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Feral Kitten - How To Catch "in My Home."

Discussion in 'Caring for Strays and Ferals' started by luvcats222, Mar 7, 2019.

  1. luvcats222

    luvcats222 Thread Starter TCS Member Young Cat

    Nov 12, 2014
    Hi all,

    I took in a feral kitten at 3 months old. Was very inexperienced with feral kitten and thought it would be easier than my 9 month old feral was (although he was easier). I let her out of the cage too soon and she will run when she can, although she approaches me and bats her eyes as well!
    Anyhow, the beastie band I put on her after being spayed is getting tighter since she has grown. I cannot catch her without cornering her and literally chasing her - which I will do if I have to. I was wondering if anyone has any good suggestions on how to catch a feral kitten. She will not go in a carrier - she is very smart.

  2. WoodstockGirl

    WoodstockGirl TCS Member Adult Cat

    Oct 17, 2017
    Pittsburgh, PA
    I drop a towel or small blanket over their heads. It usually stops them in their tracks and you can scoop them up.
    ArchyCat purraised this.

  3. kittychick

    kittychick TCS Member Staff Member Forum Helper

    Jul 2, 2013
    The band sounds like it really needs to be taken off :( I might have missed this - - -- but are you hoping to socialize her, and then either keep her yourself or get her to the point someone could adopt her and continue the socializing? Or are you releasing her (once that collar come off! :) ) ?

    You can certainly try what @WoodstockGirl suggested - - for some cats that works really well! But I've tried something similar and gotten bitten, and then out of sheer reflex, dropped the kitty. :( Which then makes it 20x harder to do next time!!!!! One thing we do quite often (particularly if it's a cat that's already outside a crate or trap) we open a carrier and have one person sit quietly w/their hand on the crate door. Then we begin playing with her with a laser pointer (avoid shining it into her eyes of course!) - - get her running and chasing it like crazy---SO crazy she forgets what's going on in the room and get her focused completely on catching the laser! Then run the laser into the carrier - - leading her into the carrier, and having the second person shut the door behind her immediately! She'll be frustrated for a bit - -and will likely raise a huge ruckus - but just make sure the door's tightly! And then throw a towel over the WHOLE carrier so uhh

    If that doesn't work -- - let me know - - I can send you a few other options. But this is kind of our "go to" since it's relatively easy, and since she won't SEE you put her in the carrier - - - she doesn't associate you with the "bad thing" - which is a BIG bonus!!!!!!

    Finger's crossed for you! Let us know how it goes!
    Jcatbird purraised this.

  4. Jcatbird

    Jcatbird TCS Member Top Cat

    Dec 5, 2017
    Southern U.S.
    Can you lure her into a small room? The smaller, the easier. I find mine like to hide behind the toilet and I can get them there. If she is likely to bite then, heavy gloves and jacket. I use babyfood to lure them to different places but I love the previous suggestion of having her chase something into a carrier. I find that carrier shy cats are sometimes fooled by very large carriers. More space seems to help them feel that it’s different. I use my carriers daily as a feeding and treat location just to make sure my cats get used to them being their,”safe place.” That makes them run there anytime they want to escape anything. I just posted last night about using the carriers that way in case cats are ever in need of fast evacuation. It helps with vet visits too. It takes time to get the kitties used to this idea and some do require a larger carrier or even a coveted small cage to trust it but it works here. Every kitty has their own house and refuge. They were all ferals of various ages in the beginning. Good luck and thank you for being a kitty rescuer! :rock:

  5. kittychick

    kittychick TCS Member Staff Member Forum Helper

    Jul 2, 2013
    @Jcatbird thanks for the kind words about making the carrier part of a "chase game". And love using their carriers as "safe places" even with your socialized guys so they don't become panicked every time a carrier comes out. Using the laser's worked with almost all of our foster cats and kittens (not our own kitties of course - - that would make life WAY too easy!).

    If the cat isn't big on laser pointers, we've also used "Da Bird" (feathers on a line attached to a stick). Kitties go nuts w/it bc it moves like a bird when you "fly" it around the room. If she'll chase it, do it several times, then let it "land" in the carrier - -- they usually see it as "dying prey" and run in to get it. Again - it helps to have two people, so one can shut the carrier door quickly.

    With our fosters and TNRs that we're socializing, we do keep a large carrier out the entire time we have them. Like @Jcatbird , we make it their "safe place" - - putting the snuggly blankets inside it, toys, etc - - anything that helps them understand it's a good place to be. We also keep a blanket or large towel over the top and sides so that the side holes are covered (it makes it feel even more safe and cave-like).

    Do keep us posted - - - - - truly hope this works out for the best for ALL parties!
    Jcatbird purraised this.

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