We are getting a rescue cat - tips for choosing please

(40 Posts)
nomadwantshome Mon 11-Feb-13 20:15:47

We have been catless for a few years now and are going to take the plunge again. I'm getting a cat flap installed and we will be ready to go.

Any tips? I don't want a kitten but an older cat. Don't mind if it's missing bits and pieces and doesn't have to be beautiful. I want one with a bit of character who is good with kids, (6&8). Getting all broody blush

It's great that you're going to rescue. There are loads of tips here:
http://www.celiahammond.org/index.php?module=pagemaster&PAGE_user_op=view_page&PAGE_id=40&MMN_position=67:67

Really your local rescue should be able to give you lots of advice and recommend cats that they think would suit your circumstances. That's the great thing about rescuing adult cats, rather than kittens, you know what personality you're getting so it's easier to find a good match. So first find your local rescue, get on the list for a home visit if they do that, and then just go along, meet the cats and listen to their advice and you'll probably just fall in love and that will be that ...

Sparklingbrook Mon 11-Feb-13 20:30:06

Ooh exciting. smile Do you have a Cat's Protection locally that have a website you can look on? Kittens get snapped up but older cats get photographed and put on the website. smile

Cat rescues will want to do a Home Visit to check location etc and then try and match you with your future cat. Squeeee!!!

nomadwantshome Mon 11-Feb-13 20:30:59

Thanks cat, that's exactly why I want an adult cat so I know beforehand what they're like. Thanks for th link, I'll take a look.

nomadwantshome Mon 11-Feb-13 20:40:20

Aww just looking on the website, why why why do black cats get overlooked? I read a thread about this recently, I don't understand. We have a black cat that has taking to sleeping in our shed on the sun lounger cushions, he's gorgeous! Kids want to keep him (me too actually) but I told them that wouldn't be very fair on the owners (or cat servants!)

One worrying thing is that the friendly ones get adopted quickly and the nervous ones are left - these ones are not good with kids. I can certainly second this, my Sticky was a very nervous puss and never came round to the kids, whereas Cosmo was right in the thick of it, bless her. She used to head butt everyone for a stroke.

Yes it's very sad about black cats. They do have a hard time. And yes, the friendly ones get adopted much more quickly than the nervous ones. Still, as you do have children, you can't let that influence you when you're choosing - you are going to need one that's ok with kids. You could certainly try to get a black one though ....

Sparklingbrook Mon 11-Feb-13 20:46:23

Even if they haven't got one that suits on the website now it may be worth getting your home visit done and telling them what you are after and asking them to contact you if a suitable one comes in?

issey6cats Mon 11-Feb-13 22:11:06

the best thing to do is go to the center with no particular cat in mind, they should show you cats that are suitable for your family, ie cats that dont mind children, dont worry about taking your time as the staff should be happy for you to do this, if they show you a few cats kjeep in mind any that stand out and go back and look again, spend a little while with each of your short list cats, and im sure that your new master or mistress will pick you, and if no one is suitable that day rescues get cats in all the time as they rehome so if several visits are necessary dont worry the rescue will want you to have the right cat, by the way i work at a cat rescue and this is what i tell people who come to look at the older cats

nomadwantshome Tue 12-Feb-13 17:05:44

Thanks issy thats good advice. You're right we don't want to rush it!

aww we adopted one with a bit missing - she's got no tail, just a little furry stump. She's got rubbish balance but otherwise is brilliant

she was friendly when we met her and was described as 'boisterous' in her notes and 'no children because she's a loon

we just fell in love with her and were so pleased to get her out of her cage and take her home forever grin

lorisparkle Tue 12-Feb-13 17:25:10

we used to be regulars at the local rspca cat rescue place and they had completed all the checks. once two cats arrived that were suited to us we had a phone call and that was that! beautiful cats but needed a bit of time and love to settle.

ProphetOfDoom Tue 12-Feb-13 17:32:55

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Lonecatwithkitten Tue 12-Feb-13 22:16:08

'Disabled' cats often get adopted fairly quickly it is the bog standard black cats or the ones with Diabetes (really easy to give injections) that get left behind.

The ones that really get left for months and months are the shy/timid ones. And they normally only need a few weeks in a proper home for them to come round. It's such a shame

Maryz Tue 12-Feb-13 23:38:57

I have always taken black and white rescues - we have been through 5 in the last 15 years (still have two of them) and all have had great characters.

