• Wed. Apr 24th, 2024

How to Get a Stray Cat to Come to You: 15 Tips & Tricks


Mar 28, 2023
smiling woman feeding stray cats outdoors


smiling woman feeding stray cats outdoors

Stray cats can be intimidating, especially if you’re not used to dealing with them. But that doesn’t mean they don’t deserve love and care! With a few simple tips and tricks, you can get a stray cat to come to you and even make a new feline friend. Here are some tips on how to get a stray cat to come to you.


The 15 Tips & Tricks for Getting a Stray Cat Come to You

1. Start Off Slowly

As with any new friendship, it’s important to start off slowly and get the cat used to your presence. The best way to do this is by sitting or standing still in a spot where the cat can see you, but not feel threatened by your presence.

Abandoned stray cat looking directly at the camera
Image Credit: Ure, Shutterstock

2. Speak Softly

Cats are very sensitive to sound, so it’s important to talk in a low, soothing voice when trying to attract a cat. Avoid loud noises and high-pitched tones that could scare the cat away.

3. Use Treats or Food

One of the easiest ways to get a stray cat’s attention is by offering it food or treats. Try laying out some wet food or treats near you and wait for the cat to come check it out. Doing this at the same time every day so that the cat learns to expect it is a great way to keep them coming back.

stray cats eating kibble from bowl
Image Credit: Hulki Okan Tabak, Unsplash

4. Don’t Look Directly at the Cat

It may be tempting to stare at the cute little face, but cats can be easily spooked if they feel like they’re being watched too long. Make sure you glance away occasionally and keep your gaze soft.

5. Get Down to Their Level

Cats feel more comfortable if they’re on eye-level with humans, so try crouching down or sitting when interacting with the cat. This will also help make it feel less threatened by you and more likely to come closer.

woman reaching out to touch a tabby stray cat in the street
Image Credit: sergio souza, Pexels

6. Make Yourself Small

If the cat still seems hesitant about coming up to you, try making yourself look as small as possible by curling laying on your side. The more relaxed you are, the less intimidating you’ll appear.

7. Move Slowly

Cats don’t like sudden movements, so it’s important to move as slow and as gently as possible when approaching them. Make sure to keep your hands low and avoid direct eye contact, which can be interpreted as a threat in their language.

Woman checking out a stray cat
Image Credit: sandryriveraa, Pixabay

8. Provide Shelter

If you want to get a stray cat to really trust you and become comfortable enough to come up close and stay for long periods of time, then providing a warm, safe shelter is a great idea. This could be something as simple as a box filled with blankets or an old pet carrier, but it will give the cat somewhere to call its own and help make it feel more secure.

9. Offer a Scratching Post

If the stray cat has been lingering around your home for a while, it might be worth investing in a scratching post and giving it some attention every now and then. This will help create a positive bond between the two of you and make the cat feel more comfortable.

cute tabby rescue cat in an animal shelter waiting to be adopted
Image Credit: nietbrucewillis, Shutterstock

10. Create a Safe Space

Stray cats may take longer to trust humans if they’re feeling scared or threatened by their environment. The best way to get a stray cat to come closer is by providing it with a secure space that it feels safe in, like a sunny spot on the porch or an enclosed area such as a garage or shed.

11. Don’t Get Discouraged

It’s important to remember that cats are not like dogs, and they may take longer to come around than you’d expect. Don’t give up if the cat seems hesitant in the beginning; it’s likely just adjusting to its new surroundings.

calico cat in house backyard by wooden deck with owner sitting
Image Credit: Andriy Blokhin, Shutterstock

12. Be Patient

Cats can sense when humans are getting frustrated or impatient with them, so it’s important to practice patience and understanding when trying to build a relationship with a stray cat. Spend time near the cat every day and eventually, it will become more comfortable around you.

13. Play Some Music

Try playing some soft background music while spending time near the cat; this will help create a comfortable atmosphere and make the cat feel more relaxed.

man playing music
Image Credit: Spencer Selover, Pexels

14. Let the Cat Become Familiar with Your Scent

If the stray cat doesn’t seem to be coming around, try leaving some familiar items with your scent on them, such as a pillow or towel, near the area in which it usually lingers. This will help make you and your presence known to the cat.

15. Spend Time with the Cat

The most important thing you can do for any stray cat is to be there when it needs you. Take some time every day to sit near the cat and talk gently, read a book aloud, or just watch TV together – this will help create trust between the two of you and enable your relationship to deepen over time.

cat waking up her owner
Image Credit: WiP-Studio, Shutterstock


When to Let the Professionals Do the Catching:

It’s important to remember that cats can sense when humans are getting frustrated or impatient with them, so practice patience and understanding when handling strays — but don’t hesitate to rely on experts for help if necessary!

  • If a stray cat has shown aggression or is exceptionally difficult to catch, it may be best to call in a professional rescue team for assistance.
  • When catching the cat would put yourself or other people in danger, it’s better to call in the professionals.
  • If the stray is in a city pipe, street, or structure, depending on the situation and severity of the issue, your local city workers or animal control department may also be able to help out with trapping.
  • When the cat is stuck in a wall, roof, or other area that requires sawing or hammering an escape hole. You need to make sure you’re not powering through any of the electrical cords in your house or causing structural damage that could cause a collapse.

How to Assess the Cat for Emergency Injuries

When you’ve successfully caught a stray cat, it’s important to assess the cat for any emergency injuries that may need immediate attention. Before doing anything else, be sure to check your newly arrived cat for signs of illness or injury, such as:

  • Open wounds
  • Signs of infection
  • Swelling or discharge around the eyes and nose
  • Bruising on the body or head
  • Dehydration or malnutrition

If you notice any of these symptoms, take your new feline friend to a veterinarian right away for diagnosis and treatment.

vet checking up the cat
Image Credit: Andy Gin, Shutterstock

Tips for Introducing a Stray Cat to Your Other Indoor Cats

If you have other cats at home, it’s important to consider how the stray cat will fit into the family. Introducing a new pet to an existing household can be stressful for all involved, so following some simple steps can help make the transition easier on everyone:

  • Make sure your current cats are up to date on vaccinations before bringing in a stray cat.
  • Create separate spaces with food, water, litter boxes, and toys that the cats can access separately while they are getting used to each other.
  • Use positive reinforcement when introducing them – offer treats or toys as rewards when they start to show signs of comfort around each other.
  • Give them plenty of time and space to get used to each other, with the help of a pet gate if necessary.
  • Once they seem comfortable in each other’s presence, slowly start introducing them to one another by letting them interact for short periods of time.
  • If you notice any signs of aggression or fear from either cat, separate them and try again later.
  • And always remember: patience is key! It may take some time for your cats to adjust to each other and develop a bond, but with love and understanding (and lots of treats!), it will happen eventually!



These tips should help you build a trusting relationship with a stray cat, possibly catch it, and make it more comfortable in its new environment. With patience, understanding, and compassion, you can turn any stray into a beloved companion!

Featured Image Credit: Canan YAŞAR, Pexels

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *