Approaching Or Capturing A Cat
How To Help Feral Cats
Every cat is an individual and its often difficult to determine whether a cat is feral, undersocialized or a stray. Cats who are comfortable approaching people may never be able to live in a house because they can become fearful when confined.
With these cases and with feral cats, their numbers and health are best managed through Trap Neuter Return . Cats living in feral cat colonies are caught, spayed/neutered, vaccinated, receive parasite treatment and are treated for any medical issues at the same time as the spay/neuter. The feral cats are then returned to their outdoor home. This ensures that the members of the colony do not continue having kittens who grow up to lead a short and difficult life.
See a cat wandering around the neighbourhood or on your property?
Remember to chat before you trap. in your area to get advice about how to proceed before going ahead and capturing the cat.
How To Take Care Of A Kitten
How to take care of a kitten will depend on the age of the kitten. If you get a kitten that has been properly weaned, then it is not much different than caring for a cat, except in the amount of food given and taking extra care around the tiny creature.
If, however, the kitten has not been properly weaned, then you will need to provide milk and wean the kitten yourself. This process is not especially hard, but it is vital to the kittens survival.
Visit a vet who will be able to tell you the approximate age of the kitten and give you advice about how much milk to feed and when to start to move to a mixture of formula and soft food and finally just to food.
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Your Turn: Thoughts & Tips On Befriending Stray Cats
Id love to hear any stories you have about befriending stray and feral cats, and Im sure absolutely everyone reading this would love it if you left a comment with any tips and advice you have for them on the topic.
Let me know if there are any similar topics/advice youd like to see related to this as well!
Looking forward to reading about your experiences with getting strays to come close and getting close to them in general, always love reading through your stories!
Dig KittyClysm? Check out all the other blogs I pen & photograph.
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The hits in my household are ridiculously affordable: cat springs, ball track toys, &kick sticks. I have a slew scattered around the house, so when my cats get bored, even if Im busy or not even home, my furries are able to actively play.
Difference Between Stray Cats And Feral Cats
- Feral cats are more fearful of humans because they have spent their whole life in the wild, whereas stray cats are slightly approachable.
- Stray cats can stay in colonies while feral cats prefer to roam alone.
- Feral cats keep their homes and feeding zones farther away from human settlements than stray cats. You will bump into a stray cat on the balcony of a restaurant and most likely never see a feral cat roaming the urban areas in the daytime.
- Stray cats are less aggressive than feral ones.
It is also vital to note another group outdoor cats. These cats will be well-groomed, have soft calluses, and a probable tag with contacts of their owner. You should put out a notice for a found cat if you suspect that it merely missed its way home.
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What Are The Factors That Might Impact The Cost
It is difficult to give the exact number one has to spend at the veterinarian clinic to take care of a stray cat. But we can point out some of the factors which can impact the expense at the clinic:
- Presence of trauma
- Flea problems
Presence of trauma:
Stray cats often develop foul wounds from cat fights or small accidents. If one takes a cat with an open would to the clinic, there will be expenses associated with the antibiotics, wound dressing, x-ray, and pain meds.
Generally, veterinarians call these wounds a wound of unknown origin, and it needs special care at the veterinarian clinic.
Neutering a cat is mandatory for any stray cat when one takes it to a veterinary clinic. One can recognize a spayed stray cat by a cut on top of the ear.
Neutering a cat reduces the chance of them getting involved in fights with other cats in the neighborhood.
Neutering a stray cat can prevent them from getting unwanted wounds, FIV , and other contagious diseases. Therefore, this process has to be done at the clinic no matter what.
Mite Infestation in Ear:
Stray cats often develop mite infestation in their ears due to constant negligence. Cats have a high tolerance for pain and discomfort.
As a result, one might not even realize that a stray cat has mite problems. One should take a feral cat to the clinic for a checkup as soon as one gets hold of it.
Running tests for each test can become a hefty sum for any individual.
