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Feral Felines Patrol Disneyland When the Sun Goes Down

Image credit: Disneyland is home to a squad of feral cats who have free rein in the park — and you can adopt one if you work there.

by Michael John Scott

Did you know approximately 100 free-roaming cats live in the Happiest Place on Earth, where they’re quietly fed, vaccinated, and neutered by Disney employees?

The cats—former pets, strays, and other assorted felines roaming Southern California—have been in Disneyland basically since the amusement park opened in 1955. They may have come originally to feast on bits of food left by visitors, but they probably stayed because there remain a limitless number of places to hide and hunt rats.

Today you can spot them along the tracks near Main Street Station, or perched on the cliffs of Big Thunder Trail, or lounging around White Water Snacks. Disney didn’t tell park visitors about the feral cat colony that came to inhabit the Happiest Place on Earth, but the company quietly instituted a policy of neutering, vaccinating, and tagging all the felines in the Magic Kingdom.

What most visitors don’t know is Mickey’s domain is populated by rats and mice.  Disney tried various methods to control the critters but nothing worked until the cats started coming in.

They don’t release the pest hunting felines, as that would imply they’re locked up during the day. The cats at Disneyland are feral, and they stay at the park voluntarily, though the company does provide them with veterinary care and they are available for adoption if you work there. What’s important is to remember these aren’t cuddling kitties. They are wild and have free rein in the park but the company doesn’t encourage people to feed or go near them, as they won’t hesitate to bite you.

For the most part, they sleep during the day and come out after the guests leave, but it’s not especially rare to spot one.

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Posted by on December 22, 2020. Filed under CRITTER TALK. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry
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3 Responses to Feral Felines Patrol Disneyland When the Sun Goes Down

  1. Bill Formby Reply

    December 29, 2020 at 1:32 pm

    Well, it actually makes sense. Rats and mice are probably some of the most dangerous creatures to humans on earth because of the various diseases they are known to carry, or at least their parasites are known to carry. They tend to multiply faster than we can control with massive amounts of poison. Simply allow cats to do what they do best and they can keep the critters under control. Domestic cats, that is cats who live around people, are the most successful predators on the planet and left to their own devices will keep the rodent population down to a minimum.

  2. Glenn Geist Reply

    December 24, 2020 at 9:31 am

    I hate to ascribe any non-financial motives to Disney. I’m sure those cats keep the (non Mickey) rodent population from spreading the plague. Took my kids to Anaheim when they were very young and had to take them home again rather soon – screaming and howling from overstimulation. A terrible time. Went to some conference at Disney World some years ago too and although I’m too old for tantrums, I’m too old for the massive phoneyness. Barbed wire and show-me-your-papers. I call it Mauschwitz.

  3. jess Reply

    December 24, 2020 at 3:34 am

    As a frequent visitor to Disney’s magical place, as you all know me to be, I have only seen a couple of cats, I did not know there were that many. Now I know they are animal savers I will continue to go there, keep up my tradition because duh Disneyland 🙂 I know I know, the ‘rents could not figure out my fascination with it either. It just is what it is.

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