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Unread 03-31-2007   #1 (permalink)
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Default Issues With Two Semi-Feral 'Teenage' Cats...?

Hello, My boyfriend and I recently 'adopted' two semi-feral kittens from a friend. We were told the kittens had been born under the man's back porch, and brought in when it 'started to get cold'. We were told at the time we adopted them, about 2 weeks ago. The gentleman also told us they were 9 weeks old... which makes no sense to us. The only way that would be possible is if he had brought them in when they had just been born (he had them from about December to mid-March). He told us when they had been brought in they were weaned enough to eat solid foods. We're estimating their current age at about 5 or 6 months old, each. He also told us that the little female 'shadow' was spayed, and that the little male 'mr. tony' wasn't fixed yet. We do have paperwork showing that shadow was in fact spayed, but we've got nothing for 'mr tony'. We're trying to figure out if these two can be tamed at all. Shadow will hiss and spit at you no matter what you do, and mr. tony has developed a habita horrible habit of 'marking' our clean clothing. We're currently debating on whether or not we should return them to their previous owner. We've read that they 'bond' to one human, usually the one who started the 'taming' process, and that they should NEVER be adopted into homes with small children. Well, they were adopted into our home, with our 2 year old. We've got them seperated into thier own, private room, but they will NOT act nicely to us. They don't scratch or bite when we try to pet them, but they pretty obviously don't appreciate the attention. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks.We've gotten them both to the point that they'll PURR when we pet them, but they don't want ANYTHING to do with us.
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Unread 03-31-2007   #2 (permalink)
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Once I had a wild cat stay in my garage a whole winter before he one day allowed me to touch him...after that day he was the friendliest cat I have ever known.So it may take a while.
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Unread 03-31-2007   #3 (permalink)
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Just a warning, this is going to be a HUGE answer.Well, it's not impossible, you just have to become a part of their family. First off, get Mr. Tony neutered ASAP, that's already a problem, and shows his age is more than 6 months old right there. It should help with his behavior problems, but not solve them. I have two insane cats of my own, not feral, but I'd think maybe they were if I didn't adopt them at eight weeks old with my own two hands. I don't know much about truly feral cats, but I know my cat, Apollo, is seriously a pain in the butt. He hisses at anybody that isn't me or my sister, so whenever family or my landlady visits, he hisses, swats, spits.Because you have a young child, you need to really watch them when they're eventually let out. If they ever pose any harm to your baby, you need to take them to a no-kill shelter immediately. Your baby should've been your priority all along. Hopefully, it won't be a problem.Make time for the cats every day, pet them where they like it, when they disobey, yell. Yell loudly. Squirt them with a squirt bottle. Show dominance and kindness. You can show dominance by staring them down and even pushing them away sometimes. This is one reason a child in the home could be a problem, they may want to show dominance to him. It's all a part of feline society, and it's natural, so I'm not sure this is the best situation for you, your baby, or the cats.BUY NAIL TRIMMERS AND LEARN HOW TO USE THEM. It's going to take two people, strength, stamina, and some bleeding (not the cats) to get this done, but it must, it'll help save your skin later on and your furniture.Make sure they have toys and a scratching post! If they have the post, they just may leave your furniture alone anyway.Make sure they have their shots, and if you ever feel inclined, you too. If you have the money and the will, you could try taking them to a pet psychologist. I can't vouch for them, but it might be worth a try if you're attatched to them.
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