Took In Two 1 Yr Old Ferals

Furballsmom

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Dang, I'm sending tons of good thoughts your way. I know it doesn't really help, but hopefully something happens soon, and I'm thrilled to hear about the cats!!
 

calicosrspecial

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Things are pretty rough right now. Job search is yielding nothing but failures on every end. Fortunately the Unemployment was extended but I'm pretty worried now. I had 2 interviews that got shot down on the literal day of the interview, the first one got shot down because they had last minute funding concerns. the second one got shot down because they hired someone else without letting anyone know before canceling the interview. There were countless more interviews that also lead to nowhere or no feedback after the interview and I'm applying nationwide now. I have been applying relentlessly since April and I'm in IT. There was only one other period of time in my life I've had this hard of a time getting a job and that was when I lived in Seattle right after finish College. I had a potential job interview today but was confronted with a Psychometric Test where they asked me to complete 50 questions accurately in 15 minutes, which I failed. In the mean time I'm just using my idle / spare time to study alot, trying to get more certs and learn more in my field. Ansible, Python, Juniper, CCNP, ect. Not getting alot of free time due to it but its the only thing that keeps me motivated now. Im very worried about the state of this country and where everything is going and the aspect that even if I succeed in obtaining more education and skills that it might not matter before long.

My cats are doing well though..

View attachment 348666

Sandy has unbelievably taken well to me. She follows me everywhere and practically begs to be pet much more so than Panda and even more than my domestic cats. I love her, I feel bad for her for what she has had to endure and the fear she must have had to endure as apart of her daily life before she was rescued. Sometimes while petting her she will swat if my hand is somewhere she doesn’t like such as on the ground in front of her. I can pet from above no problem but can’t present my hand directly in front level with her face to her.

Sandy will dart out of my room when I open the door and begs to go out into the living room with the other cats. She and Rabbit still don’t get along too well but usually ignore each other. Other problem is other cats (especially Marshmallow) want to come near me when I’m in their presence to be petted too and Sandy won’t allow them. When they get close or she comes near them she’ll swat at them. When she does I end the petting session but it’s getting harder keeping them separate.
Hang in there. You are doing all the right things. Studying, getting more certifications. and learning more in your field. It is the economic environment and not you. I know that doesn't help much but you are doing everything right and don't get down (I know easier said than done) and believe in yourself. It is VERY common for companies to have funding uncertainty or issues right now AND VERY common for companies to keep people hanging just in case the person they offered the job to doesn't take it. The only time a person loses if they give up. But if you keep trying and don't give up it works out. It is scary, I have been there. All the emotions that a person goes through. But you have to be as tough as you can and never give up. Sometimes the right fit takes a little while, I know the money situation doesn't allow for a lot of time but I hope that we can turn the corner soon. And hopefully the government can help those in transition as it is desperately needed. 30-40M people are hungry in this country. That is just not right. But you are in a great field, you are doing all the right things, you have a great personality, seem intelligent. If anyone can get through this it is you. Just keep the faith, keep working hard (studying, getting those certs, learning more in your field, etc) and never give up. Many people have faced adversity and have come out better and stronger. I have no doubt great things will come your way.

I agree, the state of this country is not where I ever thought it would be. It is shameful. I am hoping that people realize that the path we are on is not what this country is meant to be. I just don't understand why there can't be more compassion and understanding and acceptance and generosity. Where we work together to find better, better lives for all. We can all disagree but we should always have respect. A saw that people from different spectrums of life came together to solve problems. The result was better decisions with all the different viewpoints. It offers a blueprint for what we as a country can achieve. We all are Americans and humans. I just wish we could all come together and fix all our problems. I remain hopeful we will. I hope very soon.

I am so glad the cats are better. Look at Sandy.

I know Love doesn't pay the bills but you are wealthier than you may ever realize having the love in your house you have.

I am not at all surprised Sandy has taken so well to you. Cats sense character, they are really good judges of character. So I am not surprised. I know you love her, it is obvious. And most importantly SHE KNOWS you love her. Please try not to feel badly for her. What you have done for her saved her life so celebrate your love for her and the great life she now has. I take in ferals that have had injuries and many issues and I try not to think of the past but only learn and then make the future the best as possible.

