Let feral cat out on the same day as her surgery

moreknow

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Hi this is my 3rd post this week,
I am currently going thru alot of events regarding my cats, and just today i took 3 of my ferals to get fixed.. now these were really vocal and scared but the surgeries went well (so far) and they're home. However, the way the clinic handled my cats when returning them to me was really bad... they had my towels inside the trap rather than on top of it, causing the cats to be even more scared and they were rapidly pushing up against the traps.. all of them have some blood on their noses. I drive them home and they were still scared and alert. since the clinic left the towels inside, the cats had very little space within the trap, and the whole way i felt that the once pregnant female (it was 1 boy, 2 girls, one pregnant) was super uncomfortable. i fed them 1/4 of a wet food can, and when i fed her in the cage she seemed really stuck.. like she couldn't turn around at all. At this point i was really pressured by the way she was struggling inside the trap so i left the door open, and she ran out looking for more food. She's running and jumping on top of things looking for more food, drank water, and hissed at any cats that got close to her. I know this probably wasn't the right thing to do, but i felt really really bad for her when she was in there. I will stay up till 2:30am tonight to monitor her see where she goes , and protect her from any outside threats. I just wanted to share this ongoing experience to see if anyone else gets in this situation with feral cats, and im open to any comments :)
 

Jcatbird

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I know you felt desperate to help her. For now, see if she will calm and go into the garage or maybe put a cardboard box out somewhere for her to hide. On top of that table maybe?
For future reference, if you can take extra towels with you, just cover the cage again for awhile. If you can also get a larger crate to release special cases into, maybe that would be the place to let them recover. I usually release them into a small bathroom so that I can observe them until I know they are healed. Many feral rescue groups do release early. I just wait so I can let them recover from the anesthesia and to watch the incision for a bit. I am so sorry the kitty was caught like that but if it happens again, if there is somewhere quiet you can put the cage, the cat may calm down. I have had them rub their little noses raw too and it is upsetting.:alright: I know you will guard her.
 

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You are doing the best you can, and getting three ferals fixed is a huge accomplishment. What happened is not ideal, but we have all been there. I have had the waffle imprint injury on the nose and it healed with no problem. I have also had females run and jump as soon as they were released and everything healed just fine. Worst case scenarios don't have to happen. The most I have ever had the vet keep a true feral is overnight, so the next morning they are released and that has always been fine.

You are in the midst of this miserable situation with the dogs, trying to protect your cats and get them fixed and you are doing a great job.
 
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moreknow

learning to help ferals :)
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I know you felt desperate to help her. For now, see if she will calm and go into the garage or maybe put a cardboard box out somewhere for her to hide. On top of that table maybe?
For future reference, if you can take extra towels with you, just cover the cage again for awhile. If you can also get a larger crate to release special cases into, maybe that would be the place to let them recover. I usually release them into a small bathroom so that I can observe them until I know they are healed. Many feral rescue groups do release early. I just wait so I can let them recover from the anesthesia and to watch the incision for a bit. I am so sorry the kitty was caught like that but if it happens again, if there is somewhere quiet you can put the cage, the cat may calm down. I have had them rub their little noses raw too and it is upsetting.:alright: I know you will guard her.
I let her out last night into where i feed them, my backyard. She seems fine and is still eating and when she's done, she goes to my cat-friendly neighbor's garage which is ALWAYS open.. I am not worried that much for her but i am still keeping an eye out. I will see if i can buy some better traps for them, or padding that i can temporarily glue onto the doors and corners of the traps.
Apart from this cat, i let out my male, and the younger female out into my garage to spend the night. They both have spent nights there before, and i fed them a can, which they ate up desperately.. I fed them again this morning but what was odd was that the younger female disappeared after i fed her at around 9am today. I do my daily cat calls by clapping the food plates together and she still hasn't shown up.. on the forms the clinic gave me it said that i should've kept cats indoors overnight, and i did that, with one exception, and now, the younger female is missing. She typically doesn't appear till dusk or night but i feel today should be different since she had surgery.. i worry that either she's hurt from the surgery in a way (i truly hope not), or she's hiding away.. i'll keep an eye out tonight, i have to back to my job :( thank yall for the feedback
 

fionasmom

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I have had recently fixed ferals decide that they are very angry about being trapped and taken to the vet. They leave for a day or so and then come back once they realize that I was the only game in town. I hope that your female is safe, but keep looking and be hopeful at this point.
 

