Lost indoor cat & what should I do with this other feral?

Cricketsmom

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Someone left the door just a tiny bit open and Cricket got out, he's tamed and he's been neutered, so we were hopeful we might get him back by searching and leaving foot out.
Someone was eating the food so we set the trap and instead of Cricket there was a feral silver tom, he had bashed his head against the cage trying to get out.. all his fur was rubbed off and he had a minor graze.. poor thing. Tried to transfer him to a larger cage and he still just kept bashing against the wall so we let him out because he was going to seriously hurt himself like that.
Thought with the bad experience has was gone for good, and hopefully we could try catch Cricket again. Nope, he came back.
He's eating all the food and he was in the trap this morning, his wound was almost healed and he hadn't tried to get out this time, so we let him go because he did start trying to get out/going to hurt himself when we approached him. I think he's here to stay because he's learned we have food.
I'm not sure how to tame this cat if I can't keep him in a cage, I'll keep feeding him, maybe that will get him a bit tame if he learns when he's fed and comes out. And poor Cricket has been missing for over a week now, I sighted him after he had been gone for 3-4 days but I couldn't find him again. I thought I saw a black animal under my vehicle yesterday but I again could not find it. Should I just try to move on or is there still hope that he comes back?
 

fionasmom

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There is always hope that a cat will return and yours has not been gone for that long.
Our six month old kitten went missing 2 days ago...
Read through this very recent and currently active thread for some pointers that might help you with Cricket.

As for the other cat, he is hungry enough to reenter a trap which is unusual (the reentry part, not the hunger). Are you able to see if anyone is missing a cat by using social media, asking around, etc? I agree that he knows you have food and is going to keep coming back.

You are kind to keep feeding him. I am currently in this situation myself and found it is easier to feed the newcomer than to try to isolate the food for your pet cat. Observe his behavior....does he leave after he eats? Returns at certain times? You may be able to leave food out for Cricket if this newcomer leaves for a large part of the day.
 

movinintime

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Yes, my bet Cricket will return. Maybe the feral is intimidating him, if I get this correct?? I caught our feral amongst other kitties that he hung around with daily & thought I might trap them by accident instead. Luckily I got HIM not any of the others. Much patience & due diligence were needed. It took over 3.5 yrs feeding daily ouside to lure him into trap w/ fresh hot store-bought chicken pieces or KFC, if you like, as many use. It was a challenge but yes, feeding daily am & pm is the way to build trust at least on my end. As for Cricket, unless God forbid a problem occured, I'd expect Crisket's return soon. Keep us posted on both kitties' if you can.
 
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Cricketsmom

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There is always hope that a cat will return and yours has not been gone for that long.
Our six month old kitten went missing 2 days ago...
Read through this very recent and currently active thread for some pointers that might help you with Cricket.

As for the other cat, he is hungry enough to reenter a trap which is unusual (the reentry part, not the hunger). Are you able to see if anyone is missing a cat by using social media, asking around, etc? I agree that he knows you have food and is going to keep coming back.

You are kind to keep feeding him. I am currently in this situation myself and found it is easier to feed the newcomer than to try to isolate the food for your pet cat. Observe his behavior....does he leave after he eats? Returns at certain times? You may be able to leave food out for Cricket if this newcomer leaves for a large part of the day.
Thankyou for the link to the thread, it gives me hope that he will return. I will try some of the ideas in the thread too.
I will check social media to see if there any missing cat ads. I know a person near us also has cats that looked to be the same breed as him, I will ask them if they are missing a cat.
He only comes at night, I cannot observe him as he just runs when he sees someone. But he never touches food in the day. I will keep putting food out in the day for Cricket.
Do you think the feral cat is scaring off Cricket?
 
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Cricketsmom

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As the feral cat looks to be hungry enough to reenter traps, is there any tips/ways of how to get him to not run into the walls of a cage? I'd prefer to just be able to keep him in a cage and tame him that way, it would also mean that it is (unless another feral) Cricket and not this feral if the food was eaten. But with the way that he is about cages I cannot keep him in a cage as he will hurt himself. He looks like he has learned he cannot escape from the trap now, but in the other cage I take it he will still try to escape? He just runs headfirst into the bars of the cage that last time we tried to transfer him.
 

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He need be, being feral, asap the day u trap him asap-- taken in for neuter. U see hormones are the issue. If he's a male Tom he MUST be neuterd that day or asap. Vets can use meds while in trap yet--to calm him & then sedate/transfer him for the neuter. If no neuter he'll continue violent rampage when caught. This is EXACTLY as our wildman, Alpha male Tom, presented b4 neutering. Also put a towel over his trap asap when he goes in. It'll calm him. Your vet can give Gabapentin to help calm him mixed in food you KNOW or are pretty sure he'll eat. Again we used Gabapentin this way to calm him down along w/ asap towel thrown over trap tp cover into darkness to soothe him.
 
