Nothing tugs an animal lover’s heartstrings than seeing a stray animal. Unfortunately, stray cats are everywhere.
Stray cats of any breed are often homeless and malnourished, sick, or injured. As an animal lover, you might want to help them, but it can be tricky to rescue a stray cat. You need to tread cautiously to avoid getting attacked.
This guide will give you step-by-step instructions on how to rescue a stray cat safely without hassle.
Why It Is Important to Rescue Stray Cats
It’s common to see outdoor cats roam the streets without a family or a place to call home in many urban and rural areas. Why is it important to rescue them?
First and foremost, rescuing stray cats is vital because it saves lives. Stray cats are vulnerable to diseases, accidents, and abuse from humans and other animals. Without intervention, many of these cats will suffer and eventually die.
By rescuing them, you can provide necessary medical attention, cat food, and shelter, which will make a difference in their lives.
In addition to saving lives, rescuing lost pets also has a positive impact on the environment. Stray cats are notorious for their hunting skills and can significantly impact local wildlife populations.
Saving strays control their population and limit the chances of them preying on other animals. Thus, rescuing stray cats promotes a healthy ecosystem.
It also has a positive impact on the community. How? They can be a nuisance to people, causing noise, litter, and damage to property. When you take them off the street, you’ll reduce these problems to promote a more peaceful and harmonious community.
Furthermore, caring for stray cats, set an example for others to follow. It encourages others to become more compassionate and responsible members of society.
Finally, rescuing stray cats is important because it can be a deeply rewarding experience. If you are an animal lover, you’ll understand that providing care and attention to these cats is satisfying. It helps you develop a deep bond with them and experience the joy of seeing them thrive.
In many cases, rescued cats make wonderful pets, providing their owners with years of love and companionship. In summary, we can make a real difference and feel good about ourselves by rescuing stray cats.
Understanding How to Approach a Stray Cat
Approaching a stray cat can be daunting, especially if you’re unfamiliar with its behavior. However, if you come to them correctly, you’ll earn their trust.
The first thing to remember when approaching a stray cat is to do so slowly and calmly.
Quick movements or loud noises can startle the cat, causing them to run away or become defensive.
Instead, approach them slowly and quietly, speaking in a calm and soothing voice. This will make them feel more comfortable and less threatened by your presence.
Once you’ve approached the cat, avoid making direct eye contact. Cats see this as a sign of aggression, and it makes them defensive. Try looking at the cat out of the corner of your eye and let them come to you on their terms.
When dealing with a stray cat, remember that it may be scared or anxious. They may have had negative experiences with humans, making them hesitant to trust you. To build trust, try offering the cat some food or a treat. Endeavor to stay still while the cat eats.
This creates a positive association between you and the cat and helps them feel more comfortable around you.
Try sitting or lying on the ground if the kitten is particularly skittish or nervous. Such action makes you seem less intimidating and encourage the cat to come closer. You may speak to it softly and soothingly and offer gentle strokes or pats to help it feel at ease.
It’s important to note that not all cats are friendly or approachable. Some cats may be feral, meaning they have little to no experience with humans and could be challenging to handle.
In these cases, contacting a local animal rescue organization is best. They will have the knowledge and experience to control feral kittens effectively.
Tools You Will Need for Rescuing a Stray Cat
Before embarking on a rescue mission, have all the necessary tools and equipment to keep both you and the kitten safe. The tools below will make your rescue mission easier.
Carrier or Trap
A carrier or trap is critical for safely transporting the cat to a shelter or veterinary clinic. It should be large enough to accommodate the cat comfortably and have adequate ventilation.
A trap is a better option for capturing feral cats or those that are difficult to approach. Use a humane trap that does not harm the cat and follow proper trapping guidelines.
Gloves can help protect your hands from scratches, bites, or other potential hazards when handling the cat.
Be sure to use gloves that fit well, offer a good grip, and are made of a material that can protect against bites and scratches.
Towels or Blankets
Towels or blankets calm the cat and provide a comfortable or secure environment during transportation.
Plus, they protect you from scratches and bites. Use clean and fresh towels or blankets, and avoid using anything containing solid scents or chemicals.
Food and Water
Food and water keep the cat hydrated and nourished during transportation. Offer a small amount of food and water, but avoid giving the cat too much. Too much food can cause motion sickness. Use a secure shallow dish or container that won’t spill during transportation.
Leash and Collar
If you’re rescuing a friendly and approachable cat, a leash and collar will keep them safe and under control during transportation.
Make sure to use a collar that fits well and is not too tight. Also, attach a tag with your contact information in case the cat gets lost or separated from you.
First Aid Kit
A kit comes in handy for treating minor injuries or providing immediate care in an emergency. It should include gauze, antiseptic wipes, scissors, and a thermometer.