It is really interesting that she doesn't like a hand low in front of her but accepts from above. It is great you realize what she accepts and what she doesn't. That is what these interactions are all about. I like to say working with ferals is more art than science though there is some science still. But there is a lot of art which I think you are excellent at.

Very interesting Sandy wants to go out. That is a really good sign. Now, she is still a little less confident so that is where that behavior comes from but we can work with that. Just try to reassure her that everything is ok when another cat comes near. And try to avoid any negativity between them (using calm, confident words). Try to end it on a positive note. We can work on it if you like. We can fix that. Overall, I would say they are doing amazing well. If they aren't really fighting then it isn't too bad and can still be improved.

Hang in there and please don't be a stranger. Having friends to just sometimes talk can be helpful. Just try to stay as upbeat as possible and keep trying to move forward with learning, etc and realize it is their loss for not hiring you and your future is going to work out. Judging by what I have read, I have no doubt about it. This will make you better and stronger.

Good luck. Things will work out and if there is anyone that deserves it it is you.
 

Furballsmom

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Hang in there and please don't be a stranger. Having friends to just sometimes talk can be helpful. Just try to stay as upbeat as possible and keep trying to move forward with learning, etc and realize it is their loss for not hiring you and your future is going to work out. Judging by what I have read, I have no doubt about it. This will make you better and stronger.

Good luck. Things will work out and if there is anyone that deserves it it is you.
:yeah: :vibes::crossfingers:
 
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MikeAW2010

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The cats are still mostly okay.

Running into some odd issues with Sandy. She will run to me when I get out of bed or when I enter the room and practically beg to be pet. I will pet her, scratch behind her ears, her cheeks, and her back.. Sometimes she will turn around and see my hand and immediately go from purring to aggressive and try to swat my hand. Usually I can tell when she's getting tensed up and I withdraw usually just before she swats. I usually end the petting session if she does that. Today I took it a step further and told her 'Bad' in my normal tone of voice and left the room. Hoping this in some sense keeps her from doing it but Im not sure why she is so afraid of my hand or what I can do to lessen her fear or aggression toward it.
 

calicosrspecial

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The cats are still mostly okay.

Running into some odd issues with Sandy. She will run to me when I get out of bed or when I enter the room and practically beg to be pet. I will pet her, scratch behind her ears, her cheeks, and her back.. Sometimes she will turn around and see my hand and immediately go from purring to aggressive and try to swat my hand. Usually I can tell when she's getting tensed up and I withdraw usually just before she swats. I usually end the petting session if she does that. Today I took it a step further and told her 'Bad' in my normal tone of voice and left the room. Hoping this in some sense keeps her from doing it but Im not sure why she is so afraid of my hand or what I can do to lessen her fear or aggression toward it.
This is pretty common with ferals. I think it is mainly caution but at times overstimulation. I keep it short, I reassure with calm confident and loving words. I don't "over stay my welcome".

The fact you can see it coming is really good. Just end it there. Keep watching her body language.

I tend to go "ouch" and have a sorrowful attitude as cats sense emotions and since she loves you she will feel that emotion and realize it is not good. Never escalate with emotions, always try to de-escalate.

It is something I face with ferals all the time. Honestly, I think it just takes time. She loves you and she trusts you so I have no doubt she will finish that last part off.

As to why? Who knows what happened in her past. It is not you, it is either being a feral or something in her past. Just trust your instincts and watch her body language and just try to communicate the sadness emotion.

Has she ever scratched you with claws out or bitten? Recently?

Let's see how that works.
 

calicosrspecial

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The cats are still mostly okay.

Running into some odd issues with Sandy. She will run to me when I get out of bed or when I enter the room and practically beg to be pet. I will pet her, scratch behind her ears, her cheeks, and her back.. Sometimes she will turn around and see my hand and immediately go from purring to aggressive and try to swat my hand. Usually I can tell when she's getting tensed up and I withdraw usually just before she swats. I usually end the petting session if she does that. Today I took it a step further and told her 'Bad' in my normal tone of voice and left the room. Hoping this in some sense keeps her from doing it but Im not sure why she is so afraid of my hand or what I can do to lessen her fear or aggression toward it.
How are things going? Hope everything is going better.

