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feral coming around my house

post #1 of 46
Thread Starter 
I currently have 2 cats who are indoors only. About 2 weeks ago, I was in my backyard and this orange cat came walking through. He started coming towards me and I said to myself, if I pet him he will think he's welcome here. So I shooed him away. I saw him again walk through my yard the next day. We live in a very wooded area and I know there are a ton of strays donwn the street that a woman feeds every day. I was hoping this guy would have made his way back down towards her house. So I hadn't seen him for 2 weeks until this morning when he was sitting on my back step. He was just looking at my cat in the back window. She was not too happy about this! lol. Anyways, I worry so much about the strays and feral out there and I know my usband would build him a little house in a scecond if I asked him to. But I am worried that I will attract other cats in the neighborhood if I start caring for this one outside. I would without question take him to be neutered if I could catch him. I worry myself sick sometimes when I think about him. What should I do??
post #2 of 46
Let's see, you have a cat in need of help and you are asking if you should help him?

Yes, build him a house, get him neutered (help stop the overpopulation) and help him. If others come around, partner with a local TNR or shelter to trap them. If he's friendly enough and you have the inkling, take him to the vet, get him tested for diseases and if he's clean, neuter, give vaccinations and take him in if you can. Or find him a home.

Just closing your eyes and hoping the problem goes away is cruel. Because it will go away eventually, whether he starves to death, gets hit by a car, gets in a fight and gets an infected bite that slowly kills him, or catches a deadly disease and dies alone, in pain, in the bushes.

If he's not running from you and is actually trying to approach you for pets, he is not feral. He is most likely a pet that someone dumped or he may very well. Be an indoor/outdoor cat that someone isn't putting a collar on. Feral and outside cats are two very different things.
post #3 of 46
Thread Starter 
I know I feel terrible for chasing him. If he comes back again I will help him. I didn't expect to see him after these past 2 weeks.
post #4 of 46
Yes, I agree with RAFM in that if this cat is approaching you and you are able to get close to him in a friendly manner, he is not feral. He does need your help though and thank you for considering this . He needs to be trapped and neutered. You will then be responsible for caring for him outside after that if you decide to release him back outside. This is part of just being responsible for this cat after you do the TNR, caring for him outside as he will be relying on you as his new caretaker. If he is super friendly you might be able to place him easily into a rescue in hopes that he will find a new home. It is just part of taking responsibility for the strays in our neighborhood. It does come with a price, financially and emotionally. But it is the right thing to do. Yes, other cats may come around especially cats that already have a developed relationship with this orange tabby, friends . This might not always be the case though. Sometimes caring for a feral or two keeps other cats away from your yard as it is THEIR new territory and keep other's at bay. You won't know until you just take an active role in helping to TNR these stray cats so more kittens are not born into a life of uncertainty and fear . Life outdoors is very, very scary for feral kittens and much suffering does occur among them. Thanks for stepping up to help with stray cats
post #5 of 46
Thread Starter 
Thank you for your responses. Today was successful with the little guy. He came this morning at his usual time of 10am. Myhusband and I brought some food out to him and a bowl of water. He was a little hesitant towards us as well but he came close and ate. He let my husband pet him and even hold him for a minute. He rubbed on our legs and then was off into the woods to go about his business for the day. We were doing yard work all day and said lets see if he comes to hang with us. We didn't see him all day but then he was on the side of our house around 6PM. We fed him again and said hi and then walked inside. He stayed out in the yard and didn't come crying to the door or anything. Then just went on his way. He looks to be about 1-2yrs old. We agreed that if he comes around for the next few days and gets used to us, we will be taking him to get neutered without a doubt. And we will make him and very nice and warm outside kitty hut. My nerves are calmed now as I am happy he is friendly and I can take care of him!!!
post #6 of 46
That is awesome! Good for you. There are so many nice shelters that you could buy or make for him. I hope this all works out for you.
post #7 of 46
This is great news. He is a sweet boy for sure.. Either a lost pet or abandoned . He will probably start hanging around your place on a regular basis once you start a feeding schedule. He may also have other people feeding him, hard to say. Good luck in the next few days getting him to the vet! Keep updating
post #8 of 46
Thread Starter 
The little guy comes around every 2-3 days or so. I feed him every time he's here hoping he will get to trust me a little more each time. I look for him every day and call into the woods but he probably is just out making his rounds through the nearby houses. He is still a little skittish but once we call him and show him we have food, he comes running with tail up and purring!
post #9 of 46
That is great news! I hope he will come regularly and eventually stick around.
post #10 of 46
Originally Posted by MaureenL128 View Post
The little guy comes around every 2-3 days or so. I feed him every time he's here hoping he will get to trust me a little more each time. I look for him every day and call into the woods but he probably is just out making his rounds through the nearby houses. He is still a little skittish but once we call him and show him we have food, he comes running with tail up and purring!
WOW tail up and purring, not a feral boy !! That is just great he comes when he hears your voice. And he is coming almost every two days. I would suggest a plan now to get going with trapping him. The sooner the better so he can't breed and make more babies . He sounds like a real sweetheart
post #11 of 46
I don't know if you want to take this one step further, but something to consider is going to talk to the woman you know feeds these cats. Are they pets? Are there ferals? More strays? Does she just feed them, or are they being sterilized?

Maybe have a neighborhood fundraiser to raise money to get them trapped and sterilized?

If you want to look into rescue groups/foster networks that may be able to help adopt out the friendly strays, or if you want to search out low-cost spay neuter availability, you can search quickly at or
post #12 of 46
Thread Starter 
I know she feeds them. I am not sure if she is able to get close enough to sterilize them. We made our nre boy a house yesterday. Well off the floor for snow/rain protection. And also well insulated. I fed him dinner tonight and he was so happy! I hope he goes inside the house now.
post #13 of 46
She doesn't need to get close to them to sterilize them. Humane traps are used.

In fact, if you're going to feed and provide shelter for this boy, trapping him to have him sterilized is the responsible thing to do. You need to ensure that your support of this fella is not contributing to any pregnancies and more unwanted cats.
post #14 of 46
Originally Posted by LDG View Post
She doesn't need to get close to them to sterilize them. Humane traps are used.

In fact, if you're going to feed and provide shelter for this boy, trapping him to have him sterilized is the responsible thing to do. You need to ensure that your support of this fella is not contributing to any pregnancies and more unwanted cats.
It is the BEST thing for this boy!!! You will be saving lives if you can get him TNRd.

How is he doing ?????
post #15 of 46
Thread Starter 
He is so lovey! I do feel bad that I won't be able to bring him in my house. My inside kitties smell him on me when I come in and they hiss and get mad. I just know they wouldn't tolerate eachother. We named him Reilly. He's orange. And I made the appointment to get him fixed next Friday. We are on a good feeding schedual being sure not to leave out any food when he's done for fear of raccoons. He lets us pick him up and even pull ticks off him! We figured out that he has been living in our carport so we made him a little house and are moving it in there for him. Every time we fed him we take a walk around the yard and spend time with him. Thank you to everyone for your advice and support. It's so nice to know there are other people out there that care too!
post #16 of 46
Oh what a love! And great news to hear you'll be getting him fixed.

He sounds like he's totally adopted you. I think it's great he's been using the carport - it's always nice to know there's a little extra protection from the elements.

You'll have to post a picture for us!!!!!!
post #17 of 46
YES - post a picture when you can of Reilly . He does sound so darn sweet . Good luck with his neutering on Friday
post #18 of 46
Thread Starter 

I will take pictures of Riley and his house soon. I am nervous about tomorrow. I have to drop him off by 8:30AM to the clinic for his neutering. I am worried he will freak out in the carrier. He doesn't like going in his house yet so I took the top off it til he gets used to it. It is inside my carport so he is sheltered. Anyone have any advice on him being in the carrier? Any past experiances? We have about a 15-20 minute drive in the morning.

post #19 of 46
Yes. We all have those jitters, I think.

