Monday, December 31, 2007
I was able to get two larger cages for her today and I think she likes them a lot better. She probably has twice the room that she did have. I also put a strap around her litter box to try to minimize the amount she can spill. When I went in to give her some chicken baby food, she seemed very relaxed and maybe even...content. She was sitting in her litter box and started rolling around. She moved to the other side of the cage and walked back which she has never done before in front of me. She usually stays in one spot unless she is going to the other side to hide. I had blankets over both sides of the cages with sections uncovered so she could see out. I put a cardboard box with blankets in it in there for her to lay in. She is in a spare bedroom and I keep the door open with a baby gate closing it off so my cats can't get in. I want her to smell, hear, and see us and my other cats. She seems to be curious about what we are doing in the rest of the apartment.
I videotaped her last night and played it back while I was in the room with her, which I did not think was a big deal. Once she started to hear herself meowing on the video, she seemed to get very excited and was meowing back. It seemed like she was having a conversation with another cat, which was actually herself. Also, interestingly, on the video, I was also talking to her a bit and when she heard my voice on the video, she made the same sounds that she did when I videotaped her. So, she heard me talking in the video and made the same sounds she made in the video tape as she heard it the second time. It was amazing. It leads me to believe that cats do have some sort of language.
Sunday, December 30, 2007
Surprisingly her cage was clean still. I gave her baby food off a spoon this time and got my hand really close to her. I saw her smell my hand while she was eating off the spoon. Then, I tried something I wasn't sure of. I put some baby food on my finger and she licked it off!
I went in this morning to find a messy cage. I got her a larger litter box so she wasn't able to knock it over but she still somehow spilled some litter. She is soooo messy! She made some noises and meowed at me, while looking at me. I think she was trying to communicate with me because she was squinting her eyes a bit and moving her head around. This is a lot of work and it takes mental effort on my part but I am still happy I am doing it. It is about 20 degrees outside and we have snow and ice on the ground. She may not have a lot of room here, but at least she is warm and has food and water--that isn't frozen.
Saturday, December 29, 2007
The cat chewed or scratched her way out of a soft carrier I had fastened to the wire cages. It took me about an hour to finally get her back in the cage. I had to corner her and put a towel over her and get her by the scruff of her neck. I quickly wrapped her up in the towel and got her back in the cage. I only got one little scratch!
Friday, December 28, 2007
After talking to a friend who has dealt with feral cats a lot more than I have, she gave me some good ideas on how to bond with the cat. I had been feeding it baby food but it never ate it in front of me. So, I got some beef baby food and put it on the end of a straw. I put the straw through the spaces in the bars and tried to lure it closer to me. At first, I didn't know if she would eat it. She hissed and it scared me so I jerked the straw back and a little fell off the straw. She ate that and got a little more interested in what I was giving her. I decided maybe she would feel more comfortable if she didn't have to see me while she ate it. So, I let her hide behind a blanket that I had draped over one of the cages and angled the straw in so she could eat off it without seeing me so much. Over the next few minutes, I made her move a little to get it and she did. She actually looked at me a few times while eating it off the straw. I am beginning to think maybe she is trusting me more.
Wednesday, December 26, 2007
I was able to touch the side of the cage the cat was in, without her hissing or swatting! I think the cat is trusting me more. The cat also meowed while I was in the room-she was partially covered by a blanket and couldn't see me. I am sure she knew I was there though. A friend told me that means she feels comfortable enough to be vocal with me--and that is a good sign.
Sunday, December 23, 2007
I started sitting next to her cage today, reading or watching something on my ipod, while talking to her a bit. I am not sitting there for very long-at the most, 20 minutes. She is very cautious and if I get too close to the cage, she lets me know with a hiss or swat of the side of the cage. I talk calmly to her while slowly blinking at her. She went to the bathroom in the litter box! Finally! She is still messy and still pulling things into her cage.
I talked to a friend of mine who volunteers at the shelter with me about what I could do to show the cat I was not a threat. She reminded me of something I already do with my own cats, blink at them. Slowly blinking at them shows them that you are not a threat to them. If I stared at the cat, in the animal world, I am looking for a fight. She is very messy and gets food and litter in her water, and water in her food and food in her litter...she also keeps pulling anything near her cage, into her cage. She is able to pull the towels and blankets that are laying over her cage, partially into her cage. I am not sure why.
The cat blinked back at me a few times.
The cat blinked back at me a few times.
Saturday, December 22, 2007
I noticed that after I would leave the room, I could hear the cat moving around and shredding the newspaper that I put in the bottom of it's cage. I was curious to see what it was doing so I videotaped it. I saw it playing a bit and trying to get out. It was taking bites out of the paper and also shredding it with her claws. It looked like she was trying to pull it up to move it out of her way. After she shredded it, she rolled around in it. I also found out that it is a girl, because it was rolling around when it was playing and I could see that she is a girl.
This cat is not happy here at all--and she is really, really messy. She is knocking over her food and water bowls on a regular basis. Any box I put in there for her to sleep in, she knocks over. She is pulling things into her cage from outside, like the blankets I put over the top. I am not sure what to do. It growls and hissed at me a lot. It seems extremely scared and desperate to get out. It is snowing here and I don't want to put it back out in the cold. I think if I could ask it, it would rather be warm and inside.
Thursday, December 20, 2007
I talked to a friend of mine and she said if she is running into windows to try to get out, she is probably feral. That is not good news to me. I really thought I was going to catch a stray, which is different than a feral cat. I thought I was going to catch an intact male, take it to get neutered and let it go. I guess there are more cats wandering around than I thought. I saw it looking through the dumpster and I thought that was who I was feeding outside. Well, now I have a female kitten, maybe 9 months old. I guess I am just going to get to learn more about cats and helping feral cats. It will just add to what I already know about how to help cats.
I don't know what gender the cat is but I do know it is terrified. I let it out of the trap and let it roam around the room--which was NOT a good idea. The cat was running full speed into the window, trying to escape. I was trying to corner it, but it jumped into the plant hanging from the ceiling. Eventually, I got my boyfriend to help me get it down. Then I caught it in a towel and put it in the cage. Whew! Is this really a good idea? Did I get myself into something that I can't do? I might need to let it go. I am not sure I know enough to do this. She doesn't even know what a litter box is! She just dumps it over and gets water in her litter.
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
I caught a cat in a trap, luring it with food. I did not expect to catch this cat, I expected to catch a different cat. I have her in a spare bedroom. I have two cats of my own am I am not sure how she will react to them, or them to her. I don't know what I am doing. I don't even know if the cat is feral or just really, really scared. How do I know if it is feral?