Take good care and stay safe. Good luck on the job, things will work out.
 
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MikeAW2010

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Im having problems with Marshmallow and Sandy.

Sandy scares off all of my cats except Marshmallow.. by scares off I should say, they dont go near her personal space and have a certain respect for her or she may lash at them. Marshmallow, however; is just the opposite.. ..Marshmallow will attempt to charge, or even attack Sandy head on and Sandy is very afraid of Marshmallow. She keeps her distance from him but Marshmallow will purposefully seek her out if given the chance and he has initiated cat fights with her (and Marshmallow is a much bigger cat) - I've broken up one just now -- When this happens I typically have to cage Marshmallow.

Sandy isn't liking being confined to just my bedroom anymore and barges out when I open the door to it, She basically seems to be seeking me because she basically begs to be pet but I think that is somehow upsetting Marshmallow because Marshmallow is used to snuggling up beside me when I lie down or get low enough to pet them and Marshmallow seems to be upset that Sandy is getting attention.

I've been trying to diverge more time and attention to Marshmallow (Sandy admittedly is very hoggish on petting and wont leave my side even when he is around me.) At night I've been letting him sleep with me, at day I try to get in a few petting sessions but it doesn't seem to be enough.
 

calicosrspecial

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Im having problems with Marshmallow and Sandy.

Sandy scares off all of my cats except Marshmallow.. by scares off I should say, they dont go near her personal space and have a certain respect for her or she may lash at them. Marshmallow, however; is just the opposite.. ..Marshmallow will attempt to charge, or even attack Sandy head on and Sandy is very afraid of Marshmallow. She keeps her distance from him but Marshmallow will purposefully seek her out if given the chance and he has initiated cat fights with her (and Marshmallow is a much bigger cat) - I've broken up one just now -- When this happens I typically have to cage Marshmallow.

Sandy isn't liking being confined to just my bedroom anymore and barges out when I open the door to it, She basically seems to be seeking me because she basically begs to be pet but I think that is somehow upsetting Marshmallow because Marshmallow is used to snuggling up beside me when I lie down or get low enough to pet them and Marshmallow seems to be upset that Sandy is getting attention.

I've been trying to diverge more time and attention to Marshmallow (Sandy admittedly is very hoggish on petting and wont leave my side even when he is around me.) At night I've been letting him sleep with me, at day I try to get in a few petting sessions but it doesn't seem to be enough.
Yes, I was afraid of this as we didn't really do a formal intro for them.

"Sandy scares off all of my cats except Marshmallow.. by scares off I should say, they dont go near her personal space and have a certain respect for her or she may lash at them." - That isn't too bad since there is respect. Are the other cats hiding or not eating like normal or acting differently in any way?

"Marshmallow, however; is just the opposite.. ..Marshmallow will attempt to charge, or even attack Sandy head on and Sandy is very afraid of Marshmallow." - Probably because Marshmallow figures a good defense is a good offense and sees Sandy swat the others. There is some territory issues I am sure as well.

"She keeps her distance from him but Marshmallow will purposefully seek her out if given the chance and he has initiated cat fights with her (and Marshmallow is a much bigger cat) - I've broken up one just now -- " - Ok, we need to try to keep them separate (and I think we need to keep Sandy in your room sadly and then bring her out to do some work).

"When this happens I typically have to cage Marshmallow." - I would like to be careful with this. Cats are territorial so taking territory away can increase the issues. So I would separate them by getting Sandy into your bedroom and letting Marshmallow have his normal territory. I know it is hard to do but Sandy does like your room and feels most secure in their.

We need to get them to be more confident (through Play, Food, Height and Love) and to make positive associations using food and to try to make every encounter as positive as possible and try to minimize negative encounters.

