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about the neighbour's cat?

(47 Posts)
Theala Fri 30-Sep-11 19:58:25

A new neighbour moved into our building recently. We live in an old house that has been converted to flats, with one flat on each floor. We live on the first floor, NN lives on the 3rd. She is the only one in our building with a pet.

So, NN has a cat. She lets the cat out most days so it can run up and down the communal staircase. The first few days after she moved, the cat pissed all over the staircase to mark its territory. On the third day, DH asked her to clean it up, as it was stinking everywhere. She replied that she had noticed the smell, but thought it couldn't be her cat, as her cat only ever does its business in its litter tray. hmm

A fortnight later, she knocked on our door and accused DH of letting the cat out onto the street, as it had been found wandering outside. Except Dh had left for work at five that morning, and she hadn't let the cat out until eight. And I definitely didn't let it out. Anyway.

A few weeks after that, the cat had an accident (diarrhea) behind the main entrance door, and I went up to hers to let her know. I thought I was being quite nice and friendly about it, but she seemed to take it badly because she glared at me and said "And you want me to clean it up, do you?" I was like "well...hmm...yes".

So, to today. This morning DH was transporting stuff up and down the stairs. At one stage, the cat got into our flat and was apparently sat on our bed. Dh took him out, but as he did so, got the impression that the cat has fleas. (He used to work for an animal charity so knows what he's talkng about.) He sent me a text after saying we must talk to the neighbour about it.

This evening I came home and there was a note on my door "my cat is locked into your appartment". And lo, the cat was inside. I shooshed him back up the stairs to NN's flat, had a quick word with her to make sure the cat was ok (and chickened out of mentioning fleas) and came back down to inspect my place.

Luckily, the cat has not shit anywhere, but he did piss on my cream sofa. It's not the end of the world, I can clean it,'s not something that I want to have to worry about on a regular basis. And we regularly have our apartment door open, e.g., when we're bringing a big shopping up from downstairs, or DH is bringing his tools downstairs.

AIBU to ask NN to no longer let the cat out into the communal areas? Or should I just suck it up as part of communal living?

Theala Fri 30-Sep-11 19:59:03

That was a really long and boring post about a cat, sorry. blush

Andrewofgg Fri 30-Sep-11 20:00:01

No, she must keep it out of the communal areas. She must suck it up as part of communal living.

Kladdkaka Fri 30-Sep-11 20:01:45

You are not being unreasonable. As a cat owner, I wouldn't like it either.

welliesandpyjamas Fri 30-Sep-11 20:01:54

Are you/NN tenants or owners? Who owns the building? Who is responsible for the communal areas?

LittleMissFlustered Fri 30-Sep-11 20:03:49

I've got three mogs. If I wanted them in a flat, they'd be 'in' the flat. Escapes and mess would be dealt with ASAP. If mess was in another flat/communal area I'd be mortified, and on it with cleaning stuff as soon as i knew about it. There would probably be apology baking too.

Your new neighbour sounds like a complete and utter pain.

slavetofilofax Fri 30-Sep-11 20:05:37

I would be livid! How do the other neighbours feel about it? Can't you get together and force her into doing something?

Although if that's too much hassle, see if you can borrow a cat box from a friend, and take the thing to a shelter or something next time you are leaving the area. I really wouldn't hesitate to remove the cat if I was having to deal with this.

MangoMonster Fri 30-Sep-11 20:05:41

I don't think it's right to have a cat and let it run around a communal building. I have cats and I dread to think what they get up to when outside but haven't had any complaints from neighbours yet.

Vallhala Fri 30-Sep-11 20:05:52

Bloody hell YANBU!

That's horrible behaviour on the part of your neighbour. I own cats, love 'em and am lucky enough to have a house and garden but if I didn't they'd have to be house cats. The woman's taking the pee and if shes worried about the cat getting out into the street wtf is she doing letting him into the hallways whereby that might happen, silly moo? I wouldn't mind a visiting cat but I WOULD mind a peeing visiting cat with a twit of an owner.

Any decent person will TRY not to let him into the street, as you and DH have tried, but he isn;t your responsibility, he's hers and if he does get out and get hurt the blood will be on her hands.

I'd pull her up on it (an a rescue volunteer so like your DH would be concerned and mention the fleas too).

aldiwhore Fri 30-Sep-11 20:07:06

Agreed with pp... are cats allowed in the tennancy?

I love cats, and am a proud owner of a 'real' country cat who catches mice, and wanders wherever... BUT even though it was an inheritence from a neighbour, we take responsibility for fleas, worms etc., if it ever shat in a neighbour's back yard, we'd clean it up (though its impossible to tell round here, rural backwater, many animals who ignore boundaries).

