Chicago Releases 1,000 Feral Cats To Fight Rat Infestation

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Chicago Releases 1,000 Feral Cats To Fight Rat InfestationWGN9

A Chicago animal shelter has released 1,000 feral cats in a bid to fight the city’s ongoing rat infestations.

The Tree House Humane Society began its Cats at Work programme back in 2012 and not only does it give the cats a place to stay, but it helps deter rats from areas they’re not wanted.


Since the programme began, the shelter has released more than 1,000 cats in Chicago, who are now apparently ‘living their best lives’.

Tree House’s website explains:

After trapping and neutering a Community Cat, there are times when those cats cannot be reintegrated into their former colonies. This can be for a variety of reasons, including their former location being demolished (as in the case of cats living in abandoned buildings,) dangerous locations, etc. It is for these special cases that Tree house created the Cats at Work program.

The cats don’t actually eat the rats, however. Sarah Liss from the shelter told WGN9 that, while the cats will kill the rats when they first arrive at their new location, it’s the felines’ pheromones that keeps them away.


Tree House’s website further details that cats are placed two or three at a time into residential or commercial settings to tackle Chicago’s rat problem in an ‘environmentally friendly way’. While they don’t stay in someone’s actual home, property and business owners provide the cats with food, water and shelter, and generally keen an eye on them.

Cats eating (PA Images)PA Images

Apparently, in most cases, the working cats go on to become ‘beloved members of the family or team’. Some have even gone on to have their own Instagram pages.

The site added, ‘These are feral cats who wouldn’t thrive in a home or shelter environment. By placing them in Cats at Work colonies, we’re able to make sure they’re living their best lives.’


Sounds like the purrfect solution.

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Topics: Animals, Animal Shelter, Cats, Chicago, Now, Rats


Tree House Animals and 1 other
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  2. WGN9

    Meet the cats fighting Chicago’s rat problem

Niamh Shackleton
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