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Got trap?

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
It is getting close to a month since Brady got out. That was on Aug 12. Thanks to some good advice I got here on TCS I had been putting food out for him and getting him to come further and further up the steps leading to the sliding door on our deck. For abut a week and a half you could have set your watch by that boy. At 7:30 or so I would put out the food, turn on the light and wait. He would show up somewhere on the outer part of the yard at 7:45, meander his way around and then make a run for the food. He would be skittish until he actually got to the food. After that I could talk to him, move around, wave a toy and it didn't bother him. By 7:55 he would be done and leave.

I had been keeping track of all this to get to know his habits. If it was raining he was a no-show. Also if something noisy happened, like dog needing to go out, or DH having his kids over for labor day grill. A friend loaned me her have-a-heart trap and I had put in in the yard so that it would acquire the smell of the yard. It was kind of small, but it was the fastest way to get a trap.

After being a regular customer for the food, Brady was a no-show three days in a row, Sunday 9/2 (rainy), Monday 9/3 (guests) and Tuesday 9/4 (rainy). So I figured now would be a good time to bait the trap since Brady should be hungry, unless of course he is dining on mice which he can easily find. Wednesday morning I set and baited the trap and put it where DH could watch from his windowin case something happened. I figured when I got home I would do the food routine on the deck and perhaps Brady would head into the trap instead of going for our deck.

Well I got home at around 6:20, DH met me and we went into the house. After about 15 minutes I looked at the trap, it had been triggered, but nothing was in it. I asked DH and he looked around. The little tupperware container that had had the liver pate and pink salmon was outside the trap and had been licked clean. So who the heck retrieves a container from a trap without getting caught? A smart cat? A skunk? Something else??

I put out the food and Brady did not come. A skunk showed up at about 8:45, he was convinced to leave with the help of a BB gun.

So now I am stymied-did Brady not show up because he had already eaten the food in the small trap, did he not like the skunk being around, or is there some other reason. At any rate I now have a bigger trap (local Humane Society will loan for a week if you donate $10) so maybe tonight I will get lucky.
post #2 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2dogmom View Post
It is getting close to a month since Brady got out. That was on Aug 12. Thanks to some good advice I got here on TCS I had been putting food out for him and getting him to come further and further up the steps leading to the sliding door on our deck. For abut a week and a half you could have set your watch by that boy. At 7:30 or so I would put out the food, turn on the light and wait. He would show up somewhere on the outer part of the yard at 7:45, meander his way around and then make a run for the food. He would be skittish until he actually got to the food. After that I could talk to him, move around, wave a toy and it didn't bother him. By 7:55 he would be done and leave.

I had been keeping track of all this to get to know his habits. If it was raining he was a no-show. Also if something noisy happened, like dog needing to go out, or DH having his kids over for labor day grill. A friend loaned me her have-a-heart trap and I had put in in the yard so that it would acquire the smell of the yard. It was kind of small, but it was the fastest way to get a trap.

After being a regular customer for the food, Brady was a no-show three days in a row, Sunday 9/2 (rainy), Monday 9/3 (guests) and Tuesday 9/4 (rainy). So I figured now would be a good time to bait the trap since Brady should be hungry, unless of course he is dining on mice which he can easily find. Wednesday morning I set and baited the trap and put it where DH could watch from his windowin case something happened. I figured when I got home I would do the food routine on the deck and perhaps Brady would head into the trap instead of going for our deck.

Well I got home at around 6:20, DH met me and we went into the house. After about 15 minutes I looked at the trap, it had been triggered, but nothing was in it. I asked DH and he looked around. The little tupperware container that had had the liver pate and pink salmon was outside the trap and had been licked clean. So who the heck retrieves a container from a trap without getting caught? A smart cat? A skunk? Something else??

I put out the food and Brady did not come. A skunk showed up at about 8:45, he was convinced to leave with the help of a BB gun.

So now I am stymied-did Brady not show up because he had already eaten the food in the small trap, did he not like the skunk being around, or is there some other reason. At any rate I now have a bigger trap (local Humane Society will loan for a week if you donate $10) so maybe tonight I will get lucky.
Sending vibes ((())) that you outsmart Brady, LOL. But seriously, good luck, I really want that poor little fella to get caught, you know?
post #3 of 20
Thread Starter 
Kluchetta, thanks for your good vibes. They mean a LOT and they may have helped, but not the way you intended!

After being completely frustrated (Brady was no-show for five days running, the numnuts Golden Retriever dog a two foot hole behind the trap I had set trying to get at the cat food, DH and I spent yesterday evening shooting BBs at a skunk who brazenly entered our yard at about 7PM, the split second I put out the food), I had decided stronger measures were needed.

