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Discussion Starter #1
i was looking for a cat forum to join and this seems to be a very active one so here i am.

my quick story; i live in southern new england and have one cat at home (19 year old orange tabby), a small (4 cats) feral colony that i take care of and one semi-feral that i am domesticating.

not really sure what else to say so...
 

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Hi and welcome! You sound like you have your hands full. I wish you luck with your semi-feral. I have no experience in taming a semi-feral, but many members here do.
 

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Welcome Whaler!

I saw on another thread that you said that you are having an allergy problem with a long haired kitty. I was talking to a friend who is a doctor who had told me that it isn't the actual hair that people are allergic, but to cat saliva. So people react to the saliva on the hair. So it technically isn't true that people can be allergic to only long hairs but not short hairs. You probably notice it more because there is more hair about the place. Which is also why someone can have a cat allergy and not a dog allergy. I know you said the cat is feral, I would too like to know what feral means to you. If she is able to be handled is there any way you can brush her to help reduce shedding. I too am allergic to cats, but I brush mine everyday and wipe them with these nourishing wipes and haven't had problems since. Well, except when Cloud drools and insists on giving sloppy wet headbutts and nose kisses, then my allergies start screaming :p
 

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Discussion Starter #5
thank you for the kind welcome! as to the question "what is a feral cat?" the definition that i use is taken from ally cat allies;
A feral cat is a cat who has either never had any contact with people or her contact with people has diminished over time. She is not socialized to people and survives on her own outdoors. Most feral cats are not likely to ever become lap cats or enjoy living indoors.
yeah, i knew that it was the saliva (but thanks nonetheless:)). the issue i have been having is mostly due while she is domesticating she is in one of those huge dog cages and i am trying to be as touchy as she will accept so lots of unavoidable contact with the dander. she also has started to allow me to brush her (great tip Pawsitively Nicole), at least once in a while.

she is going to be a "store cat" since my old boy at home would not adjust to her after 15 years of just the two of us.

my colony of ferals are doing well, especially considering the amount of snow we have had here this winter. i get lots of joy from seeing them just being cats; playing, sleeping in the sun, etc. a quote that relly sums up my feelings for feral cats "as anyone who has feral cats knows, that's what unconditional love is all about."

thanks again for the kind welcome.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
i guess i was too slow with trying to edit my post, but either way i just wanted to say that my semi-feral is my avatar and her name is pretty girl.

i also forgot to tell the names of my other kitties; at home is morriss, and my colony consists of bootsie, mommie, blackie and limpy.
 

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I'm glad she is allowing you to brush her :) I look forward to hearing about all of her adventures as the store cat!

Pretty girl is very stunning. Her coat looks very smooth and tangle free, impressive considering how thick it appears and that she is outside getting into all sorts of tangly things like burs lol. It must take her a lot of work being that beautiful!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
So basicially a feral cat is a outdoor cat?
well, it is more than that. true feral cats have had little if any interaction with humans therefore they are very wary of us. sure, they will be more than happy to take a can of cat food from you but they will not want to be petted. i have built houses and a covered feeding area as well as been feeding the cats in my colony for a year and i still have never touched any of them, they are true feral cats.

my explanation is probably weak at best so if you want more info; Alley Cat Allies
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I'm glad she is allowing you to brush her :) I look forward to hearing about all of her adventures as the store cat!

Pretty girl is very stunning. Her coat looks very smooth and tangle free, impressive considering how thick it appears and that she is outside getting into all sorts of tangly things like burs lol. It must take her a lot of work being that beautiful!
thanks, i agree. oh yeah, i guess as her daddy i would be a little biased:p

she has been inside now for about 3 months but even when she was living in my colony she did keep herself very well groomed.

one thing i forgot to mention about her is that she was pregnant when she showed up last year and had 2 kittens. both of the babies had a genetic defect and were born w/o eyes but once they were old enough i was able to trap all of them and find homes for the babies.

I love store cats! It's such a great idea. What kind of store do you have? She's a real beauty.
we are a retail store that sells paint and decorating products. we have a storeroom that is very quiet and away from customers. that is key since she is never going to be friendly to, or even want to see strangers. although she has developed a bond with me her days in the wild seem to keep her in a defensive mode with others, even employees that she sees nearly every day.
 

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Whaler, I am interested in your feral cat colony. How did you get started taking care of them? Is the colony on private property? What kind of shelter do they have?

I started a small feral colony last March. Somewhat unusual maybe in that first I had the idea, worked on a good set-up for the cats in my barn, then went out and got the cats. I think most people start with cats.

Yes, the winter has been tough for them. Lots of deep snow. I'm not that far from you - Columbia County, about 30 minutes from the Litchfield area. Like you, I spent a lot of time shoveling paths for them so they could get to their back porch in the sun and to the stream (alternate water source.)
 
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