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Trapping Mom Cat And Kittens

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dahlia

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Just an update. I trapped mom cat and the two remaining kittens about two weeks ago. It could not have worked out better. I had three traps but had only set two of them. Tortie kitten walked right in to one so I went and grabbed the trap to put in my garage and when I came out the most shy kitten had gone in the other trap. I brought it into the garage and then set the other trap and set it out for mom. I figured it might take a bit so I was going to go inside and eat breakfast and watch out the kitchen window but before I was even to the back door I heard the trap go and mom had gone in.
The two kittens have been reunited with their sister at the shelter and they are all in a big cage in the "kitten room". I went and saw them on Friday and they are still super cautious but you can tell the difference with the gray and white one that has been there the extra two weeks. She seems braver. I am hoping they will continue to adjust. Mom cat is spayed and still in a feral cage in the feral room. I have told them I will just bring her home. I have decided to make her an indoor cat with my other cats so I need to get my set up ready. The only place that will really work to separate her initially is the downstairs bathroom. I don't care if she is ever all that friendly. She just needs to get along with my other cats and I need to be able to get her to the vet when she needs to go.
One question. I ordered a new cat box to put in the bathroom but then thought maybe it would be better to use one that the other cats have used so she starts getting used to their smell? Any thoughts? I have ordered a covered cat bed and bought a new scratching post and a few toys.
 

shadowsrescue

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This is such a great update! I am so happy for you that you are taking the Mom cat inside your home!

I would get her a litter box of her own to start. It might just be too overwhelming for her to smell other cats right away. You don't want her to start territory marking.

After she has adjusted a bit you can start scent swapping. I like to just have some small blankets or towels in the new cat's room and after the cat has slept on it or sat on it, then take it to your resident cats. Then take something from your resident cats into the new cat's space. I like to just leave it there. Not force the smell. I also have placed it under the food bowls. This allows for good associations. When the cat eats she smells other cats!

Please keep us posted and we are here to help along the way! I have brought 5 feral cats inside my home. One took a really long time to adjust and awhile to get along with my resident cat. The second one was only a few months. Then I moved and brought my 3 outside feral cats and made them inside cats. They really like being inside. They don't love all of the other cats, but I have made it work out!
 
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dahlia

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I picked up mom cat on Friday afternoon and she is in my spare room. She is doing great for the most part. She will sniff my hand and kind of bat at it. She comes out of her safe place when I come in the room and sometimes will flop on her side and roll around like one of my cats does when he wants to be pet. If I move my hand toward her though, she will sit up. The problem is, she has developed a horrible cough. She is eating and drinking fine and using the cat box. However, when I first come in the room she will often have this dry hacking cough. It seems like she sometimes brings up a little saliva but that is it. It sounds a lot like my asthma cat's cough but that seems like an awful remote possibility. Could it be stress? She got her shots the Monday before I picked her up and maybe it is a reaction to them. The shelter lady gave them to her and she just puts them all in one I think and jabs them. There is no way I can bring her to the vet, at least for awhile (since I can't even tough her). I am going to change what I am feeding her in case it is an allergy to the food.
 

shadowsrescue

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It very well could be a reaction to the vaccines. Did you ask the shelter lady if the cough was present while she was at the shelter?

If worse comes to worse and you need her seen by a vet, could you use a mobile vet? I have used one for 3 feral cats. I just made sure that they were equipped to deal with feral cats.
 
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dahlia

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It seems to be URI or kennel cough from what I can tell. It is resolving itself though and she seems much better. I only heard her cough once yesterday (of course I am gone for most the day) and she seems less snuffly. She is still eating fine and is quite active. I absolutely cannot pass whatever it is on to my asthma kitty though so it is a bit of a set back in the introduction process. I don't want to start any sort of scent swapping of her scratching post or bed until I know that she is no longer contagious and no traces are still surviving on surfaces.
She is coming along quite well. She runs towards me know when I come in the room and tried out a meow on me the other morning (and looked pretty pleased with herself). We seem to have a communication issue though because I swear it seems like she wants me to pet her but if I try she jumps up and backs away. She does this cute thing where, if I tilt my head at her, she will tilt her head back and then flop over on her side. She will sniff my hand if I put it out in a fist and then gently bats at it.
 

shadowsrescue

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Such good news. Have you tried making a pet petter? I have used them on all my feral cats to get them used to touch. I just take an old wand toy and wrap a clean sock around it and secure with duct tape. I have also used a piece of flannel. You can use the pet petter as a sort of toy to get the cat interested. Then when the cat is facing away from you, you can try to lightly touch the cat with the soft end. It can take a week or two, but usually works quite well.

Here is a picture of one I made.
 
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dahlia

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Just an update. My kitty is doing very well. She rubs all around my legs when I go in the room and I can pet her on the sides (the head only when she feels like it). We are working on picking up. I can put my hands under her and lift her a little off the ground before she gets annoyed. She has some toys but this morning I put my other cats' plastic circle with a ball in it (which they play with rarely) in her room and I could hear her playing with it for like an hour. She loved it. She is literally half the size of my male kitties so I am a little worried about the introduction process. She seems to be pretty much over whatever illness she had so I am going to start some limited introductions through the gate next week.
 

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