I figured Brady had left for calmer surroundings. What with dogs and skunks I can't say I blamed him. I did not see his dainty footprints in the sand behind our burn trash barrel anymore (where DH had had his open garbage dump). So this morning I got some powdered skunk repellent and on the way home I stopped at the neighbors and asked if they minded me going onto their property where they have a huge pile of wood and part of a vehicle. If I were a cat looking for some peace and quiet, that is where I would go.

I got home at about 6:20, unpacked groceries, and proceeded to go around the yard with the can of critter repellent (kind of like one of those big shake jars of parmesan cheese). I'm shaking it out, talking to DH who is sitting on the deck, the dogs are running around, I walk towards the burn trash barrel and see

A CAT

Is there a :censor::censor::censor: smiley? I was totally flabbergasted. Dark tiger stripes on the back. Was that him? Well who else for cripes sake, I thought to myself. If it isn't him, whoever it is is more than welcome to become my cat if he doesn't mind hanging out in this crazy yard. He walked towards me, I guess he didn't realize I was out in the yard, got within about ten feet of me, and then made a motion as if to say 'oops, didn't see you, I'll leave now." He didn't run, just calmly turned around and left.

So I saw him.

Thats' it I thought, he'll definitely show up to eat. I put out food as usual, but also crabmeat and liver pate in the trap, which I put near the steps as an alternative to the food bowl on the steps to our deck.

But now I am thinking what the heck, he doesn't like the food?!?

DH says to put the trap near where I saw him.

BTW I am told that if the trap is small enough and you accidentally catch a skunk they cannot spray since they cannot stand on their front paws. Also if you toss a blanket over it they can't see where they are spraying and so will not spray.
post #4 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2dogmom View Post
Kluchetta, thanks for your good vibes. They mean a LOT and they may have helped, but not the way you intended!

After being completely frustrated (Brady was no-show for five days running, the numnuts Golden Retriever dog a two foot hole behind the trap I had set trying to get at the cat food, DH and I spent yesterday evening shooting BBs at a skunk who brazenly entered our yard at about 7PM, the split second I put out the food), I had decided stronger measures were needed.

I figured Brady had left for calmer surroundings. What with dogs and skunks I can't say I blamed him. I did not see his dainty footprints in the sand behind our burn trash barrel anymore (where DH had had his open garbage dump). So this morning I got some powdered skunk repellent and on the way home I stopped at the neighbors and asked if they minded me going onto their property where they have a huge pile of wood and part of a vehicle. If I were a cat looking for some peace and quiet, that is where I would go.

I got home at about 6:20, unpacked groceries, and proceeded to go around the yard with the can of critter repellent (kind of like one of those big shake jars of parmesan cheese). I'm shaking it out, talking to DH who is sitting on the deck, the dogs are running around, I walk towards the burn trash barrel and see

A CAT

Is there a :censor::censor::censor: smiley? I was totally flabbergasted. Dark tiger stripes on the back. Was that him? Well who else for cripes sake, I thought to myself. If it isn't him, whoever it is is more than welcome to become my cat if he doesn't mind hanging out in this crazy yard. He walked towards me, I guess he didn't realize I was out in the yard, got within about ten feet of me, and then made a motion as if to say 'oops, didn't see you, I'll leave now." He didn't run, just calmly turned around and left.

So I saw him.

Thats' it I thought, he'll definitely show up to eat. I put out food as usual, but also crabmeat and liver pate in the trap, which I put near the steps as an alternative to the food bowl on the steps to our deck.

But now I am thinking what the heck, he doesn't like the food?!?

DH says to put the trap near where I saw him.

BTW I am told that if the trap is small enough and you accidentally catch a skunk they cannot spray since they cannot stand on their front paws. Also if you toss a blanket over it they can't see where they are spraying and so will not spray.
I thought there used to be a smilie for that (:censor::censor::censor:) but maybe it got censored, LOL! That is awesome, and what a poo poo kitty he is for leading you around like that! Aargh! Crabmeat? Pate? Where's the caviar?
post #5 of 20
Thread Starter 
Kluchetta, thanks for the vibes, and your sense of humor. Please keep those good vibes coming if you don't mind......

I SAW Brady on Friday, but he did not care for the food I put out. I am glad that the fact that he is no longer eating at our place does not mean that he is dead. He probably prefers freshly killed mice or birds to the commercial food-and around here all you have to do is reach out a paw. Even one of my dogs has bagged three chipmunks this past month. Believe me, if I thought caviar would do the trick, I'd buy a gallon jug and let him roll in it. As it is I am thinking of buying kidneys and tossing it into the Cuisinart with some liver to bait the trap.

