We caught Gladys! And a kitten! :D - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-04-2007, 03:33 PM Thread Starter
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We caught Gladys! And a kitten! :D

Finally, some good news! Last night our next door neighbors knocked on the door and handed over a very small kitten they had found. She's a girl, very docile, weighing in at a heartmelting 13.6 ounces, and we estimate about 3-4 weeks old. We named her Sally.




There's no doubt that she belongs to Gladys, the uncatchable little feral cat whose belly I'd been watching nervously for weeks. She was just a tiny bit plump for awhile, and then a few weeks ago, she was just a tiny bit thinner. We weren't even positive she'd really been pregnant. But when we showed her that we had the kitten, she became murderously upset.

So, mean evil humans that we are, we used the kitten as bait to lure and catch the mom. She hates us now. But she's back with her baby, well-fed and safe.




The cage is a mess -- typical ferals! It was a lot neater when we put them in it.

We've all been scouring the area, looking for other kittens, but we haven't found any. Gladys definitely seems to have been based in that area for several days, so we don't think she was in the middle of moving her litter. And her belly never got very big. So we are hopeful that this is the only kitten.
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-04-2007, 04:58 PM
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If looks could kill you would be long gone after pic #2.

SO glad you captured the both of them.


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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-05-2007, 12:50 AM
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Just curious but how did you use the kitten to capture the mom? Maybe I could use it for future reference!
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-05-2007, 11:35 AM
 
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Just curious but how did you use the kitten to capture the mom? Maybe I could use it for future reference!
Actually it is the best way of catching a feral mama. You need 2 cages. Put the kittens in a closed cage with it completely covered except for the back end. Then set a humane trap and have it's back end touching the back of the closed trap with the kitten. The mom will hear and smell the kitten but the only way to get close to the kitten is inside the open trap.

BTW Good job Jet!!!
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-05-2007, 11:38 AM
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How wonderful! Look at that beautiful pair!




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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-05-2007, 11:56 AM Thread Starter
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We did basically what Gina described, only instead of a real trap, we used a big dog crate and stood several feet away with a broom, which we used to slam the door after she was in. This happened after about a 45-minute standoff. We put the baby in after mom had calmed down.

The new baby looks almost identical to one from Gladys' last litter, the one in the back:



...so we were wondering if they could have had the same father. If I'm right about the age, Sally was conceived at least a week too late to be Greg's daughter. But she could be Stephen's.
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-05-2007, 07:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sweetvegan74
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mitts & Tess
Just curious but how did you use the kitten to capture the mom? Maybe I could use it for future reference!
Actually it is the best way of catching a feral mama. You need 2 cages. Put the kittens in a closed cage with it completely covered except for the back end. Then set a humane trap and have it's back end touching the back of the closed trap with the kitten. The mom will hear and smell the kitten but the only way to get close to the kitten is inside the open trap.

BTW Good job Jet!!!
Ahhhhhh... thank you!
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-06-2007, 04:19 PM Thread Starter
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The kitten appears to be fully weaned already. When and how should I separate her from mom? Would it be kindest to just take her away one day and never bring her back? Or should I do it more gradually?

The baby is happy and curious with no feral tendencies. She often lays at the front of the cage, so I can easily reach in and get her while mom hisses in the back. I've been taking her out and carrying her around for about an hour every day. But when they're separated, the mom makes the most mournful cries, and I feel like a monster.

I just want to make this as easy on the mom as I can. (The baby doesn't seem to care all that much.) I hope to get her spayed next week -- will that help diffuse her maternal instincts? Should I wait until then to take the baby for good?
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-06-2007, 05:03 PM
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I don't think spaying her will diffuse her maternal instincts. The kitten's eyes are still blue, so she's quite young. Mother cat will lie down on her tummy when she doesn't want the baby to nurse. Of course, if they weren't caged, and were loose in a home, mother cat would be teaching the baby to be a cat, through play, using the litter box, etc. As long as the kitten is being socialized, I would like to see them stay together for a while. If they were pets, I would want them to be together (with litter mates and mom) for 12 weeks. However, the public likes kittens very young--too young in my opinion, so that wouldn't be wise. I'd still wait a while..perhaps two weeks.




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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-07-2007, 12:23 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Jeanie! I'll leave them together for now, then. I'm no longer 100% positive about the kitten being fully weaned now. She eats canned food readily, and I haven't seen her nursing even once. But I (briefly and under extremely paranoid supervision) introduced her to Greg, and she immediately started examining his belly as if looking for a nipple.

When would you recommend spaying the mom, then?
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