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Trapping for 2nd time? - Page 13

post #361 of 447
Oh wow! I didn't know Batman went through all that with the big German Shephard, poor thing. So glad he completely recovered from that traumatic experience. Batman is such a sweet kitty.

Yeah, i'm going to have to watch that Tiger doesn't get jealous of Buddy when I start to socialize them. What I plan on doing when I first get Buddy used to the house is to keep Tiger in the laundry room where he is sleeping now during that period. He won't be able to see anything so he shouldn't get jealous. You might try that with Batman if he gets too anxious. I feel that I should let Buddy get used to the house before I introduce him to Tiger through the screen. Too much at one time might get his eyes dilated. I can do the house thing during the exchange of smells period which comes first.

Buddy is a big ham. He flys across the basm't floor one end to the other. He's ready. His quarentine is up next Wed. when he get checked and retested by the vet. Can't wait to let him run through the house, he's going to love that.

Sounds like Patches is doing real well in her room. Walking around just like she own the place. Good for you Patches. You show them how nice and friendly you can be. It won't be too long and she will be all over you. Giving you all the love you have given her. Keep sending the progress reports love to hear them.
post #362 of 447
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by tigerclaw View Post
Oh wow! I didn't know Batman went through all that with the big German Shephard, poor thing. So glad he completely recovered from that traumatic experience. Batman is such a sweet kitty.
Here's the story.

Patches had 4 babies in our window well. Didn't even know about Patches til we saw these babies! This was less than a year after we got married. Pretty young, just got a house. 2 pet cockatiels. Husband allergic to cats. Last thing I thought I'd be doing was rescuing kittens and socializing an adult feral. That said, keep in mind that I just LOVE cats and always had them growing up, but I wanted a portable intelligent pet in college during co-op that wouldn't restrict apartment hunting, so I got some birds. And my birdies are awesome. So yep, 2 birdies and 2 kitties.

Anyways. I did some begging, then we got a bathroom set up and went to snag the kitties. We didn't know what we were doing... We did it so wrong, looking back. We went with a box and a towel. There were only 3 by then. Got one pretty easy, brought him inside. The second one ran to the front yard in the landscaping. I got him, then he fell out, ran around the landscaping more... it was just awful. Finally got him inside. Then Batman was the last one. He bolted like a terrified little thing... went running to the chain linked fence.. and the neighbor's German Shepherd caught him.. in his mouth. We yelled at the dog to drop Batman and basically had to pry him out of his mouth. I about vomited in fear that the dog just killed the kitten. When we pulled Batman out, he hissed, then peed out of nervousness. We thought he was covered in blood - nope, just dog drool. My husband and I were absolutely mortified about how awful our rescue went. Kitties went to the vet the next day and were fine health-wise.. but WOW. What a horrible rescue. It's quite embarrassing.

The fuzzbutts were about 7 weeks old. Adorable little hissy things. They were my first socialization experiments. The friendly two were SO EASY looking back. I basically lost my whole summer last year with those babies, but it was so worth it. Batman was a bit of work as well... It seems it was just leading up to Patches in a way.

Now there was the 4th kitten. I did not see the kitten again until the kitten was 14 weeks old I think? I was looking in the yard every day the first week I found the babies but no luck - Patches hid him too well. TNR places wanted me to just TNR. No rescues had the capacity to socialize a black feral kitten... At that time we were also still working on socializing Batman and figuring out my husband's allergies. I was not allowed to take in this cat to socialize and/or adopt. You can imagine the fighting about this. But I ended up finding a wonderful rescue that DID, after emailing every single rescue within 20 miles or so. I got the kitty trapped, paid for initial vetting/neuter, wrote a nice big check, and send checks now when I can. That kitty is now a year old and STILL being socialized and still in a foster home waiting for adoption.. He's very shy, but very sweet and purry... gets along great with other kitties, etc. I'm hoping I get an email one day saying he's officially adopted. That will make me so happy. Looking back it does at times really bother me we didn't keep this 4th kitten but I try to tell myself everything happens for a reason. Patches would still be outside if I did somehow manage to convince my husband to take in #4. I know that kitten is getting great care - and so is Patches. So I don't know. It's just odd. I think about that kitten a lot.

