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Advice For Taking In A Stray!

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#11 budgetjamaicabride

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    Posted 04 October 2009 - 11:41 AM

    Vicki has provided you great advice! Provide comfort and shelter and then a way for you to keep in that comfort and shelter. In the initial times, DO NOT try to handle the kitty without towels to help prevent scratching, biting, and stress. If you end of capturing prior to your vet visit, please keep him quarantined from the rest of your cats to prevent spread of whatever he/she may have.

    I have taken in ferels and converted them into great house cats... it just takes time and patience and an understanding of the process. My cat that just passed away was a ferel cat and lived happy with us for 10 years.

    If nothing else, you can provide comfort and safety to your new outside cat. Spay/Neuter, deworm, vaccine, etc. You have a good heart!

    Keep us posted.

    #12 krayzeekitty

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      Posted 04 October 2009 - 11:53 AM

      I wish there were more people in this world that had hearts for these kitties. It is awesome that you are helping this fellow! Hope it all works out.

      Looking to share photographer week of January 16, 2010 Holguin, Cuba

      #13 BlissfulMsMiranda

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        Posted 04 October 2009 - 10:03 PM

        Aw thanks ladies! Great advice and tips ... this week is the trip to the vet week ...

        I was able to actually call him with food this morning ... I shook the bag and waited about 1 minute and he came running ... so he's definitely staying close to our house (I think he may even be under our porch). And I couldn't pour the food fast enough - I ended up pouring 1/2 of it over his head because he was so eager to eat!! :)

        We are going to try coaxing him into the garage with tuna, and if that doesn't work I'm going to try picking him up with a big blanket and carrying him into the garage that way. We are also going to keep our car parked in the driveway so if he's afraid he won't try and hide in the engine ...

        We'll have lots of warm blankies, food and water as well as a kitty litter in case he might know how to use one already!

        Neutering will be my first business after the little guy gets checked out and we make sure we want to keep him.

        Stress for our other two cats is very important to me as one of my cats is 17 years old and she's too old to have to deal with too much stress and anxiety! So, if the stray doesn't mesh, we'll make sure we place him in a warm and loving him - no SPCA, we'll find him a family on our own.

        I'll try my best to keep you all up to date on the situation ... he definitely wants a warm place to stay - he tried to run into the kitchen the other morning when I opened up the porch door to say hi. Hehehe

        As usual you ladies are amazing - thanks for ALL the great advice and help - especially Vicki!! :)

        #14 budgetjamaicabride

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          Posted 05 October 2009 - 11:26 PM

          Sounds good miranda... glad he is coming near and probably won't need a trap. Probably just a towel and cat carrier to get him there. A can of freshly opened tuna is great lure. Keep us posted.

          #15 echo2_62

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            Posted 06 October 2009 - 09:40 AM

            Vikki - that was some of the most complete and wonderful advice that I've heard!! I'd think you've been rescuing for a while now

            Miranda - I'm glad to hear that you've made progress with this cat and you're awesome for trying to help provide for it. I was faced with a very similar situation last winter here in Calgary too! My sister was frequently seeing a cat outside around a neighbors house when it was -30 degC so finally one evening I saw it out there, scooped her up and took her home. End of story! We took her to the vets nearby, kept her segregated from our other pets etc. but because she had a tattoo we felt responsible to try and get her back with her original owners. We ended up taking her to the local humane society so that they could work to track down the owners - which they did - and the owner flat out said he didn't want her anymore. Nice. So after that point we were officially allowed to adopt. The humane society said she was about nine yrs old, but later my vet said she was more likely 16!! We think the age and some dental problems were the reason the other owner didn't want her

            Now here's what might help you, if you start allowing this kitty in your house. Our new cat (Onyx - she's the most black kitty ever) made her bed under our basement stairs, I think she felt secure and was hidden from the dog and cat we already had. We didn't see her on our main floor for five months. No amount of food or coaxing would bring her up voluntarily. She is a VERY people friendly cat and would snuggle and purr and love you if we were in the basement but that was it. One day, I came down from the upstairs early in the morning and she was sitting there meowing at me. Then ran away. This continued for another month or two then all of a sudden her new bed was on my couch :) It has been almost ten months since we got Onyx, and we've seen her on the top floor just under a dozen times now, but she'll never stay up there long, or sleep up there. So my point in this rambling - BE PATIENT :)

            ALSO, since Onyx was prone to using her claws if the other animals approached, we bought the little tips called Soft Claws so that she couldn't hurt them. It was really effective because all three pets learned where the boundaries were and who ruled the roost, but we didn't have to worry about anyone getting hurt (our other cat is declawed but we didn't feel it was right for a 16yr old cat!). I would highly recommend these if the new cat will be staying inside around your pets. If she will continue to be an outdoor kitty, then you probably won't need them so that she can still defend herself.

