How do I catch my cat who ran away from home?

calust

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My cat used to be a feral cat, he was born in our backward and had no contact with humans before he met me. I raised him and gained his trust. He has lived in my house with me since April and I wanted to bring him outside in a T strap leash and he got scared and managed to jump his way out of his leash (it was probably not tight enough.) The fly trap thing of our patio door was closed and he couldn't get inside to safety (his first instinct was to get inside the house) and my mom scared him off by shouting at him and running towards the door to open it. He is now hiding somewhere outside. I suspect he is under our immediate neighbor's flower bushes because each time I get out, I hear the tiny bell on his collar but I can't find him, it too dark right now and I'm even using a flashlight. I think he knows his way around the neighborhood and I am afraid that he will run away farther. I still put about 5 LOST CAT posters with a huge picture of him in every street direction and I warned my closest neighbors about him. Now that I think I know where he is, what do I do without scaring him off to run away to hide farther? I am keeping the patio door wide open all night and placed a bowl with his favorite canned food inside, I have also placed a bowl near the front door of our house where I can see through a window. Problem with that is that there are other feral cats who have eaten him food. One of them was his sister. I don't know if it helps him feel more secure to know that his sister is with him.

What can I do to get him back?

Thanks!
 

kstonya

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I would do as you mentioned placing some food and a way for him to get into the patio running up and trying to catch him might scare him off more. It would depend on how long he has been separate from his sister. Animals do not have the same Family connection as humans do. If he has been staying together with her than having her around might make a more secure feeling. As long as the other cats do not fight then not scaring them off might draw him out. If you do the same actions that you did to gain his trust that would be my suggestion to get him to come back, unless you want to have him both indoor and outdoor I would either continue to have him outside and inside. I for one do not let my cats out.

Keep us advised on your progress and any other questions and we will help you. May you quickly be able to get him back inside.
 
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calust

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Yes, I think he still recognizes his sister. About a month and a half ago, I let him outside with his leash to greet his sister and they were kissing and cuddling. The first months of his life, he was an outdoor only car, after 6 months I let him inside with for a couple of hours and at night I would let him return outside. He always came back to my patio for food (like an indoor-outdoor cat) and that is when I let him in but that was about 4 months ago Then he became an indoor only cat but I would occasionally like twice a month go outside with him. He knew his way around the neighborhood but I am afraid that he might have forgotten? Can he smell his way home? Does he know where his house is and where the patio is? I also put his litter box on the patio. I'm afraid that he will never return to the patio. Last time I think I saw him, he got a bit father, he was at the same neighbors' house but under their car and he would just look at me. I don't think he would run towards me but when he was at home, he would always follow me everywhere I went. I hope he doesn't go too far. He is neutered so I don't think he will be looking for females or fights.
 
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calust

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I just went outside and saw him at our front diagonal neighbor's lawn and he ran away to the next house's backward. I think he saw me with the flashlight and freaked out. I'm so afraid that he will run away farther and farther. Should I put the litter box in our front lawn? I'm afraid that other cats will use it. It's 1 am and I cannot sleep, he always slept on my bed with me. I just feel awful.
 

handsome kitty

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The flashlight may have scared him.  I don't know about cats but I have a hard time seeing who is holding a flashlight. You may have an easier time finding him tomorrow.  Have you tried sitting on the front porch in low light and calling his name?
 

jcat

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Can you borrow a trap from a local shelter or rescue and set it up (with food) on or near your patio?
 

NewYork1303

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Does he have favorite treats? When my cat got off of his harness, we grabbed his treat bag and shook it. He came running right away, but was still cautious. I approached him slowly and then quickly scruffed him to get him inside since he was scared and likely would have attacked me if I just grabbed him. I hope you get him back soon. 
 
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calust

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He's too terrified. I did come with his treats when he hid near the bushes and he did not move. I see all of the other stray cats roaming around, but no sign of him today. I called an organization that saves animals http://www.urgences-animales.org/  (It's the only one in my province in Canada, other pet detectives are too far away and it would be too expensive to bring them here.) but no one answered. I left a message, I hope that they will call me back. I read somewhere about them that they use tracking dogs to find animals. I had trouble sleeping and feel awful. I would do anything to get him back and if the animal saving organisation doesn't work out, after 4 days, I will call Petsearches Canada http://www.petsearcherscanada.com/indoor-only-cat-searches/. Their services for tracking indoor-only cats is $395 but they live in BC and I live in Quebec and it will take them around 45h drive if there is no traffic. Travel and toll fees are not included.
 

bluemoon6

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I am thinking that there will be a point he will become very hungry. I would sit outside and if you use dry food in a bag, shake the bag and gently call his name. I once got my kitty to come inside by putting some of the food on the ground. Like a little trail. You can use a couple of bowls of food that lead to your door and in the door if you can. If you do see him, I would approach very slowly like you are going to pet him holding a bowl of food. 
 
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calust

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When he was an indoor-outdoor cat, he always came to our patio when he was hungry and meowed for us to let him in but that was 4 months ago. I hope he comes back. The pet emergency organisation still hasn't called me back and I found out that the pet detectives in BC charges $1 per km and I live 4,800-ish km away from them, I don't have that kind of money. I also took the contents of his litter box and sprinkled them on out on our patio, backward and frontward and the perimeter of our house. The door of our patio is now always open day and night and all is toys are placed inside where he could see them from the patio. I'm also going to distribute brochures to our closest neighbors and will give them my cat's favorite treats to lure him and I will offer a reward to whoever catches him. When it gets dark outside I will wait for him in the frontward with his favorite scrunchy sound making toy and his treats and will leave the door wide open for him to run inside.


 

kstonya

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I would continue to put food out and when he is hungry He will know where food is and will come home The expense of the detective service could maybe used better as suggested placing food where he can get to it.
 

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:clap::clap::clap::clap::clap::clap::woohoo:

CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!

[emoji]128568[/emoji][emoji]128568[/emoji][emoji]128568[/emoji][emoji]128568[/emoji][emoji]128568[/emoji][emoji]128568[/emoji][emoji]128568[/emoji][emoji]128568[/emoji][emoji]128568[/emoji][emoji]128568[/emoji]
 

margd

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SO very glad Rocky is back home and this story has a happy ending!
 
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