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People often confuse the terms, feral and stray. Sometimes the words are even used synonymously. But a feral cat and a stray cat have entirely different stories to tell and utterly dissimilar ways of telling that story.

Lost cat’s sad tale:

A stray is a cat who once had a home. She knew people from the time she was born. Then something happened – maybe she ran from a dog and couldn’t find her way home; maybe she was abandoned – and her world turned upside down. Suddenly this pet cat is cast outside to fend for herself. In her experience, food comes in a bowl, not in a living package that runs away. Some strays fare better than others: Some find a new person, move in on a porch or back yard; others are so traumatized that they fail to thrive. But a stray will remember human affection, and if she feels safe, will welcome it again. When adopted, she will settle and put her journey behind her.

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Crazy-wild cat’ tale of triumph:

A feral cat is one who has never had human contact. These kitties are born in the wild from feral parents. They live in colonies with a hierarchy. They fend for themselves. Though they will accept food from humans (caregivers), they will never fully trust. They are quick to hiss and dart; one hint you’re watching and they’ll be gone, fading back into their urban forest like their wildcat cousins. Though not impossible, it’s rare to transform an adult feral cat into a pet. Until recently feral cats were euthanized (and still are in some uncivilized mindless heartless holes of depravity). A so-much-better solution is TNR, (Trap Neuter Return), where ferals are humanely trapped, altered to curb overpopulation, and returned to their colony to live their untamable lives.

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Get more handy cat tips and read a cozy cat mystery at the same time. Watch for Cats’ Eyes: A Crazy Cat Lady Mystery by Mollie Hunt on Kindle.

About Mollie Hunt

Loves cats. Writes books.
This entry was posted in Animal Shelters, Cats, Kitty How-To Instruction Manual and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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