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What to do with Kitty, please help

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
Hello. I am new here and found this site off of the PetFinder forum. I will try to keep this short and sweet. I am a cat person, actually I am a cat magnet. I have three cats of my own, I found 1 and 2 found me. I live in an apartment complex that is famous for people dropping off cats. We are a very small community with three buildings and I believe around 40 apartments.

I have been feeding several strays for quite a while now, I have even put two kennels out for them to sleep in when it is cold. My husband and I are getting ready to move. There is one boy cat in particular that comes to my window wanting food. There are two other apartments that I know of that feed these strays, but they do not care too much for him because they let their cats run around in heat and blame him for spraying and kittens. Now, I am not berating them at all, after all I might need their help. I have already taken one mama and two kittens to the Michigan Anti Cruelty Society. What do I do with this boy? He started to trust me until I locked him in a kennel one day (the day I took the others) and I accidentally let him out because I thought he was someone else's cat (he tricked me!) He showed up last spring, I think someone dropped him. He looks like he has had it pretty rough. I want to help him, but everyone is telling me he is a wild cat and there is nothing I can do. If you ever saw the Disney movie Oliver and Co., he reminds me of one of the street strays. I know that is corny, but he acts tough then looks at me with the sweetest eyes. Is there anything the shelter can do for him? Do I just let him be? I have a live trap sitting outside right now with food in it. He stared at me through the window this morning telling me he is not that naive and just walked away. I need some advice please.
post #2 of 11
I am in Louisiana, but in a similiar situation. I live in apts also, and am feeding a stray that no one wants. I have tried everywhere to find him a home with no luck. I don't want to take him into the shelter because he will probably be killed. I am moving this summer and am worried sick no one is going to feed him and I have 2 cats and can't take him with me to another apt. complex. Have you contacted the rescue groups in your area? Louisiana is not a place for animals lovers I don't know about where you live. I only hope you can find this guy a home. Good luck and I hope it works out.
post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 
I have contacted every no kill shelter I could possibly find and no one has room. One plcae said they would not turn down a cat in need, but I can't help wondering if that is really what is best? I want this little guy to be safe, but I also want him to be happy. I thought about just trapping him, getting him fixed and letting him go again, but I can't catch him now.

I wish you luck too catlover!
post #4 of 11
In most places that I know of there are what are called rescue groups they rescue animals when there is no room at the shelters . On petfinder.com click on the tab(on top) that says shelter and rescue you will input your state and find a listing in your area. Hopefully there are some in your area that you can talk to and ask for help. Also there is a orginazation called best friends that will help , I don't know there address, but here is one I do know:http://www.pgaa.com/rescues.html#states Maybe they can help. Good luck again!!
post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
Yes, I have been down that road, too. I literally have a notebook full of people, groups, organizations and shelters that I have contacted. For every fifty that I contacted, I got maybe two responses which equalled out to "Sorry". I have come to this board as a last resort for advice. I do have one that says they won't turn him down, but I know they are so full up and he will be in a cage. I am just not sure what is best for this cat. There are a couple others here that I am also taking, but they seem more comfortable with people, so I am not worried. I just don't want this little guy to go nuts. I don't know if it is possible to make him adoptable, so should I even consider the shelter? The little guy is just so ragged, if it came between him and a kitten, I am pretty sure whomever would pick the kitten (I do know that if it came between any cat and a kitten, the more likely is a kitten, but just illustrating my thought!). I tried to find a special needs place, but alas, no reply there as well. I'm just worried and confused and I don't want him to think I am abandoning him as well when we leave, but really that is what I will be doing if I don't take him somewhere, isn't it? This cat gets in a lot of fights, if he caught something from another cat, then I would be handing him the death sentence if I took him. Of couse he could also make other cats sick..... I am so sorry about my ramblings, I am just so torn over this whole thing and I do realize it is about the cat, not myself, I just don't know how to not be emotionally involved. Sorry again, it is just very frustrating!!! I've been doing this kind of thing for a long time and it seems to get harder every time instead of easier.
post #6 of 11
Maybe the best thing you can do for him is to trap and neuter. Even if you can't find a rescue for him, you may be able to get one of the other neighbors to feed him if he is incapable of impregnating their cats. And if you leave your name and number with them you could keep track of how he is doing and if he needs vet care in the future. You might get him microchipped, too. You can put newspaper on the bottom of the trap so he might be more likely to go in, and use something really yummy in the trap like warm Kentucky Fried Chicken,deboned, or warmed sardines. Hissy has good recommendations, too, I am sure she is going to be along soon. Becky
post #7 of 11
Regardless of whether you can find a place for him or not..it is important that this cat is trapped and fixed. It will improve his health as well as keep him from fathering litters in the spring. Although feeding strays alone seems like the right thing to do..if you have 1 unfixed male and 1 unfixed female...you will end up with litters being born in your area. If you choose to feed these cats you need to take them in so that they can be spayed and neutered. The solution to the overpopulation (which is why shelters and rescues are full) is spaying and neutering so that these unowned cats have a chance to 1. find a home and 2. not create more unwanted kittens.

