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Advice about a sort of stray please

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
OK, here is the set up. We moved into this mobile home about three months ago. The family who lived here before is renting it to us. They only moved about a quarter mile away, but across the other side of a busy street. They have a cat, to my knowledge an exclusively outdoor cat, which still wants to live here apparently. He has been back a few times, but about a week ago has just made this his home. I have called the family to tell them their cat is here, but they only laughed and said he'll come back. There seems to be no concern, or interest in coming to get their cat. I did find out it is a male and has been neutered. He has no rabies tag or anything else on him, and judging from their lack of concern probably hasn't been to a vet for vaccinations or prevention medication. This cat is a very sweet cat, a black and white medium haired kitty. It is still well into the 90s here in Texas, and it kills me to see him outside in the heat with all that hair. I've been feeding and watering him, and letting him in during the afternoon. My problem is I already have a cat, and I'm afraid of possible diseases from this other cat if I bring him in full time to live. Due to lots of expenses, I'm really short on cash and just don't have the money to take a cat which isn't mine to the vet for testing and vaccinations. I also feel like I'm stealing a cat by bringing it indoors and taking care of him. What I can't do it just blow it off and let him be like his owners.

I could pull off the vet visit around the first. How likely is it my kitty could get something from the outdoor kitty? What would you all do in this situation? The cat doesn't seem too big on staying in doors with me, but I've never had an outdoor cat, and I don't think I want too. Maybe I'm being paranoid about the dangers outside, like the highway and the dogs off leash despite the leash laws. Anyway, just any input you have would be greatly appreciated.
post #2 of 17
Personally he is more at risk at getting killed on the road than your cat is catching anything from him. Does he look sick at all? Dull eyes, runny nose, gunk in the nose or eyes? Can you look in his mouth? Any rodent ulcers, or bad teeth? Put a litter pan out for him to see if you can see if he has parasites, but really just bring him in and keep him away from your other cat until you can manage the vet visit. Dumb people, some people shouldn't even own a picture of a cat!
post #3 of 17
Thread Starter 
He looks pretty healthy, but I know that can be deceiving. He definitely could use some grooming to make him gorgeous, but looks pretty good. A little thin, but not way bad. I don't see any problems with the eyes, nose or gunk. His mouth from what I can see looks OK. It is very hard to get a good look right now, since he doesn't trust me, and frankly I'm not sure I trust him enough to man handle him like I do my own kitty when I need to. I didn't think about the litter pan for parasites, but will do that immediately. To be honest, I really want someone to tell me I'm doing the right thing by kittynapping him. I'm going to go bring him in as soon as I shuffle things around and make the extra bedroom a kitty rescue room.
post #4 of 17
It sounds like you care and want to help him (more than his owners!) and that is the right thing. Good luck!
post #5 of 17
The only concern would be if he had feline aids. Which can be caught by other cats very easy. I would have him tested for that.
post #6 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by gardenandcats
The only concern would be if he had feline aids. Which can be caught by other cats very easy. I would have him tested for that.
That is what I'm afraid of. I'm going to try to keep them separated until I can get at least the testing done. It just hurts to see animals people won't take care of.

The two cats inside hasn't gone so well so far. I know that isn't exactly uncommon for cats, since they need to get used to each other and stuff. I have the new kitty from outside in a spare bedroom. My cat has been at the door constantly, alternating sniffing with hissing. I thought it might be a good idea for them to be able to see each other, so I opened the door enough for them to get a look at each other, but not enough to pass through. Out of nowhere, the seemingly calm outdoor kitty swipes my kitty, and now he has a scratch mark running nearly from his eye to nose. It just tore me up. I gave him tuna, which I don't normally do since I know it is not a good habit to get in to. The aggressive behavior sealed it though; the two cats need to remain separated until after I get the testing done.
post #7 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by MaratWC
That is what I'm afraid of. I'm going to try to keep them separated until I can get at least the testing done. It just hurts to see animals people won't take care of.

