What If I Find A Pregnant Cat
You can have the cat safely spayed while she is pregnant. If you decide to let her have the kittens before spaying her then be prepared to tame the kittens and spay/neuter them before finding them homes. Keep in mind that much of the year shelters and adoption programs are full and somehave a waiting list to accept kittens.
What To Do If You Find Older Kittens
Begin looking into spay/neuter options for the kittens immediately. Remember that cats can get pregnant as young as 5 months old so dont wait until they look like adult cats to have them spayed/neutered! FCCO spays and neuters cats as young as 2 months old, as do many other spay/neuter organizations. Even if you dont plan on keeping the kittens, get them spayed or neutered before finding them a new home.
The best option for kittens is to tame them, get them spayed/neutered, and find them forever homes where they are no longer living on the streets. Our Kitten Caboose program can help! Tame kittens brought to our clinic for spay/neuter services can be transferred to the Oregon Humane Society and adopted into homes.
If the kittens are friendly they were probably pets or the offspring of a pet or tame stray. Put up fliers in your neighborhood and call around to the shelters to see if anyone is looking for the kittens. If you suspect that the kittens were abandoned then you can consider getting a police report. Abandoning cats is illegal. They probably wont be able to do much to find out who abandoned the cat but it may help to have a record if more cats are abandoned in the same location.
Build Up A Feeding Station For Them:
While taking care of the feral cats at your home, you need to ensure that you are giving them a proper place to eat. Building a feeding station can be helpful, as you wouldnt want to end up with a mess or an unclean environment. Also, the feeding stations need to have a proper setting and placement.
Pick a discreet feeding station for them. Put it in a place that blends properly with the immediate surroundings. Keeping the feeding station away from the public eye will offer them comfort and safety while eating. They will have peace of mind when they can easily consume their food without too much traffic at a place.
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What Food Should You Give To Your Ferals
Before you feed the ferals at your place, you need to understand their nutritional requirements. They are usually carnivores and requires a protein-rich diet to keep a healthy balance in their body. Protein is an essential ingredient in the diet of a cat. Hence, 26% of their food should contain rich protein. You can offer them quality animal-based proteinaceous foods like meat, fish, eggs, and poultry sources.
Also, feral cats require a very high-fat content in their food. But remember, the fat must be the healthier one that will improve their skin coat. Again, animal sources are the best ways to deliver the required amount of fat in their diet. Make sure the food is having at least 9% of fat content in it. A proper balance of omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids is necessary to improve their skin and health.
Well, you may have some doubts regarding whether the nutritional requirement of the ferals is the same as the house cats. Honestly speaking, it is more or less the same. Protein is essential for all cats to facilitate the good health of their muscle mass. However, in the case of the ferals, you need to put stress upon the fat content in their diet to serve them the proper amount of calories.
Maximize the calorie content in your ferals meal while maintaining a healthy balance of the entire diet.
Is There A Group Of Cats
Feral cats congregate in large groups. Cats are social animals and the socialization that a formerly domesticated cat would typically get from humans has been replaced by the colony. They live together, and share hunting territory, though they do not hunt together. Feral females will share the raising of the kittens, though males have also been reported to share in kitten rearing.
There is usually an older female cat in charge, and they display behaviors such as social grooming. Feral colonies will even welcome in non-feral strays or other lone cats after a period of interaction.
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Do Feral Cats Live Short Lives
The lifespan of a feral cat is often stated as only 2-3 years. Not in our experience. Many caretakers know of free-roaming cats that reach 12 to 15 years of age. Long-term studies are underway to determine longevity. Preliminary data reveal that tom cats live the shortest, but neutering them increases their lifespan to that of a spayed female cat. Not all colony cats live to a ripe old age, but many live far longer than the urban myth projects.
Train The Cat To Use The Litter Box
Another important step in domesticating a feral cat is teaching her how to use the litter box. These cats are used to doing their business outdoors, and getting them used to using a litter box will take time and patience.
Train your cat by leading her towards the litter tray, preferably after her meals. You can use baby gates or boxes as a guide towards the litter box. The trick is to make her go at her own will. If the first method does not work, you can pick her up and place her in the litter box, but there is a chance you will get some bites and scratches if you pick her up with bare hands. Make sure to use gloves and long sleeves to protect yourself.
