How to Keep Possums Away from Cat Food: 4 Expert Tips and Tricks

two cats drinking milk outside

Baby possums may be adorable on the Internet, but in reality, they can be quite a nuisance. These opportunistic scavengers have a knack for raiding cat food bowls. If you’re tired of dealing with possums stealing your cat’s food, here are four expert tips and tricks to keep them at bay.

The 4 Top Ways to Keep Possums From Cat Food

1. Take the Food Inside at Night

Possums are nocturnal creatures that scavenge for food during the night. One of the easiest ways to prevent possums from getting to your cat’s food is simply by bringing it indoors when it’s dark outside. If you feed outdoor cats, schedule their meals for daytime hours only.

Make sure to bring the food bowls inside before dusk and clean up any crumbs that might attract possums. If you store the food in a shed, barn, or garage, thoroughly check for any holes or cracks that possums could use to gain entry.

A bowl of delicious dry cat food in cat paws
Image Credit: Svetlana Rey, Shutterstock

2. Elevate the Food

In situations where meal feeding or bringing the food inside may not be practical, consider elevating the cat food. Feral cats, in particular, may need access to food at night, coinciding with possum activity. To keep possums away, place the cat food on a table with metal or plastic legs, at least three feet tall. Possums have a harder time climbing surfaces made of metal or plastic compared to cats. Another option is to use a platform bird feeder attached to a pole. Sometimes, it may be necessary to wrap the pole in plastic or metal sheeting to prevent possums from climbing.

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3. Use Repellents

Repellents can be an effective way to deter possums from approaching cat food. There are various commercial wildlife repellents available that you can place near the cat food. Additionally, scattering dog fur in the vicinity may discourage possums, as they perceive the scent as that of a potential predator. For more comprehensive solutions, you can consider installing automatic lights or sprinklers that activate when possums enter your yard.

Automatic Outdoor Motion Activated Light
Image Credit: CC Photo Labs, Shutterstock

4. Relocate the Possum

If all else fails, and you’re still struggling to keep possums away from your cat’s food, you can explore the option of having a professional wildlife removal service relocate the possum for you. Before attempting this, it’s crucial to check the regulations regarding trapping and removing possums in your area.

Remember, possums may look cute, but they have sharp teeth. If you decide to trap a possum yourself, use a humane trap and exercise caution. It’s best to let professionals handle the situation to ensure the safety of both you and the possum.

Is It Dangerous to Have Possums Around?

While the primary concern may be possums stealing cat food, there are other potential dangers to consider. Possums are technically omnivores, and while they’re unlikely to prey on your cat, they can still cause harm through fights or injuries. It’s worth noting that possums rarely carry rabies, but they can transmit other diseases such as leptospirosis and toxoplasmosis, which pose a threat to both pets and humans. Additionally, possums can introduce fleas, ticks, and other parasites to your cat.

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Possums can also be a disturbance to humans by raiding gardens, tipping over trash cans, and even finding their way into houses through pet doors. Even if they’re not targeting cat food, it’s generally advisable to discourage possums from lingering in your yard.


If you’re responsible for feral cats or have barn cats, keeping possums away from their food can be a challenge. Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be overly complicated or expensive. By implementing the expert tips and tricks mentioned above, you can effectively protect your cat’s food from possums. And remember, if you come across a possum in your yard that appears lifeless, don’t attempt to handle it unless you’re certain it’s no longer alive.

Featured Image Credit: FotoRieth, Pixabay


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