How To: Trapping Mom And Kittens
The good news is it can be easier to trap kittens than adult cats. Since kittens often stick together and are naturally curious, they will likely follow one another into the same humane trap. This is great, but remember that youll have to separate each kitten before bringing them to a veterinary clinic for spay or neuter.;
Trapping kittens first can be helpful in trapping their mother. Once kittens are in the trap, mom will likely hear their meowing and come to see whats happening. Shell try to get close to her kittens, which can be the perfect incentive for her to enter another trap if you set it the way we describe below. You can also use a trapped mom cat to easier trap her kittens in the same way. They will want to stay close to mom and are more likely to wander into a nearby trap.
Remember: It’s ever a good idea to take mother cats or kittens to an animal shelter if you don’t have to. Young kittens are especially vulnerable and kittens can also easily get sick in a shelter environment. Shelter environments can be very stressful for cats and stress; can equal sick cats.;;
Take A Deep Analysis Of The Situation
This step involves various tasks to be accomplished. The first one is to make sure that kitten you are targeting is a motherless kitten. That means you need to observe the kitten for several minutes throughout the day and make sure its mother not present in proximity.
If you find kitten alone for few minutes that does not mean that it is motherless. It may be a possibility that its mother has gone to catch pray for the kitten. So, this task requires a lot of patience. Remember that you are catching the kitten to help it. So it will not be good to take it away from its mother.
You should also make an assumption about the age of the kitten. As in most of the cases mother stays with the kittens for at least six weeks. The assumption about age is important before catching the kitten due to two reasons. First is that it helps to decide if its mother still takes the kitten care. And, second is that if the kitten is too young, you must prepare yourself to take care of it. So, to judge the age of kittens, following information may be helpful for you:
- The kittens take at least ten days to open their eyes. So, if you see the kitten that has still not opened its eyes, you can figure out that it is an infant.
- Kittens take three weeks to learn to walk. So if the kitten is still not able to walk properly, it indicates that it is not more than three weeks older.
Sparky Needed To See The Veterinarian
Sparky might not be the handsomest cat in the world, and he hates staying inside all the time. His fur is brittle and dry. ;His body a little skinny and tough. ; He wanders the neighborhood and refuses to stay in the house. ;An unneutered male cat, he runs when anyone tries to pick him up, but otherwise, he purrs, stretches, rubs, and enjoys human companionship.
Sparky risks deadly Feline Leukemia virus from hissing, licking, sex, or fighting with infected cats outside. ;He also risks Feline Immunodeficiency virus from sex and fighting. ;Since he is one of a group of about 20 cats that come to the back door for plates of food each day, his humans care for him and love him, but cannot offer the preventive care and testing that a pampered house cat might enjoy. ;Besides, Sparky abhors the car!
So when Sparky showed up with a gigantic hole in the side of his face, his people took a large comforter blanket and quickly scooped him up and put him in a cat carrier even before Sparky knew what was happening!
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The Best Way To Trap A Feral Or Stray Cat
Here at H&R, we have a particular soft spot for stray and feral cats. Whether we are donating money to one of our favourite animal charities during our Big Black Friday Give Back or sharing as much information as possible on how you can help homeless cats in your community.
Why such a focus on these animals, you ask? Well, with over nine million stray and feral cats in the UK, it is fair to say we have a very real problem. And as much as we as humans have contributed to it, the good news is we can be a part of the solution.
In this article, we discuss the best way to trap a feral or stray cat safely and humanely, what equipment you will need, how to prepare and what needs to be done once you have trapped the cat.
However, before we get to that, we need to understand what the safest and most humane way of trapping feral cats is.
Victims Of Humans And Nature
Many people consider homeless cats a nuisance for digging in their flowerbeds, seeking shelter under their porches, or climbing on their cars. Some may take matters into their own hands by shooting, drowning, poisoning, or otherwise killing cats in cruel ways. In Kentucky, several cats described as neighborhood cats died from apparent poisoning, and another died after being beaten to death or hit by a car.1;A cat in Massachusetts who was described as a barn cat was found screaming and dragging himself home after becoming trapped in a snare that was constricting his stomach. His mouth was lacerated from trying to chew the wire off.2;A surveillance camera at a school in California captured footage of a man torturing and killing a cat by kicking and punching the animal and dragging him or her by a rope.3 These are only a few examples of the myriad horrible injuries and deaths that outdoor cats must face.