I would go to the rescue, and if they have a bit communal cat cage ask can you go into it and sit down for a few minutes. Any cat that comes to climb on/attack/investigate you is probably a good bet. I think if you have children, you have to take a brave cat.

Would you consider two, by the way? Often two need rehoming together, and there is nothing better than seeing two snuggled up on a sofa, wrapped around each other.

Agree that two is usually a good idea Maryz. (and good to see you over here - it's all getting a bit out of hand on that other thread - i'm sticking to the litter tray nowsmile )

Maryz Tue 12-Feb-13 23:57:31

I usually avoid the pet topics; they are too confrontational for me grin. I'm branching out tonight!

lol

Lovethesea Sun 17-Feb-13 16:37:15

We took our kids with us to the rescue to see the cat's reaction! One was 3 and the other nearly 2 at the time. Saw a few nervous cats but then one seemed very friendly. Took the kids into the pen with it, it was bombproof. DS (nearly 2) dropped the litter tray, tried to feed him litter pellets, climbed all round him, poked him gently in the eye ('Eye!' 'Ear') and the cat's only reaction was calm interest. I picked him up and stroked him, DD cuddled him. Totally calm.

We knew we had found our cat. He's amazing with the kids, we love him!

Black cats are apparently the colour least likely to be adopted, so always a black friendly one for me.

Lovethesea Sun 17-Feb-13 21:18:30

Oh and I had said not a long haired one, so we had overlooked our cat initially. But then the staff said to meet him as he seemed very child friendly, he'd only been there 3 weeks so they really knew their stuff.

Ironically he sheds less than the short haired ones I used to have, really soft long hair. No idea why but almost no grooming needed at all either.

QueenStromba Mon 18-Feb-13 16:49:59

How long are the ones who hide away in their pens but are described as affectionate once they get to know you likely to take to come around? We'd like to pick one that most people would overlook but don't want a cat that's going to hide behind the sofa for six months.

QueenStromba Mon 18-Feb-13 16:58:38

Unfortunately I think you're right about the black cats Toughasoldboots. When we went to Cattersea on Saturday I overheard a woman tell her children not to fall in love with a black and white cat. She was really playful and straight up to the glass to greet people but the mum vetoed because of her colouring. Can anyone explain what the problem is? I have a soft spot for tabbies and white cats because of cats I've known in the past but I'm not going to pick a cat based on that.

I would say the shy but basically friendly ones take about two weeks to come round on average. But I've had some that have been terrible in the pen, really cowering and hissy, but within about half an hour of being in my house they're all purry and happy.

CMOTDibbler Mon 18-Feb-13 18:42:05

We've got three rescue cats, and our local CPL are very happy for you to just go into the pens and visit with the cats to see what you think.
Our black and white one had been with them for 11 months, bless her - she came over as very shy in the pens, but really came out of herself after a week.

Springsister Tue 19-Feb-13 17:51:00

Queenstromba we got our 2nd back rescue cat recently. When I told friends teenagers they were surprised as they consider them unlucky.

QueenStromba Tue 19-Feb-13 18:43:41

I can't believe people still think like that!

nomadwantshome Tue 19-Feb-13 21:13:32

Oooo I see the thread has burst in to life again. Thanks for all the tips.

Well we registered with a couple of rescue centres in the area and we've just had a home visit. The centre doesn't have pens but their cats are fostered, so we will go and see a pussibilty tomorrow.

The first question was 'what are you looking for' to which my ds 6 piped up 'a black and white cat' hmm I then said an older cat that's a bit laid back and ok with kids. She showed me a cat called Jooster - I think I'm in love already! He is black and white - does my ds have ESP? and dh said 'oh it looks like Cosmo.' (our other cat, no longer with us) Apparently he is a real character. I'm all excited now but a bit nervous. Ds is a real live wire (border line ADHD) and the woman at home visit mentioned his 'energy' hmm I know the cat will be wary in any case but how do you work out wariness with incompatibility? He sounds perfect. Btw they don't know what he's like with kids as he was a stray so don't know his history - but he is very laid back.

So broody now........

SizzleSazz Tue 19-Feb-13 21:18:31

We have a black & white rescue cat - she looks like she should be on the Felix packets.

