Socializing and caring for feral kittens is a time-consuming process which requires devotion, patience, and attention. Kittens that do not have any contact with humans after they are born will be feral, regardless of whether their mother is a lost house cat or a feral cat living in a colony. They estimate that kittens under 4 weeks old take “a matter of hours or days to socialize.” Older kittens take longer, naturally, and kittens who are 10 weeks or older “can also be tamed, but it may take much longer and many times they will only tame to the person working with them and remain wild with strangers.”
Most expert feline trappers, and those who also try to socialize kittens say that 16 weeks aka 4 months is the cut off for ability to socialize a truly born feral kitten.… About Events & Adventures
How long to socialize feral kittens. Feral kittens that are between 4 to 10 weeks old are especially suitable to socialize. Several organizations recommend not to take a cat from the wildness if they are all grown up already. Even if your intentions are the best, you can harm the cat. If possible, the kittens should be socialized by people and still remain with their mother until they are 8 weeks of age. This may not be possible if the kittens are from a feral mother. In this case, the kittens should be taken in without mom at 5 weeks for socialization so that they can become adoptable. Community kittens can be socialized fairly easily if they’re handled at an early age — 8 weeks or under. Feral kittens over 8 weeks of age can be safely spayed or neutered as long as they weigh at least 2 pounds. We recommend that unsocialized kittens over 8 weeks of age be trapped, neutered, vaccinated and returned to the colony.
When handling feral kittens you may see this too, especially if you’re looking to trap them and socialize them. Some of them may not be inclined to socializing. If that’s the case, that’s a sign that it may be a bit more feral than you expected, and in that case, it might be best to return them to the colony. Feral cat mothers don’t actually abandon their kittens; they just stop feeding them and will swat them away when they try to nurse. That means they have to learn to get their own food. Sometimes the family stays together in a colony, and sometimes… The goal is to socialize the kittens so that they are comfortable around all people and pets and will be happy in their new homes, so introduce them to new some faces! As long as all are healthy, you can introduce kittens to a grownup cat, but keep a close eye to make sure everyone gets along OK.
Kittens as young as eight weeks if weighing 2 pounds can safely be spayed or neutered. – Tested for FeLV and FIV if the kitty is older than six months (until that age if kitty’s mom was FeLV or FIV positive, they can carry the antibodies the test checks without being infected, registering a false positive). How to Socialize Your Kitten. Early socialization will help your kitten grow up to become a well-adjusted cat who's confident around people. Work with your kitten as soon as possible so it becomes comfortable and secure around you. You'll… Set aside time to socialize a kitten by spending time with each kitten individually, and exposing them to a variety of safe touch, sights, sounds, and smells. The best exposure to new experiences for your kitten happens early—by 9 weeks of age. Continue to socialize to reinforce positive behavior.
We socialize feral cats and kittens to help them find homes, and because they become happier cats. How to Tame Feral Cats I found a lot of helpful information online. The most helpful was a set of three videos on the Urban Cat League’s website. I followed those instructions to tame two beautiful grey tabby kittens who were well beyond 8 weeks. A feral cat is a cat who has either never had any contact with humans or her contact with humans has diminished over time. She is fearful of people and survives on her own outdoors. A feral cat is not likely to ever become a lap cat or enjoy living indoors. Kittens born to feral cats can be socialized at an early age and adopted into homes. In fact, we do kittens a disservice when we don't actively attempt to socialize them, says Shawn Simons, the founder of Kitty Bungalow Charm School for Wayward Cats, based in Los Angeles, California. And don't let the name fool you. It is a nonprofit with a serious mission: to rescue feral street kittens and turn them into beloved pets.
We’re talking about cats who hid from and avoided people, cats who might be considered feral by some. The socialization process you’re about to learn was born out of necessity. There were around 800 cats at the Great Kitty Rescue and Best Friends staff were determined to socialize as many of them as possible, so the kitties could get rid of. Some Helpful Guidelines for Taming Feral Kittens. Kittens under 8 weeks can usually be socialized without much difficulty following the guidelines detailed below. Kittens over 8 weeks of age who've had no positive interaction with humans often take much longer to socialize. 5. Be prepared for the worst when you go in the room. Wear long sleeves, long pants, gloves, shoes, and bring along a piece of cardboard for a shield in case she attacks out of fear. 6. Work on building trust. Food = trust. Feed her on a regular schedule and stay in the room while she eats. 7. Don't force contact with her.
Feral kittens, particularly those younger than 10 to 12 weeks old, are usually easily tamable. Older feral cats who have been feral for a long time will be most difficult to tame, if you can tame them at all. But kittens between 2 months and 4 months old are more difficult and time-consuming. ACA advises against trying to socialize kittens that are older than 4 months of age or adult feral cats.Have the kitten examined by a vet.As always, start by taking the kitten to the vet to be de-wormed, receive any necessary vaccines, and assess overall health. Taming a feral cat can be a long process and requires a lot of patience. If the cat is not used to people, you should be very cautious, as they could be dangerous. In this AnimalWised article we will share the best tips to tame a feral cat , with the help of a step-to-step guide.
Feral kittens should be checked out by a veterinarian and tested for diseases contagious to other cats before you bring them home. Keep them isolated from your pet cats, wash your hands, and wear a smock (or change clothes between handling visits) to protect against the spread of disease from the kittens to pets or from pets to kitten.