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Scared Kitty

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
A woman that I work with took in a 5-6 month semi-feral kitty. They have a finished basement and took kitty down there to get used to the house. Upon release from the carrier, Kitty immediately went and hid up in their suspended ceiling. She called me for help and my friend Luana and I went over to retrieve the kitty..........BUT.......kitty had gone under a raised floor they have in the downstairs bathroom. About 8x8 square. We called and coaxed , etc, but no sign of kitty. Took flashlights and looked - but could not see kitty. Reta said kitty was coming out at night to feed and drink - but only after they had gone to bed. Two weeks of this. We set a have a heart trap and expected kitty to enter within a couple of far - no luck and Reta is getting terribly worried. They are considering taking up the floor - any other suggestions? She is azn older lady and is so blaming herself for this. I don't have any other thought. It does not appear that kitty could escape from the basement -
post #2 of 9
Oh my gosh! What a sad story. This probably won't work, but perhaps the lady (or you???) could spend the night in the basement, not making a sound and when the kitten comes down you could catch it in a net borrowed from a shelter. If not a net, perhaps you could set up a drop trap in the basement (since the kitten won't go into the other trap) and then quietly hang-out until the kitten goes under the trap.

I know another wonderful lady who frequently catches, neuters, and releases ferals....I'll ask her for some ideas.
post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks - I am really worried about kitty and Reta both!
post #4 of 9

Semi-feral cats, once trapped, need to be caged while socialized. I know this information is a little too late, but it's good to know. Once they are confined, put on glove before you take them out (depending upon how feral they really are) to protect yourself. Wrap them up in a towel (coccoon like) with just their face showing. Sit on the floor and gently whisper to them, petting them on the head while slowly blinking your eyes to let them know you don't mean them harm. The more contact you have with them, the better. The older a semi-feral cat gets, the longer it'll take to socialize them. Patience is the key. Once socialized, the rewards are endless!

Good luck.

post #5 of 9
I can only share a Rene story with you. She had taken a few cats from someone who was put into a position where she couldnt keep all of her cats. She had one get out of the cage and darted to hide. For MONTHS they searched everywhere. They moved cabinets and wall units to find him. They thought for sure he had crawled into something or had escaped somehow and was dead somewhere. I believe is was somewhere around the 4 month mark, he showed up in the house. He was coming out at night to eat and venture. Once he had realized that these people were nice, he decided it was time to show his face. I am sure once this cat calms down a little, it will come out to see whats going on. If the trap stays there and they can get the cat, she might want to move the cat to a room in the house.
post #6 of 9
Debra, The following is a quote from my friend who is the feral expert (she is the Ferals moderator on another forum).

"The humane trap is their best bet. Tell them to NOT feed the kitten for at least one day, but preferably two. This way the kitten will be hungry enough to go into the trap for food. Also, refer the Alley Cat Allies website to them on how to tame a feral, it may also give them some other good pointers on trapping. It has a lot of good pointers. Be sure to tell them it is VERY important to make sure the cat is hungry! It seems cruel but it really isn't, it's in the best interest of the cat. Please keep us posted"
post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 
Just got an e/mail from Reta - kitty is still there - but did NOT go near the trap at all. After a week, she put food down, as she thought kitty would be starving and very weak. We will keep working on this and will be updating you all iwth progress. I am forwarding her this page in the hopes it may assist her. Thanks again.
post #8 of 9
Don't give up. I have been trying to catch a little kitty for 3 months now. We built her a perch in some trees. Dogs kept her away. Tore the perch down daily. So next we built a box & put it higher up in the tree. I still can not touch her. She will leave for 5-7 days only coming at night. I do not need anymore kitties but would love to get her & get her fixed. I do not even care if she belongs to someone At least the kitty is in a safe place. Good Luck
post #9 of 9
I've never dealt with a feral kitty but hope you consider this.

The kitty is put in an area where people hardly are. Kitty is hiding in the floorboards. People are walking on the floorboards, probably quite hard, possibly running if children are there. All this kitty is hearing is footsteps and to him it is scary.

My suggestion is spend some time down there with him even if you are just reading a book for a while. Let him see you are not meaning harm. If you have another cat bring it down so feral can see you love kitties. (Of course, bring kitty back up w/you.)

Maybe play some soothing music while he is down there alone to help buffer the sound of the 'hustle and bustle' of your everyday life. I can imagine the poor kitty and the sound of the vaccum. My socialized kitties hate it and they aren't hiding under floorboards.

I think feral kitty will come out when he/she is ready. As long as he eats and uses litter box...give him time.

It is a great thing you are doing!! And remember nothing worthwhile is ever easy.

Cheers for future purrs...Dorina
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