How to catch a cat?

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It is not surprising that, as part of the feline protection associations volunteering, at some point we come across a stray cat in poor condition that we need pick up to transfer to the vet or with a healthy cat that we simply want to sterilize. In these cases, it is very important to help the feline, however, it is not always easy to catch it because its past experiences can lead it to distrust humans.

In this AnimalWised article we will explain how to catch a cat in the aforementioned circumstances, so that we can collect it as soon as possible and with minimal stress for it.

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  1. When to catch a cat?
  2. Materials needed to catch a cat
  3. How to catch a cat with food?
  4. How to catch a cat with a net?
  5. How to catch a cat with pills?
  6. How to catch a cat with a trap cage?

When to catch a cat?

Before explaining how to catch a cat from the street, it is very important to make it clear under what circumstances we should try to pick it up. You have to know that in some cities there are controlled cat colonies. This means that they are groups of cats supervised by volunteers from different associations or even coordinated from town halls. They are cats that are sterilized, fed and treated if they suffer from any ailment. Never catch a cat from a controlled colony. If we appreciate, for example, that someone is sick, unless it is an emergency in which it is essential to act now, we must look for the person in charge of the neighborhood to convey the notice.

On the other hand, it must be taken into account that some caregivers allow their cats access to the outside, especially if they live in rural areas. That is why it is also necessary to inform yourself before thinking about catching the cat, except, as we have said, that it is in a life or death situation. Otherwise I could have a home.

Once we are clear that the cat we want to catch has no one to take responsibility or worry about him, this is when we can intervene, always with the aim of helping him. Finally, if for any reason a cat bothers you, contact the authorities or animal protection associations.

Materials needed to catch a cat

Some street cats are in such bad shape that they can be easily picked up. In these cases, it is enough to have a carrier and a towel or blanket to wrap it and handle it more safely. Smaller kittens are also often easily picked up.

But cats used to living without contact with people or those who have suffered abuse and feel panic, will not be easy to catch, for example, when we want to sterilize them or move them to a safer place. These are the tools we can count on to achieve it. In the following sections we explain how to catch a cat with them:

  • Carrier.
  • Can of wet food for cats or, in general, especially appetizing food.
  • Gloves to handle animals.
  • Net.
  • Sedative pills.
  • Cage trap.

Also keep in mind that, in addition to preparing several capture plans, it is important that as few people as possible attend. You should not make excessive noise, you should speak calmly and in a low tone and move without sudden gestures.

How to catch a cat with food?

Sometimes it is relatively easy to get hold of the cat. Unfortunately, many are hungry, and hunger is stronger than fear. To catch a cat with food we can simply, insert a can of wet food or similar in the bottom of a carrier with the door open. It is important that the food that acts as bait has to be eaten on the spot. Otherwise, we run the risk of the cat catching it and taking it away to eat it in a safe place.

It is about the cat being completely inserted into the carrier and, once inside, let's close the door. We must be close enough to get to the carrier before the cat exits and be prepared to hold the door firmly, as it is likely to scramble to get out. It's a good idea to wear animal handling gloves, just in case. Cats can scratch and bite badly when they panic and just want to escape. Not just any glove will work, since only these specific ones guarantee that the teeth do not go through them. Of course, any wound that it causes us must be disinfected and, if it is deep, medical assistance must be sought..

A string can be tied to the door to try to close it as we approach, but we must be careful because it is possible that, when hearing it, the cat will try to flee and succeed if we have not yet secured the carrier. You have to have a certain skill and a great deal of patience to be successful. If there is no urgency, some cats can get used to and tolerate our closeness if we take them to eat every day.

How to catch a cat with a net?

The process of catching a cat can be done gradually, that is, starting with the least invasive measures. The gentlest thing would be for the cat to get into the carrier to eat and nothing else is needed, but it is not always that simple. For complicated cases it is possible to use a network. In this case, we are talking about the one that is attached to a stick, so we do not have to get so close to the cat. You have to see that its size fits that of the feline.

Likewise, we can put food on it to catch it with the net while it eats. You may be struggling hard to try to break free. You have to have patience and skill to be able to hold it with the net and, from there, put it in a carrier. For this movement it is recommended that there be at least one other person. It is advisable for both of them to wear protective gloves..

How to catch a cat with pills?

If nothing works, there is the option of sedating the cat. To do this, we will go to a veterinary clinic. Only veterinarians can prescribe drugs, as well as the amount necessary for the cat in question. It is about the cat ingesting the pills with food and, in a matter of a few minutes, begin to fall asleep, so that, equally with precautions, we can catch it and introduce it in the carrier. It is better that this is arranged vertically to put the cat from above, as it is better controlled than horizontally. There are several problems with this option:

  • That the cat does not swallow the pills.
  • That the prescribed dose does not have an effect or is very slight.
  • Let him go, so that, even sedated, we don't have access to him to catch him. It is dangerous for you to fall asleep anywhere.

In conclusion, this method has a chance of success, but the probability of failure is high. Thus, must be reserved for specific cases or very controlled areas.

How to catch a cat with a trap cage?

When nothing works, there is still the possibility of resorting to so-called trap cages. These are larger or smaller structures that are placed in sheltered places with food inside. They contain a mechanism that closes the door as soon as the cat steps on it, so that it is trapped inside.

The main problem is that it cannot be selective, with which the first cat that enters will be captured, which does not have to be the one to be collected. In addition, the cage must be checked frequently so that no animal stays in there for too long. Therefore, it is an option that also requires patience. Travel to the vet or to a safe place can be done in the trap cage itself.

If we are not confident in our abilities to catch the sick cat or that needs to be sterilized, we recommend asking professionals for help. The most important thing, always, is ensure the welfare and safety of the animal.

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