However, you should know how to use the items in the first aid kit and seek professional help if the cat has a serious injury.
How to Pick Up a Stray Cat Safely
Picking up a stray cat can be challenging, especially if the cat is scared or aggressive. To pick up a stray cat safely, you should first wear heavy-duty gloves. This will protect your hands from scratches or bites. Wash your hands well, and ensure you don’t have the smell of other cats on you.
Next, approach the cat slowly and calmly. Gently scoop the cat up using both hands. Support its weight by placing one hand under its chest and the other under its hindquarters. Hold the cat securely but without squeezing it too tightly.
If the cat struggles, don’t try to force it into the carrier or box. Instead, use a towel or a blanket to wrap the cat securely, covering its head to prevent it from biting or scratching.
Transporting the Cat to a Safe Location
Once you have picked up the stray cat, you must transport it to a safe location. This could be a local animal shelter, a vet clinic, or a rescue organization.
Before transporting the cat, secure it in a carrier or box. If you use a box, poke holes to allow air circulation.
During transportation, keep the cat calm and comfortable. You can cover the carrier or box with a blanket or towel. You should also avoid sudden movements or loud noises that could scare the cat.
What to Do After Rescuing the Cat
You’ve already taken an essential step towards helping a cat in need. But there are a few more steps to take after rescuing the cat to ensure its safety and well-being.
- Get the cat checked by a veterinarian: The first thing you should do after rescuing a stray cat is to take them to the vet for a check-up. Some strays may have ear mites or other health complications. A vet can check for health issues, provide necessary vaccinations and flea treatment, and determine the cat’s age and gender.
- Keep the cat isolated: If you have other pets at home, keeping the rescued cat isolated is essential until you know the cat’s health status. This will help prevent the spread of any potential illnesses.
- Provide food, water, and a litter box: Make sure the cat has access to fresh water and a clean litter box. If you’re unsure what food to provide, consult your vet or a local animal shelter for recommendations. Also, create a regular feeding schedule for the cat.
- Socialize the cat: If the cat is socialized, gradually introduce them to people and all your pets. Make sure they feel comfortable and safe in their new environment.
- Find the cat a permanent home: If you’re unable to keep the cat permanently, start finding them a new home. Reach out to local animal shelters or post on social media to help find a loving and responsible new owner.
- Register the cat’s microchip: If the cat has a microchip, register it with the appropriate database so the cat can be traced back to you if they get lost.
Finding a New Home for the Cat
Here are some tips on how to find the perfect new home for your furry friend:
- Reach out to local animal rescues and shelters. These organizations often have waiting lists of people looking to adopt cats. They may be able to find a new home for your stray cat.
- Post about your cat on social media. Share pictures and information about your cat, including its personality traits, likes, and dislikes. You never know who in your network may want to adopt a new furry friend.
- Put up flyers in your community. Include a photo and information about the cat and your contact information. You may even get to reunite the cat’s owner with their pet.
- Consider reaching out to local cat rescue groups. These organizations are often run by volunteers who are passionate about helping cats find homes. They may be able to provide resources and support during the adoption process.
- Be cautious when screening potential adopters. Ask about their experience with cats and their living situation. That’s how to decide if they can provide the necessary care and attention for your new cat friend.
Remember, finding a new home for a stray takes time and effort. But it’s worth it to help provide a loving and permanent home for your feline friend.
Resources for Stray Cat Rescue and Adoption
If you’re looking to rescue or adopt a stray cat in Canada, plenty of resources are available to help you find and care for these needy animals. Here are some of the best resources for rescue and adoption in Canada:
Local Animal Shelters
Many animal shelters across Canada take in stray cats and offer them adequate care. These shelters have a wide range of cats available for adoption. And they can guide how to care for your new furry friend.
Humane Society of Canada
The Humane Society of Canada is a national animal welfare organization that works to protect animals and their habitats. They have a nationwide network of shelters and rescue organizations. That makes it easy for them to information on how to adopt or care for a stray cat.
Cat Rescue Organizations
Many stray cat rescue organizations across Canada specialize in rescuing and caring for community cats. These organizations often have a network of foster homes where cats can be placed until they find their forever home.
Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) programs are designed to control the population of feral cats by trapping, neutering, or spaying and returning them to their colonies. These programs also provide medical care and vaccinations for cats.
Many online resources exist for those looking to rescue or adopt a feral cat in Canada. Websites like Petfinder and Adoptapet.ca allow you to search for cats available for adoption in your area and connect with local rescue organizations.
Rescuing a stray cat can be a rewarding experience, but it requires patience, care, and preparation. Following the steps outlined in this guide, you can safely rescue a stray cat and give it a second chance at life.
Always approach stray cats cautiously, and never try to force them into a carrier or box. With the right tools and knowledge, you can make a difference in these vulnerable animals’ lives.