Copyright © 2019 Barn Cat Buddies. All rights reserved.  
Created by Kota Whitlock.

Barn Cat Protocols & Traping

     My rescue work started with a neighbor who moved away and left behind their unsterilized male and female. 
     I wasn't aware the female had kittens until she weaned them and brought them to me for food. Of course, I fed them, and one by one took them to the vet to be fixed. 
     After that, a stray showed up and following that another stray my daughter found. I guess there was an invisible "neon sign" at my house that said, "Free food here"!! 
     I learned about the Angels of Assisi and started taking cats there to be sterilized as the vet was getting very expensive.

     Next, I learned about Barn Cat Buddies and began to learn all about the plight of feral cats. I started working with Diane Novak and began building my colony two by two.  I gave them a safe haven.  They live on 6 acres at a dead-end road with half of it wooded.  It is working perfectly to give them a safe place to call home. 
     It was then I felt I found my purpose in life.  It is so rewarding!! I CAN make a difference, and so can you. 

~By Brenda Adkins

Protocol For Re-homing Friendly Barn Cats

For successful relocation of your new barn cats, a period of 3 weeks confinement in a roomy dog crate (large enough for food, water, and litter box**) is required.

Each Cat should be in their own individual crate. Three weeks is a long time to be in small confinement sharing the same space. We are aware of situations where cats turned on each other in close proximity. BCB can loan you crates for confinement.

Alternatives to crating:
1) A quiet stall where all four walls are totally enclosed to the ceiling.
2) An office or small room/bathroom* could also serve as a confinement area.

Office/bathroom MUST NOT have much traffic.

** Cardboard liners found in grocery stores or beer can cases make great
Disposable Litter boxes. You can also use lasagna pans or regular plastic litter boxes – your choice! We recommend scoopable litter as it is not as messy as the less expensive clay litter.

Food and Litter should be kept far a distance from litter box so litter will not be kicked into it. Wet food for the confinement period (mixed with dry) is a good idea to make cats associate your barn with a pleasant place to stay.

Hidey Boxes: Keeping a clean/empty cardboard box in the crate with the opening facing the back of the crate. This gives even a friendly cat a safe place to hang out.

After Confinement Period: The day you release your barn cats, leave their food and water in the crate with the door open for up to a week. This will acclimate the cat to eating in the barn in a familiar space. After a week or so, you can shut down the crate and remove/return it and continue feeding the cats on the same spot. If this is too easy for other animals to reach, place the bowls on an elevated spot like a hay bale or table.

Thank you for becoming a safe haven for cats who have nowhere else to go!

 

 

If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact us!

Barn Cat Buddies - Comment Form

Barn Cat Buddies, Inc. PO Box 111 Salem, Virginia 24153

This content is copyright of Diane Novak and Barn Cat Buddies - © Barn Cat Buddies (2019). All rights reserved. Any redistribution or reproduction of part or all of the contents in any form is prohibited other than as follows:

 You may copy the content of this article without modification to individual third parties, and to additional animal welfare websites as long as you acknowledge this website and this author as the source of the material.

Protocol For Re-homing Feral Barn Cats

Please know that feral cats are WILD animals. They are NOT PETS and have no interest in human interaction and we cannot assure you they will not bite or
scratch if approached. PLEASE DO NOT TOUCH your new FERAL Barn Cats.

 

For successful relocation of your new barn cats, a period of 3 weeks confinement in a roomy dog crate (large enough for food, water, and litter box**) is required.

Each Cat should be in their own individual crate. Three weeks is a long time to be in small confinement sharing the same space. We are aware of situations where cats turned on each other in close proximity. BCB can loan you crates for confinement.

Alternatives to crating:

  1. 1)  A quiet stall where all four walls are totally enclosed to the ceiling.

  2. 2)  An office or small room/bathroom* could also serve as a confinement area.

 Office/bathroom MUST NOT have much traffic.
** Cardboard liners found in grocery 
stores or beer can cases make great Disposable Litterboxes. Fill the boxes with scoopable litter. It is less messy than clay litter. Plastic Litter pans are perfectly acceptable as are aluminum lasagna pans.

Potting Soil/Earth on top of the litter will help a feral cat identify the box as a place to excrete.

Food and Litter should be kept far a distance from litter box so litter will not be kicked into it. Wet food for the confinement period (mixed with dry) is a good idea to make cats associate your barn with a pleasant place to stay.

Hidey Boxes: Keeping a clean/empty cardboard box in the crate with the opening facing the back of the crate. This gives the scared/unsocial cat a safe place and will make it easier to change out its food and litter when the cat is safely in its box.

After Confinement Period: The day you release your barn cats, leave their food and water in the crate with the door open for up to a week. This will acclimate the cat to eating in the barn in a familiar space. After a week or so, you can shut down the crate and remove/return it and continue feeding the cats on the same spot.

If this is too easy for other animals to reach, place the bowls on an elevated spot like a hay bale or table.

Thank you for becoming a safe haven for cats who have nowhere else to go!

 

If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact us!

Barn Cat Buddies - Comment Form

Barn Cat Buddies, Inc. PO Box 111 Salem, Virginia 24153

This content is copyright of Diane Novak and Barn Cat Buddies - © Barn Cat Buddies (2019). All rights reserved. Any redistribution or reproduction of part or all of the contents in any form is prohibited other than as follows:

 You may copy the content of this article without modification to individual third parties, and to additional animal welfare websites as long as you acknowledge this website and this author as the source of the material.