It can take around eight to ten weeks before a feral cat learns how to use a litter box. While some cats are quick learners, others might need more time to figure things out.
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Other Factors Determining Cat Life Span
Other factors that contribute to determining your cat’s life span include:
- Health condition cats with certain medical conditions will live less
- Home care how well you take care of your cat
- Balanced diet
- Exercise a less active cat will have a shorter life span
- Genetic factors
So, if you want to ensure that your pet lives a long and quality life, make sure you visit the vet on a regular basis, take care of his diet and have him exercise at least a few minutes per day. Prevent cat obesity, as this shortens your cat’s life significantly.
Feral Cats Shouldnt Be Brought To Shelters
To be clear, no cat should be brought to a shelter if it can be at all avoidedbut for feral cats, this is especially true.
I say this because the kill rate of cats in shelters is incredibly highover one in four cats brought to shelters are euthanized. A large majority are completely healthy and couldve been adopted out, but couldnt be due to overcrowded shelters. Cats reproduce at a fast rate, and shelters in most areas are overwhelmed.
The cats least likely to be adopted are feral cats, because they arent people-friendly. In addition, shelters simply do not have the resources to prepare feral cats for life indoors.
You may think youre helping feral cats by bringing them to the animal shelter, but youre actually hurting them and drastically decreasing their chance of survival.
Most feral cats are better off outdoors. If youd like to transition them to indoor life, please do this work yourself or find a good home that is willing to work with a feral, rather than dumping them in an even worse position than they were formerly.
If you know of a feral cat in immediate risk and cannot take them in, try finding them another home or find an area such as a barn to relocate the cat to.
You can also try contacting local rescues or TNR programs for advice on the matter, as they may have resources or be able to refer you to someone able to help.
How Do You Feed Them
While feeding ferals at your place, make sure you keep plenty of freshwater aside. Also, keep the bowls clean so that it does not proliferate algae. If you are offering them dry cat foods, they must be free from any debris or dirt.
Before every meal, it is recommended to clean the bowl regularly. It will help you maintain a hygienic feeding practice. The best way to keep your neighbors away from complaining is by cleaning the feeding stations every day.
Besides, keeping feeding bowls clean is also healthy for both your cat and the surrounding environment at your place. The best way you can feed them is by maintaining a cycle of feeding at the same time every day. Daybreak and the time of dusk are considered to be the best time to feed ferals.
When Do Feral Cats Abandon Their Kittens
Feral cats dont abandon their kittens. They care for their kittens for a certain amount of time until they encourage them to fend for themselves. A feral cat may leave her kittens unattended for a short time while she goes hunting and finds food, but she doesnt simply leave her kittens for good.
Feral cats stay with their kittens for the majority of the first two weeks of their life full-time, for the babies are blind and deaf for the first fortnight of their lives. After that, the mama will venture out to find food for herself to stay strong while continuing to nurse her babies. At about four weeks, the mother will start to wean her kittens, and by the end of the fifth week of their lives, they are expected to eat solid food and be starting to find it on their own.
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What If Theyre Indoor Cats
When it comes to the question How long do cats live? all the research weve done overwhelmingly suggests that indoor cats live nearly three times as long as outdoor cats. How long do cats live if theyre indoor cats? Indoor cats are typically sterilized, vaccinated and removed from the stresses, risks and dangers of the outside world. They are fed regularly and have easy access to water that is fresh and clean.
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They require more attention, more distractions, and must be encouraged to get sufficient exercise to avoid obesity. Fortunately, attentive cat owners provide all of those things. The numbers varied widely among all the sites we visited, ranging from 14 to 20 years. Based on the numbers we chronicled, the average lifespan of an indoor cat is 16.875 years.
The Differences Between Feral Cats And Domestic Cats
People seem to know a stray cat when they see one, but its harder to pinpoint a feral feline. Certainly, stray cats occupy the space between house cats and feral cats, but to truly understand the differences between your own pet and their wild cousins, we have to look at behavior, cat psychology, and lifespan.
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How To Prevent It
The easiest solution to all of this is simple: DONT FEED THEM. They may look cute, but the problem is, if you feed them, theyre essentially yours. Its like taking care of a household cat, except its a lot worse and way bigger in terms of the damage that this can do.