Three Ways To Rehome A Cat
According to rescue group Mini Kitty Commune , three ways to rehome a cat are to:
Outsourcing means asking a rescue group to deal with it because you wont or cant do it yourself.;;
Given that most rescue groups operating in the community are small and volunteer-run, with maxed out capacity especially during peak kitten season, the chances of them being able to help are slim.;
In the event that they can help, be prepared to go on a waitlist.;;
Some rescues have a fee-for-service policy.; Which makes sense.; Even if they dont, it would be helpful to provide a generous donation, on a one-off or regular basis, to help with the costs and to support their ongoing work.
Dumping means sending to the pound directly or by calling in animal control. The reality of this is it is a traumatizing experience, if not a likely death sentence for the cat and/or kittens.;;
This second option isnt really an option if you truly care about what happens to the cat/s.
Longer term, this is also not a real solution, due to the high and hidden costs, financial and human, of killing healthy and treatable kittens, cats and dogs.;;
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Should You Feed Stray And Feral Cats
Its tough to resist those cute but sad eyes and hungry meows. But is feeding stray and feral cats really the best for them?
This is one tricky question. Some reputable sites recommend you feed those hungry and lonely homeless cats. On the other hand, many cat websites such as Catster;claim that feeding strays and ferals is not a good idea.
Lets glance at the pros and cons of feeding stray and feral cats:
- Youll save a lot of birds, mice, and other wild animals that those kitties hunt.
- The cats will gather around the food source and a kitty colony might form.
- That cat colony will make babies and due to a limited gene pool, some kittens might be born unhealthy and sick, with physical defects. But this is only an issue if you dont neuter the cats which you should.
- The cats will depend on you for food and they will stay hungry if you suddenly stop feeding them for whatever reason.
I wouldnt go that far by saying you shouldnt feed the strays and ferals. Although, I agree that you shouldnt make yourself their primary food source;if you will not be able to be their feeder forever or no one will be able to take over that duty if youre not able to do it anymore. If you serve them a lot of food every day, theyll depend on you for their everyday meals.
Can You Adopt A Feral Cat
The answer is both yes and no. Feral cats will require steady patience because of their ingrown roughness. It will only be worth it if you have the time and resources to cater to their transition. Alternatively, you can take in the feral kitten if you want the bets to be on your side. They are easier to tame before they are four months old.
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A Plan To Trap Neuter And Rehome
Essentially, to help a stray cat, you need a plan that involves trapping, neutering, and rehoming.; Or releasing.;
The trap, neuter and return / release strategy is carried out widely across the US and other countries, with many positive documented outcomes, for cats, dogs, people and wildlife.;
In Australia, however, this is still illegal.; There is recognition that the legislation is outdated and needs to change to support practices that are more humane and effective.;
But progress is being hindered by polarized attitudes.; Entrenched positions brought about by the demonization of cats, a lack of distinction between feral and domestic cats, and a misrepresentation of the relative impact of cats on threatened species extinction .;
As animal lovers and nature lovers who care about both cats and wildlife, this is sad because were missing an opportunity to achieve better outcomes for all concerned – cats, dogs, people and wildlife.;
Anyhow, for the purposes of this post, we will focus on trapping, neutering and rehoming.;
What Is The Difference Between A Stray And A Feral Cat
It is important to understand that a stray animal is not the same as a feral cat. Feral cats are not tamed or used to living around humans, meaning they are often violent and distrusting. These are essentially wild animals and should not be welcomed into the home or approached. They are usually distrusting of humans and it is unlikely that they will come near you. Feral animal are often infected with parasites, so avoiding them is best. On the other hand, stray cats are often tame and house trained pets that have simply run away or been abandoned.
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What To Do When You Bring Them Home
Your first instinct may be to place a saucer of milk in front of your new furry friend but don’t. Some stray kittens, especially those found on their own, are very chilled. An important feline rescue rule states that one must never feed a cold kitten. Test for warmth by feeling the ears, inside of the mouth and paw pads. If they feel warm, that’s great. But when these areas are cold, the kitten is in deep trouble.
First Thing First Trap Neuter Return
According to Humane Society, tens of millions of homeless cats live in the USA alone. Thats a lot of cats! Lets say half of them are girls that will give birth to 3-5 kittens. The shocking fact is that a cat can have babies 5 times a year! Even if they bring kittens into this world only once a year that is still a lot of newborn babies to care for.
To stop that from happening, the rational thing to do is to trap, neuter and return those stray and feral cats. Dont have the financial means or a way to take them to the vet? Try finding someone that can do it for you. If nobody in your area is available, animal rescue groups will help you out.
When I was growing up, we were feeding lots of ferals. I think it was up to 15 kitties at one point. I was a youngster then, and I didnt know better. But today, Id make sure to spay and neuter those felines. They were breeding like crazy and it gets out of hand pretty quickly.
Learn from our mistakes and do trap, neuter, return strays and ferals that are roaming around your place.
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How To Catch A Stray Cat
If you see a stray cat in your neighborhood, you can catch it humanely using a Havahart or box trap. You can purchase one yourself, but these can often be borrowed from local vets and shelters. Once you have the live trap and are prepared to catch the cat, line the bottom of the trap with newspaper and bait it with food. Take the trap to an area where you usually see the cat and set it. Keep an eye on the trap from a distance and check it frequently. Since cats are nocturnal hunters and feeders, trapping at night may be more successful.;
Cats Can Make Very Good Companions
Another wonderful benefit of taking in a stray cat is that of companionship. Cats can make very good companions for both humans and animals alike. Is there a need for additional companionship in your home?
A senior citizen living alone might find a stray cat a welcome addition to the house. Hopefully the cat warms up enough to be a dedicated companion to the senior. Otherwise, it might be necessary to get rid of the cat after making the effort to take it in.
Cats can be wonderful companions to young children, too. Studies have shown that kids who grow up with pets in the house are more psychologically well-adjusted. They also tend to have a greater appreciation for animals through adulthood.
One last thing to think about is the other pets in your home. For instance, you may have a small dog in need of companionship which you just dont have the time to provide. That stray cat in your yard could be the answer. There are plenty of cases of stray cats providing much-needed companionship for other pets.
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Using Plants As Repellents
Some types of plants are known to release scents that are disliked by cats. To take advantage of this, simply have such plants around. They include rue, coleus Canina, and lavender among others.
Other repellents that can be used with these include orange and lemon peels.
Cats have a much more superior sense of smell than humans. They detest the smell of these plants and citrus peelings.
As long as the scent remains, cats will avoid such areas. This is a cost-effective way of keeping stray cats away. The only problem here is if you keep cats as pets.
Under such circumstances, this method will not be effective as it will also affect your pets.
Bringing In A Stray Cat Takes Time And Patience
Dont rush the process when youre bringing in a stray cat. You want the transition to be as smooth and stress-free as possible so you can start things off on the right foot. Follow the steps above, and you should have a relatively easy, if relatively long, stray cat introduction.
Do you have experience bringing a stray cat home? Share your tips below!
Ben is an animal lover, blogger, and all around geek. He divides his love equally between his family, his animals, and his video games. In his spare time he is attempting to get a blog off the ground. Boy, are they heavy!
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A Kitty Shelter To Hide From The Harsh Outside Elements
Stray and feral cats are used to living outside. But during the winter time, it can be really hard for them to find a suitable shelter and a dry place to hide. With the low winter temperatures, it is extremely important for them to have a shelter thatll keep them warm.
Why dont you put your hands to work and make your own homemade shelter? Alternatively, get a heated outdoor cat house;thatll keep felines safe from the excruciating cold.
Popular kitties Cole & Marmelade and their human have their own video that will teach you how to make a DIY cat shelter.
Keep the following factors in mind while making feline safety department:
- Shelter entrance should be large enough to fit a cat but not too large.; This way the coyotes and other dangerous wild animals cant get inside.
- Try raising the shelter off the ground to keep it warmer in winter.
- Place the shelter in a safe place with no traffic or people.
- Put the shelter away from busy paths and, if possible, under some kind of cover to keep it dry.
- A spot that is protected from the winds during the winter and a shady area away from the direct sunlight during the hot summer days would be best.