Please return the cages that you picked up the cats in as soon as possible. We need these cages for our program. We are a non-profit group, and it’s expensive to replace the cages. Please help us keep costs down!
It’s critical that the cats be confined in a large crate or building for 2 – 4 weeks so they imprint on their new home, to prevent them from just running away.
The cats must have a hidey box in their acclimation crate, or places to hide if in a barn or shed. Even a card board box will work. Place the opening of the box to the back of the carrier so the cat is hidden.
If using a crate, place it where the cats will be living (in their sheltered area).
Feral cats can be contained together, as long as they are truly feral. Don’t do this with social cats!
It’s really important to have at least two working cats because a single cat will likely leave to look for a friend.
Be ready for a messy crate. Wood or paper litterbox pellets will help reduce the mess.
Feed the cats wet food during the acclimation period. Think of the 2 – 4 week confinement period as a “honeymoon” for you and your new cats…you are “wooing” your new working cats and showing them what a great home this is!
Feed at a regular time and use the same “call” when you feed the cats, so they will learn to come for food when they hear you after they have been released.
When it’s time to release the cats, just nonchalantly leave the cage/room door open and quietly walk away.
The cats must be fed daily after being released so they don’t go look for food elsewhere. Even just the presence of cats helps deter rodents, so you want to be sure the cats stay around.
When the cats are released, it’s not unusual for them to be gone a few days while they are scouting their new territory.