"Sandy isn't liking being confined to just my bedroom anymore and barges out when I open the door to it," - Yes, once they taste freedom it is hard for them to go back. If she is doing that she must not fear the other cats that much. Even Marshmallow. But we need to build trust between them.

"She basically seems to be seeking me because she basically begs to be pet" - Yes, you are a big part of her confidence so that is exp[ected. The good news is we can use that to help with the intro with Marshmallow and the other cats.

"but I think that is somehow upsetting Marshmallow because Marshmallow is used to snuggling up beside me when I lie down or get low enough to pet them and Marshmallow seems to be upset that Sandy is getting attention." - That could be part of it. We'll have to reassure Marshmallow that Sandy is not a negative. And I would like you to step up play with Marshmallow and give some extra love.

"I've been trying to diverge more time and attention to Marshmallow (Sandy admittedly is very hoggish on petting and wont leave my side even when he is around me.) At night I've been letting him sleep with me, at day I try to get in a few petting sessions but it doesn't seem to be enough." - OK, great. So you do pet him and Sandy comes up to you and Marshmallow? If you are safe and not at risk of being hurt in anyway and you can give them both love (positive association an positive encounter) that can be very helpful. But you have to be safe.

It sounds like a little confidence deficit. We can work through this. Try to step up play especially in areas there are issues and feed treats or a meal after.

Let's try that and see how it works.
 

Whenallhellbreakslose

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I understand that taking in Ferals after their socialization period is typically not a good idea.

These two kittens were apart of a litter that frequently visited my office. Generally we left food for them on the patio. They at first would not eat when we were around, eventually they would eat so long as we kept our distance, and finally they even came inside the office to eat so long as we didn't try to approach them, if we did they would dart.

Their mother went missing and the neighboring offices started having alot of complaints about the cats (there were more than just these two) and we were off a busy street that claimed the life of one cat. The neighbors called the humane society who attempted to trap them and failed on the first attempt.

My time at that office came to an end and those cats were used to coming there to eat, except noone would be there after I left, or worse someone would end up calling the humane society on them again...so I managed to trap them inside the office while they were eating and caught them both.

Of course, not having any real human exposure, they were NOT happy to see me...and I knew I was taking a huge risk attempting to handle them as despite their small size, they could really hurt me if they tried to. Usually my getting close to either of them results in a hiss or a batting paw of which I back off. I normally don't go near them unless I need to.

Its only been maybe 4 days at most since Ive caught them so I dont expect them to turn around very quickly, for the most part even in that short time I they learned how to use the litter box and as long as I approach very slow and cautiously, with food... they typically won't hiss. I guess in a way Im just hoping that there is hope in still socializing them even if it takes some time and patience. Anything you can recommend would be greatly appreciated.
I have taken cats right off the streets at various ages and the ones I had a problem with were what I call "true ferals". I know many who deal with outdoor cats just think there are two categories for them; Stray (domesticated but lost or abandoned) or feral(no socialization and very little contact with humans. I believe in the third category: Semi-ferals(cats born outdoors, but have had enough contact with humans that they are not shy like ferals.) Right now, out of the two groups of cats I feed, I say they're 5 cats I can pet and one is a lap cat who allow me to scratch his belly.😻 I would love to get these cats off the streets, but can't right now. Strays can be re- acquainted with being a domestic kitty and I believe Semi-ferals can be taken in, and it may take some time and patience to bring them around, but I have done it and seen others do it as well. I have also seen true ferals taken in and the success rate is on the low side because it may take a very long time to get them use to domestic living, and still they never really lose their feral traits. I think true ferals would be happier on the streets--that is home. If you ever had to relocate them, it has to be a last resort. Look for a new colony for them and when you find one, they will have to be outside in a crate for 3 weeks, so they can get use to their new environment and they can get use to the new colony(and vice versa). For semi-ferals, you have the option, if they are on the friendly side, you may want to take them off the streets and take the time to domesticate them or you can also transfer them to a new colony, just like the true feral. Strays should be checked out to see that they are not someone's missing pet and if their owner cannot be found, take them off the streets. If not friendly and no owner could be found, then colony transfer is the other option for them.

