Adopting A Stray Cat

World Stray Animals Day is April 4th! We definitely have plenty of stray kitties here in the Tampa Bay area. There are many organizations trying to help our homeless cats, whether by providing food and water or through TNR procedures. However, it’s an ongoing battle. Of course, we have quite a few patients that were once strays, but are now beloved pets. A Tampa, FL vet discusses taking in a stray below.

Finding Fluffy

Cats don’t always find their humans by being adopted as kittens. Fluffy sometimes just decides to show up on someone’s doorstep. In other cases, people rescue strays from roadsides, parking lots, and all sorts of places. That said, there is a huge psychological difference between stray and feral cats. Strays have been socialized, and are often quite friendly. Feral cats, however, are completely wild, and may never adapt to living indoors.

Doctor’s Visit

Even if you don’t plan to keep Fluffy permanently, the first thing you want to do is get her to the vet. Your feline pal should be spayed or neutered, and brought current on her parasite control and vaccinations. Getting her checked for a microchip is also important. She could be someone’s missing pet! Don’t let your new friend interact with your other pets or children until you’ve gotten the all-clear.

Getting Settled

It may take Fluffy time to get used to you, and to adjust to living indoors. Start your feline buddy out in a small area, such as a spare bedroom or laundry room. Offer all of the kitty necessities, such as toys, bedding, food and water, and a litterbox, and just let her get accustomed to her new surroundings. Once she seems relaxed, you can start introducing her to any other pets. Ask your vet for specific advice on this.

Winning Trust

When making friends with a kitty, it’s very important to let Fluffy come to you. Some furballs will immediately hop into your lap for snuggles. Others may be quite withdrawn. Don’t force things! Try holding treats out and calling your furry pal to you. Play sessions can also help. Use a wand toy, so you can keep a little distance. With time, love, and great TLC, you’ll have that motor going before you know it!

Do you have questions about your cat’s health or care? Contact us, your local Tampa, FL animal clinic, today!

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