Ferals in Transition
How we do it:
SHORT, POSITIVE EXPERIENCES
We interact with ferals in brief, positive intervals.
We never force a cat into a situation it doesn't want to be in.
Contrary to popular belief, cats are social animals and do well interacting with others.
Get FIT Steps
Quiet time in a separated room to settle in and get used to a new space indoors. Kept isolated from other residents. Hand sniffs. Short, positive interactions.
Brief, supervised visitations with other resident cats. Still kept separated. Slow exploration of other areas of the home, allowing advancement at own pace. Door may be open for a few hours a day, allowing free roaming opportunity. Light supervision. Still closed-door at night.
Free access and play to other areas of the home and residents for extended periods. Door left open at all times. Daily house routine is learned and begins joining open area for community play. Human play is encouraged in brief, positive engagements. Begins joining community meal times for breakfast and dinner.
Spends majority of free time in main house area. No longer returns to orientation room for sleeping. Begins sleeping on high points, such as couch and beds. Ceases fleeing from humans upon approach while on high points. Will play, accept sniffs and pets. May cuddle if prompted.
Intentionally seeks human affection such as pets, cuddles, or play time.
Some of our Graduates
But aren't cat happier outside?
None of our outdoor feral nor colony cats have shown interest in going back outside once integrated to indoor living. We have left doors open and the cats have simply walked away.
And it's not just us:
Jack is a feral tuxedo cat. When the folks feeding him had to move, they didn't want to leave him behind. They feared he wouldn't be happy indoors or do well with their other cats. We encouraged a slow process of integration step-by-step and it worked! It took a few months, but it was worth it. Now, they are a very happy family!
"Jack has adapted very well at being inside. He is loving [it]. He doesn't even go near the door anymore." - Jack's dad, November 2022
"He is doing great. He really likes to play and tries to get the other cats to join in... Can't believe he is the same feral cat." - Jack's dad, April 2023