I had never had much experience with feral cats.  I had heard they existed but in the suburbs where I live you just didn’t see too many wild cats around. 

Most of them were friendly pets that would use your yard to wander through, play with the kids and move on.  Most wore a bell on their neck to deter bird hunting, but they all looked happy and fed.

But this is not always the case.  A feral cat came into our lives this summer.  He only looked 3 months old tops, and I assumed he belonged to the neighbours, but you couldn’t approach him or her (we are still not sure). We began to feed him when he was trying to eat bird seed and realized he was not coping well and starving.  I put food out under the shelter of an overturned wheel barrow, but now with winter approaching I am looking for ways to keep him warm.

feral cat house heatedCredit: amazon.com
K&H Outdoor Kitty House, Heated
Amazon Price: $99.99 $53.62 Buy Now
(price as of Nov 20, 2016)

K & H Outdoor Kitty House

This one is one of the best on the market.  It is insulated and weather resistant, and also heated so that when the cat lays on it is when it will work so you are not paying to heat it all the time.  We have a garage tent shelter that this cat we call “MOO” (white with black spots) has been hanging out in.  Moo has been sleeping on my hubby’s insulated coveralls he leaves in there.  They were lying across a stacked pile of storage totes and Moo has decided this is his bed. 

If we enter the shelter he bolts, so we are no-where near ready for trying to train him before winter.  Actually it is snowing here in Ontario today (November 19th).  I checked at our local pet supply store and I simply could not find much for the outdoor or feral cat.  So researching online I found lots of feral cat houses, some heated some not.  It all depends on your climate and where you will keep it.  

feral cat house heatedCredit: amazon.com

Outdoor Heated Bed Pad

If your outdoor kitties or feral cats have a shelter or maybe have taken over your shed?  You may not need a cat house; you could simply set this up for him to sleep on.  It only comes on when in use so you are not paying for it all the time.  You could also sit this inside a dog house for added warmth or anything you might make yourself.

feral cat house heatedCredit: amazon.com

The Kitty Tube

This one is well insulated but not heated.  If your winters are not subzero, the cat will stay warm with his own body heat in this insulated cat house.  Up to 3 cats can fit in here.  This is a good spot for those free spirited cats that don’t like to live indoors but are still friendly.  A better option than climbing under the hood of a car or getting stuck under a porch in bad weather, if you love cats giving them a helping hand is a great feeling whether indoor kitties or out.

Feral cat house heatedCredit: pixabay.com

MOO is Our Project!

We hope to tame Moo, he is not very old but after getting lots of advice from feral cat experts I know this can take time, and winter is upon us and this is his/her first winter.  The garage shelter will keep the wind off of him but not the cold, so I like the idea of a heated cat house.  I will sit it inside the tent so he doesn’t have to deal with wind and can also stay warm.

feral cat house heatedCredit: amazon.com

K & H Birchwood Feral Cat House Heated

This one looks more natural and can take more of the weather.  It all depends on where you plan on placing the kitty home for your outdoor kitties or feral cats.  We will have ours in the shelter of a garage tent but if I was to place one right outside in the elements I would look at something like this.  It has a heated pad that comes on when needed to keep their bodies warm.

feral cat house heatedCredit: amazon.com
Twin Critters Cat Bed Cave Hideout, Large - Grey
Amazon Price: $65.88 Buy Now
(price as of Nov 20, 2016)

Cat Bed Cave

Another option if you don’t want the expense of heating or don’t have any way to plug it in is a cat bed cave.  These are not heated but if you can find a sheltered spot such as the shed or carport or porch, they can cuddle in this and keep warm with their own body heat.  Indoor cats love these too.

Make Your Own Cat House

This is another option to consider.  After getting advice from my local humane society I discovered that straw is the best product to line a feral cat house with.  It repels moisture and retains the cats body heat.  So if you don’t want to spend the money on anything with heating, you can at least give them a toasty warm spot to hang out on those subzero nights.  

feral cat house heatedCredit: amazon.com
K&H Manufacturing Thermo-Kitty Café 12Oz/24Oz 8.5-Inch by 14-Inch 30 Watts
Amazon Price: $74.99 $27.95 Buy Now
(price as of Nov 20, 2016)

K & H Thermo Kitty Cafe

We have been feeding Moo beside the shed under the shelter of an overturned large wheel barrow, so I will use a heated cat bowl to keep his water and food from freezing.  Here in Ontario it can get super cold, so this is a sheltered spot but it is still outside, so this thermostatically controlled heated bowl café system will help to keep him well fed and watered.  Feral cats will eat snow, but it is nice if you can give them a helping hand.

Feral Cat Project - Operation MOO

Our hopes are that he will become tamer as we keep this up.  We already get quite close to Feral cat house heatedCredit: pixabay.comhim/her but we have a ways to go yet.  Once tame enough we will try and get him to a special clinic for feral cats to be neutered or spayed to stop more feral cats from populating the town.  I feel it is our responsibility; he came into our yard so I will take him on as my project.  I have an indoor 12 year old cat that likes to watch him, so I will continue with my two pets, my indoor cat and my outdoor feral cat we call MOO.