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a couple of questions......

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
I have a question....what are feral cats? Are they just the strays around? I'm stumped....also what are the feral colonies? I have never heard of these...please help!
post #2 of 5
In my understanding, feral cats aren't really strays but they are cats that have never really had homes, so they are "wild" in a sense. A feral colony would be bunch of them together, with a social structure (i.e. Alpha male).

I'm probably wrong though!
post #3 of 5
Jenn, you got it just right.

Ferals are cats who either have had little if any contact with humans, or bad contact with humans so they avoid contact if at all possible. Some stray cats turn feral after their trust with humans has been shattered, but the ones who still rely on humans and try to have contact with humans (who miss the love and attention they once got in a home) are not ferals.
post #4 of 5
Thread Starter 
Thanks for clearing that up for me!
post #5 of 5
Hi! Jenn and Heidi are both right. I'd just like to add a couple of points:

A feral cat is the offspring of either already wild cats or the offspring of what was once a domestic cat (a pet) that ran away or got dumped or left behind when a family moved.

Feral cats are PRIMARILY the result of pet owners' abandonment OR simply the failure of people to spay or neuter their cats. People with pets who let them roam, if the cats aren't sterilized, are how the vicious cycle starts.

Although these figures are a bit misleading because it assumes that wild cats live seven years (when in fact they live somewhere, on average, between 1 1/2 years and three years), just one pair of breeding cats CAN, through the reproduction of all the children, produce 420,000 offspring. This costs the States in excess of $50 million annually (mostly in taxes - this does not include the many volunteer organizations and donations) in animal control agencies and shelters for cat-related expenses.

It is a terrible, terrible problem. There are many spay/neuter programs out there. One of the most well known low-cost nationwide programs is run by SpayUSA. If you are interested in help with the local kitties you take care of, The Cat Site is certainly a place to ask questions, get advice, and get help with resources.


Oh - and if you are interested in looking up low cost spay/neuter options, here's the link to spayUSA:

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