Author Topic: Stray kitten  (Read 684 times)

Offline GhostMouse

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Stray kitten
« on: October 10, 2011, 09:40:25 PM »
There's a stray kitten that I've noticed hanging around the the parking lot of the apartment complex recently. It's completely terrified of people and bolts whenever I go outside, but I've seen it hanging out with another cat who lives here. The other cat appears very healthy and well taken care of, and is extremely affectionate. He clearly belongs to someone in the complex, so I'm not worried about him. I am worried about this kitten, though, because it's starting to get cold outside.

We're on the ground floor, so I put a little box with an old towel in it out there, in the corner of our patio-area (up against two walls), in the hopes that she'll find it a warm place to sleep. I also put out a bowl of water, though it rained today. I put it under one of the patio chairs, right up against the railing (which is up against some shrubbery), so that she can get to it and still feel covered. I bought some wet kitten food, and I plan to put it out next time I see her. I don't want to just leave it out there because I'm afraid the other cat will eat it before the kitten can, or that I'll attract raccoons or armadillos (I've seen an armadillo hanging out in the parking lot before).

Our patio faces a central grass island that just has grills on it. This island also has a big decorative rock with some bushes around it, and I think this is where the kitten lives. When she's not playing with the bigger cat, I see her around there. Should I put the food and water out there? I'm afraid someone will see it and move it, or let their dogs get into it. The kitten plays with the bigger cat near our patio, do you think I should just try to put the food out and hope she finds it by smell?

Is there anything else I can do for the little guy? I know how to take care of cats, but I don't know much about luring in strays. Usually they just come to me. I've got experience with feral kittens, but the ones I tamed were caught by someone else and given to me. If I could get her it wouldn't be an issue (except that I don't think I could add a cat right now), but right now I just want to make sure she has food and water and shelter, and that she knows she has these things.

Offline nakedrats

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Re: Stray kitten
« Reply #1 on: October 11, 2011, 07:45:08 PM »
My advice would be to feed the kitty 2-3 meals a day, and pick up the bowls between feedings.  Feeding the kitten will help keep it healthy especially as the weather turns cold.  Picking up the food between meals will prevent wildlife/dog/rodent issues, and cats really don't need to eat all day long.  Leave the food out for an hour or so at first so he figures out the pattern- he'll learn fast.  Put a heavy ceramic bowl of water on your porch in an out of the way spot, and keep it fresh.  Look up your local feral cat spay/neuter clinic and get him/her fixed and vaccinated.  A male cat will fight and spray stinky urine all over the place to mark his territory if he's not fixed, and a female will make more unwanted feral kittens if she's not spayed.  If you want to provide shelter, a synthetic material such as fleece wil stay warmer when damp, while a cotton towel will be cold.  A fixed, vaccinated, well fed cat can live a happy healthy outdoor life and not cause problems with the nieghbors.  I attached a link with directons for how to build a feral kitty shelter out of a rubbermaid bin.  It also has info on building a cat shelter, trap-neuter-release, and feeding cats.

http://www.neighborhoodcats.org/HOW_TO_FERAL_CAT_WINTER_SHELTER

Offline GhostMouse

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Re: Stray kitten
« Reply #2 on: October 11, 2011, 08:02:02 PM »
Excellent, thank you. Thank link is great, and I didn't know that about the fleece. I'll switch the towel out for a blanket, I'm sure the rats can spare one.

She's so skittish and scared of people, it's going to be a lot of work to get her anywhere near the patio, but I'm going to try. First on my list is to show her where food and shelter are. If I can do that much, I'll move up to trying to catch her to get her speutered (I say "her," but of course I don't know for sure) and vaccinated.