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add fat to feral cat food for the winter?

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Member Since
11/23/2013
 
 
Purred: Sat Nov 23, '13 5:41am PST 
i live in upstate NY, theres a hassidic jewish camp near my house and it is active each year from june to july, then they leave and go back to brooklyn and almost each year they leave a cat behind. the camp and most of the area becomes totally desolate and the cat then has to hunt for food to survive and becomes feral. i dont know if they realize that cats cant survive the winter temperatures in upstate NY, at least thats what google tells me. and i guess thats why the one they left behind last year was never seen again in spring time.

so this year they left another one behind and i dont want to let it die so i started leaving tuna fish near the part of the camp where it stays under a camp building. i didnt realize they left this one behind until a couple of weeks ago so it must have been surviving on birds and mice since july and so by now it has been on its own for almost 4 months and runs away humans.

i thought i would leave tuna fish because i know cats like that, and it has a strong smell to attract the cat to find the food, i microwave the tuna in a plastic container so it will have more smell.

i doubt the cat will ever be the kind of cat that will let humans pet it but who knows.

in this case i am against calling animal control because i dont think it will ever be a freindly pet for humans and will probably spend time in a cage until put to death. also i believe in karma and i dont think it would be good for my karma to be responsible for taking it away from what is now its natural habitat.

i just saw the encouraging article here about making thermal boxes for feral cats. the problem is how do i get the cat to my property, the campsite is exactly 3 minit walk at normal human walking speed, so i figured what if i leave the food a little closer to my house each time and in my garage i can put a cardboard box with my electric foot warmer underneath for warmth. perhaps the cat would stay in it through out the winter.

but i dont know if it will ever make it to my house, because so far it is scared to come near me, so i thought maybe if i just make sure it gets enough food maybe it wont freeze to death. or maybe the reason why the previous one didnt make it to spring was a combination of it had to deal with both the freezing temperature plus lack of food if hunting may be harder in winter or prey may be more scarce in winter.

so im wondering in the event this one doesnt make it to my property before it gets too cold and has to survive under the abandond building in the camp, maybe if i feed it very food very high in fat, and try to give it a good layer of fat it might make it to spring. i understand cat food is somewhat low in fat since usually the problem is that domesticated cats tend to be sedated and fat.

or possibly mixing animal fat also known as cooking fat. i remembered from when i used to work in fast food restaurants like burger king or mcdonalds that the french frys are fried not in oil but deep fried in what is basically animal fat otherwise known as lard. i noticed you can buy Manteca lard at the supermarket, i could mix a teaspoon or half a teaspoon with a 5 ounce can of cat food to make it more fat. i would microwave it first to make it mix better.

any ideas or comments?
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Brownie

I'm the Alpha- cat!
 
 
Purred: Sat Nov 23, '13 11:26pm PST 
It would be better to reach out to a pet rescue group in your area. Some have traps like the Havahart traps. They can help find a new warm home for the poor thing.

Go to Petfinder.com or Petharbor.com to find groups in your area. It is worth calling a few to get the poor thing out of the cold and to a new loving home.

PS, My aunt had outdoor dogs on the farm. They got dry food with any meat scraps topped of with warm fat drippings. I'm not saying that is a good diet for a pets. But that is what she feed them. They would hunt for food too like ground hogs. I remember that she did let them in to the garage or the basement when it got extremely cold.
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Member Since
11/23/2013
 
 
Purred: Sun Nov 24, '13 8:14am PST 
the problem is this is a feral cat that is appears terrified of humans, it wont let humans touch it, so i dont see how it will find a loving home, but rather it will end up in a cage, and or be put to death. if it can survive the winter it will have another warm spring and summer ahead of it which i think it would enjoy a lot more than a cage. im looking into those styrofoam box shelter things. i better think quickly because today was the first really cold day of winter.
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Brownie

I'm the Alpha- cat!
 
 
Purred: Sun Nov 24, '13 10:03am PST 
By calling the rescue groups you can ask if it is a no kill shelter. Ask if they are willing to socialize the feral cat. You leaving a cat outside is not a good idea. Get the cat help. Look for a cat only group that is willing to work this the cat to find a home. Please!
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BK

Ambassador at- the Kitty U.N.
 
 
Purred: Sun Nov 24, '13 11:55am PST 
I understand why you don't want to call animal control - you're right that a city shelter would most probably euthanize. Resources are stretched to the limit and they probably don't have an extra foster available to put in the time this cat would need to become social. If you can't take the cat in yourself (borrowing a humane trap is an excellent idea if you could) I would put the shelter you make near where the cat is now instead of trying to move the cat to your yard. A little fat in its food would be ok but don't go crazy - fat causes diarrhea sometimes. I would just leave out as much food as you can.
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Member Since
11/23/2013
 
 
Purred: Mon Nov 25, '13 4:15am PST 
BK, i think you may be right that getting the cat to come to my place may be a little far fetched, the camp is exactly a 3 minit walk away and theres no other houses in between but still the cat is so scared of me its hard to believe it would stay on my property. but the thing is if i climb over the fence that surrounds the camp im entering private property. there is no one there its totally vacant, but i wonder if there might be some sort of security cameras? and also i wonder if some sort of worker or owner might visit the camp site for some reason and find the box and remove it.
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Member Since
11/23/2013
 
 
Purred: Mon Nov 25, '13 4:27am PST 
quote brownie:
"Look for a cat only group that is willing to work this the cat to find a home. Please!"

surely its a bad idea to trick a family into adopting a cat that is feral and is paranoid of humans and will never be affectionate? wouldnt this deter people from wanting to adopt from shelters? i think shelters do have kittens that have the potential to be nice affectionate pets, surely these are the ones that people should focus on finding homes for. i knew one family that adopted a kitten from an animal shelter and it turned out to be the meanest nastiest cat and most probably had been feral, they decided on it because it was reaching its paw through the cage at them so maybe thier heart melted, but her mom says she thinks the kitten was probably reaching its paw out at them because it wanted to swat them or scratch them.

i havent had a cat in over 10 years but my experience is that they much prefer the outdoors countryside (as long as its not freezing) as opposed to being in a house, i have difficulty with the idea of capturing it and putting in a cage, if i can get this cat to make it till spring i think it will have a happy time during the warm months hunting mice and doing things like that. i hope i will make the right decision, i would feel terrible if the cat perished and it was my fault.
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BK

Ambassador at- the Kitty U.N.
 
 
Purred: Tue Nov 26, '13 5:09am PST 
The fault is the people who left the cat there to fend for itself, not yours. It's totally irresponsible. I suppose it's a violation to trespass but you're not *taking* anything, you're *leaving* something! wink

Another issue is if the cat is spayed/neutered. If not, it really should be. You might consider trapping the cat, getting it fixed and keeping it at home in a large cage while it recovers so you can see if it's truly feral or just scared. Just a thought.
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Member Since
11/23/2013
 
 
Purred: Thu Nov 28, '13 1:15am PST 
it looks like thats what im going to try to do today, wish me luck smile

i had started an identical thread on this other forum because i needed advice and there wasnt that much response here, perhaps this thread could be continued on this other thread?

http://www.thecatsite.com/t/268379/add-fat-to-feral-cat-f ood-for-the-winter#post_3449035
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