Almost 20 years ago I met a very nice lady from Costa Rica named Gemma and she is a kindred animal lover. She called to tell me she saw a feral mother cat and kittens living near the dumpster at her apartment building. She was feeding them and they would come to eat when she moved away from the dish, but she’d stay in the area and watch them and talk to them which was helpful, so that they would get used to people. She wondered if I could help find them homes because the area where they lived was near downtown, busy streets, etc.
I rented the trusty raccoon trap and set it up near the dumpster and black berry bushes where the feral family was living. What was different about this trapping is that Gemma’s roommate ran a light rope from the trap to the apartment window. When the mom cat and all the kittens were inside, he sprang the trap. That worked out great because I only had to make one trip to get the whole family.
We had the mother, a short haired tabby, fixed and sent to live on a farm (usually it is recommended that the feral cat be released where it was living but this area wasn’t going to work). My neighbor took 2 kittens to tame and I took the other 2. We found homes for both of the male kittens pretty quickly. They were stunning with smoke colored fur from their father who was a Persian owned by Gemma. He was fixed soon after. We each kept the remaining female kitten that we had. Mine lived with me for 18 years and was a princess and one of the sweetest cats I’ve had. I thought it was interesting the level of wildness in each of the kittens. They were not all equal. 2 were almost tame from the beginning and 2 were more feral.
If you know of a feral cat situation and would like to find help check out the information at http://www.humanesociety.org -for the US and Canada . There are people who will help and have information on getting the cats trapped, fixed, and released.
More feral trapping and other animal stories coming soon-ish.