Cat with tipped ear

Feral Cat Policy

WAG is very feral-friendly. Since it is difficult to make an appointment for a cat that needs to be trapped, we allow for ferals to be brought in on a standby basis. Bring the cat in a trap. Working with a feral cat in a carrier is dangerous for our staff.

Cover the trap COMPLETELY with some kind of cloth. A tarp may cause the cat to overheat.

Come to the clinic at about 8:30. Those with appointments for pets will be checked in first, then ferals will be accepted if there is room for them in the day’s schedule.

Feral cats will be accepted for surgery even if they have eaten the food used as bait. Use about a tablespoon of food, not the whole can. Usually they will not eat anything after the trap has sprung unless they are kept overnight. If it is necessary to keep the cat overnight, remove remaining food as best you can and set the trap on wooden blocks or bricks so that urine will pass through. Newspaper should line the trap before it is set. COVER THE TRAP and place it in an unfamiliar place such as the garage. This will help to keep the cat from injuring itself trying to escape the trap. The cat will spend its time instead tearing up the newspaper and pulling at the cover.

When you arrive at the clinic, keep the cat in the car while you inquire about check-in. Ferals are accepted in a certain order, to the best of our ability:

  1. Pregnant females.
  2. Adult females, unless the schedule is overbooked with females as a result.
  3. Adult males.
  4. Kittens under 4 months of age. Kittens are less likely to become part of the reproduction process and are easier to hold until the next day.

Ferals that are brought in by individuals are more likely to be admitted than those brought in by rescue organizations, since the organizations are more likely to have holding facilities for the cats.

After surgery, cats need to be kept warm overnight as the anesthesia interferes with the normal regulation of body temperature. The cat should not be released immediately in any case as the disorientation caused by the anesthesia does not wear off for about 12 hours. Females should be kept confined for as long as possible to prevent the incision from opening; the staff at WAG can advise as how best to do this, depending on your situation.

The staff can counsel those who have never trapped as to the most likely method of trapping the cats. Traps are available, with the payment of a refundable deposit, for ten days or as long as the customer continues to bring in cats.

Thank you for your concern about the feral and stray cats of the community. The very best thing you can do for them is bring them in for our Feral Package. This includes: spay or neuter, rabies shot, distemper shot, flea and ear mite treatment. Sutures dissolve after several weeks and do not need to be removed.

Note: Ear tipping is mandatory with the Feral Package. A free-roaming cat with an ear tip is recognized as being altered and vaccinated, and not likely to be the source of nightly howling, spraying of the front door, or kittens appearing from under the house.