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Quick question. Cat jumped onto the kitchen surface and started eating some cold chicken. Advice needed.

(34 Posts)
MinkyRobot Tue 22-Jan-13 18:27:53

Ok.. So we have a FT Nanny. She isn't the best nanny but she isn't truly awful. The thing is.. she just doesn't seem to care that much. For example - and here's where I need a consensus:

This afternoon, after picking up the smallest from school, for a treat, we bought 3 cakes from the local cake shop. We left them on the kitchen table so the older 2 sisters could have a small bite after school and the rest after dinner. The nanny had taken some chicken out of the fridge, left it on the side, moved the cakes to the same area and then sat down to eat. "Imagine my surprise" when I came downstairs to see the cat merrily chomping on the chicken standing over the cakes.

Now I'm not prissy about eating food that's fallen on the floor (5 second rule etc) but I refuse to cook or eat anything that's been near an animal. So I screamed at the cat, throw the chicken and cakes into the compost and throw the cat out of the house and went back upstairs.

The nanny knows the cat likes jumping up on tables etc.

Inwardly, I feel the nanny should have taken far more care about food handling. What does the mumsnet public think? This is my first post so be gentle !!

ISeeSmallPeople Tue 22-Jan-13 18:29:17

Shut the door & keep cat out of kitchen.
Ask nanny to do the same.

whattodoo Tue 22-Jan-13 18:29:34

Well you left the cakes out ....

RooneyMara Tue 22-Jan-13 18:33:05

I don't get what the nanny did wrong. She can't be expected to control your cat.

MinkyRobot Tue 22-Jan-13 18:43:20

Ok - the cakes are perhaps incidental but the point I am trying to make is that the nanny left the chicken in a place that the cat could easily get to, whereas myself and my partner would always be "cat aware". Obviously cats aren't really interested in cakes, it was the chicken she was after.

MinkyRobot Tue 22-Jan-13 18:46:29

Thanks all for your feedback so far. It's just heartbreaking (pursebreaking?) to see decent food get ruined though. Money's tighter than it ever has been so perhaps that what's triggering my grrrr reaction right now.

RooneyMara Tue 22-Jan-13 18:48:34

How long's she been with you? I tink you need to talk to her about always putting food away - well, interesting-to-cats food.

I have to do the same, our cat has been known to try cocoa when all else fails (ie crisps, sandwich packets, etc all empty, even going through the recycling and licking margarine boxes)

It's a pain in the arse, but you should technically be able to leave food on a kitchen table for short periods of time without a cat getting involved.

I'd be crosser with the cat tbh - can you keep it out of the kitchen? We can't as cat flap is in there.

RooneyMara Tue 22-Jan-13 18:49:53

I understand by the way. It's one thing that makes me really angry - I have to restrain myself from literally throwing the cat out when she does this!

ISeeSmallPeople Tue 22-Jan-13 18:50:09

Did the cat try the cake?
Or did he just stand over it, which he may have done with or without chicken around?
I'd eat cake a cat had stood near, but not licked smile

But then I don't let my cat on the kitchen. He would try cake, or atleast lick icing. Before & after licking his bum.

Keep the cat out of the kitchen. Or keep food in fridge.

LineRunner Tue 22-Jan-13 18:51:32

Why do you have a cat?

nextphase Tue 22-Jan-13 18:53:32

I think you need to explain to the Nanny re food hygiene and animals.
Personally I'd have binned the chicken, but not the cakes - but then I've got a cat who doesn't go on work surfaces, so maybe not the best to comment!

RooneyMara Tue 22-Jan-13 18:53:59

If that's to me Line, I have no idea smile

I suppose she used to behave a bit better, when we got her roughly 8 years ago...she's an old girl now and very cheeky. I couldn't get rid of her now. She's lovely really, just pushes a few buttons.

If I am careful it's not an issue. But I don't have a nanny to persuade to be careful too.

RooneyMara Tue 22-Jan-13 18:55:11

Oh I meant to say we got her when she was 5, she is just 14 now.

I thought you couldn't put meat in the compost? confused

NatashaBee Tue 22-Jan-13 19:00:52

I assume your nanny has never had a cat... if you are a cat owner it kind of becomes ingrained after a while that you need to make sure the front door is shut (ours are indoor cats and are not allowed out), that certain room doors are kept shut, that no food can be left on surfaces, etc - I wouldn't expect the nanny to instinctively know that. How long has she worked for you for?

Umicar Tue 22-Jan-13 19:01:01

You could have cooked the chicken up for the cats dinner, would have saved wasting it?

Marlinspike Tue 22-Jan-13 19:04:52

As a complete aside, you shouldn't put meat on a compost heap - actually I've no idea why, but that's what my Dad always told me, and he had an allotment and everything!

Narked Tue 22-Jan-13 19:06:55

If you have a cat that goes onto the countertop and you're paranoid about food that's been near the cat, stop leaving food out yourself!

BertieBotts Tue 22-Jan-13 19:08:32

Yeah, I think the nanny probably isn't used to cats. Just explain to her not to leave food out in future.

With a dog for example they can be trained to leave food alone - cats can't and will go for stuff that they can smell or see. As a cat owner you get used to this and wouldn't leave the stuff where they could get to it. If you're not used to cats you wouldn't necessarily be aware of this - not her fault IMO. Of course if you've explained this and yet it keeps happening then it's fair enough to get annoyed.

LineRunner Tue 22-Jan-13 19:10:15

It was to the OP, Rooney, but yy to cats being cheeky. smile

They jump up. I think if a person has a thing about separating live animals from dead animals then maybe don't have a cat ... and if you do, you probabably have to chill out a bit, and possibly wash surfaces a lot if you think they are inherently unhygienic.

Umicar Tue 22-Jan-13 19:10:37

Not putting meat onto compost heaps is to do with Rats/Vermin isn't it?

nbee84 Tue 22-Jan-13 19:39:58

You say you left the cakes on the kitchen table - so you had left them out too. I realise you say nanny moved them and put them on the side with the chicken - but kitchen table/worktop - both left out. If you are the type that doesn't like animals near food (me too) then why have you not trained the cat not to climb on the tables or worktops - it can be done.

And am I the only one thinking "where was the nanny's cake?" grin

ReetPetit Tue 22-Jan-13 20:10:06

don't stress it op! it's not your nanny's fault you have an unruly cat and you left your cakes on the kitchen table smile

MinkyRobot Tue 22-Jan-13 20:52:28

re: meat in a compost heap - this is just for vermin (foxes, rats etc) but all food goes into a rotating composter which is latched and has no access from the ground, by the time everything comes out ( in about two months) into yet another composting bin (but this one open to the ground + worms), it's in such a horrid state that nothing would touch it.

re: nanny - she's been working for us for over a year now ie She's not new. In another post I'll probably give a background to her. This may seem like a "little thing" but every week there is one more "little thing". The thing is, we're not nanny averse. In fact the last one we had was a genuine super nanny. The problem was she liked kids so much she went off and had one for herself (not one of ours I hasten to add).

It's not the "you shouldn't leave food out" for me as I know that, but it was the general just "I don't really care about the fact the cat was eating tomorrow's dinner" attitude about the nanny. What should I be expecting ?

blondefriend Tue 22-Jan-13 21:30:35

Is it just me who would have checked for cat hair and ate them anyway?

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