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Neighbours stealing other neighbours cats!!!

(31 Posts)
A1Mum Mon 08-Jun-15 14:35:13

Okay, that may be a bit dramatic. I am usually a pretty laid back, easy going person and in general I get on with most people. However...

I moved into a new house late year. I had high hopes of getting to know the neighbours and form new friendships which has happened but not with my direct neighbour because I have a bee in my bonnet.

AIBU: to not want to get to know my neighbour better when I know she actively encourages and takes in the two cats who belong to the neighbour a few doors down. They meow rather loudly to get in daily and do go in every night. I can see them lying on the counter through the window. I just happened to see a tail wagging in the window one day that caught my attention. I actually thought they were their cats until I was speaking with the owners and one of their cats walked by and I said it was my neighbours cat. She looked a bit surprised and said, "no, they are my cats and I have two but they have stopped coming home, I think someone else is feeding them".

The thing is it's really non of my business I know but if they were my cats I would want to know where they are. Who is taking the correct care of them if someone has unofficially adopted them. I doubt very much if they are being wormed and flea'd if they don't own them. One of them looks particularly skinny now.

What would you do?

TwerkingSpinster Mon 08-Jun-15 14:40:13

Honestly, I'd feign total ignorance to the whole thing. If asked about missing cats, you are clueless. If asked about owners of stolen cats, who knows!!
Getting even slightly involved, even on the most trivial level.....makes YOU the go-between.

avocadotoast Mon 08-Jun-15 14:47:05

I hate it when people do this. Happened to my SIL; she had to go have stern words with the woman who kept encouraging her cat to come in for a feed.

Honestly though I'd stay out of it. You surely don't need the drama.

nocutsnobuttsnococonuts Mon 08-Jun-15 14:49:57

if my cat wasn't coming home due to being fed elsewhere I would want to know who was feeding them so I could speak to them. did the owners seem worried or ask u which neighbour the cats were going to?

Straycatblue Mon 08-Jun-15 15:00:30

AIBU: to not want to get to know my neighbour better when I know she actively encourages and takes in the two cats who belong to the neighbour a few doors down.

Im not sure the op is not actually asking what to do about one neighbour feeding the others cats situation she is asking if she would be unreasonable to not be friendly with the cat feeding neighbour as she disapproves of her behaviour

To be honest it sounds like you have judged her already without bothering to ask her for her side of the story so I imagine you not wanting to get to know her any better is not a loss to her.

Oobis Mon 08-Jun-15 15:12:21

Here is an animal behaviour book specifically about this type of situation

In all I think it's best not to get involved in other people's problems unless directly asked about it. Not your problem. I hope your new home is otherwise a happy place for you.

TheCunnyFunt Mon 08-Jun-15 15:26:31

This is a good thread to read.

Moomintroll85 Mon 08-Jun-15 15:47:19

I hate it when people do this and if someone did it to my cat he could get really ill as he is on a prescription diet and very nearly died when he was little.

I appreciate the point already made about avoiding getting involved but I personally would probably spill the beans to the rightful owner as I really don't think it's on and would hope someone would do the same for me if my cat was 'missing'.

Why doesn't she get her own effing cat.

123Jump Mon 08-Jun-15 15:51:31

I guess it depends on the situation. I hunk half the road feeds my cat. He has to go on a diet when I get back from a holiday. He is completely spoiled, particularly by our NDN. They keep his favourite 'snacks' ( I don't even know what theses are as he has never had any snacks?!), worship the ground he stalks on,and when he isn't in with us I know he is in with them.
He doesn't come in much in the evenings any more,but he drives me mad mashing me with his claws,I think they are more tolerant so he goes to them in the evenings.grin
However, we have a flap and he can come and go as he likes.
I do think cats sometimes pick their owners,do they want to come home?

A1Mum Mon 08-Jun-15 16:04:56

I knew posting this would get various responses based partly on if you're a cat owner or not. I'm sure this factor will prompt different emotions.

nocutsnobuttsnococonuts Yes she did seem concerned that her cats were not coming home. I didn't say anything conclusively but I did say I thought they were my neighbours cats; maybe they just looked similar.

Straycatblue Thank you for your input. The neighbour is otherwise lovely. And when we have spoken we do gel. I think we could otherwise become friends... However I don't take kindly to what is in my opinion could be classed as stealing. Yes I asked "what would you do?" Yes this was a bit vague but I did mean wwyd about the worried cat owner and the cats being active encouraged to stay with the adopting neighbour.