Off topic, but hopefully no one will get mad at me.

Edit: I guess I didn't end it!

I just started feeling more and more of a connection with Patches. We did the math on how old kitten #4 would be and got her fixed after we knew he'd be weened, if he was still alive (since we did not see him). Then one day when we were feeding her, we looked out and saw him. That's how we knew he was still around! Trapping him was so depressing because she cried for him for days after he was gone. She'd lay on our porch crying. SO SAD.

I got in a really good routine with her. She'd wait for us after work. She would actually start walking to the porch when the car was in the garage - really started getting more comfortable with us. I was able to also start luring her closer to me with the trail of food. (In June, she'd run to another yard. By October, she'd eat a foot or two away, giving me the leery eye.)

My husband's allergies were tolerable with Batman so we figured we could add a short hair kitty. So we brought in Patches. Well, we talked for months and months. I was getting really emotionally attached to her and really starting to worry about finding her dead on the street. And I just felt a special connection with her, after saving her babies I think. I don't know. It just felt right.

Sorry if that is long and rambly, but figured the background is helpful if anyone is interested.
post #363 of 447
Thread Starter 
Alrighty, here are some pictures:

A mouthful of fur:

Not quite pleased with me this morning:
post #364 of 447
Ah, what an touching story. You did the best you could with the rescues and everything turned out in the end. With the experience you have now you would do things a little different in the future. You did ok based on what you knew at the time.

It's pretty easy to get attached to these kitties, it's an emotional journey. I find myself feeling the same way. You have an understanding husband especially with his allergies. The way I understand it, the allergens are in their sulival and as they lick their fur it's spreads all over their body.

Nice pics of Batman and Patches. Hope Patches don't go bald in a year or so...just kidin. Batman is quit the character. He loves him mama.

In the last pic of Patches I don't see displeasure. I see an elert, interested, pleasant face, eye are not dilated, ears perked forward. She looks happy to me.
post #365 of 447
Thread Starter 
Batman had brought up a mouse toy for Patches and the two were hanging out by screen this morning. I put my hand close to screen and she came over to sniff it through the screen - then growled at me. Not sure what that meant.

The mouse toy's tail was a bunch of feathers, so I stuck the feather part under the door and pulled the mouse back and forth. She went NUTS for it, immediately going after it with her paws. She was having a ball. It takes some work to get her to play in the box but this was instant. Unfortunately she got a claw snagged somewhere on the door/wire - I thought we hammered all the staples in really well but I need to take a better look tonight. Poor girl. I'm not sure if she's using her scratching posts.

She left eventually so I could go in and feed her. She got about 1/2 inch from my hand to sniff the treats. 30 seconds after I left the room, she was already walking to the screen. When I left for work, the two were very comfortably sitting on respective sides of the screen hanging out.
post #366 of 447
Ah, that sound good. A lot of action at the screen door with the toy. The sniff and grawl wasn,t really anything. Cats are smart and realize the safety of a screen door so she came right up and sniffed your fingers. Then realized that this smell wasn't suppose to be this close to her yet and just gave a little warning. She will be licking your fingers in know time.

Keep working the toy at the door and maybe crack the door a little and stick the wand through the crack and see the action. I did this with the semi-feral that spit, hissed and grawled at me that had the little kitten in my cages last summer. In know time I was able to rub the wand on her back and she got to like the interaction. Sounds like you're making great progress.
post #367 of 447
Well, if she got a claw snagged in the door, sounds like her claws are sharp - so I'd have to say she's using the post(s)!

As to the coming forward to sniff your hand and then growling - it's that "inbetween" place that is a good sign. She's comfortable in her space, she's GETTING more comfortable with you - but is still keeping her guard up. It's typical with ferals getting friendly - they come to you, but growl at the same time - it's that "confused" place where they're used to warning you about their space - but they're the ones coming forward.
post #368 of 447
Thread Starter 
This arrived today for Patches:

I let Batman get used to it first, then brought it into her room. I put 3 treats on the base, then left the room and sat outside with Batman. 1 minute later, her head is out of the box. She eyes the new thing in her space. A couple minutes later, she walks to it, gives it a sniff, then eats her treats. She has a very normal walk now - completely comfortable and confident. After she ate her treats and investigated, she just sat down, in the 'ladycat' upright position, with her tail not wrapped around her. She sat and watched Batman and I. I hung out for 5 minutes, then went away. Now I can hear her up to something (hear bells rolling).

