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Old 12-31-2012, 06:26 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default re-homing semi-feral cats

I read that a lot of you tame semi-feral cats and re-home them. Does that really work for indoor/outdoor cats that seem to just trust me? I have only had them a few months so hopefully they will expand who they trust. One grew up in this neighborhood. I toy with trying to rehome them but would want to feel that they would be loved and safe and that the people have a lot of patience and $ for the long haul.
I took them on because I couldn't bear condeming them to death. I feel very uncertain about my future as to where I will live, $ for vet bills and hurt from attachment. I am dealing with a 15 year old beloved dog companion and a 96 year old mother. These losses will be coming. After reading so much about cats outdoors I now am scared about the future with the cats but they don't want to be confined and I don't want them in all the time. I don't want to be hurt. I don't want them to be hurt. It seems the resources for cats are overflowing. This situation stinks. All cats should be neutered as soon as possible!
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Old 12-31-2012, 08:00 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I wish people would spay and neuter more than they do. I had a large colony (at least for me -- 30+) dumped on me when a neighbor died. She let them breed unchecked. She enjoyed them, fed them...and then she died. Her family's only effort with the colony was to make sure none of the cats were in the house when they locked it up, then drove off and left them to starve, which is where I stepped in. I cannot bear to see a hungry cat.

The younger ones were semi-sociable, and with a lot of work became quite sweet. The neighbor on the other side of this abandoned colony jumped in and was able to get quite a few of them adopted. Most were successes, but there were a few painful failures, including one who was let outside when the adopter specifically promised she would not, and the dear kitty made a run for our colony. She never made it back I worked with a local cat rescue, and my neighbor had a great deal of success through PetFinder utilizing the cat rescue's adoption contract, which was just killer vicious in laying out what they would and would not do with this cat. She interviewed potential adopters and let them meet the cat in her home. It worked very well. If you do follow this path, interview carefully. Remember, THEY want YOUR cat, so you ask the questions. Don't be afraid to say they aren't the family you want for your cat. If you are willing to take the cat back if it doesn't work out after a trial period, it will help prevent cat dumping or your cats winding up in shelters.

Our colony is now down to 3 cats that eat at the neighbor's house. About half were placed, 4 were killed by cars, and the rest eaten by coyotes, which is heartbreaking, but unpreventable. We celebrate those that have warm homes to curl up in on this cold New Year's Eve. You're doing a good thing for these cats; you have a wonderful, loving heart and they're lucky to have found you.
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Old 12-31-2012, 08:38 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I guess I need to toughen up. Any animal that became part of my home was cared for as my child. I just don't know if I have that in me anymore financially, etc. Unbeliveble about 30+ cats. That is why I caught these as soon as I was aware of them and had them neutered. The plan was to return them to where they were living and eating and I did that. If I hadn't been told of the 2 kitten that died a month or so later, I would have left it that way. Now that I have read all the horrible stuff on the internet I am scared to give them away. Plus they are not trusting so I am afraid that they won't be easily adopted. Someone will have to take their time as I have. And exactly what I was afraid of that they will let them out and they will be hurt trying to go back to familiar places. Or mean cats or coyotes getting them. It could happen here but my last cat lived to 16 years old in this neighborhood. I will make some calls. Thank you for the Petfinder lead. I just wonder how someone will like meowing in the middle of the night or the scratching of the furniture when I am not looking. Animals are a big responsibility. My sister in law mentioned at Christmas that my nephew may give away their large dog because it is not trained. Who's fault is that? They even have the money to hire someone. I didn't say a word but I was shocked. I work from home and have no social life so I have put a lot of time into these cats to make them at home. I see the rewards but they need more to be the "great pet" to someone else unless that person knows what it will take. When you get them young, you can really make progress fast and show them the rules of the house easily. At least they don't run when a fast move or unfamiliar noise is made.
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Old 01-01-2013, 05:11 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Over the years I have had a lot of feral (originally) and semi feral cats. Most I have kept - those I have re-homed have settled with the right family. That's the key thing - my current semi-feral (amongst a mix of six) is adorable but it's just a case of knowing the quirks.

I guess that a lot depends on the area - we simply don't have coyotes here and feral / semi-ferals seem to live a whole lot longer that I hear on many posts.
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Old 01-01-2013, 08:23 PM   #5 (permalink)
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If your kitties are semi feral then most people dont want them. Most people are not cat savvy and want a pet which is easy to deal with. I would go about socializing them before I would offer them for adoption. Too many people would just dump them out of doors if they werent the easy cat to live with.

There are many people on this forum that could help you in the process of socializing these kitties. I really wouldn't recommend adopting out and having them moved to a different location. If they got out they would try to get back to their former territory and colony. Most are killed on the way back from starvation, hit by cats, attacked by dogs or wild animals or evil people.


You are wise to ponder whether you should take on a cat or two. It is a commitment and cats can live a long time. You should only have as many cats as you can afford. All of us with cats dogs or horses etc face the heart break of end of life of our companions. But we all comfort ourselves on the love we showered on them, the memories and great times together. The joy they brought to our lives.


Here is a sticky from the feral cat section of cat forum. Try reading thru the articles and glean ideas. Esp Kitty Boot Camp. Taming and Caring for Feral Kittens and Cats

I hope everyone perspectives help you in your decisions of what to do about these kitties.
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Old 01-01-2013, 08:34 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Truth is I will have to keep these two. I hope it all works out. I am not sure they really care about me but they sure care about their food and their comfort. They do talk to me, one lays in my lap a lot and the other lays on the back of the sofa where I am. They come to their name sometimes and at meal time for sure. I sure hope I don't get in this situation again. I really feel like the person who left the cat should be fined or worse.
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Old 01-11-2013, 04:38 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I am sorry I did not read what Mitts & Tess had to say about adopting out and moving a stray earlier and now I regret the fact that I did just that the other day. I hope it will work out for him, I pray it will. I worry myself sick every day wondering if he is alright, wondering if he is still there and if he will have the life I so desperately want for him to have.
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Old 01-11-2013, 04:44 PM   #8 (permalink)
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When I adopt strays I have found, I make people sign an adoption agreement that includes the fact that if there is any problem the cats must be returned to me not passed on to anyone else. It just makes me feel a bit better about things.
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Old 01-11-2013, 06:11 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Chrisch68 - I think we all have to resign ourselves that we do the best we can. These animals would be worse off if we didn't help. The dumped animals had owners that just didn't even care.
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Old 01-12-2013, 10:08 AM   #10 (permalink)
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We try never to move a feral cat. But if we have to we put them in a big kennel for at least 3 weeks. Usually in a barn or tack room. That way they get use to the sounds, smells and activities going on. They learn that this is where their food source is before we release them to be independent.

Chris I'm so glad BB is a very smart boy and came back to where he was released. You are a saint to go over and check on him and love on him and all your efforts to get him into a good home. I'm saying prayers he will transition to his new home and the family that wants to take him in.


When we first started TNRing we made all the mistakes you could make. Trial and error. The knowledge I have was gained thru many attempts to get it right and a lot of very funny stories along the way. (with some heart break too). I was very blessed to have friends working along side me and group efforts. Doing it alone is very difficult. Thank goodness for the feral cat section of cat forum!
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