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Old 11-14-2020, 09:35 AM
 
Location: North Yorkshire, U.K.
14 posts, read 8,379 times
Reputation: 61

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Hello, all! I have always been told that it is impossible to tame a feral cat, but I think I may have done it.

Back in March, I found a wee scrap of a kitten starving and flea-and-tick-riden in the bushes outside the house. She had obviously been abandoned or gotten lost and she was (as far as we can tell) completely feral.

I managed to coax her into eating, but for 2 months she wouldn't leave the back courtyard area and would hiss whenever I got too close to her. Eventually, I was able to get her to take bits of food from my hand, but she would always run away once she grabbed the bite and sometimes, her food aggression tendencies caused her to swipe at me with her claws, drawing blood. Around July, she ventured up the outside stairs where I'm sure she used to watch us go into the office and one day, she followed us up the stairs but didn't come inside. The next day, we left the door open and she tentatively came over the threshold and sat for a couple of hours in the entrance just gazing at us whilst we pretended to ignore her completely while she ate the treats we put out. She kept doing this until about a week later, I bought some simple toys at the pet store and started to see if she would engage in play. Lo and behold, she did so and I spent the best part of my lockdown hours just playing with her. She always scarpered off in the late afternoon. Touching her was verboten, however, as she was still very aggressive when hands came near her.

This all changed quite drastically one morning in August. Suddenly, out of the proverbial blue, she suddenly rolled over on her back at my feet, sprang up again, and then started rubbing her face on my leg. I took a chance and scratched the back of her head. Well, to my astonishment, she began to purr ferociously and I was able to pet her for hours. Eventually, later in the day, she even fell asleep in my lap.

At this time, she is unrecognisable to the kitten she once was. She is a complete love bug and follows my husband and I everywhere. She lets us scratch her belly and give her kisses on her face. I didn't believe it possible!! I am so thrilled that I found her.

I don't suppose I have any pressing questions about this, but was wondering if there was anything I could have done to speed up the process? Also, perhaps she wasn't completely feral even though she appeared to be so? Does anyone else have any stories about taming feral cats into utterly domesticated cats? She could not have been more than a few weeks when we found her and I reckon her Mum died or she was abandoned.

Thanks for your thoughts!
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Old 11-14-2020, 02:55 PM
 
6,520 posts, read 5,217,750 times
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I been dealing with cats for decades, no one has ever said it was impossible to tame a feral kitten.

The adults, especially the older ones, can be about impossible, the closest sometimes you can get is for them not to be aggressive.

Feral does not mean homeless, feral is a personality trait brought on from how they lived in the streets, a way they think and act, there are numerous friendly cats that are homeless. I have over 20 cats now, all of them were from the street.

Anyway, congrats!
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Old 11-15-2020, 03:35 AM
 
Location: North Yorkshire, U.K.
14 posts, read 8,379 times
Reputation: 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by k350 View Post
I been dealing with cats for decades, no one has ever said it was impossible to tame a feral kitten.

The adults, especially the older ones, can be about impossible, the closest sometimes you can get is for them not to be aggressive.

Feral does not mean homeless, feral is a personality trait brought on from how they lived in the streets, a way they think and act, there are numerous friendly cats that are homeless. I have over 20 cats now, all of them were from the street.

Anyway, congrats!
Thanks! I was told when I found her that she would never be tame, but I thought that at the very least the wee beastie at least deserved to eat well and I was thinking how cold it gets outside. I didn't expect to end up being adopted by a cat. I will try and post a picture, but I need to figure out how to do so.
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Old 11-15-2020, 03:49 AM
 
Location: North Yorkshire, U.K.
14 posts, read 8,379 times
Reputation: 61
Hopefully, this works!

https://app.photobucket.com/u/Hgolig...9-fd76b62d298d
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Old 11-15-2020, 04:37 AM
 
612 posts, read 817,305 times
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Yes, it is totally possible to tame feral cats......even adults. I have did it several times. It just takes a lot of time,patience and love.
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Old 11-15-2020, 10:09 AM
Status: "I love my cats but GET OFF ME!!!" (set 16 hours ago)
 
Location: state of confusion
1,404 posts, read 2,162,027 times
Reputation: 2690
I've got two, now four year old, sisters that I caught when they were approx. 10wks old. Half starved. Feral as all get out. They now sleep with me and cuddle. One more than the other. But they are still skiddish. Sure they were very young when I got them.
I also had Dolly a wild feral that I caught when she was approx. 1yr and a half old, living in a busy roadside area. Took me almost 4yrs before I could even touch her. Finally she would sleep beside me and even rest her head on my shoulder. Sadly I had to let her go on July 9th at the age of 17 1/2.
A feral can be tamed, some easier than others. Patience, soft voice, a lot of love and understanding how afraid they are.
Their love and appreciation is amazing.
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Old 11-15-2020, 05:39 PM
 
Location: Cambridge, MA
4,821 posts, read 12,134,707 times
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Awwww, a mustache!
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Old 11-19-2020, 10:34 AM
 
1,233 posts, read 1,554,236 times
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It is NOT impossible to domesticate a feral cat. Family members have adopted multiple ferals that gradually morphed into devoted loving family pets. Even five or six year old Tom Cats descended from multiple generations of feral cats.
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Old 11-19-2020, 08:50 PM
 
Location: Kansas City, MISSOURI
14,618 posts, read 4,832,229 times
Reputation: 10791
Awww, great story!

I had a similar experience with an unfriendly cat who lived next door to the building I worked in. I named him Sir Fluff (which was short for Sir Flufflufftilous Maximum Orangeous III ). He was a very scrawny, old, orange tomcat. Took me a while to gain his trust, but eventually I did.

Though I've been working at home since March and only go to my work building once in a while, I haven't seen him since sometime late last year. Given how old and scrawny he was, I've got a feeling he's over the Rainbow Bridge now.
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Old 11-21-2020, 07:18 PM
 
3,763 posts, read 939,036 times
Reputation: 3745
I've been feeding a cat that comes in through my cat's door for a year. He still won'y let me get within 2 feet of him. He squats down and looks at me and when I put food down he waits until I back off a few feet then he eats.
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