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Need advice about a stray

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
I was doing TNR at my husbands work where there was lots of strays/ferals with another lady who's the worlds biggest softie. She has about 8 or 9 cats in her small house I believe, plus about 4 or 5 outside cats. The county limit is 3 cats. A bunch of inside cats don't get along, yet she has brought more in since.

There was a stray amongst a feral colony she feeds who was apparently very friendly that she was telling me about that she thought looked sick. It was tame enough to be picked up. I told her she should take it down to the shelter I volunteer at so it can get the care it needs and rehomed. She caught it and took it home. It now lives in her bathroom and won't come out.

When we started trapping, the first cat she trapped she wanted to take home to live at her house, even though it was feral. I convinced her it was a bad idea, and she really shouldn't take the cat from the environment. Any time she caught a feral, she would keep it for days after spay and neuter (even the boys) and get completely attached to it and not want to let it go again.

Now onto the problem... There's 2 cats that she feeds at my husbands work, that she's been feeding for a while apparently. She's gone away for a week and asked me to feed them, and yesterday showed me where they were and where the food bowls are. One of them we've trapped before - she's definitely feral and had a notched ear.

The other one meows at people, and was rolling over showing his belly, and generally acting pretty affectionate. She said she's tried to trap him before, but he won't go into a trap, and he won't actually let you pat him, but he'll come close. I think we should try harder to trap him because he looks like a sweet cat who could be rehomed.

I'm torn because she's been responsible for him, and I feel like I shouldn't try and take over. But I think while she thinks she's doing the right thing, she doesn't do what's necessarily in the best interest of the cat.

The cat is healthy looking though, so I don't know if it's better to leave him in his environment and let her keep feeding him, or have a go at trapping him and keep him in my spare bedroom for a few days and see if he's tame enough to be rehomed.

Anyone got thoughts?
post #2 of 20
Thread Starter 
Anyone? If I'm going to try and trap him I need to take food way over the next couple of nights...
post #3 of 20
Personally, I'd feel guilty about removing him - but I'd do it.

To trap him, I don't know if you already use these tricks, but wash the trap and spray it with some Feliway. Pour potting soil over the wires - it'll lift right up through it. Put the food in there but don't set the trap for the first few nights.

I have no idea on how to handle her with the news. It's not like you're stealing her cat - but she probably will not be happy.



Laurie
post #4 of 20
I agree that your idea is better than hers when it comes to the best interests of the cat.

I also agree with Laurie that this woman will likely not be pleased with you if you overstep what she considers to be your bounds.

If you have a decent enough rapport with the woman, maybe you could do what Laurie suggested, and prepare the trap (without setting it) for a few nights until she returns. Then discuss the situation with her and see if she'll come around to your point of view. If she does, and everything goes well with the trap preparation from prior nights, you could then set the trap, hopefully catch him right away, and begin efforts to rehome him. If she doesn't agree with your viewpoint, well, then, I guess you'll have to decide how pushy/rebellious you want to be.
post #5 of 20
Actually, I was suggesting Sarah trap the kitty and take it home.... but this might not be a bad idea.

Sarah - it really depends upon how you think this lady will react, vs. how much you care about how she reacts compared to what is best for the kitty.

Laurie
post #6 of 20
Thread Starter 
I really don't know how she'd react to me doing it. I could always just say I spent some time there with him, and he came up to me, so I had a go at trapping him, and got him. And if I get him, maybe invite her over to see him and let her help with the adoption process?

I just really think a nice, healthy cat should not be living outdoors like that.
post #7 of 20
Sarah, I think that sounds like a great plan, and I'd do it. Sort of like - just assuming she wants the best thing done for the cat! And she gets to participate. That sounds like a plan to me.

Laurie
post #8 of 20
I just wanted to say I agree with what everyone has been saying! I am not a cat expert by any means (only recently took in three healthy semi-feral kittens two weeks ago and that is my first stab at having cats!), but I do think you need to think about what is really best for the cat and then work back from there. It sounds as if you have a pretty good idea of what should be done, so just evaluate how you can do that with limited damage to your relationship with the woman. Good luck and let us know how it goes!
post #9 of 20
Thread Starter 
We tried trapping him a couple of nights ago. He is such a sweetheart. He sees us and starts kneading the ground, meowing and rolling over. He'd make such a good pet.

He got halfway into the trap, when another cat came by and distracted him, so he reversed out and sent the other cat on its way. We were so annoyed!

I spoke to the lady though, and she sounds like she doesn't even want to be feeding them because she has so many others to feed, but she feels obligated to feed every cat she comes across and would be much happier if they were rehomed...

So we'll try again.
post #10 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by sarahp View Post
I was doing TNR at my husbands work where there was lots of strays/ferals with another lady who's the worlds biggest softie. She has about 8 or 9 cats in her small house I believe, plus about 4 or 5 outside cats. The county limit is 3 cats. A bunch of inside cats don't get along, yet she has brought more in since.
... Any time she caught a feral, she would keep it for days after spay and neuter (even the boys) and get completely attached to it and not want to let it go again.
Sounds like you may be working with a beginning hoarder. I would start talking to her about rehoming some of the cats she has inside too! But in the meantime, trap that little guy and get him fixed and adopted!
post #11 of 20
Aw, he sounds like such a sweetie! I'm glad you talked to her and you've got the all clear to do what's right.

and lots of good luck!

Laurie
post #12 of 20
He sounds like such a sweet cat! Good luck with your trapping efforts.
post #13 of 20
Any update? Keep us up to date.
post #14 of 20
Come on! Where is the update?
post #15 of 20
Thread Starter 
The night I tried to trap the kitty I ended up in Emergency with major muscular pain (had heart surgery 7 weeks ago). It turned out to be from a staph infection that turned into an abscess which was opened days later, which I'm still taking care of.

So... no chance to try and trap recently Will try again soonish though.
post #16 of 20
You heal up and get all better!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Laurie
post #17 of 20
Thread Starter 
It's wet and horrible out there and supposed to get worse, I'm tempted to try and get him now, but I daresay he'll just be hiding away somewhere dry and warm.
post #18 of 20
Our very first "feral" turned out to be a stray gone feral - but it still took like six months to earn her trust outside (this was before we got involved with cats in any meaningful way - she was really our introduction to cats. ). But whenever it was raining she NEVER showed up. She always hunkered down somewhere and would wait out the storm.

Laurie
post #19 of 20
Thread Starter 
I'm feeding him again for 3 nights over the weekend, so will try to spend some time there each time just hanging with him. Fingers crossed I'll be able to get close to him!
post #20 of 20
I'm sending those vibes!

Laurie
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