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Whenallhellbreakslose

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Hi there. First off, I want to tell you to never give up on finding Cricket. My male Tabby cat wandered away and I went through all the motions looking for him. The neighborhood was plasterd with his Lost posters. I checked online Lost and Found sites. I made sure every rescuer, vet, and shelters knew I was looking for him. If you haven't done this yet, I urge you to do it. First, ask your neighbors to check their yards decks, garages, and sheds to see if he is there. If he is spotted in one of the neighbor's yards ask if you could set up a trap there. You said you were worried your cat was not coming to you because of that feral you keep trapping. It could be possible, so be prepared to trap where he was last spotted. I had a happy ending with my male cat, he came back-- five months later. I almost lost all hope of seeing him again. So please, never give up on Cricket.

As for the feral male cat who keeps thashing around. I tnred a very feisty male cat who was like a bucking bronco. You must fully cover the trap/crate and put him in a very quiet place where he is not stressed out. I have used Feliway Pheromone spray to calm cats down. It works for some cats, but not for others. I hope this kitty has been eating in captivity. Some ferals just stop eating because they get depressed with being trapped. I took a feral to be tnred and had to ask the tnr people to give him some high cal paste because I couldn't get him to eat the night before. They did that, he was tnred and I brought him home. I usually don't release cats before they have a good meal. This cat refused to eat. I called a more experienced tnr person and they told me to let him go. Some ferals do not do well in captivity and starve themselves, so I released him right away. If this feral you trapped is not neutered, please contact a local tnr group and see if they can help you with that.

Best of luck to you. I hope your kitty comes back soon.🙂
 

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Don’t give up on Cricket. One of my kitties got out and , although it took time and I had no sightings after the first couple of days, she did turn back up. I actually think the other cats nearby helped to keep her near after she got scared. Some cats attract others and some don’t. Just keep looking diligently! If you can help the other cat, that’s a huge plus! Keep the feeding routine you previously had for Cricket and attempt to feed the other cat at a different time abd location if possible. Getting that cat to safety too would be a lifesaver for him. Ferals can be socialized. I have a home with socialized ferals and they are wonderful and amazing. I strongly suspect that the flash you saw under your car was Cricket. Don’t give up. Cats that get out are usually very near. Cats are masters at hiding. Their instincts are strong and this is genetics kicking in and telling them to stay safe while outside. If you need to start your vehicle, be sure to bang on the hood several times before starting the engine. Warm engines are a place cats sometimes hide.
 
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Cricketsmom

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Thanks everyone for the encouragement about Cricket, it really helps when I feel like he's never going to come back :redheartpump:

I could catch the feral and get him neutered right away. Will I be able to let him out immediately after and not worry about him scaring off Cricket? I don't think I can keep him in a cage away from Cricket, because of the danger of him hurting himself against the cage.
 

di and bob

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The cage must be covered asap with a blanket. And keep it on at all times! They calm immediately when you do that. Even if you transfer him to a bigger cage, either keep part of it covered or give him a small box with a hole or a covered carrier in it to hide in. Cats instinctively need a place to hide. My ferals are kept in a covered trap overnight when neutered then let go in the morning. they have all been fine.
 

fionasmom

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Cats in a covered trap will calm down remarkably for the most part. Just have a cover ready to go so that the cat does not struggle too much; watch the trap to see when it triggers, too. A neutered cat will calm down a lot and he may have an entirely different perspective on Cricket after he is fixed. I keep all males who are neutered over night at the vet's and release them the next day. You don't have to leave them at the vet's or TNR location though.
 
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Cricketsmom

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Sadly we have got no cats around that are eating the food we put out currently, I wasn't able to catch that other feral again as he hasn't returned (I assume he would have eaten the food if he was around). I did put the trap right beside the non-trap fresh food, is it possible it is scaring them away from eating any of the food?
I'm going to start putting out the fresh food in more locations in hopes that someone might stumble across it.
He used to be best friends with our feral kitten, would the kittens scent possibly help attract him back?
 

di and bob

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The kitten scent could be used to attract him, traps usually don't bother cats that are coming to eat, you might move the trap a little further away and gradually move it back. I have had ferals go right back into the trap the day after their surgery. I would have never thought they would! So then I had to use the old 'prop up the door with a bottle and long string attached' and it worked perfect!
 

Whenallhellbreakslose

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It is worth a try. It may or may not work depending on the emotional state the cat is in. A nervous or stressed out cat may not differentiate that scent from any other cats. Trappers have had to think outside the box to use different methods.I have heard of using a female cat in heat already trapped. Her trap is lined up to the loaded trap and there is a cover over the traps, so the cat to be trapped can't see that the female cat is trapped. The male cat will walk in the trap to get to the female and as soon as he steps on the plate the trap will spring shut. I have heard some trappers using the towel with a female in heat's scent on it and putting it in the trap to entice the make to go in it. In the case of a Momma cat-one of her kittens is used as bait. She hears her kitten and she comes running. I even heard where recordings of kittens were used in trapping. Also, kitten's scent being used in camouflage traps to lure her in.

Here is an article I hope helps you. Best of luck. 🙂
 
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