She chose us when we walked into her pen (with a 4 and 2 yr old) and she wrapped round our legs and let the kids pet her. She will swipe if she is being prodded/picked up by children etc, but only a warning shot. Kids have learnt to be nice to her grin

Hope Jooster is your cat smile

MrsBeep Wed 20-Feb-13 17:24:55

About 6 years ago now we took in our lovely Benji. She spent the first week hiding behind the sofa under the radiator and only came out at night to eat and poop when we were in bed (or out of the house). Now she is the most loving animal I've ever owned. We have trained her using reward techniques to be picked up, stroked and finally in the past 4 years she has been turning into a lap cat. (Took her 3 years to do that!).

It can be so rewarding seeing a little animals' life turned around for the better. She had been abused in her last home and by boys where she used to live, so she's still a bit wary of men and their voices, but once she gets to know you she loves nothing better than to play and get stroked. Her favourite activity is running up and down the stairs chasing balls and playing tennis with us!

MrsBeep Wed 20-Feb-13 17:27:39

OP...have you visited the pussy cat yet?

Fuzzymum1 Mon 25-Feb-13 15:31:10

We deliberately chose a black cat when we got our first. I was broaching the idea of having cat with DH and he wasn’t 100% sure, then one day said “If we’re having a cat, we’re having a black one” so that’s what we got. He used to play with our neighbours’ cat and when they moved away he pined for her so we went to the local rescue to pick him a friend. The available cats were fostered with a lady and we went into the room so see them. I fell for a little black and white girl but while I was looking at her a tiny tabby kitten climbed into my handbag and looked at me as if to say “I’m ready to come and live with you” so that’s how we chose her. Both of them have now passed away and are greatly missed. Our other cats have come from various places and we currently have seven of them, Personality has always won out over colour for me though I have to say one of them was chosen purely because of his amazing ginger tabby coat.

nomadwantshome Tue 26-Feb-13 20:52:03

Update: we went to view said cat. He was amazingly laid back especially with my overactive 6 yo...well to a point. We had a family vote 3:1. Dh thought he was fat and ugly! How dare he! Anyway he bowed to public pressure and said 'don't blame me when he gets stuck in the cat flap' harrumph. Anyway, we picked him up on Sunday. He's been amazing! He didn't stay put in one room for very long. He's pretty familiar with upstairs already and will let ds stroke him....but is still wary!

The first night he meowed all night, like having a baby in the house again. At about 2am I went to see him and he was all over me for cuddles, bless! Second night he started meowing as soon as we went to bed. I said to dh maybe he needs the light on! And then he was fine....a cat scared of the dark?? But he has been naughty and ventured down stairs to raid the scrap food caddy. Here was pork fat all over the kitchen counter....

Adversecamber Tue 26-Feb-13 20:58:11

How lovely!

Our rescue cat cried like a baby the first few nights, she now sleeps on the end of DS bed and is very happy.

Whoever had her could not afford to keep her so she was very loved in her previous home. I always feel a bit sad when I think of her previous owner.

How old is he?

nomadwantshome Tue 26-Feb-13 21:11:11

He's about 2 yo. He has the most fantabulous white chest. He is very cuddly already. He's got something missing from the end of his tail but he was a stray so we don't know what that was. I think that he will be very comfortable in a few weeks. He's been downstairs this evening and dh has given him some spare salmon! hmm

That's lovely. Photos and regular updates pleasesmile

nomadwantshome Tue 26-Feb-13 21:47:58

Not sure how to do to photos but will have a bash.

Fluffycloudland77 Tue 26-Feb-13 22:17:29

That's lovely op, my dh always saves titbits for our cat. They try to make out their not smitten but actions speak louder than words.

QueenStromba Wed 27-Feb-13 09:59:16

How to upload photos:

1. Click on "MyMumsnet" in the blue bar at the top of any Mumsnet page

2. Click on "My photos" then "Start a gallery"

3. Click on "Choose file" then find the photo on your computer

4. Make sure you have selected "No" under "Keep this picture private"

5. Click "Send file"

6. It might come up with a screen saying it has had to resize the picture - just click "Store" if this happens

7. Add in a description of the picture if you like and make sure you have selected "visible to any mumsnetter" under "visibility" then click "save"

8. Your profile is private at the moment so go to "My profile" under "MyMumsnet" then scroll down to the bottom and under "Should we make your page visible to other Mumsnetters?" select "yes - make it visible to all Mumsnetters"

QueenStromba Wed 27-Feb-13 10:00:59

Woohoo! That's about the fourth time I've typed all of that out but every other time it's been in Chat so has disappeared (strangely it's always been so someone can upload cat pictures).

I'm glad you've got your cat and he's settling in well smile

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