Found a feral kitten alone in the street? Do you want to help it, but you're not sure how? Feral and semi-feral cats become harder to tame as they get older, but it's possible to tame them while they're still young. Here are some methods to help tame a feral kitten, to help guarantee its survival.
What Is A Feral Cat?
You might be wondering what a feral cat is, and the difference between a feral, semi-feral, and stray cat. Feral cats are the hardest to tame, because they were born in the wild, and have continued to thrive there. Semi-feral cats are similar because they've lived in the wild for a good part of their lives. However, they were likely born into a domestic environment and then abandoned to live as a feral cat for most of their lives. Stray cats are cats that have also been abandoned, but they generally remain domesticated, unlike semi-feral cats.
Feral cats are the hardest to tame because they aren't used to human contact, and they generally shy away from it. They're very close to wild animals. To tame a feral cat, you'll need to take it in at a young age. This can be beneficial to feral kittens, due to the fact that the survival rate of feral kittens is moderately low. However, a fully grown feral cat should be left alone.
How To Tame A Feral Kitten
Here are some steps to tame a feral kitten:
1. Keep Them In Captivity
This might seem hard at first, but ultimately it's best for the kitten. Once a feral cat is brought into the house, it will be tempted to run and hide. If this happens, it will make it difficult to feed them and give them medical care when necessary. Give them a dog cage or a cat condo with a small litter box and something soft to cuddle and sleep in.
2. Associate Yourself With Food
A feral kitten will have an easier time warming up to you if they begin to associate your presence with food. Start by feeding them baby food or soft cat food with a spoon through the cage. Once they begin to warm up to you a little more, try feeding them some soft cat food directly from your hand.
3. Get Kittens Accustomed to Your Presence
Start out by sitting near them. Soon, you'll be able to play with them too. Try purchasing an interactive toy that has some reach to it. This way, they'll be able to associate the toy with your presence, and you won't have to get clawed in the process.
4. Be Patient, And Move SlowlyLovable Kitten
Get the kitten accustomed to being petted before you try to pick it up. Once it allows you to hold it, you might be able to start doing things like grooming the kitten. When you pet the kitten, try massaging the skin near the shoulders and on the top of the kittens neck. This gentle massage will release endorphin's and make the kitten feel more relaxed in your presence.
By following these steps and being gentle to the kitten, you'll be well on your way to having a friendly companion. Now, the kitten can be adopted or integrated safely into your home as a pet. The important thing is, it can now live a long and healthy life.