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Stray cat dilemma

Phocyn

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I’m looking for some quick advice. I am currently in the process of attempting to catch a very feral Tom cat that is getting older and looks very thin/sick. This cat has a history of slaughtering domestic birds and fowls in the area.

My plan is to catch him and either surrender him to animal control or take him to my vet to have him euthanized humanely. This cat will never be adoptable and my local cat shelter won’t take him.

At the moment, I’m looking for some moral guidance on the best solution.
 

Shezbug

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I think you’re doing the only responsible and right thing available for anyone to do.
I wish the original owners of cats would be more responsible- they should never be let outside let alone left out there long enough to become wild and then breed more feral cats.

We currently have another roaming cat (owned but always out killing birds) stalking Birdie again but unfortunately my cat trap is at someone else’s house who is flooded in their town and we’re flooded in at my town too so my son and I are constantly going outside to interfere in this cats attempts to kill birds in our yard.
 

Blueberry

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Call rescues and post in local neighborhood groups (try and relocate the cat) . I am against killing any animal . . . The cat was surviving by kill the local wildlife ... I sure he also killed mice and rats as well.

Where are you generally located?
 

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I fed a gorgeous feral male cat for around 4 years. A neighbor trapped him and took him to be spayed and released. After that he was not the same cat and declined in health. Like you said lost weight and looked bad. One day I WAS SITTING OUTSIDE AND HE CAME UP TO ME WILLINGLY. He was a shadow of his former self. I took him in to be euthanized. Feral cats don’t live but a few years, it’s a hard life. Thanks for caring and please help him cross over to a better place without guilt.

It was like he asked me to end his misery. Otherwise he would not have crawled in my lap. I cried and said goodbye.
 

AussieBird

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I agree with Shez. I also have a roaming cat around (I am quite sure someone owns it as it's not completely feral. I did see a second one once), and it's harassing several of my animals.
Also the fact that the one you are seeing is sick IMO means euthanizing is the best option. You say it very feral which makes it extremely unsafe and stressful (for both the person/s involved and the cat) to provide medical care.
 

Sparkles99

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I'd take the cat to a shelter to let them decide. Chances are you're right. But there are some cats who aren't suited to being pets. Our local shelter adopts them to barns & businesses as working cats.
 

Blueberry

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The cat could just need to be dewormed.


I have taken in many feral cats and they literally turned out to be the most grateful and affectionate cats I have ever had. These cats came from a farm with little to no human contact and they need vet care(literally the brink of death) and we l nursed the cats back to health. This wasn't at once but multiple occasions.

There are feral colonies that this cat could be integrated in even where people come and take care of them if you do not want him. These organizations can also seek medical care for this cat.. Life is precious and is a God given gift. If the cat wants to live PLEASE let him live.
 

Sparkles99

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Never thought of the deworming - very good point!
 

Phocyn

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@everyone I appreciate the feed back. I’m still tracking this cat down and will try and work with local county shelter to have him vetted fully and offer him as a ‘work’ cat, but not for farms with poultry. There are some local cattle and horse people I’ll try and reach out to. Ultimately it is up to the shelter but they’re currently at capacity they’ve told me due to negligence on owners behalf’s. If nothing else can be done I’ll consider some other routes. But he is a frequent danger to anything with feathers. I’m hoping I can get him on canned cat food and make the ‘easy’ meal more optimal for him. I’ll double check with a different nearby dog rescue and see if they can perhaps help since they often deal with pitts that were used badly.
 

Wally&Eva

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The cat could just need to be dewormed.


I have taken in many feral cats and they literally turned out to be the most grateful and affectionate cats I have ever had. These cats came from a farm with little to no human contact and they need vet care(literally the brink of death) and we l nursed the cats back to health. This wasn't at once but multiple occasions.

There are feral colonies that this cat could be integrated in even where people come and take care of them if you do not want him. These organizations can also seek medical care for this cat.. Life is precious and is a God given gift. If the cat wants to live PLEASE let him live.
Brother took in two ferals, against my advice (although I wasn’t against it for any other reason than financial for his current state). Ringo was an old, big, Maine coon who lived a hard life. He took in a young kitten last year, Will Ferrell, still hides and hisses, sometimes I think she would be happier outside then I remember how cold and dangerous it is. Ringo, is now a sweet old cuddle kitten who’s quality of life has been exponentially increased. But some animals are not built for the inside life. All my cats were feral so I have a real soft spot for them, just trying to make it out there. They may not be adoptable but they can be still a part of a feral community, like mentioned. I’m a sucker, so I would just feed the cat, hopefully helping him along and keeping his death count down on the neighborhood birds.

This is a hard decision and no judgement here. We have a lot of feral cats get attacked too, so I respect survival of the fittest. At the same time, I would be devastated and at my wits end if my domesticated animals that trusted me were being stalked and murdered.
 

rocky'smom

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We have feral cats at our farm. We also have a very good vet, who was neuter Tom's, notch their ear and they become farm cats. The feral cats are given their shots and tested for communicable diseases . If the cat is a female then they are spayed and found a new home. We have live trapped cats in our barn and taking them to the vet. Most of the cats are female. The few of them have been male have come back to our farm. Except for the three house cats.
 

Phocyn

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I found a foster home for Beastly. Someone with more experience than I in dealing with ferals. The recommendation came via a mutual friend and they passed my back ground check. They are a former animal control agent so that helped with the situation. Beastly will be cared for, have vet care, and won’t be allowed to slaughter any more farm animals. More importantly this person is as cat aware as they come.
 

Beebleburb

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If no one will take it in then you can just drop it off near a farm or barn, farmers usually like to have a few random cats around to keep mice and other pests in check. We always had a couple of random cats on our small farm, they seem to really like it there. A warm place to sleep, easy to catch food, easy water access, and shelter from bad weather. A feral cat's paradise.
 

