or Connect
TheCatSite.com › Forums › Feral Cats and Rescue › Caring for Strays and Ferals › rescued stray cat aggression
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

rescued stray cat aggression

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

I am new to this forum, so if this question has already been answered, please direct me to the appropriate thread.

I am relatively new to the world of cat rescue. I have been caring for a small colony of feral cats at the hospital I work at. All of them have been trapped and neutered. Recently, I trapped a new stray cat to get her spayed. I found out that she had been nursing which meant that she had a litter of kittens back at the hospital. We took her back, released her, and were able to follow her to her litter of 4 kittens and rescue them.

One week later, I have found homes for the kittens and was finally able to re-trap the mother. She is probably about 2 years old and seems friendly to people. She will rub against you and want to be petted. However, she exhibits aggressive behavior during petting which appears to be related to overstimulation. I have tried to watch for the signs and stop petting but sometimes it seems that she will try to bite and grab me with her claws if she wants more attention. We have had her for one week.

We can pick her up for short periods of time without difficulty and we were even able to give her a bath without any hissing or biting.

This biting behavior is disconcerting because it will make it difficult to find her a home. I am reluctant to take her to a pet fair for fear that she will bite and claw prospective adoptors. I don't think she will tolerate being in a cage in that environment either.

She seems like a semi-wild animal that hasn't been very well socialized. I know that she was a stray for at least a couple months before we got her, does anyone think this behavior may improve with time? She has been under a lot of stress during the past couple weeks (getting trapped, spayed, kittens taken away from her, then re-trapped).

I have 3 cats (2 rescues), none of which exhibit this sort of behavior, so I am sort of at a loss.

Thanks for any advice or suggestions!

post #2 of 8
I am going to move this to the feral cat forum for you. And now I will answer your question. You are going on the idea that this cat which is feral is going to respond like a cat who has been domesticated. That is unfortunately not the case. Most ferals can take weeks and sometimes months and even years to get over their distrust of humans. Added to that her kittens are now gone and she is stressed and confused. She does not know you- and all she knows is you showed up, and her kittens vanished. You become in her mind the prey that "swallowed" her kittens, so she is twice as afraid of you now.

You cannot force a feral kitty to accept right away the idea of being picked up. I have one mom upstairs that came here in May, pregnant and had her babies. Her babies are still with her and just the other day, I picked her up for the first time. She fought me tooth and claw and I released her quickly. You have to set your clock to her time, and take it slowly. Start out by just getting down to her level and sitting on the floor and read out loud from a book. Let her get used to your voice and your presence. It takes a lot of time and patience but it can be done. I would be happy to help you, just use the sites features of email or PM me. I specialize in ferals and have been doing it a long time now. Thank you for looking after this girl, she really needs you. Don't get discouraged, it is worth it to keep trying in small degrees.
post #3 of 8
I have no advice to add, but wanted to thank you for helping the feral cats and especially for taking the time to work with this poor momma cat.

I tip my hat to you for your humanitarian work!

Also, if you haven't yet checked out the Alley Cat Allies web site, please do so. They have loads of great advice for those of us who rescue ferals.

post #4 of 8
Thread Starter 
Thanks for you encouraging words and advice. I am going to try to work with her and see if the behavior will decrease. It has been very rewarding to know that at the very least, I found her 4 kittens good homes.
post #5 of 8
Thread Starter 
I forgot to mention I have posted pictures of the kittens and Mom at this website:

The Alley Cat Allies website is a great source of info. I learned where to buy traps and how to catch feral cats from them.
post #6 of 8
love it! looks like you are on the right track with all of them. The love pours out of each picture. Good luck!
post #7 of 8
Thread Starter 
Good News!

Rinea Lucia of the Animal Protection League has kindly offered to take in my beautiful black mother cat and find her a home. Through this experience I think that I learned about all of my local cat rescue resources. I shall definitely be better prepared for the next rescue!
post #8 of 8
That is great news Virginia! I am so pleased for you.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Caring for Strays and Ferals
TheCatSite.com › Forums › Feral Cats and Rescue › Caring for Strays and Ferals › rescued stray cat aggression