The two cats inside hasn't gone so well so far. I know that isn't exactly uncommon for cats, since they need to get used to each other and stuff. I have the new kitty from outside in a spare bedroom. My cat has been at the door constantly, alternating sniffing with hissing. I thought it might be a good idea for them to be able to see each other, so I opened the door enough for them to get a look at each other, but not enough to pass through. Out of nowhere, the seemingly calm outdoor kitty swipes my kitty, and now he has a scratch mark running nearly from his eye to nose. It just tore me up. I gave him tuna, which I don't normally do since I know it is not a good habit to get in to. The aggressive behavior sealed it though; the two cats need to remain separated until after I get the testing done.
Truthfully...I'm not surprized that he would react that way....being outdoors he probably had to fight with other cats in order to survive. You are correct to be slow with the introductions.

Katie
post #8 of 17
Thread Starter 
Well, the "owners" finally came today. I had called them a couple times in the past week and they hadn't shown much interest in getting the cat. This afternoon they came over. They seemed very surprised I had the cat inside, since he is an outdoor kitty. I told them he was a sweet kitty and I felt sorry for him being outside in the heat with all that hair. That is true, but I didn't say more. Maybe I should have, but I'm just not a very confrontational person. Well, I can be a bit confrontational online, but that is different. Anyway, the kitty is gone. If he comes back, I might take him back in and not tell the owners this time. I feel like that is wrong, but I also feel it is wrong that they don't take better care of that sweet kitty. Thanks for the input everyone. I do appreciate it. I'm so sad he is gone.
post #9 of 17
Thread Starter 
I have had a stray cat coming to my home for a while now. I wrote about it earlier in this thread. http://www.thecatsite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=62859 Anyway, since that time, the owners came and got the cat a few times, but he always comes back to me. As soon as I would open the door in the morning, he would be there, waiting for his food and for some kitty loving. He is a very affectionate cat. When we would call the owners, each time they seemed less and less concerned, and more and more bothered by this cat. Finally they said take him if you want him. So we did. He is now our indoor kitty. Took him to the vet yesterday, and he is in good health. Negative results on the FeLV/FIV combo test. Already fixed too. That is all good, but here is the problem. We officially claimed him on Tuesday. Wednesday I gave him a bath. He very much needed it, but it was a battle to put it mildly. Thursday, into the carrier and off to the vet for shots and testing. Now the formerly very affectionate kitty is now plastered against the wall under the bed, only coming out to eat and then running back under the bed. Do you think this is just a temporary thing? I'm thinking he is probably stressed from the bath/vet experience and will pass in time. He is such a sweet, loving, fluffy kitty. I'm dying to snuggle with him on the couch, but forcing myself to give him space and let him come to me when ready. Am I right? Do you also think it is just temporary? I had him in the house before, and he always seemed like he didn't know what to make of it, but now seems scared.

Sorry to ramble about this. I'm just feeling guilty, like I've ruined his life since he seems so unhappy right now. Plus, I'd like him to come out from under the bed so I can take some pics of him. I wanna show him off.
post #10 of 17
MaratWC...personally, I do think it is a temporary change in behavior...after 2 scary experiences....bath and shots....I'm sure he's just hiding in case there is another scary experience in store for him. I would give him time to get back to his sweet personality.

Katie
post #11 of 17
Poor, poor kitty. Took all the time and effort to find a new home, and then got a bath! Give him a little time. He is very intelligent, and will see that he did make the right choice of a new home. Remember, cats love tuna, salmon, KFC chicken.
post #12 of 17
Just give him time, he has gone from a home where they could care a tinker's dam about him to a home where he is cared for a lot. Just ignore him, see to his needs, food, water litter pan patrol. Sit on the floor as much as possible when you are in his room and don't pursue him. He is waiting for something else bad to happen and needs time to regroup.