Hopefully she'll figure out what the brush is for.

I'm impressed she was walking around with me in the hallway. She is definitely getting more comfortable with me!
post #369 of 447
Thread Starter 
Had a really fun play session with her under the screen door with the feathery mouse toy last night!!! She gets SO into it!!!!!! I can actually get her going with both front paws and get her on her honches to go after it. It is SO FUN playing with her.

This morning, I was also playing with her. But she again got a claw snagged on the screen. It is so sad. I don't think she understands how to get it out. Reminds me of when kittens have issues retracting their claws and getting stuck to everything. She finally got herself off the door and walked away content (content tail) but I hate seeing her pull at the door.

Which has me thinking... Should I try to get her to the vet for another nail trim? I think the trim was 2 months ago. I'm not thrilled about the idea of scaring her to go to the vet but if her nails keep getting caught, maybe it'd be important. Or she needs to figure out how to not get stuck. Not sure.

(We don't have to go to the vet until her Rabies in November, although I wouldn't mind having them put more Frontline on her. I am not certain she is flea free.)

post #370 of 447
Well, it doesn't sounds like she was too traumatized by it if she walked away with content tail... I'm not sure I'd take her to the vet just to get her nails trimmed. ...but if you're not sure she's flea free, both kitties should be Frontlined, and if you think it's less traumatic to take her to the vet for them to do it for Patches than for you to do it... that's a call you'll have to make!

...it's great to hear she's enjoying so much play!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
post #371 of 447
Great to hear that Patches comes out of her box to get her treats right away. Will she do that with you in the room sitting still?

For the nails caught in the screen, you might try to install a 3" board across the bottom of the screen door. You can get them 3" wide by 1/4" thick and screw it across the bottom so she will be scratching the board rather than the screen.

Nails get sharp again in a week or two. I agree with LDG, forget the vet for just a nail cut.

Good action at the screen. When the toy gets out of site under the screen door doesn't that just drive Patched nuts. My newly adopted Buddy flies at the toy when I flick it on the other side of my legs kneeing down. When it gets out of sight it triggers action because the prey is getting away. Patches is really picking up some steam in the training sessions. It's a reflection on how well you are training her.
post #372 of 447
Thread Starter 
Nothing really new the past week. There was a day she was hanging out in the middle of the room and I decided to let Batman in the room to see her not in the box. She basically flopped to her side exposing her belly, not wanting to deal with him. Then she eventually retreated to her box. I think she did not like that encounter, so she hasn't been at the screen as much in the evenings. But she's usually there in the mornings.

She will play with my husband as well under the screen door. She's so much more confident there. When I'm in the room with her, she still has that nervous look about her. If I come in when she's sleepy, I will move my hand to be pretty close to her with treats - and sometimes the sleepiness will make her be less on guard and she'll just come up to my hand and sniff. If she's nto sleepy - I can't do that. She looks too nervous and I don't want to get myhand too close to her and have her defend her space. But yeah, she'll get close if she forgets about being scared. When she's sleepy, Batman picks up on it and doesn't try to play with her - but just gives her a lick and happily walks around the room. It's interesting seeing that - how different he will react depending on if she's sleepy or not.

We had staple gunned pet wire on her side of the door to act as a 2nd layer. The screen on the door (Batman's side) is slowly being taken off the door by Batman. We're trying to fix it, but he's just determined I guess to force us to remove the door so she has full access to house. Maybe we'll have to just let her out soon. She and Batman have 2 different types of litter. Not sure if she'd just prefer to run upstairs and use her own box or if she'd use Batman's, etc. Batman's 2nd litter box is in the basement but I only let him down there when I'm there with him because of the mattress against the wall (from her room). I was worried he'd get hurt with it.

