Looking for support/ adopted semi-feral cat

fionasmom

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What you did worked, and that is what counts. When I brought my first rescued cat into the house, I gave him a bed but no litter box. It all worked out though.
 
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H&Alina

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What you did worked, and that is what counts. When I brought my first rescued cat into the house, I gave him a bed but no litter box. It all worked out though.
So , I think I might have made a mistake:( Alina has been exploring more when I’m not in the room and playing and I let the door open to a few rooms of the house . Now she is hiding, I have found her , but she will not come out and I’ve only known that she has eaten when I leave food . I’m so sad a d discouraged (and mad at myself for letting her explore when she is still so scared of me)
I feel like this is a set back because now I don’t see her much at all . I’m feeling very down and hate to say it but getting worried about her ever trusting me. It’s almost been 2 months , I’m not expecting miracles, but wished she be a little less scared and show some interest in me . I’m really needing a boost of encouragement. Will this get better ?
 

fionasmom

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The fact that she has been exploring her own room more was a good sign that she is becoming more comfortable in the house. Depending on the layout of your house, can you close doors so that she cannot roam the entire premises? This is not a whole lot different than what you were doing before when she was in the single room, just more space. Try to repeat what you were doing before. I do recommend preventing her from going into really hard to reach places though like behind appliances. This whole process can definitely take a while so just hold the course.
 
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H&Alina

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yes, but a couple of months is not sufficient time. Suggest you read my old thread from 2016...... meet Buggy
Major frustration and time finally paid off, memory serves Bug finally came around .....9 months later!
I will definitely check out your former post about Buggy !
 
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H&Alina

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The fact that she has been exploring her own room more was a good sign that she is becoming more comfortable in the house. Depending on the layout of your house, can you close doors so that she cannot roam the entire premises? This is not a whole lot different than what you were doing before when she was in the single room, just more space. Try to repeat what you were doing before. I do recommend preventing her from going into really hard to reach places though like behind appliances. This whole process can definitely take a while so just hold the course.
I have a single floor home and I have tried to block off rooms and spaces where she might hide . She is clever (as most cats are ) and has gotten under the barricades I set up around the guest room and couch . I have closed the room door , but she is currently under the couch and I can’t get to her , she is coming out to eat food I leave in her safe room (at some point/ seeing her on video)
It’s just sad , I feel like I have less contact with her the past few days and less socializing, which she needs. I’m torn , if / when she comes out to eat , do I close her back in her safe room or let her out to explore and see how this distant contact builds??? Please let me know your thoughts! Thank you 😊
 

fionasmom

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I would put her back in the safe room and return to what you were doing. It is just preferable to having her find a sequestered spot and getting into the gunfighter position and staying there. If you see some change in her behavior at large, such as a willingness to come out, that might be different.
 
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H&Alina

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I would put her back in the safe room and return to what you were doing. It is just preferable to having her find a sequestered spot and getting into the gunfighter position and staying there. If you see some change in her behavior at large, such as a willingness to come out, that might be different.
Ok. Thank you! I am thinking that’s what I should do too . She is curious about exploring, but I think it’s maybe too early since she is still so afraid of me and was hiding so much that all I saw was her glowing eyes from under the bed for 2 days 😥. She actually went into her safe room a few minutes ago (I saw on video to eat ) and I closed the door. I brought her a treat and fresh food , which she ate and then moved away (went to hide in her litter box, which she has never done before 😬) but I got her out with a toy for a minute. She really isn’t playing with me anymore, but at least I got her out of there . She is sitting on the opposite side of the room . I cannot approach her , so I’m just quietly sitting here. I know that many of the comments and feedback has been to just be patient and I’m trying.
Thank you for responding.
 

fionasmom

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Is she from a rescue? I know you said that you don't know her previous story.
 
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H&Alina

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Is she from a rescue? I know you said that you don't know her previous story.
Yes she was from a rescue. From what I do know . She was rescued with several cats , her mom and sister . Her mom was considered “not adoptable “ due to her feral and aggressive behavior and she was very protective of Alina , so I guess they needed to separate them so that Alina had some interaction with the previous foster , who had her for 2 months. The foster said she was mostly crated for the time with her , so little contact 😢 . This is really her first home type experience . I’m hoping she eventually feels safe here ❤
 
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H&Alina

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Hang in there. I have a friend who got a one year old feral cat and she hid under the spare room bed for about 4 months. My friend was pretty discouraged. The cat then started to interact by playing with a wand toy and then worked her way up to being on the bed instead of under it. It has now been about 8 months and the cat is quite well socialized and will follow my friend around and talk to her. She still can't touch her though so that is the next big hurdle.
 
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H&Alina

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Hi ! Thanks for the feedback. Do you know if your friends cat continued to hide under the bed after the 4 months . She has his under my bed and gets room and couch for a few days . Im blocking all areas I think she may get in and have now shut most of the doors to limit access. Im wondering if she will always try to escape and hide . I hope not 🤞 is your friends car more confident?
 

fionasmom

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I was in a situation once with a very feral mom and a kitten who was very bonded to her. Mom was TNRed, totally unadoptable by any standards, and the kitten was brought inside with her brothers. It took this little girl longer go come out of her shell. There was something about (in my opinion) the bond to the mom. In fact, when I trapped the mom after the litter was born on in my front bushes and had been with her for about 8 weeks, this kitten ran into the trap with the mother and they were trapped together and separated at the vet's.

