How To Make A Stray Cat Your Friend
Heres some tips on how to make a stray cat your friend.
1. Put out cat food. If you know the stray is a kitten, put out soft food.
2. Put a warm blanket out for the cats to keep warm.
3. Be slow when approaching the stray so you dont scare them away.
4. Avoid making loud and sudden noises. That will also upset the stray.
5. Put out cat toys if possible. If not, put out toilet paper. Most cats love ripping up toilet paper.
6. Make sure you have some kind of roof over the top so precipitation doesnt seep through and wet the cat and/or blanket.
7.Make sure the yard is clear of sharp objects so they dont think your trying to hurt them.
I hope this has helped you make a new feline friend. Beware! Some cats are mean and if they are, these steps probably wont work. Otherwise, they should be all you need.
Thank you for reading.
Build An Outdoor Litterbox
One way to stop cats from eliminating in one spot, like a flower garden, is to give them a more attractive place to go, preferably well off in a far corner of the yard. Inexpensive options include:
– A large pile of peat moss approximately 4 feet square and 8 inches deep.- A sandbox, using regular “kiddie sandbox” sand.- Fill a large storage bin with a few inches of kiddie sandbox sand. Cut a doorway 8 inches by 8 inches in the bin just above the level of the sand. For extra cleanliness, instead of sand, put a litterbox with regular litter inside the bin.
To attract the cats to their new bathroom, place a couple of pieces of the cats’ poop in the new digs To reduce odor, replace the peat moss, sand or litter regularly. Occasional scooping will also help.
The Problem With Relocation And Eradication
Some people advocate relocating or putting down feral cats instead. Relocation may sound like a humane solution, but it is ultimately ineffective due to the vacuum effect. Feral cats gather where there are resources: food, water, and shelter. When an existing colony is relocated , before long a new flock of feral cats will discover the same resources and move in to fill the vacuum.
Relocation is unappealing for other reasons. Because cats are very territorial, a relocated cat may try to find its way home, suffering accident or death on the way. The relocation area may already have an established colony or it may lack food, water, or shelter. Unless a colonys life is in danger, most experts agree that relocation is almost always a bad solution.
Most people are not willing to support eradication, either. With a TNR effort, people will give their time, money, and resources, says Slater, author of Community Approaches to Feral Cats. But if youre catching and euthanizing cats, in most cases you just wont get volunteers to do that.
She also sees TNR as a teaching tool. It gets people to think about how we can prevent cats from ending up on the street and how we can manage cat populations.
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Cats Are Getting Into My Trash Cans
Cats are scavengers and are looking for food.
- Place a tight lid on your trash can. Exposed trash bags will attract wildlife as well.
- See if neighbors are feeding the cats. If they are, make sure they are doing it on a regular schedule.
- Start feeding the cats yourself but remember to keep them on a regular feeding schedule, don’t leave food out for more than 30 minutes, and place feeders off the ground and in location that will not disturb neighbors. Feeding cats regularly and in reasonable quantities, will help ensure they don’t get hungry and turn to the trash.
How To Get Rid Of Stray Cats
When it comes to keeping pests of the feline nature out of your yard, there are two types to consider you have pet cats, and stray cats. Stray cats are cats that were born into a life without an owner, or cats that have left to fend by themselves by previous owners who can no longer look after them.
Although they are both ofthe same species and if you put a collar on them both you would be hard pushed to tell the difference. The only visual indicator would be that a stray cat will not be as well fed and may look leaner, even skinny. It may also show scars from territory battles from its roaming adventures around the neighbourhood. A stray cat will also look unkempt compared to a pet cat, with a rough, sometimes matted coat.
According to the video below, there is a difference between feral cats and stray cats, but for our purposes of keeping stray cats out of your yard, there really is no difference.
Feral cats are also at a higher risk for infectious diseases, parasites and fleas. Due to a life in the wild with no care, a stray cat will often be covered with parasites dangerous to humans and other animals, such as your pets.
There is a slight difference in the way you would go about keeping stray cats out of your yard, compared to pet cats that roam your neighbourhood.
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Garden Fences To Deter Cats
Aside from these organic methods, there are also architectural elements which can help deter cats from the property. Although cats are notoriously good climbers, there are some specially designed fences which help to stop cats from entering. At the top of the fence, a perpendicular outcrop will make it very difficult for the cat to climb over. While you may need to secure the entire perimeter of the property, it is one of the most effect deterrents for cats.
What Is The Difference Between A Stray Cat And A Feral Cat
Although there are distinct similarities between the feral and stray cats aesthetically, they are quite different in terms of how they interact with people and what social cues they take.
This can be essential when determining the proper procedure when approaching a cat, as failing to identify the type can lead to potential injuries to the one in contact.
