On January 5, they were trapped along with several others from a cat colony and were brought to a sub Foster’s house in a cage where they remained with their colony mates. They were then taken to the local pet store to be put up for adoption after being neutered and being checked out by a local vet; they were there for about 2 weeks.

I’ve had them for 12 days now. Given that they have had extremely limited human interaction and are not really used to being handled, how long should I realistically expect it to take them to get used to the new surroundings? They don’t run and hide any more and the older one is definitely more social and curious. He’s constantly slowly expanding his territory and checking things out. The younger one kind of just stays in one general area seemingly all day except to eat and use the litter box and he is always looking to see where I am. At times will run away and if he gets nervous or scared. Occasionally he will poop on the floor. They are not from the same litter but play together and seem to enjoy the company.

Honestly, I’m coming from having to put down my 13-year-old cat who was super sweet, super social, got along with everybody and seemingly made it her mission every day to seek out human interaction so this is quite the change. Any advice or what I should expect would be greatly appreciated as having a pair is certainly different so far and given their life so far it seems like maybe the opportunity to really bond with them and have socialized cats has already been lost.


1 Answer 1


Young feral cats will not have had the interaction with people that kittens born in a household will have; the older the feral cats are, the harder it will be to socialize them.

A feral cat will often hide during the day and come out to eat at night when people sleep. It can often take a month before the cat comes out of hiding during the day; it is important to try to interact with the cat at this time.

When the cat comes out during the day you can try to play with the cat using a stick toy; this is to slowly build trust, and you can expect a few setbacks during this time. Let the cat escape and do not follow it, but try to engage in play later.

When the cat starts to relax and play it will use some energy in a no stress situation; this is the time for you and the cat to start to get closer to each other.

By what you say in your question, it sounds to me like you and the cats are well on your way to get to know each other; within a couple of weeks, you and the cats will have made massive progress.

To help the cats to start using the litterbox, take the lid off so it is open; you might have to put the cat onto the cat litter and show the cat how to dig a little bit.

Normally, a feral cat will understand this very quick; I once had a 10-12 years old feral and he did learn this within a couple of days.

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