Feral Fun

October 16 was National Feral Cat Day. I haven’t had a chance to share how I celebrated yet due to a number of life events which I will elaborate on later. I love my feral cats and so of course I also love celebrating National Feral Cat Day. This year, a few of my friends came over after work to munch on some noms, watch Ten Lives: A Feral Cat Odyssey, and discuss issues facing feral cats and potential solutions to these problems. We had a great time. One of my favorite things in the world is vegging out with my friends and discussing animals, and cats are a popular topic with me.

For anyone who doesn’t know, feral cats are domestic cats who have reverted back to a wild state. This happens when lost, stray or abandoned pet cats breed in the wild and have kittens who grow up without socialization to humans. Since they are fearful of humans, adult ferals do not make good pets. Kittens of feral cats can be socialized to humans and go on to make good pets if caught at an early age. Check out this video for more info on feral cats:

It is INCREDIBLY important to get your pets spayed and neutered to help prevent pet overpopulation and the potential for feral cats. I got involved because I’ve seen how quickly feral cats can get out of control without trap-neuter-return programs. So when I spotted two kittens on my way to work one day, I had to get involved. It took me a while to learn the ropes, and I’ll go over that process in this blog someday, but let’s go back to the beginning of National Feral Cat Day 2014. I started the day like I normally do. I woke up, got ready for work, took care of my own pets and then headed out to feed my wonderful feral kitties. I had special treats for them and I have to say, they are the best way to start a day. My ferals all know the feeding schedule and I have two sweet little girls at one location who have gotten used to me and actually rub all over me while I pet them. Sudden movements and anything out of the ordinary still startle them, but most of the time we have a routine where I sit down with the girls and I’m able to pet them as they rub all over me. After some lovey time, I give them fresh water, dry food, and canned food. I feed them in the morning and give them just a little more food than they can eat in one sitting so as not to attract wildlife to the feed site. I also stay with the girls as they eat to make sure nothing else scares them off.

This is Twilight:

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And this is her sister, Smoke:

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After feeding the girls, I go to my second feed site where my boys are located. I have trapped my ferals and had them spayed or neutered and vaccinated. It’s not always easy caring for feral cats, but for me, it’s worth it. At least I know that my ferals aren’t being euthanized in a shelter or pound. Nearly 100% of all feral cats in pounds and shelters are euthanized since they are not socialized with humans and cannot be adopted out as pets. I know for a fact that TNR or trap-neuter-return prevents unwanted litters of feral cats. I also provide winterized homes for my ferals.

Two of my boys have become the bestest of buddies. This is Bobcat…

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and this is Blue…

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Aren’t they handsome?

Bobcat showed up a couple years ago and always wanted a friend. He tried to make friends with another male feral, but it didn’t work. Blue started showing up towards the beginning of this year and was extremely shy. I only caught glimpses of him. He was like a ghost cat. Both Bobcat and Blue learned the feeding schedule and got a little more used to me and to each other when they came to eat in the mornings. They became absolutely inseparable almost overnight. They eat together, sleep together, cuddle together and wrestle and play together. They can barely walk a straight line because they rub on each other so much while walking.

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Surveying their territory together…

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One can’t go far without the other.

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You can see another of my male ferals in the background. That’s Mr. Gray.

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I love kitty bums!

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Taking care of ferals can be hard work physically and emotionally, but it is absolutely much more rewarding!

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