Rehome a farm cat

Looking for an independent cat who loves living outdoors?

Some of the cats that come into our care are most suited to live an independent outdoor type lifestyle. These cats are also known as farm, barn, stable, yard or outdoor cats - but you don't necessarily need to have a farm or riding stables to adopt one. We're looking for homes of all different types to match the variety of different cats we have.

Some types of homes they might like to live at include:

  • Stables
  • Farms
  • Garden centres
  • Nursing homes
  • Large gardens with shelter

These cats need homes where they have the freedom to roam, where they can maintain some distance from people if they choose to and where they are supported with food, water, shelter, and the veterinary care they need. You might consider yourself more of a 'guardian' than the owner of these cats.

    There are all sorts of reasons why some cats need this type of lifestyle. They may have lived for a long time as a stray and aren't familiar or comfortable being close to people or it may relate to their early experiences or genetics. Whatever the reason, we try to find the perfect home for them.

    Jada the treehouse cat

    Jada came into our care after she was found on the streets struggling to give birth. Once her kittens were rehomed, the RSPCA Manchester and Salford branch knew they needed to find a unique home for Jada.

    Very little was known about her history or whether she had ever lived in a home before. She also showed signs of being nervous of people, so the branch found the perfect home for her - in a treehouse!

    Jada is doing really well in her environment. She still mostly prefers her own company but now she has the freedom to cosy up next to her owner's feet when she feels like it!

    Adopting a farm cat from us

    These cats are unique and need a special sort of home which is different to a traditional family house. Taking on one of these cats gives them a second chance in the type of home where they can live their best life. Seeing them roaming free, dozing in the sun and exploring to their heart's content can be really rewarding.

    All our cats will be:

    • In good health
    • Neutered
    • Microchipped
    • Vaccinated, where appropriate
    • Treated for fleas and worms

    We'll also support you with advice and guidance on looking after your cat.

    Find farm cats on find a pet

    A suitable home for a farm cat

    Despite the name, you don't need to have a farm or riding stables to rehome one of these cats. We're looking for homes of all different types of homes to match the variety of different cats we have. You may have a farm, stables or outbuilding but equally for some cats access to a cosy shed in your garden may be just what they need.

    The suitability of any home will be made on a case-by-case basis. However, as a minimum, suitable homes should meet the below criteria.


    Provide shelter which the cat can always access. It must be weatherproofed and well maintained year-round. Examples of suitable shelter include barns, outbuildings, tree houses, unused garages, sheds etc. Extra sources of warmth should be added to these shelters during cold weather e.g. extra bedding, insulation.

    Hazard-free area

    Be free from any obvious hazards such as toxic chemicals, poisons intended for rodents, hunting dogs running loose, very busy roads in the immediate vicinity, loud busy machinery in the immediate vicinity etc.

    Daily food and water provided

    Be visited frequently by the adopter and provided with food and water at least daily. The adopter will be responsible for checking the shelter is still in good condition and for keeping an eye on the health of the cat (and seeking veterinary help when needed).

    Access to vegetation

    Provide the cat with access to some vegetation such as woodland, fields, gardens.

    Getting along with other animals at your home

    When considering the suitability of any alternative home we'll always need to think about other animals in the area too. Generally, the presence of farm animals isn't a problem. If you're interested in adopting a farm cat we'll discuss your individual setup with you.

    Merlin the yard cat

    Merlin was taken off the streets by our Macclesfield, South East Cheshire and Buxton branch through their 'Trap Neuter Release' programme. He was brought back to full health and was then adopted as a yard cat. He's settled in very well!

    How farm cats are different from normal pet cats

    Caring for one of our independent 'outdoorsy' cats will generally require less time than a traditional 'pet' cat would. You might consider yourself to be more of a 'guardian' than an owner.

    Any adopters of these cats will be responsible for their health and welfare and should be prepared as a minimum to:

    • Ensure the cat has constant access to clean water.
    • Feed the cat at least once a day. Cats much prefer to eat small frequent meals so if you can feed more often that is advisable.
    • Ensure the cat has constant access to a clean, safe, well maintained and waterproof shelter.
    • Provide extra warmth such as bedding/blocking draughts when necessary during colder weather.
    • Seek veterinary help if the cat becomes unwell or injured.
    • Wherever possible, provide regular treatment to prevent fleas and worms.

    Farm cats can be good pets to the right owner

    The behaviour and personality of each cat will vary. In general, these cats will want to maintain some distance from people and are unlikely to seek attention or affection. However, in some cases, the freedom to control their proximity to people can help these cats to become more friendly, especially towards people who regularly feed them.

    Anybody thinking about adopting a cat like this should be open to the idea that they may end up with a cat that's a little more friendly than expected.

    Want to adopt a farm cat?

    Please get in touch with your local branch or national centre to express your interest in adopting. Some of our farm cats are also advertised on our find a pet search.

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