My Feral And Rescued Cats

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Jcatbird

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I am dashing this off while I have a signal here. Tech issues where I live so access is sporadic. Need help! I rebaited the traps this evening but no takers so I went out after dark. Jazzy came, but not to the trap. She came from the neighbors house. I know she must have eaten there. I sat still by the fence and Coal came and rubbed against me. Jet played nearby but not as trusting yet. I have caught most of the kitties ( with the exception of the two kittens) by making friends with them. I guess I have been doing it the hard way? Lol That was just the only way I knew to save them. But I am learning. It was my quest for info and help that led me here to this site and I am so grateful I found it. There were so many kitties out there at the end of last year I was overwhelmed with the urgency of the situation so I just started grabbing every cat I could get my hands on. I can’t say that every single one thought of me as a friend but at least that I offered refuge from the immediate threats to them. Poor kitties! If anyone has an idea about how to get them trapped I welcome the help. I don’t know how to compete with the free food at the neighbors, house. The friend that regularly traps is out of town but when she returns I will ask her if she can help with a drop trap. I am feeling my age but I desperately want to get the last kitties in to start socializing. My time right now is divided between finding homes for the kitties that are now ready for adoption, getting others vet care and spay/ neuter, socializing the ones I caught that are not yet ready for adoption and catching the last ones still running around outside. I admit to exhaustion. With the first 20 or so kitties I was doing it without any outside assistance or support. I was very afraid for the kitties. I wasn’t sure if I could really help all of them in a way that would offer them a good life, but I wanted to do as much as I could. Time was not on my side. It often left me in tears. However, now I have received the support of others. With every kitty that is adopted my spirits are lifted. With every post from other cat lovers I feel less alone in my efforts. With every bit of knowledge that has been shared with me I have been given new tools to aid me in the rescues. I am more hopeful now than I ever thought possible. A huge part of my support has come from those of you who have helped me on this site. My first post on any website ever was here back in December 2017. I had no idea how to maneuver on the site but I received help and guidance from others who were understanding and patient. The people who are here on this site have made a difference in my life and the lives of all these kitties. Thank you! You all inspire me to continue in spite of any losses or setbacks and energize me through my exhaustion. I now look to you all once again for knowledge. A way to bring the last kitties to safety. I will keep trying to trap as well as making friends or just grabbing any kitty that I can but if there is a more efficient way to do this I sure would appreciate some advice. Especially with the feral that is the wildest kitty. She is one that will never want to be caught by making friends. I tried to get her last winter but when all but one of her kittens were shot and killed I lost any chance of gaining her trust. She even injured me this past week just for putting food near her. The sooner I get the kitties, the better it will be for them. I will be getting the last adult male I have in hand fixed this week. If I catch the girls then I can get three kitties fixed this week and then the final 2 cats can be fixed the following week. The last cats to be fixed! That would be a day of pure relief for me. Then all that would remain for me to do would be to get the last kittens, continue the socializing, vet care and adopting of all that remain. We are so close to the ending of a feral colony! On the day the last kitty is fixed I may cry happy tears. Lol I will be sure to share that day with everyone here so that they can celebrate their part in this! I am at a point where I really think it can happen. Gold stars for everyone!!!!
 

Mamanyt1953

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We finally stopped putting food in the traps and have left them near the kitties favorite places.
You know, many of these traps can be set so that they will NOT close. If the ones you are working with are like that, try setting them to stay open and give the cats some time to get used to them again. It might not work with your older, wily cats, but even then, if they see some of the others coming in and out without a problem, they might accept them. THEN you can try nabbing them again!
 
