Anonymous

Will A Feral Cat Abandon Kittens That Are Touched By Humans?

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R. Browning Profile
R. Browning answered
Whoa!!! NOT TRUE!!! I am a very experienced veterinary technician and NO feral cats will not abandon their kittens if touched by humans! Cats are very instinctual and protective, however, they will not abandon their babies. A mother cat is very protective of her kitties and knows where she wants them to be. So, if per say, you were to pick them up and move them, she may very likely move them either back where they were, or somewhere else she deems safe. She may also become irritated with you and growl, hiss, or swat at the thought of her kitties in danger so be careful if the cat is truly feral. You must gain the trust of feral cats in most cases if they will not approach you and some are just not approachable at all depending on their life experiences or personality. Offer food and water. NOT MILK as cats are lactose intolerant (hence the diarrhoea it gives them). The best thing you could do for all the kitties is gather them up and take them to your local vet. Mom should be spayed as a non-spayed female leads to many ovarian issues and also outdoor cats may have many health issues. If you plan to keep them or find them homes have them checked for parasites (worms such as round and tape), fel-V (feline leukaemia) which can be fatal, and FIV (kitty hiv) which a cat live a normal healthy life with. All are contagious to other cats. Fel-V and FIV are not zoonotic (specie specific diseases) but parasites are. Fel-V is contactable though saliva, blood, sneezing etc. and should not live with another not infected cat. However, FIV cats can live with other cats if they get along. It is transmittable mostly through fights that draw blood and sex with other infected cats (same with Fel-v). It can be risky housing FIV cats together, but not really a huge risk. On another note, there are some animals that will abandon their little ones if humans interfere. I am pretty sure rabbits (lagamorphs) are one. So, if you come across baby bunnies, it is best to leave them be and enjoy them from a distance. If a baby bird falls out of its nest, go ahead and put it back in, if you can reach, the mother will come back.
Hope this has shed some new light for you and helped a little. I am open to criticism and corrcetions if you should find research showing my advice is wrong. However, I am worked with animals for seven years in a few different states.
Best,
La Gata
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
Well, I just picked up all 5 of the kittens, and had them inside awhile, and held the kittens, I put them back outside and the mother cat, did tend to her little ones. I think it is absurd for someone to think they would not touch them anymore. I say it is perfectly ok.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
I have been feeding an outdoor cat at work since she was a very little kitten,she comes to me but will not let me pet her,she now had 4 kittens which I found.they appear 4 weeks or so she lets me hold them and when I put them back she feeds them,I made her a new shelter around the area as the kittens are getting really mobile.any tips on catching the mom and her babies?The babies will be easy ,the mother not so.I tried once when she was small she got away.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
A feral cat gave birth to 3 babies in a insulated shelter house I keep outside, she left for a long time but came back even tho I straightened out their blankets,  is there a time I should bring them in to give them food and water?  How long will she stay and nurse her babies?
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
If shes feeling scared or threatened then yes.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
I've been told that cats will sometimes abandon their kittens for that reason, or even for no apparent reason.

Perhaps some of them are in a intermediate state of feral/stray, but are taken care by some random people, in a almost careless manner - just leaving some food and water outdoors, for instance - with no real "owner", so they do not have their instincts quite in tune. I don't know.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
I hope not! -  I just moved some little ones onto a blanket and off the cement where they were   born yesterday - and am waiting for the mom to come back - it has been six hours...  Getting worried - 7 mouths to feed every two hours - yikes!
mark lane Profile
mark lane answered
I am sorry to tell you that with the cat being feral it will be very wary of humans, if the mother smells human scent on her kittens she will abandon them as this is a threat to her security. This is the case throughout the animal world, which is why experts say if you come across a young animal, you should leave it alone as the mother will return, and if human scent is present the mother will abandon. Maybe you could adopt the kittens into your family, or take them to a shelter who could find a home for them. Hope this has helped and good luck with the kittens.

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