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neignborhood cat

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
I haven't posted in along time. I was hoping to get some ideas from all of you.
I have one cat and a big dog. I did have two cats but unfortunately we lost one a few months ago. Anyway there is a cat that lives next door. She was always starving so I started putting food out for her. She is always jumpy and scared. When the weather got cold we realized she would climb over head in our garage and be very quiet so my cat or dog didn't know she was there. My husband took one of the cloth houses my cats played in and put it up overhead in the garage with a blanket in it. She sleeps up there most every night.
We live in the mountains and it gets very cold here. While she made it fine last winter I'd like to know if there are other options to keep her warm enough. Unfortunately we can't spend a lot. She has warmed up to my husband so much that she follows him around. When he pets her she will attack him but then rub around his legs again. I have a feeling she hasn't been treated very well. No use talking to the neighbor about taking better care of her. They are very strange people and have numerous problems.

So would you say she is ok above our garage or is there something else we can do that wouldn't cost an arm and a leg?

I can't stand to see her neglected.
Thank you!
post #2 of 6
There are lots of good ideas for providing housing for strays and ferals on this board - so hopefully someone with more experience will come along with advice. Or you can search. Knottybuoyz had a thread here recently about shelters for a family of semi ferals they look after.

And bless you for caring about this little darling.
post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 
Thank you. I just want to be sure she is warm enough. She is use to being outside with no shelter which is how she eneded up in our garage. I wish I had the finances to get her a cat house but we are very strapped now.

I will read up and see if we can get something to make sure she is warm. I know she is well fed now. Little stinker actually turned her nose up at the wet food I put out for her the other day. I've been feeding her off and on for over a year. It use to be once in awhile now I feed her twice a day. She is so pretty and I love her. She is taming down slowly but let her do what she feels like.

Sorry I am rambling but I am very attatched to her.

I still do not understand how someone could just leave their cat outside in the winter with no shelter and only feed it when you feel like it. What is wrong with people?

I could go on and on but I'll stop now.
Thanks again.
post #4 of 6
If you can get a deep rubbermaid container and fill it with straw that would keep her warm. It's too bad you just can't take her as one of your own, although it does sound like she has already adopted you. Bless you for taking care of her, it seems she knows she can depend on you.
post #5 of 6
Depending on the garage condition and set up - can you make a straw bale house?

This is when you use about 4/5 bales of hay and stack them into a "house"
You put some loose straw on the inside and make like a square igloo. leave
on side open so kitty can come n go. Makes v. good insulation, isn't expensive or terribly messy, can be used in the garden in spring (for mulch, LOL) and keeps kitty toasty warm. Also, is noise proofed so that doggie and kitty of house aren't too savvy she's there....

Not sure how your rafters in the garage are set up etc.

Alternately the rubbermaid container with holes cut in each side
(2 sides for escape makes them feel safer) with a lot of straw
in it is good, esp. if its off the ground. If its sitting on the ground
put about 1.5 inches newspaper for insulation in the bottom, THEN
put the straw in.

As long as kitty is out of the wind, and the elements - this will keep
her warm and toasty. You can also put "snuggle disks" in the
rubbermaid when its really cold. These are disks you heat in the microwave
and then wrap and put in the rubbermaid. They can stay warm for hours....

PM if you want more info, or ask on the board for feral caretakers to give you ideas...
post #6 of 6
Thread Starter 
Thank you all for the ideas. It got very cold here and we didn't see our cat for a few days. I was so scared she frozed to death. Finally she showed up in a few days starving again. We fed her well. She has been coming into the garage early now. Her little house is up very high. My husband put flat boards in different places up there. She will not eat or sleep down low. I put her food up by her sleeping place tonight and she ate like a horse. She feels safe up there. My cat & dog stay in when it gets dark so she is fine. She is so smart. She has learned how to be very quiet.

We have tried bringing her in to introduce her to the house but she goes crazy. We also worry about our cat not accepting her. She chases her off if she sees her. She does seem to be getting use to her being around though.

Our other cat that died was our cat's sister. We adopted them together so they got along most of the time. Not sure if she would accept this cat. They are both females.

I just hate it when people do this to thier animals. She should have an owner that loves and takes good care of her. We are doing the best we can. My husband has really gotten attatched to her. I guess we'll keep helping her as much as we can. I don't want to take her to paws as they are overcrowded and she has been in this neighborhood since she was a tiny kitten. I don't think she'd warm up to anyone either.

Sorry to go on. I appreciate the advice and help here. I am reading all of the posts. What a blessing you all are to these beautiful animals.

Thank you,
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