Cat & Aubiose.

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woodruffsdad
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Cat & Aubiose.

Post by woodruffsdad » Tue Oct 07, 2014 8:24 am

My cat has suddenly taken to pooing in the straw bedding in the chicken house, usually when it's raining! I can't shut the cat permanently out of the hen house as that would involve shutting the chickens in their run and denying them access to the garden.

I have been told that Aubiose in place of straw would be less attractive to our cat. I have a large bale of it which I use in the run to soak up rain. The hen house bedding is currently straw on top of wood shavings.

1) Would my cat be less likely to poo on Aubiose?

2) Does Aubiose make good, warm bedding for chickens, particularly now that winter is marching towards us?
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Marigold
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Re: Cat & Aubiose.

Post by Marigold » Tue Oct 07, 2014 3:47 pm

Aubiose is preferable to straw in every way, being much more absorbent, easier to poo pick as it comes in shorter bits which coat the droppings effectively and make them easy to pick up, and also more pleasant underfoot for the hens, who love rolling and digging in it if spread in the run. It's also a lot more absorbent than woodshavings. In the coop, again it's much easier to clean up and makes a softer bedding for nestboxes. Yes a good layer of Aubiose is warm and cosy, although on the floor of the coop this is not actually important, because if the hens are perching at night they are up above it, not snuggling in to it. Also, hens really don't need to be kept warm overnight, their feathers do that for them. It's much better to give them a dry and draughtproof coop with maximum ventilation, so they don't face a big temperature difference when they come out in the morning. A poorly ventilated coop is prone to damp air and consequent condensation, which often leads to bronchial problems for the hens.
I don't know about the cat, but I would imagine she would like Aubiose even more than straw, for the same reasons.
woodruffsdad
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Re: Cat & Aubiose.

Post by woodruffsdad » Tue Oct 07, 2014 4:02 pm

Marigold wrote:Aubiose is preferable to straw in every way, being much more absorbent, easier to poo pick as it comes in shorter bits which coat the droppings effectively and make them easy to pick up, and also more pleasant underfoot for the hens, who love rolling and digging in it if spread in the run. It's also a lot more absorbent than woodshavings. In the coop, again it's much easier to clean up and makes a softer bedding for nestboxes. Yes a good layer of Aubiose is warm and cosy, although on the floor of the coop this is not actually important, because if the hens are perching at night they are up above it, not snuggling in to it. Also, hens really don't need to be kept warm overnight, their feathers do that for them. It's much better to give them a dry and draughtproof coop with maximum ventilation, so they don't face a big temperature difference when they come out in the morning. A poorly ventilated coop is prone to damp air and consequent condensation, which often leads to bronchial problems for the hens.
I don't know about the cat, but I would imagine she would like Aubiose even more than straw, for the same reasons.
I have one hen that perches at night, the other just snuggles into the straw.

I think I'll give Aubiose a go in the hen house. I have nearly a full bale of it!

I'm not sure how to dissuade the cat from pooing in the hen house!
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Marigold
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Re: Cat & Aubiose.

Post by Marigold » Tue Oct 07, 2014 4:33 pm

You could try training the 'snuggler' to perch, by just going down when they've roosted and lifting her up on the perch. Should only take a few nights and will be better for her, cleaner than sleeping in her overnight droppings, and warmer when it gets cold as they can snuggle up together.
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rick
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Re: Cat & Aubiose.

Post by rick » Tue Oct 07, 2014 6:01 pm

Maybe the cat could be tempted to use a litter tray, maybe with some straw in, under a different cover? Animals never seem to read the instruction book :)
valeriebutterley
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Re: Cat & Aubiose.

Post by valeriebutterley » Thu Oct 09, 2014 9:33 am

I have just changed from Aubiose to Bed Max, giant wood shavings that smell lovely and "piney".
Thought Aubiose the best overall , but not terribly absorbent, maybe my hens just do too much wee.
This bedding is also a couple of £s cheaper than Aubiose, when I went to Roker's for food, saw it in one of their pens and it looked good.
Margaid
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Re: Cat & Aubiose.

Post by Margaid » Wed Oct 22, 2014 11:46 pm

How old is your cat? I had one that would always come in from the garden and use the litter tray but as we were on almost solid clay the soil was either to wet and sticky or rock solid! My kittens prefer to use the litter trays when the earth is wet or it's raining. Can you put a litter tray anywhere where the cat walks? Don't put it near the food - almost certainly won't use it. Try and ensure that the cat litter doesn't look like the hen's litter - I use one which is made from maize husks called "the best cat litter in the world". It "clumps" very easily when wet, but a Fuller's earth type litter is just as good.
woodruffsdad
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Re: Cat & Aubiose.

Post by woodruffsdad » Thu Oct 23, 2014 8:25 am

Margaid wrote:How old is your cat? I had one that would always come in from the garden and use the litter tray but as we were on almost solid clay the soil was either to wet and sticky or rock solid! My kittens prefer to use the litter trays when the earth is wet or it's raining. Can you put a litter tray anywhere where the cat walks? Don't put it near the food - almost certainly won't use it. Try and ensure that the cat litter doesn't look like the hen's litter - I use one which is made from maize husks called "the best cat litter in the world". It "clumps" very easily when wet, but a Fuller's earth type litter is just as good.
Woodruff is 11. He hates litter trays!

Our garden soil is mainly clay and quite heavy. I've made him a little house with sand and straw in it but he still prefers to use the hen house!
tygrysek75
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Re: Cat & Aubiose.

Post by tygrysek75 » Fri Oct 24, 2014 3:51 pm

You have no choice as to train him not to go in to their run.Water pistol ans wait for him when he come close spray with water,he soon works out that this is not a nice place to go.
Last edited by tygrysek75 on Fri Oct 24, 2014 5:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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woodruffsdad
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Re: Cat & Aubiose.

Post by woodruffsdad » Fri Oct 24, 2014 3:56 pm

tygrysek75 wrote:You have no choice as to train him not to go in to their run.Water pistol ans wait for himwhen he come close spray with water,he soon works out that this is not a nice place to go.
There's a problem with that. He only does it about 2 or 3 times per week, usually when the weather's wet.

I 'd need to lurk in the garden permanently with my water pistol in my hand!
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