I think he has widened his territory. The trap was out there with what I thought was yummy food-I tried it camoflauged under an old rug, out in the open where I know the animal path is, nothing has been in there. And we ended up shooting the dang skunk. Didn't mean to kill him, but the BB gun was enough to do it.

So for now Brady does not have competition from any other small animals for the food. I even left it out all night and no one ate it, which tells me that we are rid of both skunks.

Drats!! I guess I am stuck watching and waiting and putting out food. The mouse hunting will get hard when there is snow on the ground-I don't know how cold it has to get before a cat will seek warm shelter. He may go into our garage unless he finds something better.
post #6 of 20
Don't you just love how these cats are so finicky. Elsa, my former feral/stray, is the pickiest of my cats.

I wonder if he's mooching from someone else as well. Maybe just put out some hard food for a while. Or something really stinky like anchovies. OR, just put out water. I seem to remember that we forget to put out water for our strays, and they need it a lot! Good luck!
post #7 of 20
Thread Starter 
Well again thanks.
I tried again last night with fresh chopped beef kidney and sardines-no cat. I think he has moved on.
I doubt that anyone around here would feed him intentionally. Definitely not the neighbors up the hill with the horse barn, although Brady might join the barn cats up there if he has gotten over his dislike of other cats. All the other neighbors know to watch for him but I will remind them tonight when I get home from work.
I thought about the water, but around soggy northern New England water is not hard to find. As a matter of fact that is going to be my last dtich try. I have to bring back the trap today, and there is no point setting a trap if you do not see him. I am going to set it near a little pond where our neighbors to the left have a bunch of junk in a cleared area of their property. Perhaps if Brady is drinking out of the pond he will see the food and eat it. We had frost this AM so he will defininitely be looking for a warm spot to hang out.
It has been exactly a month, please keep the good vibes coming-I do not give up easily.
post #8 of 20
Some people swear by warm KFC chicken....without the skin.

Katie
post #9 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by TNR1 View Post
Some people swear by warm KFC chicken....without the skin.

Katie
Yum - that would smell REALLY good to him!
post #10 of 20
Thread Starter 
Well I'm glad I got the tip about the KFC chicken. Because if I hadn't stopped on the way home to pick up 6 chicken strips, I would not have been driving up our driveway at the precise moment that Brady had to run across it.
So again, I knew he was alive and presumably well.

DH told me that he had gone to check on the trap I had set Tuesday morning. I had put in fresh chopped beef kidney and some sardines. Also a carpet remnant so Brady would not have to feel the steel mesh on his paws. I had tied some twine to the door so that in case we caught a skunk instead of a cat you could hook the twine with a pole and release whatever was in there. Unfortunately the twine had prevented the trap door from closing all the way when something tried to drag out the food bowl. So weary, and feeling like this was a shot in the dark, I asked DH to re-set the trap and please put in the KFC chicken strip. Meanwhile the dogs are looking at me like, hey isn't that for US? So they got a little bit.

Wednesday morning (today) was the day the trap had to go back to the Humane Society. I got up at 6:30 and put on work gloves and hiked over to the neighbors. I took the long way through the woods, rather than the direct way through the swamp. I had sunk in up to my thigh yesterday bringing the trap over.

From a distance I could see an animal. With my eyesight I was not sure, since it was dark and crouched down. Holy moly, it was Brady. And he was NOT happy to see me. Dog person that I am I do not claim to understand feline language, but I think he was saying "get the away from me you , I am !!

So I started to go back -not the direct way through the swamp, but taking the ridge through the woods- and got myself LOST. I never did get a Girl Scout merit badge for finding my way around in the woods, and all the while I am carrying this raccoon-size trap with a cat who is running back and forth, hissing and saying the feline equivalent of "You can't do this to me!! I got my rights!! I was free! When I get outta here I'm gonna show you what means!!"

At some point I realize I have no idea where I am and start hollering for my husband, who I hope has gotten out of bed. I did not want to put down the heavy cage with hissing cat because knowing me I never would have found it again. I tromp around for about 25 minutes and my arm feels like it is going to fall off. Finally I hear my husband, (who is familiar with my not having ANY sense of direction, not even a bad one), who calls me closer to the house and carries the cage.

Since you all deserve to see the result I took a moment to take a picture. What was a few more minutes in captivity, besides I had to go in first and shut the dogs in our bedroom before bringing Brady in. His little nose is hurt. Dang it.




