Feral cats are the offspring of stray of abandoned domestic cats, which live wild in our towns, cities and rural areas. They have little or no contact with humans and as a result are scared of them and avoid their company. Very young kittens can be domesticated quite easily – one such is Whisper, who is now a furry purry.
Some people regard feral cats as pests, but many, particularly in rural areas, regard them as working mousers who protect valuable grain or feed. A healthy feral colony is likely to keep vermin levels to a minimum. However, they do need minimal care:-
- Regular feeding – Cats fed regularly are better hunters than hungry ones who don’t have the same patience to wait for live lunch.
- Neutering – This keeps the colony populations to a manageable level. This involves trapping as they are too wild to be handled. Whilst they are anaesthetised, the vet can check their health and treat them for parasites.
The Cats Protection League has many branches who will trap, neuter and return adult cats to their territory. Cats are protected by law and it is an offence to kill a cat. If a colony of feral cats was removed from their territory, it would not take long for a new colony to take over, so it’s best to care for your colony and they will take care of the vermin.