If you have a barn it's a pretty good assumption that you have a barn cat or two, or in our case three. They serve a fundamental role in homesteading, farming, or simply country life. Ollie Wallie, Mo Mo, and Baby Kitty definitely pitch in around here and earn their keep. They each came to us under unique circumstances. Ollie moved with us from our last home his mom was a stray that showed up at the door pregnant and hungry. We took her and her babies in and found them all homes except Ollie who stayed with us. Mo Mo showed up at our new house the week we moved in and he simply never left. Baby Kitty found my husband and son in the middle of the woods while they were out hunting. The cats help in many aspects with a few standing out above the rest. They keep the mice population down in all the out buildings, protecting the property and livestock from unwanted predators, and serve as amazing companion animals. For all they do for us we must be diligent in taking care of their health.
I feel the most important thing you can do for your cats is to spay or neuter them. We get this done as soon as a new cat decides to make this his home. There are a lot of great organizations out there to help with low cost spaying and neutering for stray, feral, or barn cats. It helps to deter the males from wondering off, fighting, and acquiring diseases. Spaying your female cats cuts down on unwanted litters and also disease control. We always have the cat either tattooed or their ear cropped so if they leave organizations will know they have already been fixed. We don't want to add to the cat population problem at $15 a cat we will fix everyone that shows up. opportunity
It is of the upmost importance that you keep them healthy. Their rabies shots need updated and treat them routinely for both round worms and tapeworms. We also look over our cats often to watch for ticks that may need removed. We choose to use flea control during the summer months as an extra precaution. Simply knowing your cats personality will help you spot when somethings not right. Wether a simple splinter in the paw, abscess, or a cold it's a good idea to keep a few things in the kitty section of the animal medicine cabinet. We keep peroxide, bitter animal wrap, tweezers, and syringe with no needle for wound care. opportunity
We call our cats in each night before we head to bed. It gives them a chance to sleep in the garage or outbuildings if they chose to. We find this especially important in the winter months. It gives a great opportunity to see they are ok and that no one is missing. Even though they scavenge for lots of food its essential to give them a good quality cat food as well. It helps them maintain high protein, vitamins, and minerals they need to survive a long healthy life. Giving access to fresh clean water at all times is imparative. Most of all love them, show them gratitude for all the hard work they put in to the farm.