Regardless, both types of cat are domesticated.
The key difference between feral and stray cats is whether they are used to people or not through a process known as socialization.
Like humans, in order to function in a sociable manner, cats need to be exposed to other cats and humans. Feral cats lack these interactions with people and are solely used to depending on themselves.
Strays are previously socialized cats that have simply lost their home, though they are also self-sufficient in feeding/hunting.
With these aspects in mind, here are some other differences that can help anyone identify a stray cat vs. a feral cat.
These cats live a rather secluded lifestyle.
Feral cats have likely never had any natural interaction with humans, though stray cats can potentially become feral if they havent experienced human interactions for significant periods of time.
Once feral, they come to fear people and actively avoid them when possible.
Socializing is a complex process that is not recommendable to any extent, especially if the cat is over 4 months of age.
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Use Scents To Set Boundaries For Feral Cats
Naturally occurring scents can communicate with feral cats, sending them the message that theyre in a risky location. If they smell scents related to predators or other menaces, theyll stay away. Offensive scents such as mace are available for outdoor use as well. Bottled scents are available in pet and hunting retail stores and online. Scents will need to be reapplied on a regular basis, especially in rainy climates, in order to keep the deterrent effect in force. If the feral cat or colony of cats moves on, you can stop applying the scent until you see signs that they have returned or another colony is moving in.
How To Help Community Cats And Kittens In Your Area
- Become a cat caretaker and TNRM community cats in your neighborhood. A community cat caretaker is an individual who manages one or more groups of cats in a community. The caretaker keeps an eye on the catsproviding food, water and shelter, spaying/neutering and oversees their general wellbeing. Since caretakers keep an eye out for these cats, the caretaker is most frequently someone who lives nearby.
- Offer your assistance to established community cat caretakers who are doing TNRM. Ongoing needs include feeding, trapping, transportation to and from the veterinarian, temporary housing for cats after surgery, and fostering and socializing kittens for the purpose of finding them good homes.
- Contact local shelters or welfare groups to see if a TNRM program is available in your area.
- If you find kittens outside, check out our guide to decide the best next steps for them: aspca.org/foundkittens
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Why Do I See Community Cats In My Neighborhood
Community cats live outdoors. Like all animals, community cats settle where food and shelter are available, and they are naturally skilled at finding these on their own.
Because they are unsocialized, community cats cant live indoors with people, and are therefore unadoptable. Community cats should not be taken to animal sheltersnationwide, virtually 100 percent of community cats taken to shelters are killed there. Trap-Neuter-Return is the humane, effective, and mainstream approach to addressing community cat populations.
Do People Take Care Of Feral Cats What Do They Do
Many people see a homeless cat and start feeding the cat even though many communities have feeding bans meant to discourage feeding. Ideally, the person quickly does more to help the homeless cat:
- If the cat is tame, the person should take steps to find a permanent home for the cat.
- If the cat is feral, unapproachable and wary after several days of feeding, the person should find out if there are any groups in their community that are currently performing Trap, Neuter, Return .
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Ways To Keep Cats Out Of Your Yard Or Garden
The Spruce / Candace Madonna
Domestic cats, feral cats, and homeless strays may wander into your yard or garden due to curiosity, mating, hunting, feeding, and establishing territory. Some may be looking for a new place to call home. Since cats have incredible climbing and jumping abilities, keeping them out of your outdoor area can be challenging. Take a look at a few good cat repellents and approaches to stop feline intruders from using your garden as a litter box.
Illustration: The Spruce / Catherine Song
Undo Their Territory Mark
Once a stray cat pees on your property, you can bet that they intend on setting up their camp there and becoming a permanent tenant on your property. If you leave it as is, theyre sure to keep coming back.
A cats urine has a strong distinctive smell. Look for its general area and wash it down with water. For added measure, you can use eco-friendly soaps to scrub down the area. Its not a long-term solution to getting rid of stray cats in your yard permanently, however, as they may come back to repeat their marking.
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For Feral Cats Home Is Where The Food Is
Food is their anchor. If you leave food out for your own pets or providing unintended sources of food such as open trash cans, youre likely feeding them also. Your kind-hearted neighbor might also be putting out food they may keep their home in your yard and wander over for a nibble, then return to the safe spot theyve found with you.
Block access to food sources and nesting sites by covering spots under porches and holes with basement access, either with solid covers or wire mesh. Keep trash tightly covered and make sure that they dont have any convenient spots to stash their own food sources such as dead birds and small animals, which you may notice by smell as time passes.
