At some point or another it’s happened to us. You’re innocently minding your own business and suddenly out of nowhere, an adorable little stray cat appears. What to do? How do you react?
You may want to first determine if this stray cat is an outdoor cat or wildlife cat. Well-groomed cats are likely pets that go outdoors. Since they’re a family pet, they’re comfortable with people and may try to come inside. Male cats apparently roam whereas females and neutered male cats are typically neighborhood cats and seldom roam.
Lost cats and feral cats in wildlife may seem one in the same. When cats are lost and scared you may think it’s a stray cat, after all it will come out at night and hide during the day. When you approach it, you’ll notice it turns into an aggression mode by hissing, growling, and arching its back.
Still unsure, you may want to first call your local veterinarian to see if somebody has reported losing their cat. When you find a stray cat, you may also want to call the local RSPCA and Cats Protection League – they may have a lost and found.
If you’re simply attached to the stray cat and want to adopt him or her, you’ll first need to determine if it’s a lost cat since another owner may be desperately searching to bring him or her back home. But, if the stray cat is indeed stray, you’ll want to take it to the veterinarian and ensure it doesn’t have any diseases. The veterinarian will neuter/spay it, check for flea, worm and mite treatment, etc. You’ll need to start regular feedings with your stray cat at the same time and same place where your stray cat will feel safe in your home. If you have other pets, word of caution: keep them away from your stray cat. At this point the stray cat needs to associate you with the food.
Your stray cat needs to be kept in one room with a closed door with only litter and bedding until it feels secure there. At that point, you may leave the door open but realize your stray cat is in a new, unusual environment. Taking things slow is the way to go.
At The Dog Bowl, nothing is more important than your pets’ health and well being. For more information about stray cats contact your local shelter.