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Celebrate!!!!! I just convinced the two kittens that belong to Jazzy to trust me! They went into a carrier! I have them! Just minutes ago. I have to get things situated for them but had to let everyone know that Jet and Coal are safe! Be back if I can get a signal. Thank you everyone!!!!
Jcatbird Jcatbird : I'm glad you read this thread too. If for no other reason than for you to know there's other rescuers doing the same thing you are. :petcat:
 
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Ever get the feeling you were being watched by an elf in the woods?
You know, many of these traps can be set so that they will NOT close. If the ones you are working with are like that, try setting them to stay open and give the cats some time to get used to them again. It might not work with your older, wily cats, but even then, if they see some of the others coming in and out without a problem, they might accept them. THEN you can try nabbing them again!
I have left the traps open and in places the kitties like to go. Today is the first time the Mom allowed her kitties back inside my fence. They were even near the trap. I managed to get fairly close to all myself. I managed to lure them fairly close to me. Mom and the three kittens left out of the litter I caught. I caught four. The first two in the trap and the second two by luring them to me. After getting the four Mom took them away so I was thrilled to see her bring them back out of the woods today. Got some pics but at a distance. Didn’t want to scare them. They were very emergetic and playful. They seem healthy.
 
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The celebration tonight is all about these two! Mom is Jazzy. These two are Coal and the tuxedo is Jet. Safe inside now and just a few feet away from me for the night. I have been petting Coal the past couple of nights. Jet is still timid. Coal wants out of the cage to be held already and has been purring. I’ll get better pics later. I didn’t want to scare Jet. The very late night visits have paid off! Yay!
 
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Coal and Jet cried a lot last night. Had the cage covered. Finally figured out that they wanted play time. I have a fold up mesh carrier that is large. Put them in that and they played , then returned to cage, potty and went to sleep. Whew! They are beautiful kittens. Here are happier pics!
 
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Thank you! The kind thoughts are greatly appreciated. The encouragement helps! Especially while the babies are crying! Lol My old female , Smokey is worried about them and managed to slip in with Coal. She wanted to comfort them. Smokey is a rescue from about ten years ago. Have to love them and have to try and help them. They always return the love , and then some!
 
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I am so tired I must be loopy! Lol I just had an idea for a different style of cat trap for the elusive kitties. I have had my best luck using a cat carrier. Does anyone produce a trap that is made to look more like a carrier? I know many kitties go in traps that appear open but there are some that want the security of going into an enclosed structure. If nothing like that is produced already...... it should be. Maybe some company will get the message and make one. Hurry please. I need it yesterday. If this is a new idea then I expect every rescuer on this site to get one for free from the company that uses the idea! Ha! A cat carrier with auto closing door! Maybe motion sensor instead of trip plate. Wonder if it would work. Jet escaped the cage! I just had to chase him down in the laundry room. I think he was smiling when I finally caught him again. At least I got to hold and pet him after his big adventure! He seems much happier now! Silly kitten.
 

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Wow, you've done a fantastic job! Some cats are very trap shy, others just need a lot of patience before you can get them in.

OK, I only have a few minutes now and I'll post more later, but off the top of my head:

Try getting some cardboard boxes. Cut a piece of card to size to line the trap floor, other larger pieces to stand the trap on. Cats are very aware of what they are standing on so don't like the feel of the wire cage beneath their paws. Cardboard to walk on outside and inside the trap sometimes works.

I used to have a trap that had a sheet of clear perspex at the closed end, so cats thought they could walk all the way through.

I rented it from a rescue, I can't remember what make it was but I guess you can find something. Have-a-heart and Tomohawk might have something?

kittychick kittychick @ashade1 have a lot of experience of trapping. They might have some good ideas.
 
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Ha! Too funny. They pretend well! Had a bit of bad news today. Manny has been rejected by the shelter. He swatted at the staff and escaped his cage to hide behind it. I either arrange pick up or he will be euthanized.Manny on right with brother Man on left. Man is still with me. I will work on getting Manny back here safe. More later If I get a signal. Hopefully better news. Thanks for the great trap tricks!!!
 

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kittychick

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Wow, you've done a fantastic job! Some cats are very trap shy, others just need a lot of patience before you can get them in.

OK, I only have a few minutes now and I'll post more later, but off the top of my head:

Try getting some cardboard boxes. Cut a piece of card to size to line the trap floor, other larger pieces to stand the trap on. Cats are very aware of what they are standing on so don't like the feel of the wire cage beneath their paws. Cardboard to walk on outside and inside the trap sometimes works.

I used to have a trap that had a sheet of clear perspex at the closed end, so cats thought they could walk all the way through.

