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HELP! soon please!

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
hi all, havn't been on here in ages but found another litter of ferals and need advice so i thought of you all.
there are many stray and feral cats in my neighborhood and they reproduce...quickly. my dad and i usually get out and can catch the babies when they're between 8-10 weeks old, so they can get used to people. one of my cats, Peanuts, used to be a feral but is now fine with people.
but anyhow, we just caught three more kittens. there's a forth but it got away...our driveway has so much junk on it that it's probably just hiding under something, but seeing as it's dark outside and it's a black kitten and we spent about 45 minutes outside searching i don't think we'll have any luck tonight.
like i've said, i've caught cats before but they've never been this crazy...the runt of the litter (see pics below) will let me hold it and likes my warmth but the other two are INSANE! they hiss, and spit, and one of them tore my hand up a great deal.
i have them all in a crate in my house. i cut up bits of chicken and put a little canned cat food (not a lot cause it's so rich and they havn't been on the best diet) and a small amount of cat food in their crate (two of them hissing bloody murder at me) to see what they'll eat. so far the runt has been the only one to come forward and eat...the other two finally just stopped spitting (as long as i keep myself at least 15 feet away) and are now pressing themselves against the far back of the crate.
so...how old does the one in the pic look? (sorry for the horrible picture, the lighting's terrible and the kitten uncooroperative) it's old enough to be away from it's mother, right? it's been a couple of years since i've taken in kittens, I'm a little out of practice. any tips on how to get the other two to eat? any advise in general?
my dad says that we might take them to the humaine society tomorrow...i really want to find homes for them instead like we used to and am trying to persuade him. should i take them to the humaine society? i'd rather not...

the runt...the only one i can touch without gloves.

post #2 of 14
Thread Starter 
man. i think i put this in the wrong section.
post #3 of 14
I could be wrong, but the kitten in the picture looks about 7-8 weeks old.

When I caught my little Bestia she was a beast(duh! That's why her name is Spanish for Bestia, haha)! Right after I caught her I had to put her in a box to keep her from attacking me, lol. She was a MANIAC! She was jumping around in the box life her life was on the line(which, to her, it probably seemed like that, poor baby). However, a couple hours later I opened the box in a closed room, put on a glove, and started sloooowly petting her, to let her know I meant no harm. After a couple minutes of cowering in the corner she lept out of the box and ran to hid. She found a spot and settled in. I just slowly crept over to her and kept petting her.

She was freaked out for the first 2 days, but I would hold her(against her will) as much as possible and she calmed down a LOT. She didn't really LIKE being help, but she tolerated it.

Most likely, the kittens won't eat while being trapped in the crate. I recommend setting up a litterbox and food/water in a small room or in the bathroom and then letting them loose in there.

They'll eat eventually. the tummies always win out.

I would try and socialize them before taking them to a shelter because sometimes shelters will put feral cats/kittens to sleep because they don't want to put effort into socializing them when there are already so many "tame" kittens/cats that also need homes.

Keep us posted.
post #4 of 14
Oh yeah, this actually should have gone into the "caring for strays and ferals" section, but I'm sure one of the mods will come along and move it soon.
post #5 of 14
They'll eat when you leave the room and they feel that it is safe. If you take them to the Humane Society while they are feral they will most likely be put to sleep because they are not adoptable in that condition.
post #6 of 14
Thread Starter 
yeah, about the shelter thing, that's kinda what i was worried about. that's so sad...
i will try and convince my dear father that we should put the cats in the bathroom. Peanuts has been nosing around trying to get into the room they're in now *rolls eyes*
now, at least, i can get a little closer to the crate without the two of the going crazy. yay!
uk, i'm a hypochondriac though and now after all the scrtahing im freaked out that i have rabies or someting. i don't even think the kitten bit me, but that's just how i am. i hate it...and it isn't helping that i'm kinda dizzy...
thanks for the input though! it was very much appriciated!
post #7 of 14
Thread Starter 
they are so LOUD! it's been about two hourse by now and anytime i'm in the same room as them they growl. it's kinda of like a moan, actually. i turned off the light in the room and corevered the crate with a blanket. '
i'm going to be gone for like 1 1/2 days, so i feel horrible that i can't get started on de-ferilizing them right away. my dad will be feeding them and checking up on them but he won't hold them.
i was thinking that i'm going to turn on the radio all of tomorrow while i'm gone so that they can at least get more used to hearing human voices. do you think this is a good idea?
i held them each for like 2 minutes tonight. with gloves.
i think i petrified one of them into temporary silence, it would open it's mouth to do something but nothing would come out...
i feel like such a novice at this, it's been a couple years and i've never had ones this crazy before!
i them though.
post #8 of 14
I think they're freaked out because they're in a crate. I HIGHLY recommend finding a room to put them in and letting them "free". They most likely will not eat while feeling trapped in the crate. It can also, imo, make bonding with them alot more difficult. Just let them in a room and give them a few places to hide and feel safe.