Having been crated did not move this along, but I am sure that they were doing the best they could to save lives.
 
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H&Alina

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I was in a situation once with a very feral mom and a kitten who was very bonded to her. Mom was TNRed, totally unadoptable by any standards, and the kitten was brought inside with her brothers. It took this little girl longer go come out of her shell. There was something about (in my opinion) the bond to the mom. In fact, when I trapped the mom after the litter was born on in my front bushes and had been with her for about 8 weeks, this kitten ran into the trap with the mother and they were trapped together and separated at the vet's.

Having been crated did not move this along, but I am sure that they were doing the best they could to save lives.
That makes sense,… and is sad . So I’m guessing it just might take longer for Alina to come out of her shell too . thank you for the continued feedback and support!
 

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My first cat I took in because a friend could no longer keep her - I knew nothing about cats - but the first thing it did when I let it out of the cage in my house was to find my bed and hide under it. I accepted that, put a litter box in the bathroom and a tray with food and water in the room. Litter box was used and food was eaten but I didn't see the cat much for the 2-3 weeks. Then, one night I felt it's weight at the foot of the bed, as soon as it realized I was awake - under the bed. Over the next few weeks it would stay longer at the foot of the bed which evolved to it coming out and sleeping there and eventually to sitting next to me on the sofa.
Good luck - since then I've domesticated a feral that was supposed to be a TNR and I'm working on another.
 
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H&Alina

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I was in a situation once with a very feral mom and a kitten who was very bonded to her. Mom was TNRed, totally unadoptable by any standards, and the kitten was brought inside with her brothers. It took this little girl longer go come out of her shell. There was something about (in my opinion) the bond to the mom. In fact, when I trapped the mom after the litter was born on in my front bushes and had been with her for about 8 weeks, this kitten ran into the trap with the mother and they were trapped together and separated at the vet's.

Having been crated did not move this along, but I am sure that they were doing the best they could to save lives.
 
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H&Alina

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Update on Alina. It’s been 2 months . She seems more comfortable in her room and enjoys exploring the living room at night . She has allowed me to sit closer when she is eating and has come out of her hiding spot to eat despite me being near . She hides if I stand or come into a room she is in . Alina often leaves a room once I enter and has not shown interest in me. She has not approached me , has never made any vocalizations at all (she is silent all the time ) and I still cannot touch her. I keep trying to play with her but her participation varies and now she quickly ends up leaving the room . What do I do ?? Am I trying too hard . Should I be doing something different? I’m just feeling discouraged today and could use some encouragement/ feedback .
Thank you
 

fionasmom

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She is making progress, but it is slow. The fact that there are no vocalizations could indicate a more feral background, although ferals I have brought inside have definitely found their voice. Have you tried not looking at her and ignoring her? Taking care of her needs, of course, but letting her work this out for herself.
 
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H&Alina

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She is making progress, but it is slow. The fact that there are no vocalizations could indicate a more feral background, although ferals I have brought inside have definitely found their voice. Have you tried not looking at her and ignoring her? Taking care of her needs, of course, but letting her work this out for herself.
I was wondering about her lack of vocalizing. I’ve never heard her make a sound at all (no meow, purr, she even has silent hiss )
I have considered that maybe I should pay less attention to her . It does feel weird, but Maybe she feels that I’m trying too hard ?? I have noticed if she is hiding and I see her (know where she is) she leaves the room .
This is very hard ! 😩 I keep trying to pair my presence with positive experience, but it seems to backfire . She seems to want nothing to do with me :( I hope that changes with time.
Thank you as always for writing back !
 

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Hi! I am going through the same thing. In fact I joined this site to seek help. My boyfriend and I adopted a young cat who is apparently semi or full feral. We just passed the 3-month mark with her (her pic is my avatar) and while she is comfortable in her safe room and will let us pet her when she is in certain spots in the room and will also play in those in those same spots, her first reaction when she sees us is still to shrink down and put her ears down. And if we catch her out and about in her room she will run to hide. (We try to be very careful to not surprise her that way.) We have found great advice on this site and others about how to socialize a scared cat, and we’re now like you, just trying to remain patient and not get discouraged. We keep reminding ourselves to trust the process!
A few things we have tried that seem to have some positive effect: 1) She loves the Gerber baby chicken/gravy food and will lick that off of our fingers; we use that to encourage her to move toward us and to associate us with good things; 2) She is also mesmerized by movement, so I placed a battery operated Hexbug (you can buy these online) on the floor in the middle of a mat where she could see it. It really got her attention! I stayed on the other side of the room, and she slowly crept toward it while also keeping her eye on me. She didn’t pounce on it, but she did roll over on her back very playfully, something she hadn’t done when on the floor at the same time someone was in the room, so that was some progress! Baby steps. 😊 I know we will both get there with our kitties….in time!
 
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