Many animals seem good but are dangerous. One such smart creature is the barn owl. Their large, razor-sharp talons make them effective predators.

When hunting, they mostly employ surprise and discretion. Knowing how barn owls behave is essential if you own a cat since your pet can be in danger from them. So, Do barn owls eat cats? Let’s find out!

The Barn Owl

Barn owls are occasionally referred to as monkey-faced owls because of their absence of ear tufts and heart-shaped facial disks. They range in color from white to gray, are between 30 and 40 cm long, and are yellowish to brownish orange.

They have small, black eyes in contrast to other owls. The main prey that barn owls hunt is small rodents like mice and shrews, and they usually do this in cultivated areas. They live in abandoned hawk nests, hollow trees, towers, and structures.

The Barn Owl

The common barn owl (T. alba), which is not present in Antarctica or Micronesia, may be found all around the world. Other species can only be found in the Old World.

Read more about Do Owls Fly During The Day?

Do All Owls Eat Cats?

Some species can but not all owls eat cats. Although owls primarily prefer rodent prey, they will also hunt other animals if their preferred prey is not available. Because they are raptors, owls must kill prey to survive. Invertebrates, fish, reptiles, amphibians, birds, and small mammals all make up their diet.

The majority of what they eat depends on their species. In contrast to Barn Owls, Scops and Screech Owls mostly consume mice, shrews, and voles. Prey items for larger owls like the Eagle Owl include hares, juvenile foxes, and birds as large as ducks and game birds.

Although certain owl species have preferred foods, most owls are opportunistic hunters that will eat whatever prey is nearby. This is how animals like cats may become their supper.

Why Do Owls Attack Cats?

Yes, owls have been known to attack cats, but never out of excitement or boredom. Usually, one of the following situations results in their attacks on pets: 

  • It’s possible that the owl doesn’t have access to its typical food, so it feeds on what is available.
  • The owl may be attempting to steal your cat’s kill of a mouse or other prey.
  • Your cat may have gone after an owl’s young or it might have entered its territory. When protecting their young, their partners, or their territory, owls attack both people and pets.

Do Barn Owls Eat Cats?

Cats are not eaten by barn owls; however, an aggressive barn owl can target a small cat. They generate 28 pounds of pressure when they grab a creature, quickly piercing organs and shattering the spine. They strike with such vigor that even larger animals are helpless before they realize what hit them since they remain silent during the attack.

However, it wouldn’t be enough to lift and kill an adult cat. Therefore, Barn Owls are unable to attack and move an adult cat.

Can Cats fight off an Owl?

If you have a cat, you wouldn’t just want an answer to “do barn owls eat cats?’. You” also want o know if your cat can fight off the owl.

Due to their quiet flying habits and ability to launch surprise assaults, owls will frequently prevail in fights with cats. However, cats are capable of acting viciously when required.

The quick reflexes of a cat can enable it to respond instantly when an owl attacks. It may use its razor-sharp claws and teeth as potent weapons if it can turn around and turn on its attacker. Cats can protect themselves from owl assaults, thus the answer is yes.

How Can I Protect My Cat from Barn Owls?

Do barn owls eat cats? I am hoping you got the answer! Now let’s look at how you can protect your cats from barn owls.

Due to their curiosity and need to explore and hunt, cats frequently go outside. However, keeping your cat inside when owls are hunting is the smartest way you can protect your pet. When possible, during these periods, keep your cat inside. Even when unable to transfer a larger animal, an owl can still attack it. All windows and doors should be shut during the evening hours.

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If you are in a region with a sizable owl population, you can obtain more information about the species of owls that dwell there and their preferred hunting grounds by getting in touch with your local wildlife services.

If your cat has survived an owl attack, contact your veterinarian immediately. The cat might have been bitten and have scratch marks that can transmit diseases and illnesses. If your cat sustains a few scratches, go to the clinic right away.

Even if you don’t want an owl to attack your cat, you should be aware that killing owls may be illegal in some areas. Criminal charges, court-ordered fines, probation, and community service are possible outcomes. Take measures and be knowledgeable of local regulations to avoid undesired confrontations.

You can also do the following to protect your cat:

  • Put bright lights outside your home since owls dislike and avoid them.
  • Loud noises make owls anxious. To drive them away, use devices like pyrotechnics, sirens, or horns.
  • So that you can recognize when owls are nearby, pay attention and learn the noises they emit.

Check Out Top 5 Common Birds In Los Angeles (Most Wonderful Spices You Have To See)

What Animals Can Eat Owls?

You’ve heard a lot about “Do barn owls eat cats”, let’s focus on what animals can prey on owls. As has been established, owls may hunt and kill a broad range of animals, including cats. So what animals are capable of killing owls?

Even though they are carnivores themselves, owls can become prey to other predators. Most of the time, they are pursued by other animals and birds. For example, larger owls frequently kill smaller owls, whereas eagles and hawks sometimes kill owls of all sizes. The majority of predators avoid owls because no predator hunts them primarily and because healthy adult owls are tough foes.

Do Barn Owls Eat Cats

However, certain predators may choose to prey on owls who are frail or injured. Particularly young owls may occasionally find themselves in peril, and because of their innocence and naivety, other creatures may kill them. Wolves, bears, and cougars are just a few of the many terrestrial predators that could prey on young or wounded owls.

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Conclusion on Do Barn Owls Eat Cats

Do barn owls eat cats? Barn owls rarely kill cats but that does not mean you should not be wary of owls generally. If you truly love your feline companion. you should ensure you strictly adhere to the precautionary measures mentioned above. 

Reiterating what was mentioned earlier, it’s also imperative you are aware of your local laws so you don’t get sanctioned for harming or killing owls, especially barn owls.

Talk to a nearby firm for animals or ask for advice from your veterinary doctor. 


Can barn owls kill cats?

Owls can be very aggressive and active when hunting for prey! An owl can attack a cat (especially kittens), which will lead to serious injuries and further loss of life.

What type of owls eat cats?

The great horned owl can cause very significant injury to a cat. This species of cat might successfully feed on kittens if injuries are significant and lead to a loss of life, but this rarely happens.

How do you keep owls away from cats?

Keeping your small cats and other pets indoors is a significant way to avoid attacks from owls. Alternatively, installing a bright light outside the home will keep owls away1

Can a cat beat an owl?

Yes! A cat can hunt/kill and fight an owl.

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