1) Make sure it is sturdy, that everything that can be undone or opened is VERY secure.
2) If you have feliway, spray it liberally on the inside of the box about 20 minutes before you need to put him in the carrier.
3) Put something on the bottom of the carrier that you don't care if it gets peed, pooped, or vomited on. We have one kitty that is deathly afraid of the travel, and we put several layers of those small sized doggie wee wee pads in there, so the top layer can be removed when at the vet so he doesn't have to travel home in a mess.
4) Cover the trap with a light blanket leaving one end open during the drive.
5) Open one or two windows in the car 1/2" or so, so there's air, but not too much and not too much road noise.
6) If you have calming classical music or harp music, play it on the drive. Or tune the radio to a classical station.

Bascially, while these may help, if he's going to freak, he's going to freak. Though they usually settle down once the blanket is over the crate/trap/whatever, they may wail up a storm. You just have to steel yourself, and just keep talking to him quietly, calmly, and in baby-talk that you're going for a short trip and he'll be coming home VERY soon! Keep telling him he'll feel SO MUCH better after this is done, and he'll be SO MUCH happier! This is good for his long term health, and he NEEDS this! Just keep telling him WHAT a good boy he is. rub.gif

And just keep talking to him. This will help YOU too! heartpump.gif

When the time comes to put him in the carrier, before you head outside, stop. Take a few deep, slow breaths, and remind yourself that this is the right thing, a good thing, and imagine all the stress leaving with each exhale. The less nervous you are, the better it will go. "See" him being quiet and content in the crate, and think of happy things. Then head out with the crate and treats or whatever you're going to use. heartpump.gif

VIBES all goes well and smoothly!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
post #20 of 46
Thread Starter 

Thanks so much LDG! I know in my heart that this is the right thing to do. I will just have to put a couple treats in the carrier, lock him in and go. Any thoughts on if he will run  off when I bring him home? I figure if he does, he does and there's nothing I can do about it. At least he will be neutered and I did the right thing.

post #21 of 46
MUCH luck tomorrow with crating Riley and getting him off to the vet hugs.gif This is the best thing for him AND for any other stray females he might meet and breed! We don't want that, so this is what needs to be done for him hugs.gif. When you return from the vet, leave him in the crate for a few hours at least before you release him to make sure he is fully awake. When you do release him, he might run off and you might not see him for a couple of days. They are ALL different in this aspect though. I have had cats disappear for a few days and other's who never leave the area. Hard to say, but do not worry if he does run off. You have no control over that happening. At least he won't be making any more babies biggthumpup.gif. I think he will be staying around you though, you are his new caretaker and he trusts you. Give us an update tomorrow when you return biggrin.gif. Good luck in the morning with crating him cross.gifwave2.gif
post #22 of 46
Thread Starter 

Ok so I got him to the clinic!!!!!!! He freaked out in the car but I stayed strong and told myself and him that I just had to do this. He is also getting tested for FLiv and Leukimia just in case we do get him in the house at some point.

post #23 of 46
banana1.gifbanana2.gifwoohoo.gif I AM SO HAPPY happy2.gif to hear this. I have to say, I was REALLY worried that you might not be able to get him into the crate nervousy.gif. But you did it clap.gifclap.gifclap.gif. Just curious, how did you get him in that crate?!! laughing02.gif

Now we just keep our cross.gif that he test negative! Keep us posted !!!!!! biggrin.gifbiggthumpup.gif
post #24 of 46
woohoo.gifclap.gifbiggthumpup.gif GREAT news! I know, it's not easy.... but I'm so proud of you! clap.gifclap.gifclap.gif

I doubt he'll disappear for long, if at all. Most of ours don't run far or for long. cross.gif

Now vibes.gifvibes.gifvibes.gif for more good news, and your boy tests negative for FeLV and FIV! One of our ferals just tested positive for FIV. Of the two, I'm glad it was that, because it wasn't a very difficult decision. As he's not aggressive, we put him back outside. heartpump.gif
post #25 of 46
Thread Starter 