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Cover The Trigger Plate
Cats cotton onto things pretty quickly and will be able to work their way around the trigger plate. If this is the case, you might want to cover it with a blanket, towels or newspaper.;
Another option is to cut a piece of cardboard and duct tape it to the trigger plate. However, for it to work, it needs to be slightly narrower than the trap and a few inches longer than the plate.
How To Catch A Stray Cat Without A Trap
No trap? No problem! There are other ways to catch a stray cat when theres no net or trap nearby.
Phoebe was one of those happenstance cats, the kind that find you unexpectedly.
I stopped at a local antiques shop, and she followed me in. She was a sociable girl and something of a regular there but she was definitely a stray.
It was only about 6;degrees above 0;outside, and I didnt feel right about leaving my new acquaintance behind. But how was I to get her into the car? Fortunately, the woman behind the counter found a grungy carrier from a previous rescue attempt lying outside the shop, and the cat went into it with a minimal amount of struggle.
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Place A Trap In A Dark Place
Once you have tried to lure them into a safe space using more benign methods, you can try placing a trap in an area where they feel safe.
Try putting it in a dark place so it is more difficult for them to see and understand the function of the trap. Dark spaces also make kittens feel like they are safer because they are hiding away.
Once you have captured the kittens, take them to a rescue shelter or a veterinarian right away for a checkup. Many things can go wrong for tiny kittens, especially if they are very young or havent weaned off their mothers milk yet.
Featured Image Credit: Ludmila Pankova, Shutterstock
Ways You Can Help Stray And Feral Cats
From little to big, there are many ways to help stray and feral cats. Here are some, beginning with one you can do at home:
As part of living in a civilized society, it is our obligation to look after those who are weak, sick, or powerless, says Slater. Our responsibility includes our domestic animals, whom we took from the wild and made dependent on us.
Linda P. Case, MS, adjunct assistant professor, University of Illinois, College of Veterinary Medicine; author, Canine and Feline Behavior and Training: A Complete Guide to Understanding Our Two Best Friends.
Margaret R. Slater, DVM, PhD, senior director of epidemiology, animal health services, ASPCA, Urbana, Ill; author, Community Approaches to Feral Cats: Problems, Alternatives & Recommendations.
Humane Society of the United States: Feral Cats: Frequently Asked Questions and Testimonials Describing the Advantages of Trap-Neuter-Return for Feral Cats.
Best Friends Animal Sanctuary, Kanab Utah: Caring for Feral Cats.
Feral Cat Spay/Neuter Project, Seattle: Feeding Stray Cats? Youre Not Alone.
ASPCA: Feral Cats FAQ.
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Extend The Length Of The Trip Plate In The Trap
Do this to outsmart a clever feline who plans to walk in, have a bite, and leave).
- Cut a piece of corrugated cardboard so that it will be 12 to18 inches long and about ½ inch narrower than the inside width of the trap.
- Use masking tape or painters tape to secure this cardboard rectangle to the top of the trip plate.
- Use another piece of tape to secure the base end of the cardboard loosely to the wire mesh near the trap door opening. This piece of cardboard extends the length of the metal trip plate. It is essential for catching the crafty feline who walks into the trap, and then delicately places one paw over the trip plate, contentedly eating the nice snack you have left for her. When the cardboard platform covers the trip plate, and the wire mesh at the opening of the trap, the feisty feline does not notice that there is a certain point along the path to the food whereupon she will actuate the trip plate.
Expectations For Raising A Feral Kitten
Catching a feral kitten is only a small portion of the work that lies ahead. Raising a feral kitten can be extremely hard, and it requires a lot of patience. You have to be able to accept the fact that you might not be able to pet your feral kitten for the first couple of months while it becomes acclimated to you and your home. You should take small steps, as you dont want to scare you feral cat into running away. Over time, your feral cat will begin to build more trust in you, and they will begin to relax more and accept you.;
It is also essential that you take the feral kitten to the vet as soon as possibly. You should get the feral kitten all the proper vaccinations, and we strongly recommend; spaying or neutering the cat.