So we'll see! I feel like she's most safe in her room - she can't dart outside, etc. And I don't have to worry about Batman ticking her off when she's inside there. So we'll see. I'm a control freak but if she's ready to come out, I should let her.
post #373 of 447
Well, since she seems to be happy in her room, and comfortable with you guys when she's behind her screen, and so much more confident behind the screen - I'm thinking it's probably best to let her stay in the room for now.
post #374 of 447
Thread Starter 
Ah, so Laurie you're thinking I should wait to let her roam the house until she's a bit more confident with me in the room? I guess I've just been feeling bad she's still in her smaller living quarters.

I should start letting Batman in there for longer periods of time. He sure lets me know when he wants out. He goes to the screen door and paws at it.

I heard my husband telling her the other day how pretty she was. Until recently, he never saw her.. then he only saw her in the cat loaf position. But now he'll see her sitting more upright or stretched out. He's even playing with her now. That's great she's letting him do that through screen because he is new to her, really.

Well, if she's going to be in that room for a while longer, maybe I should get her one of those $40 Walmart cat trees I rave about. That'd be fun for Batman as well when he visits her. We'll see if my husband goes for the idea.
post #375 of 447
When it comes to the space.... I think we do a lot of projecting. Cats have larger territories in outside life for hunting - but they den up in small spaces. Right now, she's got stimulation from play, and she's made the room her territory - that's why she feels safe behind the screen door. She's got companionship when she's in the mood for it - and she sounds, actually, like she's pretty happy! She hasn't learned "the art of love" yet, , but she doesn't know she's missing anything when it comes to petting and being brushed and such.

But for her own safety, until she's more comfortable with you, my take on it is that it's best to keep her in her safe space. Free to roam in the house, she may freak out and hide somewhere - and then how do you get her out of there as she's still scared of you?

I don't think you need to wait until she loves being petted or whatever - but I sure wouldn't worry about her being in there for another - few months, or whatever, if it comes to that.

You know, you may actually want to PM hissy about this. I think a synopsis of the situation would suffice. She's comfortable with Batman, she's willing to sniff your hand when sleepy, but otherwise tenses up when you're around - unless it's playing through the screen, where she's totally comfortable. I think MA would have valuable input on what's best here.

And BTW, I'm so sorry I missed your Birthday! I hope you enjoyed a wonderful day!
post #376 of 447
Sounds like your two guys are progressing a little at a time. Slow but sure in the right direction. That's good to hear that Patches and your hubby are bonding. It makes things easier when that happens.

With my two I focus on body language especially with Buddy. He's like a rambuntious little kid. He will lay flat on the floor and want to rush towards the screen barrier. When he does that Tiger will back away. So what i've been doing is using the wand toy to break Buddy's intense focus, sending the wrong vibes. The wand toy snaps him out of it and puts him in a playful mode. I can see then Tiger is more relaxed. I also hold him on the sides and rub both sides of his neck which relaxes him and relieves his tension. I'm looking for a playful mode when they get together by the screen.

Body language, depending on the posturing can trigger many moods. I like to break up the intense moments either with the wand toy or a gentle rub to the cat's body around the neck and front part of the body area. It gets them to focus on something else.

Glad things are going good for ya. Keep it up.
post #377 of 447
Thread Starter 
Ok, this is an uncomfortable question.

Our little casanova.. Batman... how do I say this? I'm pretty sure he's trying to mate with Patches. For a while I was trying to tell myself no, he's just trying to play... But he bites off loose fur of her winter coat she's shedding, then starts biting her neck/throat... then tries to mount her basically... She does not like this and growls when he approaches her back or near her behind.

What should I do? My husband thinks it's funny and reminded me that I told him this was a possibility when we had a male and female cat regardless if they're fixed or related. Should I just pretend I don't see it and not tell anyone that my cats are trying to be incestuous? And even if they weren't related, gosh I feel bad for Patches. I usually try to break things up when I see she's getting really irritated with him.

I got Batman out of the room and a few minutes later, she's back at the screen and he's laying there on his side of the screen. Sigh.
post #378 of 447
I'd have to do some looking, but my guess it's it's an alpha/domination thing, not... because it's not hormone driven!
post #379 of 447
Thread Starter 
Hmmm, interesting. That would make sense. Poor Patches!!

