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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a cat that came to me as a feral kitten that I was going to foster and socialize and eventually find him a loving home. Well, 10 years later he's still here because I couldn't give him up. He is by far the most affectionate cat I have ever had. He sleeps by my pillow at night. I absolutely adore him. The problem is, there is still a lot of feral-ness there. I wish there was a forum for dealing with ex-ferals. I had another ex-feral who recently succumbed to cancer who had less of the wildness still there. Putting Advantage on him every month is extremely stressful because he knows when I have the Advantage in my hand. He then keeps his distance. He has allergic dermatitis to flea saliva so I absolutely have to get it on him. Does anyone know of an ex-feral forum? I searched Yahoo groups but didn't find one. It's hard to believe one doesn't exist because a cat that was once feral is different from other cats. I think I also did a bad job socializing him. I had a lot going on in my life in his kitten and teen years and he didn't get exposed to other people.
 

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Hey Waterfaller, we can start one together. I have lots of ex-ferals. All I can say is, I kinow you have done the best you can for this cat. He loves you and you love him. All those traces of his feral days that still remain will present some obstacles - like giving meds or getting them in a carrier - but some of these challenges can be overcome.

I can't get flea and tick meds on my ex-feral Stubby, but I can sprinkle diatomaceous earth on his bed, or wherever he sleeps. If you can get a bit rubbed into his fur it's even better. DA will do a good job on fleas. You can also add it to his food for internal parasites.
Also, I have heard that some people have success with Brewer's yeast and other supplements for elimimating fleas.
 

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I have a cat that came to me as a feral kitten that I was going to foster and socialize and eventually find him a loving home. Well, 10 years later he's still here because I couldn't give him up. He is by far the most affectionate cat I have ever had. He sleeps by my pillow at night. I absolutely adore him. The problem is, there is still a lot of feral-ness there. I wish there was a forum for dealing with ex-ferals. I had another ex-feral who recently succumbed to cancer who had less of the wildness still there. Putting Advantage on him every month is extremely stressful because he knows when I have the Advantage in my hand. He then keeps his distance. He has allergic dermatitis to flea saliva so I absolutely have to get it on him. Does anyone know of an ex-feral forum? I searched Yahoo groups but didn't find one. It's hard to believe one doesn't exist because a cat that was once feral is different from other cats. I think I also did a bad job socializing him. I had a lot going on in my life in his kitten and teen years and he didn't get exposed to other people.
I have 2 ex-ferals. One of them, you would never know was a feral. The other one, it's apparent she is a feral. My oldest one, Mooch, you would not know she was a feral. She's very outgoing and very social. Phantom, her great niece, well, as much as we're trying to socialize her, she's content in letting only a limited amount of people into her life.

I agree, try DE. Make sure it's human grade, not the stuff that is treated with chemicals.

Also, I have found that a raw diet is the best for ferals and ex-ferals. There's something about a raw fed cat's blood that makes it unattractive to fleas.

And, now that you mention it, Mooch's sister, Faith, who is also an ex-feral, also has the same problem and is about the same age as your cat. It's a constant battle between allergy shots and steroid shots and trying to keep the fleas off the poor kitty. Good luck!
 

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ferals can be trying, I have 2 . tammi took over a year to tame to a managable state and will allways be a skittish kitty (she was a ghost in the yard, we only ever saw flashes of her) smokey my outdoor kennel cat tamed fairly fast after we got him fixed at over a year old.. he still has a wild side but would make a wonderful lap cat if it wasn't for his spraying habits (he was the proud owner of the yard when trapped, he still marks his territory and everthing else) canned food is great distraction when its time for his neck drops..
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hey Waterfaller, we can start one together. I have lots of ex-ferals. All I can say is, I kinow you have done the best you can for this cat. He loves you and you love him. All those traces of his feral days that still remain will present some obstacles - like giving meds or getting them in a carrier - but some of these challenges can be overcome.

I can't get flea and tick meds on my ex-feral Stubby, but I can sprinkle diatomaceous earth on his bed, or wherever he sleeps. If you can get a bit rubbed into his fur it's even better. DA will do a good job on fleas. You can also add it to his food for internal parasites.
Also, I have heard that some people have success with Brewer's yeast and other supplements for elimimating fleas.
Hi Greenport,

I like the idea of starting an ex-feral forum up!
I bet there's a lot of people out there like us that feel quite challenged by their ex-feral kitties. How would we do that?

I plan to move to San Diego in the next year or two and I dread thinking about how I'm going to transport Bodhi and get him resituated. Also, he meows a lot. They sound like complaining meows. I don't know if his skin is itchy or something else is going on. He calms down though when I give him a good scratching. I'm ashamed to admit, I haven't tried to get him into a carrier to take him to the vet. He is so frightened of other people that I really fear he wouldn't be able to handle it. I also have big doubts I'd be able to get him into a carrier. But he's getting up there in age. He's going to fall ill and I'm going to have to get him in to the vet's office. It might take a feral cat trap. I feel very anxious about it. I really think he had to have been badly traumatized in the initial trapping.
 

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It's hard to believe one doesn't exist because a cat that was once feral is different from other cats.
Not all ex-ferals are the same. I have two, one that was a feral kitten and wouldn't move off the couch for first month, nor fully felt comfortable inside for at least a year. The other one I tamed from the street, she used to be owned by someone but had turned wild and didn't trust people, it took a year before she even let me pet her, and at least another year or so before she felt fully at home in a house again (the first time I put her indoors then closer the door she immediately went frantic and jumped out a broken window that was way up high).

The once feral kitten Blaze (now 16) sprays, and is afraid of strangers and loud noises, especially garbage trucks and plastic bags. He was raised behind restaurants and lived out of dumpsters. He isn't the most well adjusted cat there is by a long shot, but he will let the people he trusts manhandle him and loves attention, and meows as much as a Siamese, but with a huge vocal range.

The other one, Blacky, is the most well adjusted cat I know. She doesn't run up to strangers but likewise isn't afraid of them; she just doesn't know them so is indifferent, outside only a few people she'll let approach her. She has no irrational fears, she doesn't even run from the vacuum until it's in the same room as her. She lets the people she knows manhandle her quiet easily and sleeps curled up on me every night.

Also, there are a large number of feral cats and ex-feral cats at the cat sanctuary I volunteer at, probably more than half the cats there, out of about 700 cats. A lot of them spook easily or are only friendly to those they know, but some are crazy affectionate cats that you would never guess had once been feral, they run up to everyone for attention. Some feral cats only take a very short time to become tame while others may never tame up at all.

I guess I'm trying to say is you shouldn't limit a cat based on its past feral history, I know it can hugely contribute to its behaviors, however some cats are just naturally born less trusting and spooky, they don't even have to be ex-ferals to exhibit a more feral behavior. The Behaviour section should be adequate for addressing all types of issues with kitties, ex-ferals or not.
 

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I adopted 2 feral adults, so I know what you guys are talking about. Prince wasn't born feral, I think, but the other two I know for a fact. That said, I took home the friendliest of the tens of strays around my feeding station, so I have it easier. A forum would be great, though I don't know if there are enough people in our situation...
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Not the same

You guys do know that there is a Feral Forum here, right?
The Feral Cat forum is not about ferals that are homed. It's about TNR and colonies and everything to do with outside completely wild cats. Ex-ferals are somewhere in between a totally domesticated cat and a totally wild. feral cat.
 

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That forum is probably going to be your best bet, though. I'm not sure, but I don't think there's enough of an interest for the mods to create a new forum for ex-ferals...though it would be interesting to have one.
 
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