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post #31 of 48
Originally Posted by bigbadbass View Post

i'm realizing trapping my (new to me) 12 year old feral to get him to the vet/neutering is by and far quite a challenge.  Using a large carrier.for over a week now  ..I'm moving the food dish further and further inside....I estimate next week i'll be able to slam the door....immediately off to the vet he goes.

If it were easier, I'd have done it already.

I can't even imagine using a towel and bare hands...I'd be ripped to shreds. are certainly BRAVE!    

Should I ask the vet for a pill/sedative to mash into his food?   

My former feral has been in the house for almost 4 years now. I would never attempt this with a true feral. Always use a humane trap. So much safer for the cat, yourself and the vet.

Feeding the cat in the unset trap for a few days to a week before the appointment is definitely the way to go.
post #32 of 48

My guy was at a shelter, he had been brought in as a stray. I started him in the bathroom off my bedroom with a nice box to hide in, but he could peek out at me; and I would go in and just sit on the floor- talk, read, be quiet, sing a quiet song, not really look at him- at night I'd have the bathroom door open and my bedroom door closed and he could come out while I was asleep.

After a few days if I laid on the floor with my arm outstretched he'd creep up and got a taste of getting scratched on the cheek, he loved it. I stopped free feeding and would come in with his food (in bedroom) and have a few bites in my hand; he'd take a couple pieces, then I left the room and left the food in there and I just kept doing that. Visiting often, lay down, talk, be quiet, food and treats.

It was 2 months before he jumped in my lap (I think.)

Once he started approaching me more I'd put the food bowl closer and closer to me, then sat it on my thigh while sitting down.After about a month he willingly approached to get scratched, luckily he LOVED to be scratched about the head and would purr and purr. I had to be sitting down.

It's been 4 months and I can't go up to him to scratch him, but he will come to me and lay out on my lap and purr up a storm.

Definitely time and a whole lot of patience- it's so worth it.

He's out in the house, is very playful, stampedes around the house. On my lap he gives me these looks like he's the happiest thing in the world, so glad I found him!

post #33 of 48

This is Evander before his crisis with the urethral obstruction. I'm supposed to take him back to the hospital for a follow-up, but I am giving him more time to heal. He is peeing OK, and the vet trip is just way too much stress.
post #34 of 48
Originally Posted by Feral lover View Post

This is Evander before his crisis with the urethral obstruction. I'm supposed to take him back to the hospital for a follow-up, but I am giving him more time to heal. He is peeing OK, and the vet trip is just way too much stress.

I'm sorry but I have to say that I absolutely adore the "coon" tail. My Felix and Hazel have one too.
post #35 of 48
Thread Starter 

His tail is so adorable. My Max is that pattern all over and he has the most gorgeous green eyes, My vet calls him gorgeous. I call him MAX A MILLION. Because he has been very expensive, Some monster threw him out a car window when he was only one pound and about 6 weeks old. This caused him to have a broken leg and he also has asthma, Unfortunately the prednisone is making him TOO FAT. I love him so much!


Have you tried purina urinary tract formula for Evander? I feed that daily to all my cats and have never had a problem. My sister who is ten years older than me and has had over 50 cats told me about this years ago. One of my best friends is a vet and she told me to feed that also,



post #36 of 48
Thread Starter 

I ordered her two of those beds. We thank you very, very much!!!

post #37 of 48

My girl Shadow was a feral that had kittens in our garage a few years ago. 


I trapped her and got her spayed, and a friend socialized the babies (5 weeks old) and adopted them out. 


We kept Shadow in a spare room for a few days, hoping to keep her as a pet. She hid behind everything, only coming out to eat. One night I startled her, and she was in between hiding places. She crouched and hissed at me, then growled. I gave up, thinking we'd failed and she'd be happier outside, so we released her. 


She kept coming around for food, staying at a safe distance. With cold weather coming on, I worried about her surviving the winter, so we put a pet door in our cellar door, leaving it propped open. She came in for food, I sat across the cellar from her just talked to her. Eventually she learned to come up the cellar stairs into the kitchen for feedings. We got to thinking about how short her life would be outdoors (coyotes, disease, busy road out front), and we decided to shut the pet door, keeping her inside. 


She became friendly, but wouldn't let us touch her for months. Eventually, we were able to pet her, and she really bonded to me, and to my husband to some extent. He can pet her, but she's a little wary, they can slow blink back and forth. :)


Whoever said patience was very wise, it just takes time. Shadow is extremely timid (not aggressive at all), and she had to figure out I was no threat to her. She can easily go to fear and revert, but mostly she's a happy kitty, purrs a lot of the time, and loves to be groomed. Super happy ending. 


However, she will never learn to love music -- especially harmonica. She will leave the room when I play or sing, complaining over her shoulder on the way. 


Here's a video I made of her last year: 

post #38 of 48

Thank you so much for sharing your video of Shadow.  Fantastic job!!  I too have a feral named Shadow.  

post #39 of 48

You got lots of good advice, talk softly, move slowly, the slow blink, etc. I will share my experience as payback for all the information, advice and support I got from people on The Cat Site. Could be too little too late but I will share it anyways.


I find this to be a tricky subject, in that at which point are they no longer feral. I have two used-to-be feral cats named Rusty and Kitty. I started feeding my two when they were approx. 2 months old and feel that took part of the feral out of them. A big part of an animal's life is getting food and being fed by people has to knock some of the feral out of them. I trapped them when they were approx 9 months old and they had been watching me put out food for several months and knew when I called "kitty, kitty, kitty" it was time to eat.


