Welcome a Stray Cat into Your Home
Although some people think cats are not supposed to live indoors with us, this is not the case. Nearly two-thirds of domesticated cats spend all or nearly all their time indoors. Indoor cats can enjoy a long, healthy life with their families. Cats’ lifespans are drastically shortened when owners allow them frequent outdoor access. An outdoor cat is constantly at risk of death from things like parasites, catching diseases from other cats, getting hit by cars, being stolen by strangers, being attacked by predators, and getting lost. Cats pose a significant threat to wild animal populations. So, if a stray cat has been lurking around your household from a distance and you are kind enough to invite her in, here are the five best ways to welcome a stray cat into your home.
5 Ways to welcome stray cats into your home
It may seem like an uphill battle, but there are some things you can do to welcome a stray cat into your home and help her adjust to life in the house. Semi-feral cats that have been socialized into loving homes can become some of the most appreciative, affectionate pets. Follow these five simple guidelines to make the transition from feral to domestic life easier for your cat.
1. Do not rush it
A stray cat may initially avoid coming too close to the house. They may eat near the perimeter if they are offered food. Stray cats can be extremely wary of humans and flee at the sight of a human. Once they are more settled in, you can try bringing their food closer to you, but it may take weeks or months. The sooner you can get them to feel comfortable around you while feeding, the sooner you can coax them indoors. There is a chance that the cat might need some medicine if it is not in a very good state. In this case, you may want to learn a few tricks to give your cat medicine as well.
2. Avoid making direct eye contact
If you catch the stray kitty staring at you, you should not respond right away. You need time to gain their trust. Make direct eye contact with a feral or semi-feral cat, and they will become aggressive. The best thing to do if you find yourself in an unintentional staring contest is to simply blink your eyes slowly and calmly. Turn your head away and close your eyes for a moment. This sends the message to your cat that you are not a threat and are willing to assume a submissive position. This will make them feel more at ease in their new surroundings. Once they are a little bit more comfortable around you, may even try to give them a pet while they are eating.
3. Make a cozy and warm spot for your new friend
Cats have been domesticated for thousands of years, but they can still exhibit some wild behaviors from time to time. Especially if they have never been around humans a lot. So, you will need to make sure your cat has plenty of places to play and explore inside the house. Make sure to tackle home decluttering to get some free space and have a lovely spacious corner for your new four-legged friend.
Ways to create space for your stray cat
Here are some suggestions for arranging your cat’s space:
- Give your cat plenty of toys it can stalk, chase, pounce on, and kill to satisfy its natural hunting instincts. There is no need to go all out; even something as simple as a ball of aluminum foil and a paper bag can bring cat hours of entertainment.
- Cats enjoy looking down on their environment from high vantage points, so get them with a cat tree or kitty jungle gym.
- Provide them with a sunny window so they can enjoy the outdoors and take a nap. Before you open the window, double-check that the screen is in place and secure.
- Plant some cat grass (it can be found in pet stores) so they have something to nibble on.
- Spend some more time around your new furry friend and help her adjust to you.
4. Do not insist on petting stray cat
If your cat feels secure around you, it will approach you. Once the cat has relaxed, you can entice them with treats to do this. The cat needs to have a safe space. Make sure to make your home pet friendly. It could be just a blanket on your porch. Make sure that you always pour her food at the same spot. Give them a taste of the gourmet kitten food by putting a little on your finger and letting them lick it off. By doing so, you will able to get the cat to approach you and form a favorable opinion of you in its mind. If you want to start petting your cat, you should extend a closed fist while taking your eyes off her and waiting for her to come to you and start whatever kind of interaction it is ready for. In order to gain the trust of a semi-feral cat, you must be patient and allow it to approach you.
5. Be patient
Finally, patience is the most crucial quality to possess when taking in a stray cat. This takes time, and cats are notoriously cautious. You must give them room to settle into their new environment in peace. It may take longer than you would like, but the love and affection you receive in return will be well worth the wait. With these few ways to welcome a stray cat into your home combined, you will surely see results. Just remember to be patient and consistent.