Above all, do not try to grab it by force, you risk scaring it away for good. To do well, arm yourself with patience and follow our 6 tips for adopting a stray cat with complete peace of mind.
Tip #1: Feed It To Coax It
The first step to adopting a stray cat is to catch it. The best solution is to feed it. If you bring him food, he shouldn’t resist it for long.
Drop off a bowl of kibble every day at the same time and in the same place. Find a place close enough to the house, but not so close that he is not afraid to come and help himself.
Once he’s finished eating, take it out, start again the next day, and let the routine set in. As trust builds, you can gradually bring the bowl closer to your home.
Then you will put his food in the house to bring him in. Once inside, close the door gently so as not to frighten him. Keep him in your house until he gets used to you.
Don’t rush him, let him come to you and you’re done. You can also begin to acclimate the stray cat to your presence throughout the course of this operation by sitting a few feet away from him when he eats, without seeking eye contact which he might consider threatening.
To maximize your chances of success in taming it, keep children and other pets away, too restless not to scare your future companion.
Sometimes the stray cat may not get used to its new environment and you will have no choice but to set it free. The ideal is to have it sterilized before releasing it.
You can do even better by calling on an association. Thus, even if he will always be a stray cat, he will benefit from his protection and he can legally be fed, even on the public highway.
Tip #2: Make Sure It’S A Stray Cat
Yes, it would be a shame to snatch a tomcat from a family that loves him!
Check he doesn’t have a tattoo in his ear, if he doesn’t he may still have a chip and unless you have the device to check it you will only be able to tell by going to see a veterinarian.
If it’s a male, checking to see if he’s neutered will also give you a good clue. There are also lost cat ad sites, so do not hesitate to go around the web and local shops to check if there is not a small poster with his name!
If there is nothing to suggest that your stray cat already has an owner, then you can consider yourself his new master after having him identified at the veterinarian for the adoption to be official.
Tip #3: Avoid Putting It In Contact With Other Family Animals
Once in the house, if you have other pets, make sure to establish a quarantine for your new companion by limiting access to certain rooms.
Indeed, a stray cat is more likely to contract diseases that can be extremely contagious to other animals. It would be a shame to have to deal with everyone when you could have avoided it.
In addition, this isolation precaution will also prevent him from a possible electrical encounter with the other tomcat in the family or the dog. Everything in its time. Once accustomed to his new home and to you, you can make presentations, under supervision.
Tip #4: A Visit To The Veterinarian
Once he is coaxed, your new companion will have to go through the veterinary box. Indeed, the legislation requires that cats be identified, but it will also be necessary to do a “check-up” of your tomcat to ensure that it is in good health.
It would also be wise to administer the recommended vaccines as well as the antiparasitic treatments (worming and flea) necessary for his good health. Finally, it is strongly recommended to have it sterilized in order to avoid unwanted litters which would only create new stray cats.
Tip #5: No Outings Before Three Weeks
If you want to make it exclusively an indoor cat, you will have to be more patient, because a cat accustomed to the outdoors appreciates its freedom. As a result, you may have to experience untimely meowing at all times of play and night and some inappropriate behavior. Don’t worry, it should pass over time, and you can help it by soothing it with your love or hormonal diffusers, for example.
If, on the other hand, you plan for him to have access to the outside, take the time to create a bond between your new four-legged friend before leaving him to walk alone. He needs to get used to you and your family (including children and pets). If this bond is not strong enough, he might not come back and resume his life as a stray cat. Three weeks is a minimum for him to get his bearings and know how to return to his new home after an outing.
Tip #6: Lots Of Love
Cuddles, treats and toys are all your new cat will need to feel loved! Don’t hesitate to do a few play sessions with him using a feather duster or a fishing rod for example, they love it! Do not hesitate, either, to let him enjoy the warmth of your knees in front of the television!