Ani was very vocal after being trapped, and he didn't run to the back of the cage when we peaked at him. I think he's likely not feral, and instead a stray cat.
Last week, a neighbor and I set up a time to meet and try our 2nd attempt to trap Ani, this handsome tabby cat who showed up on our large apartment complex recently. Our complex is cat friendly, and we used to have a large community cat population, but over the years they got older and passed away. Just last year, our last cat who was 17 passed away. There are cat shelters and a feeding station set up on the property. We were alerted by a staff member who works late that a skinny cat was spotted. We immediately got our team of feeders on board to start feeding.
Once we established that Ani was coming just about every night, we set out to trap him. Luckily, one of our neighbors loaned us the trap and the associated equipment . The first night we tried, Ani did not show up which was a surprise. The second night he was waiting for us, meowing at us while we set up the trap. We walked away, and he walked right into the trap. We couldn't believe it. We had trapped a cat in record time. We housed him overnight, and took him to the veterinarian the next day to be neutered and vaccinated. Turns out, he was already neutered! We had missed the ear clip since it was dark. But, he got a round of vaccinations, and antibiotics for a wound on his paw. We released him that same evening on the property. We thought he might be mad at us, but he still shows up every night for feeding time.
By spaying and neutering cats, we are reducing the over population of animals. 70 to 80% of kittens born outside die, typically from sickness. TNR saves lives.
Jennifer Van de Kieft is a Certified Feline Training and Behavior Specialist residing in Brooklyn, New York City.