How to rehome a farm cat
Battersea’s farm cats normally require less maintenance than domestic cats. Find out if you could rehome a farm cat and what the benefits are.
What is a farm cat?
Some cats are more independent than others and don’t do well in a typical family home. At Battersea, these cats are referred to as ‘farm’, ‘outlet’ or ‘working’ cats and are rehomed to outlets where they can live in a way that best suits them. Farms, garden centres, stables and rural homes with outbuildings are just some of the places we’ve already rehomed farm cats to.
Battersea’s farm cats normally require less maintenance than domestic cats and generally only need food, water, warm shelter, someone to keep an eye on them and a sufficiently large and enriched area for them to explore. They usually prefer to come and go as they please without the pressure of interacting with people.
Sometimes, it can be very hard to predict whether a cat will want to interact with people when out of the cattery or foster home environment. If carers are happy to care for and interact with the cat, then it is fine to stay in the outlet. However, Battersea understands that many outlets don’t have the time to regularly interact with a cat, and in this case we will collect the cat and find it an alternative home, then find another cat more suited to the outlet’s environment.
What are the benefits of getting a farm cat from Battersea?
Many farm cats have a strong hunting instinct, which means they can help to control pests in your property. Even if a cat has limited hunting instinct, their presence and smell within the area may be enough to deter rodents and even help keep the local rodent population down.
All Battersea cats are microchipped, neutered, treated for fleas and worms, and given an initial set of vaccinations. Unless the cat becomes unwell, they shouldn’t require any further health or veterinary treatments.
What does Battersea provide for farm cats and their carers?
- Two metal food bowls and a metal water bowl.
- An initial supply of food.
- A litter tray and initial supply of cat litter. This is for the first few days whilst the cat is settling in.
- Blankets, towels and sheets.
- An insulated cat house.
- A cat carrier, which will be used to transport them to their new home (and other hiding options such as cardboard boxes if needed).
What do carers need to provide?
- Ideally a secure, sheltered area for the cat to settle in during their first week. Suitable areas must be dry, warm and give the cat privacy. Examples include a barn, stable or large shed area.
- At least half an acre of personal territory, including plenty of vegetation to provide an enriched environment.
- A twice daily supply of food and water for adult cats (more regular feeds for kittens). To encourage them to stay in the area, it is vital to keep feeding them.
How does Battersea decide if a cat is suited to living in an outlet?
When a cat arrives at Battersea, staff gather as much information as possible about their history and behaviours. The cat is then put on a tailored stress management plan in order to give them the best chance to settle. Staff will carefully monitor how well the cat copes with cattery life as they settle, as well as how they behave around people.
If a cat has previously been known to enjoy the company of people but isn’t coping well in the cattery environment, they will be placed in a foster home. If there’s no history of the cat wanting to interact with people, or they don’t respond to continued efforts to help them settle, it’s highly likely that they’re better suited to an outlet environment.
The decision to place cats in outlets is made on a case-by-case basis, in consultation with a Battersea vet.
If you think you can provide a home for one our farm cats, please complete the application form.