Trapping 101 Plan, Prepare, Protect

     Start a feeding schedule at least two weeks prior to trapping. Whenever possible, feed the cats in open (un-set) traps for several days prior to the evening/morning you decide to trap.

You can use a bungee cord or zip tie to keep the trap door open to get the cats used to eating in the trap. Make sure the food is in the way back of the trap so the cat will go all the way in, step on the plate and shut the trap door. Before you do anything, make sure there is a sheet or large enough towel that can cover the entire width and length of the trap.

     Feed at your regular times and keep the trap covered as you would on the actual trapping day. The day before you set the trap, withhold ALL food & place a small bit the evening or day you intend to trap making sure the food is all the way in the back of the trap so the cat is forced to step on the trip plate. Bait: sardines in water, tuna in oil, fancy feast fish food or anything else smelly and tasty. * Always check ahead with the clinic to make sure of days and hours they are open as you do not want to keep the cat in a trap for extended periods of time.

     Preparing the Trap: line trap floor with newspaper: It’s easier for the cat’s paws to rest on the paper and not wire. *Cut an old sheet to the size of the trap and long enough to touch the floor so the cat cannot see out when trapped. I prefer having trap covered when feeding to get the cat used to the trap so nothing looks different the day of actual trapping.

     Place ‘bait’ as far back in the trap as possible so the cat is sure to set the trap door closed. Trickle a little in front of the trap and a little in the center of the trap as well. Never leave an open can in the trap as cats have cut their tongues and gotten their heads caught in cans.

     Why Cover? : Once the cat is in a trap and realizes ‘I’m in here and can get out’ s/he will become panicked and run from end to end cutting up his/her face in an attempt to escape. We have learned that when cats cannot see outside they are more relaxed and settle in. If it’s a windy day, put rocks along sheet edges so sheets don’t fly up.

     Stay with the Trap: Never leave the trap unattended. An unintended possum or raccoon could wind up trapped and then you have to deal with releasing it or someone can decide to take a ‘free’ trap. Do stay within watching distance. You will also need to discourage more than one cat from going into the trap.

      If a second cat goes into the trap: Do not attempt to separate them, just bring a separate trap to the clinic for second cat to go into after surgery.

     Once Cat Is Trapped: Leave it alone, don’t lift the sheet up to examine or talk to it as this will only stress the cat out and s/he may begin the bouncing around you tried to avoid in the first place.

     But It Seems So Sweet: The cat may seem docile or ‘tame’ in the trap because it is scared and calm from the sheet covering it. DO NOT STICK YOUR FINGERS INSIDE TRAP. If you are bitten this means a hospital visit for you and a 10-day quarantine for the cat or worse. Health Departments take animal bites seriously and may insist on euthanizing the cat and testing for RABIES.

     Prior to Placing Trap in your vehicle: Line the seat area where the trap will sit with tarp/pee pad or something plastic. If kitty relieves him/herself while in transport you will be glad you planned ahead.          Please DO NOT ever put a cat in a trap or in a carrier in the trunk of your car.

     If Trapping Night before Surgery: Choose a safe/quiet spot to overnight the trapped cat. Keep in mind the season you are trapping. Garages are hot in summer/cold in winter. Keep sheet over the cat and you can add a light blanket if very cold. If you do not have a basement or garage to overnight PRIOR to surgery, keep it on a porch safe from other animals. *See the 2x4idea below...

     After Surgery: A porch may be too cold or drafty so if at all possible, find an indoor space that is draft-free. To protect your floors from feces/urine put some type of plastic down. If you have 2x4’s or wood, place that on top of the plastic and the trap sitting on the wood. This keeps them off the cold floor and allows feces to drop through the cage so the cat does not sit in dirt after surgery.

     Feeding: For both you and the cat’s safety, do not open the trap door to feed/water cat. I have had cats escape in my garage and it took forever to re-trap them. Instead, use this great trick. Get a paper plate and put some canned food with some extra water mushed into it on the plate. Check where the cat is laying/sitting and lift the opposite end of the trap, placing the paper plate under it. The food will squish through the floor and cat can eat without the chance of escape or hands involved.

     Keep the cat in the trap overnight after surgery: If you are told you have trapped a nursing mom it will still be spayed/but will need to reunite with her litter sooner. Follow the clinic or doctor’s instructions if that is to occur.

     Release Day: Take the cat BACK to the spot where you trapped it and position the trap so it faces away from traffic and towards woods or a backyard. Stand behind the trap & lift the door until cat leaves.

     Most cats will run and never look back but some will ‘freeze’ in the trapunsure of what to do. In this case, you can secure the door open with string or bungee cord and simply wait. Sometimes ‘gently’ tapping the back of the trap encourages him to leave.

REMEMBER: Stay with the trap as long as the cat is still in it.

Disclaimer: This handout is for educational purposes only.

Trapping 101 Workshop

Also see the links below for additional assistance and insights into the world of ferals, trapping and TNR. We would like to offer our thanks and appreciation to the folks at Neighborhood Cats: The Feral Cat Experts.