Did you know that October 16th is National Feral Cat Day? This is certainly a wonderful and worthy cause, and one we are happy to support. We believe that every living being deserves to be treated with kindness and compassion. There are far too many homeless kitties fending for themselves! Read on as a San Jose, CA vet discusses feral cats.
Although physically there is no difference between a stray kitty, a feral cat, and a housecat, they are all very different mentally. Strays are kitties that have been around humans before. Many strays were once pets, or were born and raised around people. They’re often quite friendly, and may even make themselves quite at home on your porch or patio. Feral cats, on the other hand, are entirely wild, and can be extremely wary of people. Although strays can become feral if left on their own too long, the reverse isn’t necessarily true: feral cats don’t always make good housecats.
Supporting TNR (Trap-Neuter-Release) programs is one great way to help feral cats. By helping get these kitties fixed, you’re fighting pet overpopulation. This is a huge problem, and is actually one of the main reasons there are so many feral cats to begin with. It’s also important to get your own pets fixed. If you want to help feral cats in your area, ask your vet for advice on providing them with food, water, and veterinary care. You can also help homeless kitties by setting out shelters for them. A plastic storage tote with a hole in one end and some newspapers inside will do just fine!
While some feral cats can be tamed and socialized, others just aren’t well-suited to the indoor life. That doesn’t mean these kitties can’t be helped, however. If a feral cat has kittens on your property, you may be able to help the little ones, and perhaps even adopt one. Feral cats also make wonderful barn cats. If you have a barn, Fluffy may be more than happy to keep your place mouse-free in exchange for bedding, food, and basic veterinary care. Talk about a win-win! Ask your vet for specific recommendations.
Do you have questions about cat care? Contact us, your San Jose, CA animal clinic, anytime! We’re here to serve all your pet’s veterinary care needs.