Helping Stray Cats
Castaway Critters is overwhelmed with calls to take in cats and kittens. As the weather turns colder and winter is is upon us, there are things you can do to help the cats and kittens you have found – or have found you! You are an extension of our rescue and a part of the solution – you can help us save more lives!
1. The most important thing for kittens is to get them warm and dry. If you can spare a corner of your warm garage, basement, bathroom, bedroom…etc – anywhere that they can be safe out of the weather – it will help save their lives. We can lend you a crate and basic supplies if needed, as well as offer advice.
2. Nourishment – kitten milk or human baby food (chicken) can get them going. Older kittens can be fed immediately with canned or dry kitten or cat food. If they are very tiny they will need bottle fed with kitten replacement milk. You can call your veterinarian for help with this. Many will provide you assistance for no charge. Here is a helpful link to assist you if you find newborn kittens:
3. If the animal is injured, please keep the animal warm and seek veterinary care immediately. Many Vets will provide discounted services if you are helping a stray.
4. Kittens can be spayed/neutered when they are 3 lbs. This is typically between 12- 15 weeks old. For more information on how to help spay/neuter stray cats in your neighborhood contact these LOCAL organizations:
-The Spay/Neuter Assistance Fund at www.snapofpa.org. Low-cost spay/neuter and vaccines for owned or stray cats.
-The Nobody's Cats Foundation at nobodyscats.org. Nobody's Cats Foundation is specifically focused on Free-Roaming Cats only. 855-867-4228
-Steelton Community Cats www.steeltoncats.org
-Derry Township Community Cats 717-592-8087 www.DerryTownshipCats.org
5. Visit our Re-Homing Page for helpful hints in finding a loving home for the kitties you are helping!
Adult Stray Cats
1. Provide fresh food and water for the cat. Most friendly strays do not have adequate hunting skills to live on predatory animals alone and depend on people to feed them to get the nourishment they require.
2. Provide shelter. If you are able, the very best thing is to bring the cat into a warm garage, basement, bedroom, etc to keep them safe from weather and dangers of the outside. If this is impossible, then provide a shelter outdoors. Preferably in a sheltered area – along a building, behind bushes, etc. A shelter should be insulated, but can be anything from plastic containers, purchased dog house from a pet store, - just be sure to fill with straw to help keep heat in. There are many inexpensive ways to provide shelter – the internet is a good source of information. Nobody's Cats Foundation in Camp Hill has information and samples of cat shelters and workshops on how to build an outdoor cat shelter. To get the cat to use the shelter, slowly move the food over several days towards the shelter and feed the cat at the shelter or in it, if possible, or right outside.
3. If the animal is injured, please seek veterinary care immediately. Many Vets will provide discounted services if you are helping a stray.
4. Be sure to spay/neuter and vaccinate the cat for health and well-being and of course to prevent further births. Refer to organizations above to help with Spay/Neuter.