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Discussion Starter #1
I have recently taken a stray cat into my home that was abandoned and ill. I know that he has lived for at least three years on the street, scrounging for food from neighbors. He is neutered and he is very friendly to humans.
When I first brought him in I confined him to a room in the house. He was crazy, howling and tearing at doors and windows trying to get out. (I only tried this for one night) I contacted a stray agency and they suggested that I confine him to a cage for a period of time, including all the things he needs to be comfortable. I bought a cage and we have survived the night with him in it.
He slept most of the night but this morning he is crying, howling and close to hysteria in his cage. Standing on his head, rolling around in his litter box, tearing everything up trying to find a way out.
I just want to verify that this behavior is normal and that I'm not doing permanent damage to this poor guy given that he is so used to running the neighborhood. Should I ignore him when he is hysterical or try to sooth him by talking to him?
Secondly I would appreciate some information on how often to let him out of the cage initially. When I let him out this morning to clean the cage he was back to running around the room hysterically trying to tear the doors and windows apart to get out. This is leading me to believe I should leave him in his cage for some time till he settles down.
He is a very sweet cat but he is basically wild. I am encouraged because there are periods of time where he is quiet and then the hysteria begins again.
Any guidance you could provide would be greatly appreciated. I love this cat very much and I want so bad for him to be happy with our family b.
 

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Welcome to CatForum and I hope we can help.
It sounds like he may have been friendly and socialized at some point in his life but was then either lost or abandoned and has reverted back to his instincts for survival. It may take time for him to adjust to confinement. I would try to encourage him to remain in his quieter and more accepting time-periods so he remains relaxed and calm, helping him by reassuring him and letting him know your intentions are good. I've brought completely feral cats into my home to tame and socialize for public adoption ... but truthfully? ... those were ALL kittens. Five to six months old at the oldest. The adult ferals I tamed and socialized outdoors before I offered to let them come in, and when I did so, they walked themselves in and I stood at the door to be able to quickly allow them back out if/when they began to get nervous.
I've never been in the situation you are in and I don't think I have any advice that would be helpful. I think when Mitts & Tess sees this, she will be able to offer *much* better advice as she works primarily with adult feral cats. Most of my work is with younger cats and almost all of my work with adult ferals were with the ones found on our property and I tamed/socialized over a long period of time outdoors ... though every adult feral has become a wonderful indoor kitty for us. ...but again, I did the majority of the socializatin process outside where the cats were free to come/go and interacts as they pleased.
Wishing you the best of luck,
heidi =^..^=
 

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Since this poor cat needs your help, I would try Feliway, and give him as much privacy as is possible until he calms down. Then I would take steps to socialize him. He will eventually recognize you as the person who feeds him, and that's step 1. When he's well, of course, you might want to release him. I hope you will get him neutered first. There are many organizations that will help with cost, some that will do that at no charge. Here are some resources for you, by state:

http://www.bing.com/search?srch=106&FOR ... s+by+state.


It's so very kind of you to help him! Keep us informed, please.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
thank you so much for your ideas and suggestions. they help to let me know what i should be doing as this is all new to me. my plan is to keep him if possible. he is a very nice guy and i really have developed an affection for him. luckily i was feeding him when he lived on the street for about 3 months. he is very smart, comes to a whistle to get his food when he was outside. so step one is taken care of because he seems to like me. just hates the house. now i just have to get him used to the house. i will give it time and privacy and hopefully he will calm down.
 

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Some cats do not react to feliway, similar to how some are not affected by catnip. If he doesn't respond well to the feliway, you could try Composure Liquid and/or Rescue Remedy. I haven't tried any of these products, but many people have, with great results. Mitts & Tess is most knowledgeable about the two products I mentioned and I hope she sees your topic so she can advise you about dosing.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
i will get some feliway today to see if it helps him. he is better but still very unhappy and howling and trying to get out. not as hysterical though. i feel so bad for him and i just want him to be happy. he really is a very nice guy, very loving so i don't have to deal with alot of the things others do when the kitty is afraid of people.
if the feliway doesn't work i will try the others.....
 
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