Set these kitties in a small room with a crate and a place they can hide when scared. Give them their space. Show that you mean them no harm, sit or kneel down when you are in your presence, the smaller you make yourself, the more at ease they will be with you. Feed them using a spoon when they are in the crate. Talk to them in a comforting voice. Interact with them when they are not stressed out by using feather wands or string toys (the longer the better until you gain their trust.) Let them out of the crate in the closed off room when you feel they have begun to trust you, sit down and interact with them through play or food. When these cats no longer fear you, their personalities will come out. Take things one step at a time and don't rush things. It may take a while, but you will eventually break through. Best of luck to you.
 

calicosrspecial

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I know you are busy on so many fronts but how is everything going?

Hang in there, all will work out as long as you do your best and never give up. I know you will do those things so I have faith in better times coming for you. It is hard to go through more difficult times (I have several times in life) but I do believe things do work out. I hope all goes well soon for you all.

You have friends rooting for you.
 
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MikeAW2010

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I know you are busy on so many fronts but how is everything going?

Hang in there, all will work out as long as you do your best and never give up. I know you will do those things so I have faith in better times coming for you. It is hard to go through more difficult times (I have several times in life) but I do believe things do work out. I hope all goes well soon for you all.

You have friends rooting for you.
I guess its time for me to confess that I have lost Rabbit. My G/F was watching him at the time and we had a fight and she ended up dumping him in the wilderness. She and I are no longer a thing. I have a huge search effort going for him, signs and flyers as well as NextDoor and Facebook and animal shelters, he is chipped and has the most updated info on his chip. He has been missing for alittle over two weeks now and he wasn't lost in an area local to my house but an area nearby wilderness and wildlife and I'm very worried about him. I've been going out there with boots and a flash light as well as placing down food stations monitored with wildlife cameras but all I'm getting are Racoons, Possums, and an occasional Feral cat. There are Rattle Snakes, Foxes, Coyotes and Bob cats as well as Owls, Hawks and Eagles out there and I'm fearing the worst for Rabbit...his claws were recently trimmed as well.

I've been told cats are most active at night and have been going after the sun sets and when you shine a flashlight all you can see are reflections of eyes (super creepy) everywhere. I've walked out there with catfood rattling it and shaking it calling for his name but he does not emerge. There are storm drains that let off into a huge ditch area filled with tall grass (I'm deathly afraid of due to the possibility of snakes) that I will occasionally test my wits enough to check and have called for him there but no luck there either. I have left food / cameras in those areas but I'm also very worried that my luck may run out in searching for him and I may be subject to a snake bite which is something Im really trying to avoid. The drains lead into private property which I dont technically have authority to search, they're pretty strict about it.

As for the job situation, I have been truncated into irrecoverable debt but I did manage to find a job which I am basically taking out of desperation. Im okay with most of the job which is basically doing what I have always been doing, working with Networking Equipment but there are chances I will have to visit a hospital and even work on isolated floors filled with Covid patients... so I'm worried about that but Im not really in a position where I can say no anymore.
 

calicosrspecial

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I guess its time for me to confess that I have lost Rabbit. My G/F was watching him at the time and we had a fight and she ended up dumping him in the wilderness. She and I are no longer a thing. I have a huge search effort going for him, signs and flyers as well as NextDoor and Facebook and animal shelters, he is chipped and has the most updated info on his chip. He has been missing for alittle over two weeks now and he wasn't lost in an area local to my house but an area nearby wilderness and wildlife and I'm very worried about him. I've been going out there with boots and a flash light as well as placing down food stations monitored with wildlife cameras but all I'm getting are Racoons, Possums, and an occasional Feral cat. There are Rattle Snakes, Foxes, Coyotes and Bob cats as well as Owls, Hawks and Eagles out there and I'm fearing the worst for Rabbit...his claws were recently trimmed as well.

