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Feed on

A few weekend’s ago I attended the class on barn relocation of feral cats, well I just completed the practicum portion of the class this past Monday, which was tremendous!! I learn best by seeing things happen and getting my hands dirty and I got my chance to do just that.

Nancy, the instructor of the class, had already been to the site and checked things out and prepared the owner with what modifications were needed to get the temporary acclimation setup ready to go, so when we arrived everything was nearly ready to go! We added a few finishing touches to the amazing cat-shed and once all that was done, we released the cats.

The cats will acclimate to the property for 2-3 weeks in this cat-shed and attached pen. The idea is to get them familiar to the sights, sounds and smells of the property while having a safe enclosure for them to hang out in. Once the cats have acclimated, the wire pen will be removed and the cats will be allowed roam the property. The hope is they will attribute the cat-shed as their safe place and will always return to sleep there in safety.

Inside the cat-shed there are many carpeted shelves and cozy spots. We added the blankets and cushions to make it more cozy. The window in the back is actually a cat door. It’s meant to be an emergency escape if a predator enters the cat-shed then the cats can still escape. While the cats are acclimating, the cat door was secured shut.

These cats are set!

They have plenty of food, toys and scratchers to keep them occupied. I still remember Nancy’s words that we want to make it a home for them not a prison! These three cats will be living in style.

The outside wire pen provides the cats a chance to see the area outside and it’s easy access for the caretakers to scoop the litter box and replenish the wet food.

The finished setup

And then it came time to release the cats into their new home.

Nancy shows us how it’s done.

In the two seconds I saw this cat, I fell in love. He popped out of carrier and looked around before entering the cat-shed.

This guy was in a hurry to get to his new home!

This sweetie didn’t want to leave his carrier.

Eventually he left his carrier and joined his buddies in the cat-shed.

The three cats we released were from the same colony, so they already knew each other and were buddies. These three cats were all homeless and were in a situation where they were facing euthanasia if they didn’t find a new home. Thankfully, they now have a great home. Yahoo!!

It was fun to get to meet the cats’ new caretaker, she was so enthusiastic about getting these cats! She had already picked out names for them was eager to get them settled in. I love seeing people take such good care of their cats, it gives me hope for humanity.

10 Responses to “Barn relocation practicum”

  1. this just made me cry. How fabulous. What lucky kitties. Am praying that others learn from you!

  2. how wonderful….we wish there were more people like this willing to help these cats….

  3. nancy says:

    Wonderful work! I love your photos! And what lucky kitties!
    We have found that four weeks (28 days) is good for relocating ferals–or barn cats. Before that time there is too great a risk of them trying to return to their old territory–often with tragic ends.

    Good luck, and I look forward to following your blog!

  4. Marg says:

    That is such a great house. Did you build that yourself? What a great idea to have that there for them. That sure will give them a safe place to go to when they need to. You ought to put some building plans for that house some where. Anyway, this is so great that you are doing all this. It sure makes me smile to see those three cats all safe and sound. Take care.

    • thecatguy says:

      Marg, I did not build the cat-shed. I believe the property owners picked it up in a trade with someone awhile ago and they weren’t sure what they would do with it. And then it became a kitty home! I wish I had building plans for it as I would like to have one myself. Maybe after the cats acclimate and are released I can go back and look it over in more detail and create some plans.

  5. Wonderful that you are doing this! Great way to help the ferals!

  6. Katie Isabella says:

    I am just so completely always and ever grateful for yours and the others care for these precious lives.

  7. Lily says:

    Thank you so much for not only doing this great work but for also providing valuable information to others for the type of structure that would be a good shelter for them! Wonderful ideas and awesome photos! They really make a vision of the “how-to” easier to see! Thank you! We currently live where it is very unsafe for ferial cats because of predators so we relocate them to a safer place where they will have food and some care. But in the next couple of years, we plan on buying a home with land in a different area where they would be much safer and this really help me see how we could do something like this. Thanks again.
    Lily and Little Grey Girl

    • Lily says:

      Just a couple more thoughts. If the cat door that is the “escape hatch” had a shelf on the outside of the building, the cats could go out onto it and jump up onto the roof of the house. That might keep them safer from some predators. (dogs, coyotes, etc.) than having them have to jump down onto the ground. Even a table sitting next to the shelter for them to land on at anytime could be good, too. It is a rather long jump for some cat to just fly out of the shelter and land on the wood pile or ground. Just a few thoughts even knowing how much better this already is for the three kitties that are now there.

      • thecatguy says:

        Thanks for the suggestions, those are great ideas! I think a shelf outside that escape window would be an improvement. I’ll pass this idea along to the project contact.

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