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She is probably hiding. Surgery is scary to us and to kitties. If you can kind of try to imagine how you would react to things, it might help to understand what a kitty might do. You would probably be confused by all that happened and just want to curl up somewhere where you could relax and safe. Maybe your neighbors garage? She should return soon.
 
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moreknow

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She is probably hiding. Surgery is scary to us and to kitties. If you can kind of try to imagine how you would react to things, it might help to understand what a kitty might do. You would probably be confused by all that happened and just want to curl up somewhere where you could relax and safe. Maybe your neighbors garage? She should return soon.
update: sorry i was really busy cleaning yesterday, but she's back, and all cats seem to be fine. No abnormalities apart from the bruised faces; im still really upset about that. But so far, in my experience, if one TNRs a feral cat and let them out on the same day, make sure their surroundings are safe (no rain or dogs), and monitor their behavior where they end up going if possible. I'll check back again Thursday, but im pretty sure they'll be ok

on another note, animal control came by Friday afternoon, and left me this:
File_000 (1).jpeg

so it's down to 2, but i haven't seen any so far. Im glad they came by, and i now have to keep focusing on making the catio and stuff :)
Thank y'all so much for the comments, i am really really grateful for y'all 🧡
 
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moreknow

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thank you for the words again, but unfortunately i cant seem to catch a break
I don't mean to start a new thread and keep going with my complaints and struggles, but i just need a way to voice my feelings b/c all i receive is criticism from my parents and neighbors
In the morning when i fed my cats, 2 dogs came by and ran at me, thankfully no cats were hurt but i shot at them and they ran away. So i was paranoid the whole day, and when i slowly pull out of my garage at 5pm to take my little brother to work down the street, i get this little thought that "there's no way a cat can be stuck in my engine (b/c it has happened before)". i wait 5 min for my brother to get in, and when i pull out of my street, i feel something move under my car, and it's a black cat that runs out into this rv park that lives right by my house. I dont want to get into more detail, but i am still actively searching for her.. but it just really hurts me how im losing cats left and right and im getting attacked by dogs, and verbally attacked by my parents
 

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I am so sorry! The cat ran off? Then we must hold out hope that the kitty just got bumped until you can find it or know otherwise. I often have that same fear and now I beat on my car hood before I ever get inside. I give a moment before starting up too. These things , sadly, do happen. We do what we can and we learn as we go sometimes but we are only human too. Now you can hit the car hood each time. I know that doesn’t help the current worry but you are doing what you can to help those cats. Many feral guardians lose cats and take harsh criticism. It can be hard on our hearts but if we didn’t care we would not be trying to help them by doing TNR and protecting them from predators. You have to know that your heart is good and kind and the cats need to be spayed and neutered to have a better life. You have people here who understand and will do all they can to help you. :grouphug2: Sent you a PM.
 

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You are facing some pretty difficult odds here with the dogs and those who should be supporting you. You most certainly are not complaining; in fact, you are taking this all pretty well and are remaining proactive. I am not saying that it is okay for the dogs to be killing your community, but with ferals there is a very different mindset that you have to accept which is you probably won't save them all for reasons that are completely out of your control. It is heartbreaking, but it is not the same as your own pet cat, indoor or even outdoor.
 
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moreknow

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You are facing some pretty difficult odds here with the dogs and those who should be supporting you. You most certainly are not complaining; in fact, you are taking this all pretty well and are remaining proactive. I am not saying that it is okay for the dogs to be killing your community, but with ferals there is a very different mindset that you have to accept which is you probably won't save them all for reasons that are completely out of your control. It is heartbreaking, but it is not the same as your own pet cat, indoor or even outdoor.
im doing all i can to see if she can find her way home, without sacrificing too much time away from home or else my parents would be upset.. and you're definitely right on that, I really need to learn how to adapt that mindset to taking care of these ferals.
Thank you for your words, fionasmom, i really hope to reciprocate it in the future, and help you out & be a person to talk to when going through cat struggles :)
 
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moreknow

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She has returned :)
i went to the rv park, 2pm and 7pm, and made the calling sounds as far as i could to see if she could hear my calls from far away, i thought she was long gone but she appeared unexpectedly at 9, healthy as before :D thank y'all so much for the help, i will make sure to get back on track
 

fionasmom

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I am so glad to read this! Cats, especially ferals, have intuitive survival skills. She was hiding and understood when she saw you that it would be safe to come back.
 
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