Greylady1966

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Please don't drop a cat off near a farm without permission. Many farmers around us are overrun with stray and feral cats and can't afford any vet care for them. When one cat gets feline distemper it usually takes them a out, a very slow, terrible way to die. We live 6 miles out of town and just recently have had 3 stray cats show up. This aren't feral cats, they're tame and hungry and our vet said most likely dumped off.
We just took a male cat in and had him neutered and shots. 160 dollars and thankfully found him a home with a vet tech. Now we have a female that had kittens about 5 weeks ago. We need to get her fixed and still find inside homes for 3 kittens, two already are spoken for.
We interact with several farmers because we are a small acreage in the middle if 3 very large farms and were told most farmers put poison bait out to keep rats and mice under control which I'm very much against. Poison kills everything that eats it including cats.
I don't know the solution to all of this but droppings them off at farms is just moving the problem to somewhere else.
I love to feed the wild birds here and have several feeders up and a heated bird fountain. I just saw another cat drinking out of it so I'm pretty sure the birds will go somewhere else. I'm frustrated.
The shelter my daughter volunteers at said they are full with cats and kittens. It's a no win situation.
 

Phocyn

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If no one will take it in then you can just drop it off near a farm or barn, farmers usually like to have a few random cats around to keep mice and other pests in check. We always had a couple of random cats on our small farm, they seem to really like it there. A warm place to sleep, easy to catch food, easy water access, and shelter from bad weather. A feral cat's paradise.
Please, don’t do this! I’ve had to rescue 12 cats this year alone and those are just the ones I could get to. I have so many nightmare stories about what happens to abandoned pets it’s sickening.
 

Greylady1966

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We put one cat in our coop to get her fixed and find a home, than she had 5 kittens. I was told a cat can have 2 to 3 litters a year. We wanted to prevent adding to the problem.
 

Sparkles99

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All the barns I ever rode at complained about dumped cats. Responsible barns have their own mousers. They are neutered & get routine vet care.

My best barn had a fighter dumped on them. He caused injuries requiring vet care to one of theirs. When the owner approached a no-kill rescue they speeched her about responsible animal ownership & refused to help. She gave them her vet's phone number & said he'd been dumped on her. They did this to a woman who'd even nursed one of her own barn cats back to health after an encounter with a fisher. He had many wounds & a broken leg.

They realized their mistake & said no anyway: he was a fighter; he'd be hard to place. So, she brought him to the humane society. That's how I learned how no kill rescues maintain their stellar records: turn the 'problems' away & 'pull' highly adoptable, desirable dogs from open admission shelters desperate to try to improve their own reputations.

And as an aside, not every cat is mouser material. :)
 

rocky'smom

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If no one will take it in then you can just drop it off near a farm or barn, farmers usually like to have a few random cats around to keep mice and other pests in check. We always had a couple of random cats on our small farm, they seem to really like it there. A warm place to sleep, easy to catch food, easy water access, and shelter from bad weather. A feral cat's paradise.
How irresponsible is that? ^^^^^^^^
As a part-time farmer , we do not want your cat or kitten dumped in our fields or near our barn. We already have our designated Barn cats we don't need your cat to become a feral on our farm.
As of today's date we have had 14 feral cats on our farm, 5 females that were pregnant; 2 of those had kittens in our barn or horse shed. That is 10 kittens that we had to find homes for. One mama was hit by car on our road, rushed to veterinary. Sadly she did not make it. The other female was live trapped and brought to a local rescue.
Of the 10 males, 5 of them were horribly sick with FIV and had to be put down. The other 5, 3 were already neutered and are still sitting at the rescue. 2 were neutered and are sitting at rescue.
We can't afford to feed your cat or kitten plus your own. And don't you say there are plenty of rodents on the farm. Because there isn't, we store our feed in chest freezers that no longer work, to keep it away from rodents and other animals. Feral cats have reduced our wild bird population by about 30%. Feral cats will hang out near our home and drive our indoor cats insane. Our 2 resident neutered tom cats that live in our barn ,handle our rodent problem on their own. They do not like feral cats intruding on their territory. They will fight the feral cat and possibly get hurt ,get sick and possibly die.
In a lot of states it is illegal to dump your animal on the road ,in state park or on somebody's land.
Just heads up for those that may not know this us farmers are pretty internet savvy, we have wifi cameras set up on our fields, pastures driveways. We see people that dump animals, guess what, we see their license plates and get a description. We turn this information over to the local sheriff.
 

Sparkles99

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We see people that dump animals, guess what, we see their license plates and get a description. We turn this information over to the local sheriff.
Good. It's condemning the cats to a miserable end. People need to take care of their own responsibilities. This is just like the people who 'free' pet birds when they become inconvenient.
 

Beebleburb

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How irresponsible is that? ^^^^^^^^
Idk I'm just speaking from my experience, we were always happy to have some random cats around. I'm unable to figure out how to remove the post as it seems to have upset people and not helped as I intended it. My apologies.
Feral Cats are able to live independently- they don't need human care. I was not in any sense saying to abandon a domestic cat, domestic cats do not know life without relying on humans. If im interpreting feral correctly it means it doesn't need humans. This is a wild animal causing issues in this person's area. It's not unkind to relocate it to a different habitat, especially one more suited to it. This was not a thread about a domestic cat it was about a feral cat.
As for people commenting on the costs of barn cats- they never cost my family anything. They feed themselves, they care for themselves. They aren't pets. They don't come near people. Not every animal has to be domesticated to be happy.
I apologize if I have offended anyone but please ignore my post and reply to the original poster with information you deem helpful to them.
 
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