If you are a person who likes and cares about animals, you may one day find yourself in a situation in which a stray cat wanders into your yard or up to your door. You may then find yourself faced with a bit of a conundrum. If the cat continues to come back and seems as if it does not have a home to return to and you decide to try to adopt the stray cat, there are some things that you should know about taking in a stray. That way, you know what you should do to ensure that you are doing the right thing for you and your newfound feline friend.
Have The Cat Checked For A Microchip
The last thing you want to do when you take in a "stray" animal is to take it away from an already loving home. Some people do allow their cats outside and let them wander the neighborhood to hunt and explore without understanding that their cat could form relationships with other people (let alone the myriad of other scenarios that could occur).
As such, before you fully commit to adopting the cat, you will want to take it in to your veterinarian to have it scanned for a microchip. Microchips are identifying devices used for pets in case the animal is lost or stolen. It is essentially a tracking device as well as a way to identify an animal's registered owner. If the cat has a microchip but the contact person does not claim the cat any more (has relinquished ownership) or the cat does not have a microchip at all, you will be able to legally adopt the cat as your own pet.
Be Sure To Get Them Vaccinated
The next step in adopting a new cat is to have them both tested and vaccinated for common feline illnesses. Feline leukemia is a contagious viral disease among cats, for example, that can easily be spread to any other cats you have in the house if your newfound cat friend has already contracted it.
Animal vaccinations are very important for keeping pets safe and healthy for as long as possible. And because your new cat has been living as a stray, you will likely be unable to obtain any health or vaccination history for the animal. Your veterinarian will therefore want to give the cat a full work up and round of vaccinations, particularly the major ones like feline leukemia, rabies, feline distemper, and vaccines against viruses like feline calici and herpes.
For more information, contact Cherokee Hospital for Animals or a similar location.