Ok everyone! He is finally getting some well needed sleep in my bathroom. We just fed him a little bit and he laid back down in the carrier. My husband said he was so good on the way home and the people at the clinic said he was good the whole time he was there! I couldn't believe it! I am a little ticked off though because I checked over the paper they taped to his carrier before I left, and it didn't say they were gonna test him for FeLV and FIV. So I said to the woman there I want to have him tested, And she said ok and took the paper off and wrote on it. I also marked it on his paperwork when I got there. Bottom line, they didn't test him. argh2.gif We are gonna keep him in as long as he wants to stay. Tomorrow we are not gonna be home in the afternoon so we will move him to the basement where he will be safe from my  other 2 kitties and he will have plenty of room to roam if he feels better.

post #26 of 46
So glad he is back home and doing well biggthumpup.gif BUT that is NO good that they didn't test him mad.gif... I wonder if you could run him back to the vet in the morning dontknow.gif It is a quick test and only takes a minute to get the results. That is up to you though. I would want to know since he will most likely be living in your backyard. How frustrating frusty.gif that they didn't do that for you...... I know it might be pressing your luck getting him into a crate again. What a shame shame.gif they just didn't do that test!! Can't wait to see a camera.gif of Riley bigwink.gifheart.gif
post #27 of 46
Oh HOW ANNOYING! Yeah, it took us a few rescues to realize, the vets don't do everything you ask them to. We have a checklist of things we cover before we leave now. rolleyes.gif

Before you move him to the basement, PLEASE make sure he can't get up into the ceiling, stuck behind washer/dryer/water heater, that kind of thing. Scared cats are notorious for finding unbelievable places to hide in basements. It may be safest to leave him in the bathroom. agree.gif

You may want to consider keeping him inside until you can take him to the vet for the test on Monday. As Feralvr says, it should take a couple of minutes. You shouldn't need an appointment for it. cross.gif
post #28 of 46
yeah.gif I was just thinking about this some more and wanted to make sure you, as Laurie suggested, make absolutely sure Riley cannot escape somehow or hide if you move him to the basement. They are so notorious for finding teeny, tiny places to hide. I would keep him in the bathroom till you can get him tested on Monday. Then he can be released smile.gif.

I also learned the hard way to make sure right up front to have that "list" of everything to be done on the cat. I just tape the list to the trap or crate. Lots of tape rolleyes.giflaughing02.gif Hope all is going well tonight!! We do care hugs.gifhugs.gifvibes.gifvibes.gifvibes.gif for Riley:heart4:
post #29 of 46
Thread Starter 

He was in the basement all night last night. He didn't make one sound! he just laid down in the bed of sweatshirts I made for him. Once in a while he would be laying in the carrier. I left it out for him because he was feeling safe in it. He even went potty a couple times in the litter box!!!! We checked on him about every 20 minutes and spent time with him. He was totally safe down there and didn't get into anything. Today he got his strength back and wanted to go back out. We let him up and he walked around the house a little but then went for the door. Our other kitties were locked in a bedroom to be safe. When he got outside he went to his usual spots and with tail up, sharpened his claws on a log and was so happy to be back out! He came back for dinner and we claend his ear tip with some peroxide. His incisions are looking better and not swollen like they were yesterday. We re going to keep an eye on his incisions and make sure he's healing well. Here are a few pics of him recovering in the basement. I plan on calling the shelter again tomorrow to see about the blood work. Nobody has gotten back to me since I called yesterday. Riley 003.jpgRiley 001.jpg

post #30 of 46
AWWW!! Riley!!! What a gorgeous orange boy love.giflove.gif He really does sound like such a sweet boy heartpump.gif He really does deserve to find a home, if you can cross.gif. Good luck today in getting him back to the vet for those tests agree.gif. You are doing such a great, great job with him. Loads of hugs.gifhugs.gifhugs.gif to you for that heart.gifbigwink.gif
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