Lots of people dont realize the scope of this. They think that these cats are just going to go away, hat feeding one every so often is just going to be harmless. But, remember this causes them to never go away, and it can cause them to also populate your area, and people will complain.
So whats the best thing to do when you see a feral cat? Well, read below.
- Dont feed it
- Instead just passively acknowledge that its there
- If they come up to you, be gentle with actions, remember since they are afraid of you
- If possible, just let them be, since theyre doing their job
Remember, cats can take care of themselves when theyre out in the wild. A cat that used to be a household pet, and then out in the wild may become feral, but they also may come up. This isnt a chance for you to feed it, but you can give it some attention. Just dont feed, since it destroys the ecosystem, can cause them to rely on you, and then you have an extra responsibility.
Will Animal Shelters Adopt Out Community Cats
Most community cats are not adoptable and shelters are not a hospitable location for a community cat to be held. The fact is, most community cats exhibit wild, shy or frightened behavior, and it’s impossible to predict how or if they will ever acclimate to indoor life and the consistent presence of humans. While a community cat might look exactly the same as a pet cat, community cats survive by avoiding close human interaction. When properly cared for, community cats are happier outdoors in their own territory.
Some community cats are actually stray cats who don’t exhibit feral behaviors but rather are friendly and enjoy interaction with humans. These cats were likely once owned or have a caretaker who frequently cares for and interacts with them. It is very important to take caution, especially with cats who seem to straddle the fence between a community cat and a stray cat. Even though they might encourage petting or follow you around, they could likely be inadequately prepared for adoption and an indoor life. These cats dont need intervention, other than TNRM, unless theyre ill or injured. Talking to local community members about the history of a specific cat or group of cats in the neighborhood may help you discern if the cat is being cared for and how you can best help.
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How Long Do Wild Cats Live
With all this talk about how indoor life, veterinary care, and nutrition can extend the lifespan of a cat, what about the cats that live in the wild? Unfortunately, the pressures to surviving in the wild are even greater for wild cats. The lifespan of a wild cat is drastically shorter. While tigers in captivity commonly make it into their 20s, the average lifespan in the wild is far less at 10 to 15 years. Its pretty typical for half of a litter to not make it more than two years as well. Lions follow along the same lines as the tiger, while mountain lions experience a slightly shorter lifespan at 8 to 13 years. On the smaller side, a bobcats life expectancy is only around seven years, while the wildcat is closer to 14.
The Most Important Distinguishing Factor Of Feral Cats Versus Stray Cats Involves The Cats Perspective Of Humans
How long do feral cats normally live. How long do feral cats live. Theres little doubt that feral cats on average dont live as long as pet cats especially those living exclusively indoors. Although the often-heard claim that these cats live only about two years is supported to some degree by studies of unsterilized cats living without any apparent reliance on food from humans 911.
Some experts believe that cats can go without eating for as long as four to six months. To keep an elderly cat from having to use up all its energy in order to survive you should give your cat a short three to four hour break every day and feed it with kitten food instead of canned food. A feral cat definition is a cat that is considered an unsocialized cat or a cat who is fearful of humans.
These cats typically live outdoors in little groups called colonies. These colonies will normally stick together and help feed protect and shelter the group. These feral colonies are becoming known more and more as community cats or free.
Feral or domestic mother cats are on duty 724 for about 2 months. They teach their babies their lifeskills and what their new world is about. Then they are done with mothering.
Happens quite suddenly at between 812 weeks. Feral cats and colonies are predominantly nocturnal. A cat out at night is more likely to be a feral cat than anything else although it should be noted that cats in general are comfortable in the dark and often prefer it.
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Difference Between A Stray Cat And A Feral Cat
Feral cats are the offspring of lost or abandoned pet cats or other feral cats that is the result of pet owners abandonment or failure to spay and neuter their animals, allowing them to breed uncontrolled. A feral cat is primarily wild-raised or has adapted to feral life, while we define a stray cat as someones pet who has become lost or has been abandoned.
Stray cats are usually tame and comfortable around people. A stray cat is a pet cat that is lost or abandoned. Stray cats are accustomed to contact with people and are tame. They will frequently rub against legs and exhibit behaviors such as purring and meowing. In contrast, feral cats are notably quiet and keep their distance. Stray cats will also often try to make a home near humansin car garages, front porches or backyards. Most are completely reliant on humans as a food source and are not yet able to cope with life on the streets.