This is ridiculous-what am I supposed to do with this stray cat when it gets cold?

  1. I mentioned this in anther thread, but I started feeding a stray because she looked terrible and I had lots of regular dry cat food, left over from my own cat (who has since died) when the vet put her on special diet. I was happy to have a use for all that dry food that my cat was not allowed to eat.

    This cat won't let me near her/him, which is fine, I don't want another cat at the moment and I just want to feed it and help it out. It never leaves my backyard and spends all day sleeping on the wooden garden bench. It's getting cold! I want her to have a warm place to sleep. I feel sick when I look outside my window and there she/he is, just curled in a ball and sleeping. I feed her two-three times a day. I've mentioned before we have a major raccoon, skunk, squirrel problem, here in the big city, but wish I could just leave the food outside and not have to worry about her waiting for me.

    I do not want her in my garage, which I use, when it snows. It's not all that warm anyway.

    I'd feel a lot better if she had a warm space to crawl, but can't imagine where that could be. Once, many years ago, I had another stray and set up a tool shed (don't have it anymore) with a blanket, etc and the cat would never go in it anyway. Not even once! I think I found a home for that cat, but she was a little friendly, so I was able to get near her.

    Any suggestions? Thank you if anyone cares to answer. :yes:
     
  2. I also many years ago use to feed a stray (I now have six cats of my own) and like you was worried when the weather started to get colder as she would not come into my home as I had a dog. Anyway not sure this is any help, but I found an old wooden packing crate, very solid kept out the cold and rain, I linned the bottom of it with plastic sheeting and then put some thick old blankets into the back area she slept in it every night until I eventually found her a good home. Hope that helps best of luck.
     
  3. ^^ Thank you for the suggestion. Does it get much below freezing where you are? I'm worried this cat is going to suffer when it is freezing out, crate or no crate.
     
  4. My opinion remains that she should be trapped and taken to a shelter.
     
  5. bnjj, i respect your opinion - which you gave in the other thread. but i believe this thread was started so that discussion could be left behind and the OP could get some input as to shelter suggestions. i think we should respect her decision and answer the question that she asked.

    jayne, this cat will be fine living outside if you provide some shelter so that it can get out of the cold and the rain in the winter. cats live outside at farms all over the country and do very well -- if they are never inside, they grow a nice, thick coat for winter, and many of them put on some weight going into the winter as well.

    so if you provide sheter and predictable access to food (get into a routine and the cat will too, so you don't have to leave food out all the time) all should be well.

    here is a website with some information to help you, and they even have a link to an outdoor shelter you can purchase. by the way, they are spot on about how cats nest in straw -- in the cold weather ours are frequently seen in little hay nests in the corners of the stalls. we have two cats right now, and they're usually in the same stall but separate corners.

    http://indyferal.org/index.php?page=shelters

    ETA: some you can make - http://indyferal.org/Literature/out_cat_shelter.pdf
     
  6. ^^ Much appreciated, dressage queen! :yes: :flowers:
     
  7. Hi Jayne,

    I agree with DQ, ferals are used to sleeping outside and we've found that unless they are ill, the will generally find themselves somewhere to sleep.

    If you wanted to try and set her somewhere up, then if you have somewhere that is off the ground, a coal store/timber pile? then you could definately try to see if she would use it. I would even suggest a cardboard box to start, with lots of newspaper (you need to check to make sure it keeps dry) just to see if she will use it? If she does, then you can try and get something more sturdy.

    Dont know if it's an option where you are, but if you have somewhere bigger that is sheltered (an open shed?) then they absolutely love, and get very toasty, in a shelter made from straw/hay bales.

    Good luck, you're a real dear for sorting her out!

    Take care,

    K
    xx
     
  8. The question was "This is ridiculous-what am I supposed to do with this stray cat when it gets cold?"

    I answered that question.
     
  9. no, that's the title and as with most not as precise as the actual post -- which, if you read it, clearly states that she wants to "feed it and help it out" and asks for advice as to how to do so.

    but i don't think you and i debating the point is helpful, so i'm prepared to drop it.
     
  10. Bless you for wanting to help.:tender:
    How about some kind of rabbit/small animal hutch?
    You can get ones that have two sections, an indoor section (which will be perfect in the cold, with straw, bedding etc) and an outdoor section for basking in the winter sun (if you get any!!)
    Just take the cage door off the front so the cat can come and go as he/ she pleases.
    Maybe you could try making your own if you're an extremely adventurous DIY'er?:lol:
     
  11. well said... my mom took care of a stray for several years, in n.w. indiana, on lake michigan (very cold). she used one of those little insilated dog houses. good luck!
     
  12. Where can I buy straw and hay, if I'm in a big city? Is that a stupid question? Does Home Depot have straw, I wonder.... ?
     
  13. ^ Just go to a pet store. They will sell them for guinea pigs, rabbits, etc. I think you can just use that. ;) And sometimes they will even sell cotton insulation in packs (they would be sold as bedding for rodent pets. Check that section.
     
  14. If there is no way to trap the cat and bring to a shelter you could try getting a small heated dog house. Hopefully she will go in there if it gets too cold for her.
     
  15. :lol: Oh that makes sense. :p I'll do that... thanks!

    Cindi, our Humane Society is overrun and giving the animals away for free. If I take this cat in (not the prettiest cat I've ever seen and not social) they will have to put her down because I can't see anyone adopting her/him, whatever it is.

    I'll just let it live its life and give it a helping hand.