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Homeless Cats: Trapping Is The Kindest Solution
It is estimated that more than 60;million homeless cats are roaming the parks, parking lots, backyards, alleys, and streets of America. Although so-called feral catswho have not been socialized and who are often the offspring of other abandoned catsare fearful of humans, they are still domesticated animals who struggle to fend for themselves and dont survive for long on their own. Homeless cats do not die of old age. Many are tortured by cruel people, attacked by other animals, or hit by cars. Others die of exposure, starvation, or highly contagious fatal diseases, such as rabies, feline AIDS, feline leukemia, and feline infectious peritonitis.
What Is Trap Neuter Return
The only way to control feral cats ever-increasing population is to trap, neuter, and return them. This programme also referred to as TNR, involves the humane trapping of feral cats, neutering them and then returning them to their colonies. As part of the process, the cats left ear is clipped. This is so neutered cats can be identified quickly and easily and stops them from being trapped more than once.
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Tips On Handling Stray Cats On Your Own
1. Provide Food and Water
- Provide cat food, tuna, or cooked meat for adult cats if you dont have cat food immediately available.; Cats are carnivores meat eaters!
- Provide kitten food for nursing moms and kittens, whenever possible.
- Provide clean water. Do not give cows milk which is hard for cats to digest!
2. Lure the Cat Safely Inside a Carrier
- Be cautious about picking up a cat since this could scare the cat.
- Its best to try to carefully lure the cat inside a carrier with food.
- Once safely inside the carrier, bring the cat inside your home and let the cat out in a small, contained room.
3. Trap the Cat Only If the Cat Cant Be Safely Lured into a Carrier
- Use a humane trap to capture a cat, if absolutely necessary.
- A rescue organization or local animal shelter may be able to loan you one.
- Otherwise, you can purchase one at home supply stores.
How To Make A Cat Trap By Yourself
Cats neighbors, stray or feral can be a HUGE problem for any homeowner especially when these critters reproduce and carry disease. To crack the problem in a humane way you can capture cats and take them to your local Animal Control. Those who dont want to purchase often-very-expensive cat traps can make or build a cat trap.
Watch how to do it:
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How To Catch The Cat
For this part, youll need a cat carrier or kennel of some kind . Once kitty is hooked on the daily food, try leaving the carrier near the feeding station. Over time, begin to move the food closer and closer to the carrier and observe to make sure the cat is still comfortable. Start to move the bowl a few inches every meal, until its settled all the way inside the kennel. Once the cats full body enters the carrier, shut the door and cover it with a towel to keep her calm. Bring the cat to a safe location until youre able to see a vet.;
If luring the cat into a carrier is unsuccessful, you can work with a local TNRM program or your local shelter to access a trap and get training on how to set it up, Nigbur says. Since cats can become injured or medically compromised if kept in a trap inappropriately, its important to follow TNRM recommendations on trapping.
Once youve got kitty safe and sound in the crate, bring her to the vet immediately. Theyll be able to check for a microchip to find the owner, if the cat has one. If not, they will administer any medical care, spay or neuter the cat if needed, and release it back outdoors post-recovery.
The Secret To Catching A Skittish Cat
If you need to catch a cat-like an outdoor cat who’s afraid, a housecat who’s been separated from their owner, or a stray or feral cat that needs medical attention-follow these tips so you can capture Kitty safely.
Wondering what to do if youve found an outdoor cat? If you suspect the kitty has been separated from his owner, or if shes a stray that needs medical attention, its critical you find a safe way to catch her and get her the help she needs. But luring and catching a catespecially one whos afraid of humans or feralcan be tricky. We teamed up with the ASPCA to share some tips on what to do if youve discovered a cat whos less than thrilled about getting in a crate or being picked up.
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Lure The Kitten Into A Confined Space
Start by trying to lure the kitten into a confined space. Stray kittens have claws that wont be very clean, but it is generally easy enough to carefully pick them up and put them into a box or container so you can safely transport them to the rescue shelter.
Before you put them in the box or container, make sure to prepare it for them. Line it with some kind of blanket. If they are old enough to climb, then you shouldnt put them in an open cardboard box, or they will climb right out.
What Should I Do If I Can’t Find The Cat’s Owner
If after not being able to locate the animal’s owner, you’re prepared to take responsibility for continued feeding and are willing to take the cat to a vet for vaccinations & neutering, please do so – you would be potentially saving a little life.
If you’re willing to help but are concerned that you’re not financially able, you can contact your local branch to see if they can offer you any welfare assistance. Alternatively, other animal charities such as Cats Protection might be able to help.
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