I rented it from a rescue, I can't remember what make it was but I guess you can find something. Have-a-heart and Tomohawk might have something?

kittychick kittychick @ashade1 have a lot of experience of trapping. They might have some good ideas.
Thanks for the shout out Norachan Norachan !!! I've definitely (I should say "we" since hubby has helped with lots of them!) got more than my fair share of trapping experience over more years than I like to think about. :rolleyes: We've got a pretty decent-sized colony spread through our suburban neighborhood. Most are feral, but there are now more and more strays being dumped here (I'm sure after hearing there were so many here that no one would notice "one more."). In fact our last trapping late last fall involved a mom and kittens a few blocks from us (about 9ish weeks old if I remember right) - we didn't know they existed until one night the three babies were playing in the street and we almost ran them over! My sweet hubby had a less-than-thrilled reaction (he's more logical than I am) when I jumped out of the car before it stopped to try to see where they went and if they were ok - -and then started walking through the neighbor's bushes to see if they'd run under there - - only to look up and see the homeowner and his whole family looking at me like "What are you? A female peeping tom?" Turned out the homeowner was nice - - he thought the mama was "wild" (which, after talking to him, I realized he meant feral) and had literally been dumped in the side door of his garage, only to have kittens a day or two later. With his permission, we trapped the whole family - - and it turned out momma (now "Maggie") had definitely been someone's cat - - a real lover. The three kittens needed socializing, but we worked with them for weeks - and found homes for all.

Then a bit ago I said "the phrase that should never be spoken" - - "I think we've finally gotten the whole colony fixed!" You know what comes next - - we see three young cats ("teenage-ish") come from a back yard a block down from our house! It was definitely a "pride goeth before a fall" moment! So --- going to talk to several houses right there, see if we can get someone to admit who's feeding them, and see if we can TNR them (like you - it's all on our very limited dime!).

Anyway - - -as always, I digress. :) I've gone back and skimmed your thread (going to read it all tonight) - - - what you've been doing is BEYOND impressive!!! But if you would like any help/need suggestions/etc. with trapping - - I'm MORE than happy to share what "tricks of the trade" I know!! We can either do it through this thread - - or if you'd like to send me a note, I can do that too. Anything I can do to help - - I'm VERY happy too!

Keep going girl - you're amazing!

(While we're showing feral cuties - - -below is "Aspen" - - one of our sweet TNRs from three years ago - - who has made our garage his home - - possibly due to heated shelters, hand-fed chicken, soft food morning and night, flea treatments, etc.)

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After getting the four Mom took them away so I was thrilled to see her bring them back out of the woods today. Got some pics but at a distance. Didn’t want to scare them. They were very emergetic and playful. They seem healthy.
I know how happy you are to see them back, safe and sound! You tell Mama for me that she is the reason for that old saying, "too smart for her own good!"

I am just in awe of what you are doing with these babies. Do you know how hard it is to get your hands on a feral and transition it? Even kittens are wary and wily! And you are doing it all (or almost all) by hand! YOU GO, CAT WHISPERER!
 
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Yep! Mom is too smart for her own good. I watched her today as she led the three babies in and out of my fence. She is traveling but the rain today put her back in an old greenhouse. Yay for rain. Now, got two kinds of news. Hang in until the happy ending. I took a male to be fixed. Good news. I cam home to find the trailer on my property that had my over flow of six kitties( minus the one I took to be fixed) had been broken into. Main room was missing Kodiak and Mountain Bear. Goldilocks was in hiding but came when I called her. I was had a panic attack. Looked everywhere for over an hour. Two cat friends called at that moment and we’re also panicking. ( these are friends who adopted from me and got friends to adopt) They stayed on phone with me until I heard a scratching noise. I got off phone to try and locate the noise. My heart leaped when I realized both cats were trapped in an old storage area outside the trailer. I guess they were either put there or got there trying to hide during the break in. They are shaken but okay. All five are unhurt. I just spent many hours trying to secure the building. I do have monitors there and I almost never leave my property unattended by I left today for twenty minutes to take the kitty to the vet without someone watching the place. I won’t again.
 
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