Something leaving small animal parts at my door!

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Five times in the past two weeks, "something" has left parts of small animals at my front door. The items range from liver, kidneys, intestines, and once a small paw like a squirrel's, but very little/no blood. I dispose of the items and hose the area down (I removed the front door mat after the first time). I've also tried spraying the area - one time with citrus air freshener and one time with lysol spray (got a "present" the next morning). My front door is sheltered and a little secluded. What might be doing this and how do I discourage it?
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Val Gal wrote:

Probably the best candidate is a neighborhood cat...
--
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You have a cat admirer that is leaving you presents to get into your good graces. Spray or sprinkle something that cats find malodorous around your front door.
R
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RicodJour wrote:

Like tuna-can drippings??? :)
--
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wrote:

What's wrong with you? You have a cat leaving you presents. Why would you want to discourage that behavior? The cat is killing off garden pests. I say, leave out some food and you'll have a new pet.
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Val Gal wrote:

Likely a formerly-domestic stray cat looking for a new home, or a dumb neighbor cat mistaking your door for theirs.
I had that problem a LOT in the apartments with hundreds of doors that all look alike- open the door to check the mail, and a cat that was waiting there strolled in like he owned the place. (Thankfully no loose parts- I gross out easily) Cats are the only common suburban animals I know of that leave presents on doorsteps. It is the old hunter hardwiring, trying to show they are good providers and deserving of a place in the group.
--
aem sends...

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Thanks for the suggestions. I had thought of cats, but I haven't made the acquaintance of any in the neighborhood. There are hawks, skunks, raccoons, and such around, so something like that is probably more likely. I think I'll try the mothball suggestion. Do hawks have a sense of smell?
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Leaving only the guts didn't appear to be cat like to me, but I bow to the greater collective knowledge/experience. Thanks.
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Val Gal wrote:

Doesn't get any more cat-like than prototypical cat behavior...
--
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Having had outdoor cats for a few decades, I gotta agree with ValGal to some extent.
Our cats usually enjoy the fruits of their labor in private and the leftovers are found in the back corner of the garage or under a bush, depending on where they decided to have their picnic.
The "front-door gifts" have been fully intact, albeit demised, creatures in the form of birds, chipmunks, mice, etc.
I don't recall every having been gifted just pieces and parts.
I'll agree that it *sounds* like a cat, but the pieces and parts is not prototypical in my experience.
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DerbyDad03 wrote:

I have to agree...the original post made it sound as if separate, intact organs were being left. That would seem very peculiar...cats don't dissect their prey.
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wrote:

El Chupacabra !!
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Maybe not your cats, but all my formerly-feral cats left all sorts of intact organs and various pieces (paws, tails, ears) for us every morning. I've only had one cat who ate everything and didn't leave us the "bits".
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h wrote:

My only cat was acquired with my husband and trained by me :o) Kitty was an indoor cat...there is a coyote living somewhere on a golf course not far from where I live and I suspect it is well fed with outdoor cats.
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snipped-for-privacy@earthlink.net wrote: ...

Send him over this-here way; ours haven't been doing their job and keeping up... :(
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wrote:

I had a cat that would do that. It was always the gall bladder (intact) with a bit of attached tissue and always on the front step.
Harry K
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After thinking about my post above for a minute, it dawned on me that my cat's leavings weren't a "gift". That cat just like to dine on his victim at that location.
Harry K
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On Tue, 25 May 2010 18:49:14 -0400, " snipped-for-privacy@earthlink.net"
[snip]

"Nibbles", one of my cats brought a small rabbit in one evening. In the morning, I found a patch of fur and a kidney on the floor. He often leaves bird feathers in the bathroom.
--
Mark Lloyd
http://notstupid.us
  Click to see the full signature.
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wrote:

Yup. Normal cat behavior. Back when I had many outdoor formerly-feral cats we called the roof above our basement walk-out the "wall of carnage". That's where everyone would leave their "gifts". Many mornings we would find 5 or six livers, kidneys, etc., several ears (from different types of critters), a rabbit tail, a few paws from mice or moles, etc., and doG knows what else. All laid out very neatly and in orderly fashion. Yeah, cats are "dumb" animals. Umm, yeah, right. When I see bumper stickers saying, "My cat is smarter than your honor student", I have to smile, because it's true. Yes, I currently have the dumbest cat to ever draw breath (she's alive because she's cute), but I've had the privilege of living with cats smarter than some of my former co-workers. Seriously.
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How long have you lived at your house ?
If you moved in recently the cat that is leaving the presents may have belonged to the previous owners...
~~ Evan
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