She continues to surprise me. If she's not by the door, she's starting to stick her head out of the box and watch if there's noise going on in the hall. Definitely getting more and more curious - and braver. This morning, she didn't even wait 10 seconds before I left her room to head out of the box and walk to the door. We've heard her call for Batman a few times in the evening the past week and Batman will run up. She's definitely more active and her sleep schedule is Batman's now. I'll hear her playing with her toys in the weekend afternoons and late mornings. Pretty sure I heard her using a scratching post last night as well.

She's still a chicken when I'm in the room but she's starting to sniff my hand almost consistently - unless I'm in loud scary shoes or something. (She is used to my slippers and sneakers.) She had some fun playing with her feather toy in the box last night with Batman in the room (not harrassing her this time). I am starting to put the treats in a trail to lead her out of the box when I'm in there cleaning her litter box. She'll crawl out to eat them and watch me for a bit before going back in, but when she sits, she's not all the way in the back - she's pretty close to the front, which is a change.

I'm getting less scary.
post #380 of 447
That's good news that Patches is coming around. Becoming more social and not so scared. Even the smallest improvements are big forward steps. That's great.
post #381 of 447
Originally Posted by killerapple View Post
I'm getting less scary.
It's ALL good!
post #382 of 447
Quincy does that to Autumn occasionally, I think it is a dominance thing too, only he usually gets rolled over and smacked a dozen times for trying - that girl packs some punch.

Good news on the progress front
post #383 of 447
Thread Starter 
Patches is doing good, but there are days she is really scared for some reason and then other days she's more daring.

A few days ago, I went in to see her and didn't realize she was out in the middle of the room. I got down low, grabbed the treat bag, and threw a treat in her direction. She went for it. I started tossing them farther away from her so she would move towards me to get them - just like I did when we were outside. That went well for a while until she decided she wasn't moving farther and just sat down. But that was a nice moment.

She's been having some really nice moments at the screen door too. I've been playing with the wand toy under there and she just loves it. She even did the happy belly flop, where she kinda just flopped over to her side when reaching for it.

I think yesterday, I had one of her mouse toys with feathers on it (that I play under the screen door with) in her room and was dragging it around in her box - I was wondering if she would go for it with me holding it. And she did - so her little paws were (dangerously) close to my hands. She made contact with my hand at one point and hissed in reaction to that, but it was good she got so close to me. Not sure if I'll continue that for safety reasons but it was cool she got so close.

Batman is still being a little obnoxious male with her unfortunately. I'm not sure what to do - do I just let them work that out? Do I break it up when she's getting ticked off or let her get him off her on her own? (She does, but I feel bad for her - and sometimes she'll flee the box and then be out in the open and get nervous. Poor girl.)

So things are going pretty well I think. I am unsure about letting her out to rest of house. I see pros and cons to both options. She's doing good with me in the room, but she's by that screen so much, she's probably bored and wants to get out? But with Batman being annoying at times, I can see how it's nice for her to be in her private room still and get more trusting of me too. I think I will know it when the time is right maybe?

Edit: We also hear her calling for Batman at times we think. She's getting more vocal. She's either talking to her toys when she's playing and/or calling Batman.
post #384 of 447
Sounds like Patches is coming along real good. I think we have some of the same problem getting the two cats to act normal with each other.

Buddy just wants to charge Tiger. I think Buddy thinks Tiger is his litter mate or something. But when they make contact Tiger explodes and there is a heck of a fight. It's usually under something so I can't see who is doing what. There is alot of screaming and the fur flys. Then when I put them in another room or with the screen barrier they act like nothing happend. Read my thread, I explain it there.

I don't think it's some much the individual cat. Your Patches is feral while Buddy is the complete opposite. He's as tame now as Tiger is. I think it's more in the way each cat sees each other and how they react to each other given their body language or there approach to each other.

I don't think Batman charges Patches like Buddy does Tiger. Buddy just trigger the fight in Tiger. While Batman takes the slower approach and gets on Patches nerves in time and action. I think we are both at a point wondering what to do next. I think in time they will work things out themselves. That's how it's got to go. It's really up to them.