Imagine if you were one of the kittens and you've just been taken from your mama, one of your siblings is gone, you've been "attacked" by a huge scary creature(aka, human), and now you're trapped in a cage! Let them run and hide together and they will come out on their own. You have to earn their trust and let them know you won't hurt them.
post #9 of 14
I have had good success taming ferals by keeping them in a large crate. They way I see it is that they have no choice but to be near you and get used to your hands being around them as you clean, change litter, feed etc. I think they learn to trust you sooner than if you let them loose in a room with many places to hide. They can be let out of the crate once they learn that you do not intend to eat them. I'm sure there are many methods that work; this is just the one that has worked for me.
post #10 of 14
Thread Starter 
ok, yeah, i defihnatley will move them.
right now i am cleaning out the crate and they were a little better about coming out...atill as loud, but not as scratchy.
post #11 of 14
I had a 75 gal fish tank I set up w/ newspapers and a bed and a litter box, and that's where I kept my feral kittens while I tamed them down. Every day, twice a day, I took them out and talked to them and petted them and even the hissers and spitters calmed down after about a week... I bribed them with IAMs wet kitten food (it seems to be the softest for tiny kittens) If you have to take them to a shelter, atleast get them REALLY sweet first so they can get good homes... see if there is a Feral Spay./Neuter program in your area. They may trap for you.... the one near us only charges $15-20 to neuter ferals, and it's much easier than catching and rehome litter after litter (TRUST ME....we feed about 6 ferals who kept pumping out LOTS of kittens...)

Good luck!!
post #12 of 14
Thread Starter 
ok, quick update, they are doing much better!!!
Their names are Peter, Piper, and Panther. all "P" names because...well...it's kind of tradition.
Peter and Piper (btw, it's Piper shown in the horrible pics above) are tame. they are doing really, really good! Peter likes to be snuggled and actually purrs when he seeing me coming (btw they're all boys). Piper is sweet but not a lap kitty, more of an "oh my goodness i must go explore that!" and "ohhhh...a molecule of dust! it's a new toy!"
Panther is fairily tame, will hiss once in a while. it took two day for him to eat...i kinda had to force him to try the food and after that he was ok. i thik he has a toothache, though, b/c sometimes when he eats harder food he mews like something's hurting him. it's getting better, though, i looked at his teeth and none of them appear to be hurt, but i might have overlooked something...so anyways, he's the most timid and shaky out of the three. he is improving, though.
no sign of the mama or the other kitten. i think she moved it and herself.
post #13 of 14
I have a really strange way of looking at this situation being that I am a true animal lover as you and all of the people here are. I would hope that the kittens get socialized and spayed an neutered and find good homes. If you are willing to see this situation out and help the kittens find good homes that would be great!
However, If the kittens will eventually end up in the shelter, this may not be the best situation for them in the long run.
You are doing a good job helping them, please keep up the good work. Is there a No-kill animal shelter in your area that can give you assistance in helping socialize and adopt them out?
post #14 of 14
Thread Starter 
hmm...i don't know, i though of that. i don't know of one in my immediate area...i will check though. there are also a couple of people i know who are definately interested. yay!
most people i know though have a horrible view on cats. it drives me crazy.

they're all play fighting on the floor right now as i listen to oldies. they're so cute...really wish i could keep one...am trying not too fall to far in love
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