            We had a few times that we questioned whether or not we did the right thing only because she is fairly old, had to go through some pretty extensive dental work and maybe would have been just as well of getting put down instead of being adopted, but in the end we're happy that we kept her because she is such a snuggly, loving little kitty and we're happy that her last years will be warm and safe and secure - AND NOT IN FREEZING COLD ALBERTA WINTERS!!!

            #16 BlissfulMsMiranda

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              Posted 07 October 2009 - 10:40 PM

              Hi all - first of all, WOW - thank you all so much for all the advice and kind words. Honestly, that's the best feedback I've ever had!! :)

              So, here's an update: We tried to bring Ghost Cat (as we've nicknamed him) into the house tonight. His vet appointment is supposed to be tomorrow.

              Now, I got him into the garage with food and a little physical coaxing (I had to lift him in). Once he was in ... he was a little panicked ... tail down, meowing, running around like he wanted out ... and then my bright husband opened the door to take out a bag of garbage and he ran out. But he came right back to me, rubbing up against me and meowing and being friendly. And he comes as soon as I rattle the food in the bowl.

              Also, when he was in the garage, my husband noticed that he's been declawed. Now we think he must belong to someone ... but he has no collar, he's really small, he's ravenous when he eats and he's ALWAYS around no matter what the time of day or the weather...

              So, what do we do?! Do we try and catch him again and just let him calm down on his own in the garage ... I mean, he can't possibly cry all night and day... is he panicking because he's a stray or because he knows it's not his house?

              I know people abandon their pets everyday ... but I don't want to be responsible for STEALING someone's cat!

              I want to help him ... but now I'm not sure!
              Thanks again for ALL your help. You guys are incredible!

              #17 Vikki

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                Posted 07 October 2009 - 11:01 PM

                I doubt he is currently a pet. And if he is shame on his owners for letting him get like that.

                You can let him cry all night if that's what it takes to have him on hand when it's time to go to the vet, just make sure he has an enclosed space he can hide in while he's in the garage. It will help him feel safe-something as simple as a cardboard box with something to snuggle in and a towel hanging over it. He'll panic but after he figures out it's warm, you're going to feed him and he's safe it will be much less stressful for him than living outdoors is.

                I had a spay and release experience that was similar-I brought the kitty home from the clinic and couldn't let her back out for a couple of days so she just lived in my laundry room. She cried a ton and was really scared but in the long run she needed the enclosed space to heal and was no worse for it.

                Good luck :-)

                #18 echo2_62

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                  Posted 08 October 2009 - 09:42 AM

                  If he's declawed and was somebodies pet, they may have also gone so far as getting him microchipped which the vet could check for as it is undetectable otherwise. If you're not familiar, the microchip is about the size of a small grain of rice and is inserted beneath the skin between the front shoulder blades. The vet would at least be able to contact the owners and see if they even want the cat back (as was similar to my case). And I think by law they have to do that, but I could be wrong on that part. At any rate, I agree that with cats that are in distress, the cardboard box can be the way to go because it will limit their senses a bit (ie. they can't see the world rushing by as you drive!) and can help make sure they don't hurt themselves. We have one cat that LOVES his crate and the other that HATES hers, so we have to use a box even still.
                  Good luck getting him into the vets today and I hope that everything checks out okay. I'd just keep practicing coaching him into the garage and letting him out again after short periods to get him used to it. Likely he'll stop crying as badly after a while.

                  #19 BlissfulMsMiranda

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                    Posted 08 October 2009 - 10:31 AM

                    Hi all - after much thought and your answers and a bunch of answers from fellow cat-lovers on Facebook I've decided that we ARE going to try and catch him again.

                    He was waiting on our porch this morning, starving, at 6:30 a.m. so I fed him and he was SO cold and just wanted love and food. And he even sat and watched us go about our morning through the porch door while our Cornish Rex howled at him through the window. Hehehe

                    We didn't have time to coax him into the garage again this morning, but I'll be at it tonight when I get home and I"m going to sit with him for as long as I can once we have him inside again. I rescheduled the vet appointment for next week and if, in the few days that we have him in the garage, we notice posters etc. we'll return him.

                    But, I feel the same way: If someone is willing to leave their declawed cat outside ALL THE TIME, then they don't deserve to own him.

                    I couldn't tell if he was fixed or not ... There may be little balls back there but I'm not sure ... and he doesn't have a pouch like most fixed cats do (hanging in front of his back legs like extra skin)... and he's pretty small ... my Mum thinks he has worms and his growth has been stunted.

                    I will keep you ladies up to date on how the entrapment goes tonight ... hopefully he'll stop crying and realize he has a safe, warm place to stay with food and water and blankets. I'm going to give him a nice big box with blankets and leave a radio on for him while we're at work tomorrow.

                    #20 budgetjamaicabride

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                      Posted 08 October 2009 - 08:50 PM

                      Good job Miranda... if nothing else, you can let the local animal shelter know you have him and send a picture. You hold him, keep him, and but if there is an owner that cares enough to look, they will call the shelter and they can contact you.

                      Most times though... it sure sounds like he is not owned or not wanted.

                      Good luck!

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