maybe that one was okay, or if it was hurt, maybe we could still save it. I started to take out the blankets from the basket and out rolled Ollie, the last baby, without the skin on the top of it's head and it's back was extremely torn apart. Why would she do this if we never touched the babies? We never messed with her. We didn't even bother her unless it was to fill up her food and water bowl.
Posted by Sierra  in  Ohio  on  Wed Mar 24, 2010  at  04:02 PM
^ Holy cow!!! She ate them all? what the hell! what's wrong with cats these days?
Well, my cat ate three out of 5, and its been weeks since she ate em. I think the remaining 2 are safe... she's been really nice to them so far.

Sorry about what your cat did, Sierrra.
Posted by Osama  on  Sun Mar 28, 2010  at  01:54 PM
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