On Wednesday I set everything up at around 4:00PM to catch them. The Tomcat was in the trap within an hour. So I covered him up and put him in our carport. I knew that I would be in for a tussle moving the awkwardly long cage, but it is quite frightful to move an 11 pound tomcat as he hisses and pops and thrashes around. I put him on the back carport, kind of terrified that his claws would somehow get through the little grates even though I rationally knew they couldn’t.
Within the next 20 minutes I had caught one little kitten on the front porch. He was pretty easy to move back to the carport. It had started to rain though so I moved all of the traps to the carport and out of the rain. I moved the tomcat and kitten inside the house where they could have quiet and not stress. I should mention that I had taken the dogs into the doggie daycare and boarded them overnight because I knew that this could get complicated otherwise. So for one night our dog room turned into a cat room.
I left the trap setup on the carport, and lo and behold by the time I got the first kitten settled another one was already in that trap. When I went to pick up that kitten mom cat gave me a stern hiss from the corner. We only had three traps, so that left us with a decision to move a kitten to a regular carrier or release a kitten to catch mom. Joe and I decided to put the kitten in the carrier, hoping that if we caught mom we would be able to make a fourth appointment at the vets office. After getting the kitten into the carrier with some careful finagling, we reset the trap to catch mom. Mom actually walked right in the trap, I think that she wanted to go where her kitten was. That left us with two adult cats and two kittens hissing in our dog room.
We hadn’t seen any sign of the other male cat or the other little male kitten for a couple of days, so we declared that we were done kitty catching for the night.
The smell the next morning was horrendous, and I slept with one eye open still fearful that the tomcat would realize his mission of breaking out of that trap and tearing every living human being to shreds in the house. I’m sure our bird was non-plussed as well with the whole situation.
I moved them all out onto the carport. The TNR hero came and brought another trap so that we could transfer the kitten out of the carrier for the vet. It’s much better for them to be in a trap where the vets can have access through the bars. Getting rid of the smell in the house was a task, but thankfully we have tile floors.
It took about an hour at the vet to check them in. They weren’t all done at the time they were supposed to be, so two trips were necessary to pick them all up. In the meantime I ran the towels and blankets they used two times through our washer, the tomcat was quite the stinker to say the least.
I brought all of the cats to a friendly ladies house who is gracious enough to let the TNR organization set up the cats in her carport to heal after their surgery. Connecting some traps together to create a suite where they had room for a litter box on one end and food dishes on the other end took about an hour.
The next few days were spent going over and feeding the cats and scooping the litter. I can’t express how thankful I am that our local cat hero also went over to feed them so that wasn’t as much of a task.
During these few days the question came up about where to shelter the cats. It’s best to provide them a shelter so they stay and no other cats move in their place (therefore giving us the same problem next year).