Semi feral rescue cat(31 Posts)
I'm after advice/reassurance.
About 5 weeks ago I took in a rescue cat. She was estimated to be about 18 months old. My vet thinks that she's about 1.
She was found in a park locally with a litter of 6 kittens. 3 alive. 3 sadly not.
I found out today that she was born to a housecaf and was one of a litter of 5. Her original owners couldn't find homes for her and her siblings so let her free.
She hasn't been socialised much. And is very wary of people.
Since we've taken her in, she's taken refuge under a chair in our hallway. She didn't eat for 3 days. But is now eating fine (albeit scoffing her food down). She took a few days to fine her litter box but now has no issues using it.
She doesn't like us getting too close (apart from when she's eating - in the last week she has let me scratch her behind the ears) but doesn't cower away.
She meows at nighttime from the window sill and likes to play with her toys at nighttime.
I'm trying to feed her at around the same time each evening and morning and to encourage her to interact with us.
A few times we've left our living room door open at nighttime. On some of these occasions she's peed on the couch (oddly only on dh's "side").
Does anyone know anything about whybshe might be doing this? And suggest any advice which may help?
To tempt you this is a picture of her.
It's lovely that you took in a rescue cat. You sound to be doing everything right and, apart from the peeing, it sounds as though things are going as well as can be expected. It's a very long process with semi-ferals.
The peeing thing is a pain though and I really don't know. Is the living room closer to her hide out spot than her tray is? If so, can you put her tray nearer for a while? May be give her two trays?
Ooh a response!! Thanks!
No. the litter is closer to her hiding spot than the couch.
I'm reluctant to get a second litter as I really don't want our flat to be full of litter. As a last resort I will.
She won't come out from hidin g when we're in the house and won't do it unless we have food.
I've just spent the past half hour playing with her. I roll a ball near her and she lazily looks at me and bats it back.
I was advised by a friend to show her the pee and say no. If we can't pick her up or show her this won't work (although I can see how it would).
It's reassuring to know it will take time
I'm afraid it will - but you're doing OK so far.
Out of interest, how does she react to DH as opposed to you?
She's Indifferent to dh. Since day one he's maintained that she's "my" cat all the time. He hasn't spent as much time with her as I have. He hasn't cleaned out the litter or washed her food bowls. This isn't a problem. I pushed for the cat. I said I'd do everything for her. So I'm not bothered by that.
Maybe it is it though. Maybe she sees him as uncaring.
I'm in bed now and he's watching a movie. She's in the hallway under her chair. She's just used her litter (plastic box wood chip litter so we can hear it). And she's meowing. I'm meowing back. She's meowing back.
Feliway and a tall shelf or cat tree? If it keeps happening I think I'd check with the vet in case its a UTI. Have you got insurance?
I'm wondering whether she's wary of him. Do you know any more of her history? ( If he has a distinctive smell - to her sensitive nose - and she's only peeing on his side of the couch (and otherwise using her tray fine) I'm just wondering whether she's doing a Ya Boo Sucks and overlaying his smell?)
Meant to say,as soon as we got our cat a tall cat tree I found I could get very close as we were then on the same level.
Mine was a stray too,he just decided to come and live with us! Ratty little thing he was, but now is tame as anything and sleeps on our bed every night even though we swore he wouldn't be allowed in the bedrooms
So glad you took him in
I had a rescue kitten once. The tea lady at my work found him so malnourished he was virtually bald. By the time he came to me he had started to grow fur back.
He stayed under the sofa mostly for about a week.
He HATED men - would not have anything to do with them. He would leave the room at first whenever a man entered it. This slowly graduated to simply showing his bottom to any men in the room and otherwise ignoring them.
He also hated walking on the carpet and for several years would jump across the furniture and run across the carpet as quickly as possible if it couldn't be avoided.
After a couple of years a male flatmate won him over with patience and perseverance (and he enjoyed the challenge) and he got over the man hate age about 3.
He grew the most amazing fluffy brown coat and was an incredibly gorgeous cat. Very eccentric but beautiful and wonderful.
When we had a house fire he moved next door for about a year, and then came back to me.
Damn I loved that cat - he lived to be 18. Best cat I ever have known. When I left the country (it broke my heart to leave him) he adopted my best friend and she still has his ashes in a bespoke carved wooden box.
Enjoy your lovely cat - he'll come round.
My theory re the man hate was he was abused & nearly killed by males. But I don't know the facts so it's purely a theory. ONce he got over his initial fear is was very affectionate with females.
Tea lady found him in the gutter on her street, half dead with boys throwing stones at him.
Friends also have 2 cats, that were born feral - they got them as kittens though. I did take time but they are lovely pets now. One sleek outdoor hunter type, and his brother fatter and more cuddle.
Neither of these cats would come near me apart from to be fed. But they adore their main humans.
IME cats rock their own vibe and have their likes and dislikes without rhyme or reason.
I second getting some Feliway, the plug in might suit best, or you can get a spray form too.
I've socialized several abandoned cats for rehoming, usually by sitting patiently on the floor and letting them investigate me in their own time over a period of however long it took. I talk to them, about everything and nothing, just running conversation. Other tricks that work by trial and error are hand gestures, usually for a NO and making eye contact then doing a big, lonng blink and looking away.
They do everything in their own time though regardless of your best efforts.
She's gorgeous by the way
Oh so many replies!
I'll tell her you think she's gorgeous. She likes being told that.
I have feliway. Which seems to help.
Dh sat with her for a bit last night and tried to play with her. He showed her mousie and batted it around. She watched. He gave up after an hour. Then we heard her playing.
We're going to keep trying to encourage her.
And not let her in the living room at night time. During the day if she decides she wants to spend time with us that's fine.
We can't force it.
I think she came into our bedroom again last night. (I heard a Very loud meow very close)
I mentioned uti to my vet and he dismissed it in the basis that she'd be in pain distressed and would be peeing everywhere if it was that. But wil keep an eye on it. And yes I have insurance.
I don't know and more of her history. I do know that the park she was found in had a park keeper and I suppose he may have tried to catch her. So maybe it's a man thing.
dame yours is Puccini? And he sings?
Ours cries at nighttime. She sits on the windowsill looks outside and meows at stuff. I think at the moment she's meowing at daddy long legs and a leaf that's got itself caught in a web.
I took in 2 adult ferals earlier this year, so do understand where you are coming from. Took days before there was even a sighting of them, the only reason I knew they were still alive was that the food & water vanished overnight, and the litter tray was used.
5 months down the line and they are pretty much settled in and the rulers of my house and my life. I can stroke Girlcat most days which she enjoys when she's in the mood, and Boycat (always the shyer of the 2) will let me sometimes - usually when Dreamies are involved . They both adore playing with the Da Bird toy until my arm can't take any more, charge about the house playing chase & killing each other, and have various favourite sleeping places. Girlcat sits on the windowsill watching the world go by, Boycat is a bit too thick & clumsy to get up there so sits by the French doors instead.
So I think you WILL get there, just a matter of time and patience. Don't push it, let her come round in her own time.
Hardly sings at all now at night since he was so I'll and now needs Cystaid which contains green tea which in turn makes him into the soppiest lap cat ever who sleeps all through the night on my feet
Millie catface has just ventured up the hallway and is currently sitting by the living room door. I was making tuna melts.
And apparently she was hungry. Lucky I'd not used all the can of tuna...
I would clear it and put a folded tea towel up there with a bowl of something tasty- she'll be up there like a rat up a drain pipe
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