Her cat, her apartment, her responsibility. She needs to sort out the fleas, I suppose you need to be aware of any cat coming into your apartment, but seeing as she's the only cat owner on the premises, she needs to clean up its mess.

Are you owners? If so gang up together and read her the (polite) riot act, if not, maybe you need to get in touch with the landlord?

Vallhala Fri 30-Sep-11 20:08:04

PS - what does the lease say about pet owning and soforth? Maybe remind her of her responsibilities. God knows I'm sure you don't want him to be sent to rescue any more than I do and wouldn't make a formal complaint but saying that you will if she doesn't keep him in might make her act with a little more consideration.

Theala Fri 30-Sep-11 20:09:06

wellies, I'm an owner, she's a renter, however we're all responsible for keeping the communal areas clean (to keep fees down, ; we could employ a cleaning company, but that would mean more fees for everyone obviously).

troisgarcons Fri 30-Sep-11 20:09:18

oh honestly - tell you are buying a a a a ummm pit bull that eats cats!

welliesandpyjamas Fri 30-Sep-11 20:10:42

I see. But who 'owns' the communal areas? Leaseholder? Freeholder?

helpmabob Fri 30-Sep-11 20:14:17

You know I was all ready to say yabu before I read your postbut you are not. The cat is either an outdoor cat with access to outside from the owner's property or an indoor cat. I don't understand why it would be running around communal areas. And if the cat is peeing in random places it suggests the cat is a bit upset as they tend to go in the same place. It is a difficult situation for you as she is being so uncooperative. Maybe you or your dp could try talking to her again and if that fails go to her landlord.

aldiwhore Fri 30-Sep-11 20:17:30

She's a tennant, speak to her and reason with her like an adult... if she doesn't listen, get in touch with her landlord.

HeidiKat Fri 30-Sep-11 20:18:13

As a short term solution you can get that stuff you put on a cat's neck to kill fleas in poundland, that would at least stop it from infesting your flat if it gets in again. This woman is a complete idiot, when I lived in a block of flats my cat was kept inside the flat, never in the stairwell, send her the bill for having your couch cleaned and maybe that will make her think twice in future about letting it outside her flat.

Theala Fri 30-Sep-11 20:18:43

The lease doesn't mention pet owning, but it was drawn up in the fifties, when perhaps people didn't have pets so much. It's a very old house. confused No one actually owns the communal areas; they're divided between the three of us who are owners (me, the people on the second floor, and the man who owns and rents out the third and fourth floors).

God, i'm going to have to have a talk with her, aren't I? Oh, cringe.

aldiwhore Fri 30-Sep-11 20:23:54

You are, and should in the first instance... but then you need to talk to HER landlord the owner of floor 3/4.

Its a health and safety issue after all... catshitslippeddisc due to slipping on the stairs is not nice.

Vallhala Fri 30-Sep-11 20:25:45

Maybe ask DH to speak to her as a former animal charity employee, to tell her that as the cat is peeing indiscriminately it sounds like mog is distressed? Make it sound like pure concern for the mog, that he'd be happier and safer indoors etc?

Theala Fri 30-Sep-11 20:34:40

NOoo, Dh is Polish and is a very lovely and gentle man but has a quite scary accent that makes people afraid of him. grin It's going to have to be me.

"Hello, we'd like to invite you chez nous so that we can scold about your sub-par animal husbandry. Feel free to invite us back!!!" FML

schroeder Fri 30-Sep-11 20:36:15

Yep speak to her, if no joy speak to the landlord. It should not be allowed in the communal area.

I really wouldn't treat someone else's pet for fleas-it may have health conditions or allergies that you know nothing about.

FabbyChic Fri 30-Sep-11 20:40:24

Id contact the landlord of her flat if she does not keep the cat in.

It's unhygienic and not fair on the other people in the building.

purpleknittingmum Fri 30-Sep-11 20:46:10

That is not on at all! We rent and have a ground floor flat and our cat is a house/indoor cat. VERY occasionally he has nipped out in the communal area when we have come in with shopping, I think in the year we have been here it has happened about 4 times. He doesn't get far and hoiked up and back in!

The other day we discovered some cat sick outside the back door to our entrance and I bet some people will think it is our cat!

monkeypuzzeltree Fri 30-Sep-11 21:10:53

You have been more than reasonable - if that was my sofa I'd have gone nuclear by now. As everyone says, you keep your cat in your own house and just because she wants to live with a cat doesn't mean everyone else wants to too (and I say that as a former cat owner, I like them, but don't expect everyone to).

Be quite clear when you speak to her - cat is not welcome in communal area - it belongs to everyone and its not fair. Nip it in the bud!

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