What is a feral cat? How do you tame a feral cat or kitten?
Feral cats are those born in the wild. Literarily, the term feral cat means cats that have gone wild. Feral cats can be the offsprings of stray or abandoned cats who have reverted to a wild state. They can also be the offsprings of feral casts who have lived in a wild state for some time.
I don’t blame such cats because even when humans are subjected to such terrible conditions that they were not used to, they can easily go wild… within a short time.
However all is not lost with your feral cat. There are still lots of hope in taming your cat. First… with a little patience and time, a feral cat can be tamed into a loving pet. Young cats are more apt to adjust quickly to domestic environment.
Please, handle feral cats with extreme caution. Use gloves and protective clothing, because cat bites and scratches can result in severe health problems.
The taming processes of feral cats can be from about two until six weeks, depending on the age and state of wildness of the cat. Individual kittens may show differing personalities, even those in the same litter. Any person attempting to tame feral kittens should have patience and be committed to the project. But the process is worth all the while since you are not only saving the lives of these kittens who’d likely not live long if they were feral, you’re also creating wonderful companions.
A kitten who is feral will likely hiss and spit at humans, and indeed they are usually terrified of humans if they’ve had no previous contact. Why? It is not far-fetched. To that kitten you may be predator. If you come near the kitten, reach out for it, and / or touch it, it fears you are trying to hurt it – and don’t be surprised if she fights as if she is fighting for her very life. A hissing, spitting, scratching cat who’s trying to get away from you probably will…and will likely hurt you and herself in the process. Use caution! Humanely trapping them in a box tends to be better than trying to catch them by hand.
Since you don’t know this kitten’s history, you’ll need to test her for diseases by bringing her to a veterinarian. The kitten should be isolated to a small section of your home both until they are tamed, and for sure until they’ve been tested and treated for diseases by a vet.
If you did use a humane trap to catch your kitten who’s feral, then at your first chance put the kitten in a cage that’s big enough to hold her bedding and a small litterbox. Cats (just like you, no doubt) don’t like to eliminate where they eat and sleep, so make sure there is a distance between the litter box and the sleeping/eating area.
Then place this kitten’s new home in a quiet place (away from the normal hustle and bustle of your house), and eep away for the few days. Remember you are still viewed as a potential predator, so don’t attempt to hold the kittens. You can go into their room frequently and talk softly, however. In other words, slowly acclimate them to you and the surroundings. Patience is the key.
Let the kitten slowly gain your trust and feel safe with you. Moving too fast on this process can terrify the kitten, and it is capable of giving you a nasty scratch or bite and will probably try to escape if given the chance.
Food and water, plus bedding should be placed in the cage. Many cages have food and water bowls attached to the doors so that you can feed and water the kittens without having to place your hand inside. Remember, these kittens can bite. If you do not have a cage or your cage is too small, then place the kittens in a small room all on their own until they are successfully tamed.
And lastly, a good idea to gradually introduce the kittens to human is to use worn clothing as the kitten’s beddings. This get them used to the smell of humans.
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