Lay Down Chicken Wire To Keep Feral Cats Outside
As any cat owner can attest, cats dont like uneven and difficult footing and will avoid it at all costs. Thats what makes this first cat repellent trick so useful. You can lay down chicken wire in your garden or flower beds to prevent cats from walking through it.
Cats find walking through the chicken wire unpleasant, which you can use to keep them out of your yard. After you till your garden but before you plant, roll out chicken wire and lay it out across your garden. Cover it lightly with dirt and mulch to keep it in place.
Plant your garden as you usually would, cutting holes in the chicken wire to accommodate growing plants. This method will also stop squirrels from invading your yard.
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Trap Neuter And Release Your Feral Cats
The best long-term solution to your issue of how to keep cats away is to reduce the feral cat population. Your local animal shelter removes cats from the environment, which leaves a vacuum that is quickly filled by other strays.
To take care of your feral cats for good, use a humane trap, and neuter your local strays. Trap, Neuter, and Release is the most effective way to reduce feral cat colonies.
Place the traps in traffic areas that you know cats use, and bait the traps with food. Always wear protective clothing when you handle full traps to avoid bites and scratches. Bring the trapped cats to a local clinic, and get them spayed or neutered.
Release them back to the colony. Repeat until youve fixed all the feral cats. Eventually, the colony will shrink and disappear.
We hope that you had a great time checking our feral cat guide. Growing a garden means we can expect to get visits from stray cats, which is why its crucial to know how to keep stray cats away.
Our guide gives you tips and secrets to keep your yard happy and feline-free so that you and your family can enjoy your gardens bounty.
Lay Down Ground Cover
If you keep seeing strays urinating in your gardens, laying down ground cover is a quick way to get rid of that problem. Sprinkle gravel around your garden, or spread out mulch, or even place pine cones around to prevent cats from walking where they shouldnt.
These ground cover tricks work for the same reason as sandpaper and aluminum foil cats cant stand the feeling on their paws. Any substance that has a bristly texture works as ground cover to keep feral cats away.
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How To Identify An Independent Kitten
An independent kitten will:
- Be capable or urinating and defecating without assistance from their mother
- Eat solid food
- Be able to walk
- Be able to play
If the kitten is not capable of any of the above, they’re deemed still dependent on their mother. If this is the case and the kitten is alone, please get in touch with us via our helpline on 0300 1234 999.
Can Feral Cats Be Hunted Or Killed
Although feral cats are sometimes regarded as vermin, especially in rural areas where they can become quite plentiful, it is a violation of animal cruelty laws in virtually every jurisdiction to wound or deliberately kill a domestic species such as Felis catus, the common house cat. Only animal control agencies are authorized to painlessly euthanize domestic species, even animals that roam as feral creatures.
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Ways You Can Help Stray And Feral Cats
From little to big, there are many ways to help stray and feral cats. Here are some, beginning with one you can do at home:
As part of living in a civilized society, it is our obligation to look after those who are weak, sick, or powerless, says Slater. Our responsibility includes our domestic animals, whom we took from the wild and made dependent on us.
Linda P. Case, MS, adjunct assistant professor, University of Illinois, College of Veterinary Medicine author, Canine and Feline Behavior and Training: A Complete Guide to Understanding Our Two Best Friends.
Margaret R. Slater, DVM, PhD, senior director of epidemiology, animal health services, ASPCA, Urbana, Ill author, Community Approaches to Feral Cats: Problems, Alternatives & Recommendations.
Humane Society of the United States: Feral Cats: Frequently Asked Questions and Testimonials Describing the Advantages of Trap-Neuter-Return for Feral Cats.
Best Friends Animal Sanctuary, Kanab Utah: Caring for Feral Cats.
Feral Cat Spay/Neuter Project, Seattle: Feeding Stray Cats? Youre Not Alone.
ASPCA: Feral Cats FAQ.
Can Stray Cats Be Domesticated
Having been without human contact for a significant time, there are few cases, if any of successful domestication. It will be a long process until they are successfully tamed and adopted.
However, it is easier to get rid of stray cats safely than domesticating them.
This is most common among feral cats. Some of the diseases carried by them can be spread to humans too. However, domestic cats are the most vulnerable to these disease attacks.
Such diseases include feline leukemia, scabies, cat scratch fever, rabies, and feline AIDS. Exposing your cat to these can lead to serious health risks.
Having Several Around
The more the number of stray cats around, the more unbearable it becomes. Some of the common reasons include the loud noise made when fighting. This is more often among a large stray cat population. The strong odor from liquid discharged by male members adds to the problem.
This is used as a form of territorial marking.
One of the reasons a large stray cat population will stick around a neighborhood is the presence of an adequate source of food. The presence of a good shelter is also responsible for such.
To save yourself the risks, there are several ways to get rid of them.
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