Yes I feel bad for Tiger too, what did he do to deserve this obnoxious(to use your description) cat.

I think if you leave Patches out in the house she is going to hide under the furniture for a while. Tiger did for a few weeks. Now Buddy has no interest in hiding. He checked out ever inch of the house and loves to fly up and down the stairs. He is such a sweet cat, I can hold him upsidedown, hug him, kiss him on top of the head and he interacts very well and has already bonded with the wife and I. But with Tiger he is completely unsocial. He even stalks him when he first sees him. He lays flat on the floor like he is ready to charge and pounce, which he does. He has no manners.

I don't know what to tell you. I'm waiting for the golden answer myself.

You could try the whole house thing and see what happens. You might be surprised in a good way. Sometimes it's hard to predict what two cat will do. All I know it's going to take time. and
post #385 of 447
Talking to her toys or calling Batman...

I'm sorry - I really don't know what to suggest to do about Batman when he gets obnoxious. Seems like she was willing to tell him to go stuff it, so to speak... ???? See what happens if you let it go?

And as to the whole house thing..... if you're ready to potentially have a "shadow" kitty - maybe leave the screen door open one night when you head to bed. ????

When we moved from the RV into a house, we released the cats into the bedroom. The concept of "upstairs" and "downstairs" didn't exist for them - and they were all feral rescues, so the change in territory (except for one of them) was rather traumatic LOL. We kept the bedroom door closed the first couple of days to help them feel secure - then we just left it open one night. I don't think anyone ventured out... but after a couple of nights we'd find toys re-arranged upstairs not in the bedroom. The longest took two weeks to venture out. Getting them to use the stairs was a different issue Very scary monsters potentially down there, apparently. Of course once they figured it out, the stairs were great fun...

My point, I guess, is that even if you open the door, Patches may choose not to leave her safe space. Of course, if she does and gets scared, she may hide somewhere else and you won't want to traumatize her by fishing her out.... and if she does leave her room - she may not go downstairs.... a lot of possibilities. But since she and Batman get along fine, really, at this point, it's kinda just whether you feel like seeing what happens - knowing she may hide under the couch or something while you guys are out and about and not asleep.

Are you able to put a towel where she sleeps? If you can, you may want to work on getting a few towels that smell like her, so you can put them around the hallway upstairs or something.... ??????????? That is - if you think you're ready to "open the door."

post #386 of 447
Patches mom, my intuition tells me that it would be better if she stays in the room and gets more used to you. I too think she will go into hiding in the house and avoid you if you open the door now. I know you want to try something different because you feel you reached a plateau with the process...

post #387 of 447
As far as dominance thing this is something you have to let the cats work out. they are trying to figure out who is alpha kitty. Batman was there first, but that doesn't really mean anything. If Patches challenges him she can easily end up being alpha.

As far as dominance problems if there is no blood being spilled I usually let it go. If someone starts getting hurt you need to redirect their attention. If you can't break them up and they won't listen to you nothing works like the pillow toss in their direction. With my two I ended up breaking up fights for about a year at that point EG stopped trying to challenge Isabell for alpha.

What you describe sounds like Batman is trying to establish himself alpha. While Patches isn't taking it lying down she doesn't sound like she is trying to establish herself as alpha. If he pushes her too far though she will establish herself as alpha. In reality all you can really do is wait for them to work it out.

As far as letting her out of the room. I'd probably wait until shes more comfortable with you.
post #388 of 447
Thread Starter 
Thank you so much everybody!! Yeah, it does seem like Batman for some reason thinks he needs to establish himself as alpha - but Patches does not want to be alpha so I'm not sure why he thinks it's an issue. My husband and I feel so bad for Patches - she really gets cornered in her box. There have been times she's gotten out of the box during their play/fight stuff, but she really is literally backed into a box. We'd like to get another box and make a L shape and cut a hole out and connect the two, so she has an escape path. In the meantime, I am letting him in there still but I'm trying to a) wear him out with play beforehand b) spoil him with treats but it is still a little tricky. Patches seems very bothered during the confrontation but not so much when he's gone, so I'm not sure. I'm trying to let them work it out but man, I hate hearing/watching the paw batting. I feel bad for Patches.

