How To Socialize Feral Kittens So They’re Ready For A New Home

Every year, more feral kittens are born into the world, and sometimes, they don’t have the best quality of life.

Rescuers and kind-hearted people might try to capture the kittens and offer them a new home, but coming from a feral background can mean they don’t adjust well to life with humans.

Anyone whose been around feral cats and kittens knows just how feisty and “mean” they can be. Sadly, the rescued kittens who don’t get used to humans often grow into cats who are skittish and deemed unadoptable, resulting in many being euthanized.

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Thankfully, it doesn’t have to be this way and there’s actually a method for socializing feral kittens. Flatbush Cats shared a video on YouTube with instructions on how to socialize them and it could save a lot of lives.

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First, he used food to build trust with the kittens. After building some trust, he began to incorporate play and touch, allowing the kittens to feel like the predator, instead of the prey.

Slowly, most of the kittens began to be comfortable being handled, but some needed a little more work.

Photo: YouTube/Flatbush Cats

In the video, he explained:

“These kittens haven’t spent much time around people so, in their minds, we’re probably just giant predators who might be planning to eat them tomorrow … socializing several kittens can be very time-consuming because you need to spend one-on-one time with each cat so they continue to progress. Playtime is another critical tool for socialization, it helps kittens build confidence by switching their mindset from prey to predator.”

He went on to talk about how important fostering is. Many people don’t want to foster kittens, which is a critical piece in their socialization and adaptation to life with humans, because they couldn’t bear to say goodbye once the cats find their forever homes.

Photo: YouTube/Flatbush Cats

However, it’s important to keep the bigger picture in mind. He said, “Saying goodbye is an important part of this work and it’s what makes foster volunteers so special. You’re giving a selfless gift, not just to those cats but to the new families you’re helping to create.”

To learn more about socializing kittens, check out the video below:

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