Many of us will come across a stray cat and want to bring it home. The Humane Society of the United States estimates that there are 30 to 40 million community cats (the collective term for feral and feral cats) across the country.
Dr. says. Jose Ars, president of the American Veterinary Medical Association. “You might even know someone who took a stray cat and lived a wonderful and rewarding life with it.”
Below, Arce and other cat behavior experts outline what you should do when you encounter a potential stray “to ensure the best possible outcome for both of you.”
How do you get a stray cat to come to you
Arce advised caution when approaching an unfamiliar cat. It can be intimidating and attempts to catch it could injure you or the animal.
The Humane Society said that some stray animals may be friendly and approach you for food or attention, while others may be too afraid to let you get close. “But usually if you put food in front of them, they’ll eat right away.”
What do you do with a stray cat?
looking for owner
“If an unfamiliar cat finds its way into your heart and home without a collar, it is important to remember that someone else may miss that cat,” said Arce.
They need to verify that the animal is “really stray or just a neighborhood resident doing the rounds.”
Check to see if the cat’s ears are angled – if the tip of one ear is flat and not pointed). According to the Humane Society, this is a “community cat badge,” indicating that she has been spayed or neutered through a local community program and has an outdoor home.
Arce pointed out that a cat without a collar is not necessarily a stray. “Many of your cats do not wear collars and should be left alone.
If you have reason to believe a cat is stray, or you are concerned about the animal’s health or welfare, Arce advises the following steps:
- Post a message about the cat on the social media platform in your area, like B Nextdoor
- Check out any websites that unite lost pets with their owners, such as lost.petcolove.org
- Have the cat scan it for a chip that contains owner information. You can do this at a local veterinary clinic, pet care and examination office, or animal shelter.
It is helpful to provide shelter for the cat while looking for a potential owner.
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals believe that to ensure their safety, stray cats should not be left with food without being hunted. According to the advocacy group, it is important to keep animals off the streets.
PETA spokeswoman Katie Cryar said News week: “As cats that struggle to survive on the streets are exposed to frigid winters, scorching summers, speeding cars, infectious diseases, and attacks by roaming dogs and cruel people, PETA encourages anyone who encounters homeless cats or cats to bring them indoors.”
According to PETA, only food should be used to safely catch a stray cat. “Otherwise, feeding only increases the number of homeless cats.”
The Humane Society said you can lure a cat into a humane food trap by feeding it at the same time and place each day to establish a routine.
The PETA website provides detailed advice on catching a stray cat. Cryar also shared these 3 tips to help you catch shy, fearful, or antisocial cats:
- Add soft lining to a human trap or chest
- Use strong-smelling food as bait
- Always keep within sight of the trap.
Be careful with cats
Before caring for potential feral cats, Arce recommends contacting your local animal welfare office or shelter or shelter for advice.
He said feral cats may be “especially tempting to bring them home”. “However, this may not always be best for cats,” she may still be breastfeeding and her mother may be nearby but is hiding or looking for food.
The UK-based Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) has warned that if someone tries to transport kittens, the mother could refuse or kill her offspring.
You should only act if you have not seen the mother within hours or if the kittens appear to be in distress or otherwise unsafe, according to the Humane Society.
What to feed a stray cat
Dry cat food is the best option, according to the Feline Foundation, a group that rehabilitates feral cats in the Indian city of Mumbai. Kibble is convenient because it’s easier to store and distribute, and it’s less expensive than cans or bags of wet food.
The foundation said that your leftovers, or even meals you prepare for strays, may not meet the cats’ nutritional requirements. Cat food will commercial.
Where do you put a stray cat
Take the wayward to a local vet. Cats who have been outside can contract parasitic, fungal, viral, or bacterial diseases, some of which infect humans as well. Arce said feral cats can also suffer from malnutrition or injury.
Your vet will thoroughly check your cat for any infestations — such as ear mites, fleas and tapeworm infections — and recommend appropriate treatments if necessary.
Depending on the feline’s approximate age, health status, and needs, additional testing, vaccinations, or parasite prevention products may be required.
How to adopt a stray cat
The RSPCA said if you check the cat for a small chip and can’t locate its owner, you can choose to adopt the cat yourself.
“Adopting a cat is a huge responsibility,” said Kriar. “Prospective adopters must first ensure that they have the time, space and resources to provide the cats with affection, food and lifelong veterinary care.”
You should also consider how suitable the cat is in your family, including other pets, and what care they need to lead a healthy and happy life.
“If a suitable home cannot be found, the cats should be placed in an open shelter where they have the best chance of finding a loving home,” said Kriar.
You can also reach out to local cat organizations, many of which have former feral cats available for housing.