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Help,, Stray old cat, I want to domesticate

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 


Forgive this post it may seem a bit "already answered" but i assure you I searched and searched for some help and advice. 

I want to rehome, domesticate my semi-stray / semi-feral cat. 

Here is the background, Im going to try and keep this as brief as possible 

All the forums and advice i have read, is about a new stray or feral cat. my cat has skipped a few steps.

- A stray cat would come to our garden approx 18 months ago
- We started to feed him and it became a daily thing from 8:00 am till 8pm
- The whole street lay claim to him spending time at there homes. 
- he eventually ventured into our home and would spend time, eat and sleep during the day and leave at night. 
- he allows us to stroke/ pet him, but if you touch is stomach or further down his back he goes a bit wild, he wont let us pick him up.
- We have taken him to the vet to see if he was chipped. 

now a good 15 months later he came to the house limping with one of his legs bent and it broke my heart. 

- We took him to the vets and the vet said as its been so long that he's been with us we should keep him. 
- she suggested that while she was going to sedate him that we neuter and test him. another appointment was made for the next day. 

Now this is the problem

- Because we had to come back the next day we were told to keep him that night and not let him out as he was given some drugs. 
- I put him in my room, its a box room, 2x3m
- The vet gave me a litter tray with wooden pellets. he would just sniff it and rip the paper lining and push it away. 
- I kept him in with his poor paw and limp. and he cried and yawled all night. he would scratch at the door and then run to the window and try to jump on the window sill
- this went on till 5:30am and then i let him out. like a fool

He had his operation today and is now home,
- I really want to keep him home from now on and "domesticate him"
- I really need help, he keeps wanting to go out. 
- what is the best way for me to bring him and sleep here at night and domesticate him

- what should i do?
- what food should i stock
- what do i need, water, food, litter? how do i train him?
- how should i set the room up, what should i do, its my room, do i leave him in there and sleep away.
- Should i clicker train him?

please bare in mind, that the first vet said he was 5, and this vet said he was 2-3 years old. 

What should i do? all help will do? 

Please help? what do i do?

post #2 of 4
I don't know if I would try to keep him in right away. He's been outside a long time, it's all he knows. Plus, it'll take a few weeks for the hormones to completely leave his body. He'll calm down a lot after he doesn't feel all hormonal. I think I would make it gradual. Let him come in and out as he pleases at first. After a month or so, try keeping him in every night. Then try keeping him in for longer times during the day, etc.

For food, wet food is usually better. If you can't give him all wet food, try for at least 50/50 wet/dry. For dry food, look for one with meat as the first ingredient, no corn, wheat, or soy, and no artificial colors. You can also give him raw meat and egg yolks, very nutritious. If it's going to be a big part of his diet, you'll need to learn how to provide a balanced homemade diet, but if it's just for treats, no worries. Always provide a bowl of fresh water.

Most cats like sand-like litter best. And a nice big litterbox--the bigger the better.

Clicker training is a good idea! You'll need to find out what treats he likes best.
post #3 of 4

I agree, he will be easier to foster as indoor after his neutering.

It seems he does keeps near, as you could catch him again to go to the vet??


If he is serious hurt, this will make in itself easier both to have him indoors, and help with quicker socializing. 

But if he manages well anyway, these mechanisms will not work in the same way.

It may be the best idea to let him be outside, say 2 weeks more. But him being near and getting help.


If he is a friendly tom, his hormones niveus will go down fairly quickly. If he is a dominating, territorial tom, it may take more than a month...


Afterwards, you take him in.  He knows you, he gets help and food from you, he lets you pet him.

It shouldnt be impossible.


Keeping him in your bedroom, and yourself sleeping in there, is actually an excellent idea.  :)

With any luck, he will soon take as habit to sleep in the bed with you.


Have some hidey for him. Say a cat igloo or similiar. You shall usually NOT go and disturb him there. But good if you can see where he is, and reach him if there is an emergency.

Scratching tree.   Litter, food, water.... Some toys...


Clicker?  I dont know so much about clicker. I heard is it much useful for training dogs, and may be useful for cats.

But I suspect it is not useful for newly adopted semiferales.  You must have their total trust, be their sworn friend for this to work.  I think.    :)


Welcome to our Forums!


Good luck!

post #4 of 4
No, for clicker training you don't need to be friends---that's why it's used for wild animals like whales, and timid animals like rabbits, and not-very-smart animals like goldfish tongue.gif. You could, theoretically, clicker train an animal without ever touching it, even without getting closer than you would need to to toss treats. But you do need to find a good reward. And, of course, have clearly in mind what behaviors you want to train, and what behavior chains you'll have to follow to get to the end result. I haven't tried working with a semi-feral, but it's an intriguing possibility. Let us know how it goes if you do try it.
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