So now he is in cat jail in our downstairs spare bedroom and thinks I am Satan. He has water and a litter box. He cannot get out the windows, they are closed. I get a second chance. Now I want to do it right. I am supposed to bring him food and go in and ignore him, right? And I am going to get a Feliway on my way home.

Well I need to get back to work, and my arm hurts like

again
THANKS FOR YOUR HELP, YOU GUYS ARE AWESOME!!

If you don't mind, I will need some coaching on getting him to like me. To say we got off to a bad start is an understatement!!!
post #11 of 20
What Wonderfull news!!! I have been following your post and I'm so happy that you have finally caught him! That KFC must of done the trick.
post #12 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by gardenandcats View Post
What Wonderfull news!!! I have been following your post and I'm so happy that you have finally caught him! That KFC must of done the trick.
I'm telling you...so many trappers swear by that stuff.....

BTW...congrats on catching him!!!

Katie
post #13 of 20
Thread Starter 
Well thank you thank you.
It really was a shot in the dark. Mind you I had never SEEN Brady over at the neighbors', I just assumed he MIGHT be there since it was adjoining our property, had a pond, a field (for hunting mice), plenty of places to hide / stay warm and he could have peace and quiet.

I can't say I blame him for preferring that piece of property. Did I mention that after the skunk died under where our shed used to be, that it STUNK? I sure as heck would not have wanted to eat anywhere near there, KFC or not!!

So coach me please, do I go in the spare bedroom and log onto the computer and just hang out there for 1/2 hr a day and wait for Brady to decide that I am not a horrible person?? How long does he stay confined to the room? I know there are some good links since I remember seeing them somewhere, but I do not know where.
post #14 of 20
Oh my gosh, wow!

I'm at work right now, so I can't type too much. Go on the Caring for Strays & Ferals, or also search for any articles (anywhere) by Mary Anne Miller. If he hates you as much as you think, you need a piece of cardboard to protect yourself when you go into the room. But if he's relatively calm and just invisible, I would go in, talk softly, hum, read aloud - but don't make eye contact. Just sort of ignore him and talk to yourself. Also, put his food bowl on top of a t-shirt or something that smells a lot like you, and he will put those two things together - you=food=comfort.

Your story about getting lost was kinda funny though!
post #15 of 20
Well done .
You will find so many good advices on this site - I have. Be patient though. It can take a long time. There will be set backs almost after every piece of progress but it is so worth the effort.
post #16 of 20
You can also look for thread by Hissy as she usually had lots of good advice.

BTW..you may want to read this thread.

http://www.thecatsite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=11395

Katie
post #17 of 20
P.S. sorry - should have clarified...Hissy = Mary Anne Miller!
post #18 of 20
Thread Starter 
TNR, thanks that was the thread I had seen.
Kluchetta, glad I put a smile on your face for being lost in the woods. I remember thinking that if Brady could only talk, he would have cussed me out not only for trapping him, but for getting us lost. I'm sure he would have done a better job of finding the way back to the house!
post #19 of 20
I too had been keeping up with this thread and am so very glad to hear that you finally got hold of ol' slick Brady.

Time, patience, food and snacks and he will eventually allow you to be his loving mistress. Cats really do have a handle on the best way to traing us to do their bidding.

I know the time will come when you are telling others the story of how you and Brady finally came to bond, etc., etc.

Your real adventures are now just beginning!
post #20 of 20
Thread Starter 
I am writing this directly from our CAT JAIL, where Brady is crouched under the guest bed.

The Feliway is cranking.

The store bought litter in the litter box was lovingly covered with real dirt from under our deck. I do see his paw prints in it.

Aside from the dry food I put in yesterday he got a meal of freshly diced beef kidney (as a serious dog lover I am used to preparing all kinds of yummnies that animals like), commercial fish flavor canned food, and more of the KFC chicken strips. The bowl was practically clean this morning. My nigh shirt was under it.

The toys I got for him (including what had been his favorite while at his fosters, a ping pong ball in a round green track) are on the bed. The hardest part has been getting the dogs to NOT steal them. I know it will be a while before he plays with them. (Sophia, our Golden Retriever, was a rescue. She had not been abused where she was before, but she had not been treated well either. It took her three days to be able to eat and much longer to open up. She did not even know what to do with a BONE when we got her.)

I have to say, I really like this guy, and I surely got to like him more than he got to like me during the month that he was on the lam. He is smart and wily (and I think he is gorgeous) and he never asked to any help from anybody. With his independent streak he will fit in very well in our household.

Now I just hope I don't mess it up again!!

Thanks everyone for your really great help!!
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