My two had upper respiratory infections when I trapped them and it seemed like they knew the vet and I helped them. Within days I was able to pet both of them, the odd hiss but that didn't last long. Of course I had to approach them slowly and talk softly so it wasn't casual petting. Kitty did the occasional hiss for maybe a month and a half, only if I startled her. Rusty progressed much faster than Kitty. Within the first couple weeks Rusty did not seem interested in escaping me but his sister was closer to a couple of months. I could pick up Rusty with no struggle after a few weeks where Kitty it was a couple months. Other people could approach Rusty after a couple of month where Kitty was a couple more months after Rusty. Of course the other people have to work their way up to petting them and it isn't instant.


My bond with Rusty is different than Kitty. When I was feeding them outside Rusty always came first to scope out the situation. It seems like I look after Rusty and he looks after his smaller sister Kitty. I feel that is why Kitty progressed slower than Rusty. It was out of necessity for Rusty but not for Kitty. They are around 16 months old now and some people would say my cats are still semi-feral as they are leery of other people but I consider them to be timid.


I would expect that someone that trapped an older feral would take much longer. I would also expect that someone that had only fed them for a short time would also take longer. I know my cats were never bothered by other people, they were isolated from the general public and I am fairly certain they were born on the property. If someone had been cruel to them that would have likely caused things to take much longer. I also had a brother and a sister which likely makes the entire process easier as they got to share it and not go through it alone.


I think there are lots and lots of factors and I don't think anyone could say exactly how long it will take to socialize a cat.


I hope things go fast for you. I wish you and the cat the very best.

post #40 of 48
Thread Starter 



Thank you for letting me know about your sweet Shadow!! Tomorrow makes two weeks that my cat will be still alone in her bedroom. I have had a few people tell me to release her but there is absolutely no way that will ever happen!! I too know that it is too dangerous for her to ever be back outside again. As much as it makes me sad that I know she has not figured out that she is deeply loved and safe now, I know that the alternative would be possibly freezing to death to say the least. So each morning  and eve,I tap on her door and softly announce that I am bringing her yummy food.  I also go in one more time mid day to try to get her used to me, So far she has graduated from hiding under a chair to now hiding in a large circular toy where she can get a better view of me. She peeks out with only one eye. I pray she does as well as yours has!! God willing, we have plenty of time for that to one day happen, I can not even imagine introducing her to my other five, All in due time I guess,


Thanks again! You made my day!!!

post #41 of 48

My feral Seal was in the bathroom for months.  It takes patience as many here have said.  Things will happen in their own time.  You cannot rush it.


I trapped and neutered Seal 13 months ago.  And great news!  He hopped up on my lap for the first time today!  It may not sound like much, but I am pretty excited about it!  He is such a sweet, shy sugar bear.  :rub:  I have been able to hold him and he will nuzzle me, but no lap until now! :clap: For me, kitty on the lap is a sign of the good life.  :D

post #42 of 48
Thread Starter 

This made me cry! I am so happy for your cat! I know it will take time. I rescued my cat Andy almost 10 years ago. He was living under a house in deplorable conditions. He was the only cat I did not have to trap to get fixed and homed, The reason I could pick him up was he was so sick, That is also  the reason that I kept him, Long story short....It took him five years to jump in my lap and he has not been there many times in the last five years, I only want him and they rest of them to be happy. 


I read that I should go in and out and bring food and talk sweetly, I have done this for two weeks today. I also read that I should go in and just talk to her and I do that too. I tap on her door so she is not caught off guard. When I open the door she is ALWAYS in the same spot, hiding in this large circular toy that I bought her. She peeks out with only one eye. It's so sad that she is still petrified. I fed her for almost one year before I finally trapped her. I would sit several feet away while she ate but she always took off fast after she was done eating. This is certainly taking along time but God willing, we will have enough time.


Thanks again for your happy ending!!! I can only pray for the same ending!!!

post #43 of 48
Thread Starter 

Your cats are not only LUCKY but BEAUTIFUL! God bless you for taking such great care of them. And thank you for the great advice and kind words! I truly appreciate you!

post #44 of 48

A few things I didn't mention about Shadow (the video kitty) -- she allows my husband to pet her but is wary, and hides when anyone comes to the house. If only one visitor is here and they are quiet and patient, she might come out and sniff an outstretched finger, but no touch allowed. When the band practices, she's gone down cellar until we stop. 


Once she got out, and seemed to revert to wild, she was scared and hiding in the bushes, meowing pitifully. I panicked thinking I might lose her or she might get hit by a car, so I picked her up, and in her struggle to get down (still can't pick her up), she tagged me pretty good with one of her claws and I bled a bit. She never attempts to bite, but will try hard to escape if she's held in restraint. 


When we tried to get her a companion kitty from the shelter (didn't work sadly), I realized the huge difference between Shadow and a tame cat. She'll probably always be timid, wary of other people, but is so sweet and bonded to me -- I think if something happened to me, she would eventually bond to my husband that way. 


What I'm saying is, the reward of having a feral and giving them a life of security, food, and not freezing to death or being eaten by a coyote -- it's really rewarding, it's just not the same as having a "normal" tame cat. (Others may have different experiences with their ferals)

 I'm really hoping your sister decides to try developing a relationship with yours. :)


Jan H.

post #45 of 48

LOL, Boris, my Shadow found my lap a few months ago (much warmer than our cold floor) -- if Seal is anything like Shadow, he'll want that warm lap all the time! I have trouble convincing her I have to get up and get things done. :)

post #46 of 48
@hopeformyferalthanks for the Purina mention. It is supposed to be such a big no-no variety, but Evander hates both the Royal Canin and Hills urinary diets. He is doing pretty good. The sneezing and running nose have cleared, but his litter urine balls are still pretty small compared to what they were.
post #47 of 48
Thread Starter 

I'm happy he's getting better!!! You might also check with your vet on putting cranberry juice in his water/

post #48 of 48
Thread Starter 


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