This website has a listing of low cost and no cost clinics by state:


post #8 of 11
I seriously get quietly furious when people tell me and others relay they have been told that older ferals cannot be socialized and become wonderful cats. I have several here that came to me past their prime, and yes, it takes time, it takes patience, but it can work.

The problem with rescue organizations is they mean well, but until the irresponsible members in society start taking care of the cats they have, by spaying and neutering, then rescue places will always be full up. The minute you say the word feral, the rescue shelter worker's face will close down, and there will be no more room at the inn.

I would trap this little boy and take him with you. I am willing to work with you via email or phone to help you socialize him, and I am here to tell you that for all the trouble and frustration you will have to deal with, one day soon it will be worth it and he will be a wonderful cat that trusts you, as he already does. The first thing I would do, is talk to your vet and see if he works with strays and ferals and if he is willing to neuter this guy- or call and see if you can a spay and neuter mobile clinic in your area where they do low-cost spays and neuters just to stop the overpopulation problem.

Good luck!
post #9 of 11
Thread Starter 
Unfortunately, taking him with me is not an option. I have two older cats and one younger of my own already, and the olders do not take kindly to new friends or visiting furry friends. I would love to foster all of these stray cats, but my babies (furry ones are the only ones we have) come first. I really appreciate your offer Hissy and wish I could take you up on it! I really screwed up that one day I actually had him in the kennel and the day I took the others. He would come to me before that. I have worked with many feral cats to get them to purr , but I am just running out of time.

I try to do the right thing the best that I can in this life. I do not have the resources alone to catch all of these cats that people drop off. The least I thought I could do is give them some food so they would stop going in the dumpster and have people complaining or worse yet get hauled off when the garbage company comes. I live at the very edge of St. Clair County and have not found any organizations that could be of any help when I asked. I appreciate the list you provided, TNR1 but the closest one to me is minimum two hours away. Which that hasn't been a problem, except when I call these places I am out of county and there is nothing they can do. The other people that live here that feed them are all on Social Security and do not have means to contribute. Anything I have donated in taking the cats I already caught was straight out of my husband's paycheck (I have been unemployed since last May). I stay up at night just praying that I may have the means to help all of these cats outside, and as of right now that is just not possible. So I guess I apologize for not having enough to do enough, I just want to help who I can. I know I can't save the world, but I can start with one.

I only have two options with this little guy, I take him to the shelter--where I am not quite sure how happy he will be, or I leave him here. I have been trying to catch him and he is very smart. He appearantly knows what a live trap is and that he doesn't want any part of it. I even went as far as to run a string from the kennel door to our door and yank it closed when he got in the kennel, to which he ran me over by the time I got out to lock it. Now he grabs the food from the kennel and drops it on the ground to eat so he doesn't have to stay in there. If I can catch him to have him fixed and released again, all of which I am paying for (so far it looks like full price because 'we really haven't experienced too much of that yet' at the vet), is that the best thing to do?

I'm sorry if I am coming back too strong, but I can not begin to count the days and nights that I have been reduced to tears because I couldn't help an animal. I can't can't count how many relationships with people I have strained because they just don't get it. But I try and I want to do what is right, but there is a limit to what one person can do and I try to exceed that limit every day and I won't stop until I do. I realize you all have professional experience, but I also have a lot of experience with animals and this is not something I am doing on a whim because I thought it would be cool to do something nice. I am just looking for a little guidance this time and I thought I would ask the pros.
post #10 of 11
I would leave him then, unless the shelter has been informed that he is a feral cat and they are prepped for that. No one faults you for what you are doing, and no one expects you to trap and neuter if it is not in your capabilities or finances to do so. I do everything privately, meaning I am not a non-profit organization. I do what I can, when I can and trust that it will all work out.

If the shelter will take him, and you can get close enough to him to capture him- then that is your first option. It is highly possible you won't be able to get close to him because of the last incident, they never forget stuff like that.

Don't beat yourself up about it. You are not the one who put this cat on the planet. You can only care for what you are able to. No one here expects you to save the world-
post #11 of 11
Have you contacted local vets to see if they are aware of anyone who is doing TNR in your area. Oftentimes..there is a person or group of people who do not have a website but who are silently working on neutering/spaying cats. It may be worth trying that angle. The other thing you can do is contact the Best Friends Network...they can send an email out to network members in your area in hopes of finding someone who can assist you:

(435) 644-2001 ext 123, or e-mail them at bfnetwork@bestfriends.org


You could also post here:


They have over 1000 members and 1 might live near you.

Good Luck

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