Hissy Spitty Kitten Program
A pregnant cat living outdoors will give birth anywhere she feels safe – in or under a shed, in a derelict building or even in thick bushes.
The kittens are usually kept hidden away until they are about 5/6 weeks old, then the Mother will bring them out of hiding to teach them how to hunt.
These young kittens will already be nervous of humans because they have not been handled and socialized.
These kittens will be classed as “wild” or feral.
If the Mother is very fearful of humans, she will teach her kittens at an early age to be fearful too.
If the Mother and her kittens are caught, the Mother can be spayed and the kittens tamed.
The younger the kittens, the easier it will be to tame them.
If the kittens are not found, the female kittens will be capable of breeding from four months of age and a new feral cat colony will be formed.
Even the kittens of a friendly cat living in a home can be very nervous and almost “feral”, if they are not handled and socialized in the critical first few weeks – as in the case of Cat Hoarding situations where there are just too many cats.
Taming feral kittens takes time, patience and gentle handling but there is nothing quite as rewarding.
Be warned! – a fearful kitten can inflict some painful bites and scratches.
Hissy Spitty Kitten Socialization
- Confine in a small space – dog crate / bathroom
- Separate from other kittens, if necessary – divide and conquer!
- Approach often and with tasty food
- Wrap and hold in a towel – younger kittens only!
- Play the radio / TV
- Have friends visit (male, female and children)
- Try to spend as much time with the kitten as you can
- Speak softly, move slowly
- Be PATIENT
Some kittens will socialize very quickly. Others will take much more time and patience. However, the majority of Hissy Spitty kittens can be socialized and are good candidates for adoption.
80% of kittens born outside do not survive the first year. So, it really is worth putting in the time and effort with these little creatures!!
Some great articles and videos!
Cat Action Trust 1977 has a great article about Taming Feral Kittens.
Urban Cat League has very helpful guidelines for Taming Feral Kittens.
Watch the 3 You tube videos below from Urban Cat League.
Flatbush Cats have a great video – Socializing a Spicy Feral Kitten!
Please support / sponsor the Hissy Spitty Kittens while they go through through their socialization program.