Patches spends lots of time by the door still and we have a morning routine. She's at the door, I make the noise to open, she goes to the box, I feed/etc, put my hand out with treats, she sniffs, I put treats down in a trail out of box, I clean litter box, she eats treats (leaving box halfway) and watches me for a bit, then sits in box close to front. Then when I'm leaving and closing the door, she's on her way to sit by the door.

Well this morning we had some excitement and change to the routine.

I had put a blanket by the door for her so she could sleep on that rather than floor - which she liked. This morning though she wasn't there - she was sitting in the front of the box but her head was poked out. So I walk in the room and I extend my hand (no treats!) to her, from the side of the box - and she stretches out to sniff. I do the food/water thing, then get treats, go to her - she again sniffs my hand. I drag a toy around and she goes for it, not hissing this time at me when she got her paw close to me. I put the treats down, do the litter box thing - and guess what? Instead of looking at me and then sitting in the box, she just walks to the door. My husband (who stands outside the door waiting for water and the litter) and I was like 'what??!' so she just sits there by the door. Not caring at all that I'm still in the room. We're dumbfounded so I walk across the room (she looks a little more nervous but not terrified) and I get some treats and put them outside her box. I then tell my husband to start touching the latch so it makes the noise that indicates to her she should leave - so she does her relaxed walk to the box - and I'm still standing nearby - and she eats her treats, then sits in the front of the box. Then I leave the room.

I can't believe she did that!!! It's awesome!!!!! She really must be getting more trusting of me.

We're still on the fence about keeping her inside or letting her to go rest of house. At this point since I'm not comfortable with Batman in there with her for long periods of time, she'll be in there for a while longer. But I think she is starting to want to get out and see the rest of her kingdom.

I'm proud of her. I think this morning really proved she's getting more comfortable in her new home. Considering what things were like 6 months ago, I feel this was pretty amazing.
post #389 of 447
That must have felt AMAZING!

I think your idea of creating an "L" shaped "box" with an escape route is a great idea.

We used to build huge 3D kitty "condos" out of boxes - taping them together, cutting holes in them so they could go up and through.... Don't know if Patches is ready for THAT yet - but having a way to not be cornered sounds like a good idea.

But I'm just busting with smiles for you this morning!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
post #390 of 447
Sounds great. They do surprise you at times.

One comment in your routine. I don't get the latch noise to get Patches back to her box. Maybe she would like to stay at the door when you come in. I always believed in the voice recognition. Your there and i'm here and you have your reasons that I don't see because i'm not there. Just something I would do different.

What you might think about is to just start talking to Patches before she can see you coming to the door. If you are just using the screen door then she can see you before you make the latch sound. What I always believed is that as soon as your cat hears your voice they know right then who it is. A latch is a sound with nobody connected to it. I think Patches would make up her mind whether to go to the box or not as soon as she would hear your voice. Maybe she will surprise you one day and just stay at the door as she did while you were in the room.

As far as the fighting, I have the same thing. Each cat acts different and it how the other cat sees that action and reacts to that. My Buddy seems to be very young and wants to play like litter kittens do. Crouch down, wiggle there butts a little just before they run in and bounce on their litter mate. Tiger sees this as not play but an attack and goes right into the fight mode with the claws, hissing and screeming.

I think it harder for Patches to adjust because she isn't tamed down yet. It will take her more time. I put Tiger in a training cage with 2" x 3" screening that simulated one on one. Tiger will growl, hiss and raise his paw if Buddy gets too close. I have to put one in a cage because the fighting is too intense. I'm going to do the cage training for a couple more week then let them go one on one and solve the rest of their differences themselves.

Yeah, poor Patches gets trapped in the box and can't go anywhere. Tiger gets cornered and he comes out fighting. I think in the end they just have to work out things themselves. I'm like you in that I feel sorry for the cat that just wants to mind their own business and be felt alone. Good luck with your kittys and please take my comments as suggestions and do what you think is best in your mind.
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