I've been told cats are most active at night and have been going after the sun sets and when you shine a flashlight all you can see are reflections of eyes (super creepy) everywhere. I've walked out there with catfood rattling it and shaking it calling for his name but he does not emerge. There are storm drains that let off into a huge ditch area filled with tall grass (I'm deathly afraid of due to the possibility of snakes) that I will occasionally test my wits enough to check and have called for him there but no luck there either. I have left food / cameras in those areas but I'm also very worried that my luck may run out in searching for him and I may be subject to a snake bite which is something Im really trying to avoid. The drains lead into private property which I dont technically have authority to search, they're pretty strict about it.

As for the job situation, I have been truncated into irrecoverable debt but I did manage to find a job which I am basically taking out of desperation. Im okay with most of the job which is basically doing what I have always been doing, working with Networking Equipment but there are chances I will have to visit a hospital and even work on isolated floors filled with Covid patients... so I'm worried about that but Im not really in a position where I can say no anymore.
Oh my goodness. I am so sorry. No words can even come close to expressing my sadness. I know how much you love Rabbit and what a great life you have given him. I am so glad you are putting up such a great effort and a great search for him. It is great he is chipped. PLEASE be careful going out there. I admire your efforts but you also have to think of your own safety. Cats are resilient and there are amazing success stories. Let's hope all goes well. I will pray for Rabbit.

Yes, PLEASE be careful about all of that. I just don't want you to be injured or worse. Rabbit would not want something bad to happen to you.

I am so glad that you have a new job. It is easier to find a job when you have a job so you can use it as a stepping stone. If you have to visit a hospital demand you have the proper PPE and N95 masks. I am sure they will have to comply. And then make sure you don't go near your parents or anyone vulnerable. You can use this job as a base to proceed forward to something you would like more. I am not sure what irrecoverable debt is but try to talk and work with the lenders as they may be more willing to work with you. Lenders always like it when effort is made.

Oh Mike, I am so sorry about Rabbit but have faith and try to stay safe. I know how hard it must be. All you can do is your best and you obviously are doing all you can. Congratulations on the new job. I knew you would find something fast. I am sure you will do great and find something you like more if you so chose. But at least it helps with the financial pressures. Just keep taking things one at a time and do your best and try to stay positive. Life is hard but it is what we overcome that really defines our lives. If we fight through the tough times we learn and become better. I know you will find greater heights in life.

Thanks for the update. I will pray for Rabbit.
 
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MikeAW2010

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I'm still searching for him but I've covered just about every area that I safely have access to. I've found a colony of feral cats but no sign whatsoever of Rabbit. I left wildlife cameras out at feeding stations but they are only getting racoons and possums. I am concerned he may just be hiding but if he is, I dont know where to check and I only have limited access because there is a heavily secured complex adjacent to the site which I cannot go into and private property also adjacent which Im not allowed to explore (its completely wilderness). Thing I'm worried about is exploring the grassy area (tall overgrown grass and shrubberies) and stumbling upon a rattle snake or meeting a buck, there were alot of deer out.

Not sure what to do.
 

calicosrspecial

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I'm still searching for him but I've covered just about every area that I safely have access to. I've found a colony of feral cats but no sign whatsoever of Rabbit. I left wildlife cameras out at feeding stations but they are only getting racoons and possums. I am concerned he may just be hiding but if he is, I dont know where to check and I only have limited access because there is a heavily secured complex adjacent to the site which I cannot go into and private property also adjacent which Im not allowed to explore (its completely wilderness). Thing I'm worried about is exploring the grassy area (tall overgrown grass and shrubberies) and stumbling upon a rattle snake or meeting a buck, there were alot of deer out.

Not sure what to do.
You are doing everything you possibly can which I admire greatly. All you can do is your best which you obviously are doing.

Just make sure you are protecting yourself. The last thing he would want is something happening to you.

Cats are incredibly resilient and there are stories of cats finding their home (either directly or indirectly through animal control, etc) so a good outcome is possible.

I know how emotionally difficult it as. I have had many ferals that I have been very close to disappear. I think it is important to try to understand what we can control and what we can't and try to find acceptance in trying our best. That is really all we can do.

I wish I had good advice as to what else to do. Just please make sure you are safe.

And talk to us about what you are feeling. Many of us have gone through similar things as we understand the emotions to some degree.

Hang in there. I am wishing you all the best.
 
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