I also merged your threads, it helps to keep the story together so people see the whole picture-
post #13 of 17
You cannot completly change an outdoor cat into an indoor. It isn't fair to them, They are used to freedom and you are taking that away by bringing him indoors and cooping him up. Even if he has been neutered he IS still used to being able to go where he want's when he wants. Cooping him up will only make him miserable, that's why he's hiding now. I know what it's like to want to bring a cat in, I raised a cat from a kitten and bottle fed him, the works, but he was raised as a barn cat and we didn't fix him, so when we moved I pushed mom into trying to get him fixed and brought over to our new house which was in town. We brought him over, and made an appointment, but he was so miserable, we never could get him to get used to being pinned up. We took him back to my grandparent's where he was raised and turned him loose again before we nuetered him. He is back to his old self now. Outdoor cat's are just that, they were raised in those situations and know how to take care of themselves. If you want to keep him since it doesn't sound like the owners care anymore that's fine, but it is really cruel of you to leave him where he is miserable. Why don't you at least try having an outdoor cat? This guy is smart, he knows cars are dangerous, he can handle it.
post #14 of 17
I know quite a few people who have turned outdoor cats into indoor cats, including myself! My kitty was a street/feral and now lives very happily indoors. He's never tried to get outside, and we even left the front door open accidentally and he just sat in the doorway.
Your kitty is probably just stressed out at the moment. Hopefully he'll calm down soon.
post #15 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Audrey
You cannot completly change an outdoor cat into an indoor. It isn't fair to them, They are used to freedom and you are taking that away by bringing him indoors and cooping him up. Even if he has been neutered he IS still used to being able to go where he want's when he wants. Cooping him up will only make him miserable, that's why he's hiding now. I know what it's like to want to bring a cat in, I raised a cat from a kitten and bottle fed him, the works, but he was raised as a barn cat and we didn't fix him, so when we moved I pushed mom into trying to get him fixed and brought over to our new house which was in town. We brought him over, and made an appointment, but he was so miserable, we never could get him to get used to being pinned up. We took him back to my grandparent's where he was raised and turned him loose again before we nuetered him. He is back to his old self now. Outdoor cat's are just that, they were raised in those situations and know how to take care of themselves. If you want to keep him since it doesn't sound like the owners care anymore that's fine, but it is really cruel of you to leave him where he is miserable. Why don't you at least try having an outdoor cat? This guy is smart, he knows cars are dangerous, he can handle it.
There are many stories that would contradict your story...especially after neutering. Many cats do (over time) adjust to life indoors. But whether someone decides to make an outdoor cat an indoor cat or keep the cat as an outdoor cat...spaying/neutering is key (that is why it is TNR...Trap, Neuter, Release)!!! Without spaying/neutering a cat is subject to diseases from mating/fighting, cancers associated with being intact as well as being able to add to the overpopulation.

I am surprized that you didn't neuter this cat before you decided to release him back outdoors. At this point, I would still trap him and have him neutered. He will adjust to being neutered and he will not be able to add to the overpopulation.

Katie
post #16 of 17
When I bought this house just over a year ago, I had a cat coming over all the time. Wasn't quite full grown yet, but very well mannered. I didn't know who the owners were either. The only problem was once you start feeding them, they won't go away. So I let him in as well during the winter at night, and out during the day while I was at work. Then one day the owner came over and mentioned that the kitty seems to like my house better than theirs and asked if I wanted him, free. I got all the medical records, etc, as well. She's a calico, very well mannered, potty trained. Will not go potty in the house, has to go outside. When she sits by the door, I know she's got to go, lol. And she still lives here. Very gentle, and definitely has character, and loves the big cat tree I got her.
post #17 of 17
Our Tedy was 6 mo old when we adopted him. He had never even been inside a house before...although he`s been lugged and loved by 4 kids and was used to spending time with aprox 20 cats....we got him...had him tested for whatever the vet suggested, got his shots and had him nutered...brought him home...and WA LA! He has NEVER even tried to get back outside again. (Maybe he has always remembered being cold all last winter???)
Linda
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