Oobis Thank you for the information, very informative. I am not inclined to get involved but people who own pets who have small children have an emotional attachment to them so I don't know what is best. It does not help that both cats use my garden as a toilet as there is no earth in the neighbours garden.;-(

TheCunnyFunt Thank you for the link, I will read it when I get a chance.

Moomintroll85 This was one of my initial concerns. How does the person now feeding the cats know their background and if they have any medical conditions that require special care. As I said, one of the cats is starting to look a bit manky of late, it was a lovely cat when I moved in.


BettyCatKitten Mon 08-Jun-15 16:30:15

I love catgate thread!
As a cat lover myself, this type of bonkers behaviour pisses me off. One of my cats goes into a neighbours but at least comes home every night.

Yarp Mon 08-Jun-15 16:42:12

My MIL does this. She once lured kittens in. It's most odd - she collects them - strong desire to nurture. She does it in a rural part of another country, so her excuse is that the cats aren't being treated well - they are, but they are more outdoor or farm cats.

Makes my blood boil, as it happened to us when I was a child. I would only get female cats now, as I think males tend to wander further and get lured easier

LaLyra Mon 08-Jun-15 17:54:12

I hate people who do this. One of mine has a special diet and almost had to be a housecat (which he'd hate) because one selfish cow who said "but he eats the food when I give him it, he must be hungry..." when having it explained for the umpteenth time that she was killing him. Poor sod had been through a battery of tests to see what had changed/developed when he suddenly stopped eating as well. It's so selfish and rude.

tutorproof Mon 08-Jun-15 17:59:31

My FIL has done this. To the point where the cat now gets shut in the house and he has to go home to 'let it out'

I have made my disapproval known, especially as we have cats & DC would be heartbroken.

ReginaBlitz Mon 08-Jun-15 22:38:19

My neighbour has done this. This random evil cat started hanging around my house because of my cat. Despite me and another neighbour telling her exactly whose cat it was, she took it upon herself to feed and take it in.
She took the cat to the vets God knows what for as it's perfectly healthy! The cat is vile it rips other cats to shreds, comes through my cat flap setting the dog off at stupid o clock on a night.
I just don't get why someone would do that.

HellRunner Mon 08-Jun-15 22:49:20

wish someone would take mine! whilst I love him, care , feed etc for him I never wanted another cat and inherited this one. I chose not to have another cat deliberately and then ended up like this,

AyMamita Mon 08-Jun-15 23:07:00

Tell her! You would want to know. You don't want to be friends with the mad cat-stealing neighbour anyway.

WoonerismSpit Tue 09-Jun-15 01:28:59

Oobis bit of a stretch to call it an 'animal behaviour' book. It's a children's picture book!

Oobis Tue 09-Jun-15 12:33:40

WoonerismSpit - it's one of my favourites! In all seriousness, in my experience, cats are not like dogs and will often choose where they want to live which can indeed, be more than one place. They're not loyal creatures by any stretch. I would struggle to term it 'theft', however I have only had moggies in my life, not expensive breeds and I have also not had a cat with a particular diet which must be adhered to. I also have a very unfriendly cat at the moment and if she chose to move out, that would be fine. If I still had a friendly and loving feline in my life, I might feel more emotionally attached!
All the best with your neighbour OP. Mostly people do things out of good intentions rather than malice, so hopefully you will manage a friendship. If it still concerns you, you will know how to make your feelings known in due course!

luckygirl322 Tue 09-Jun-15 14:15:46

If it's your cat, keep it out of my garden. We have inherited a neighbor's cat-it hangs out all day in our garden (comes in over the gate or the privacy fence).

In fact-she's out there now. She's not allowed in the house and never will be, but she's in my garden, and she's friendly-so I pet her when I'm outside. Obviously, she prefers it here rather than wherever she actually lives.

QueenOfTheAlley Tue 09-Jun-15 14:20:44

Miaow - if slaves don't give them what they want can you really blame them for going elsewhere???

When will you slaves humans realise that just because we liked chicken last week doesn't mean we like it this week and that tuna tastes better at the neighbour's house even though it came out of an identical tin.

CloserToFiftyThanTwenty Tue 09-Jun-15 14:23:04

I wouldn't go knocking on the owner's door to tell them, but if you were chatting anyway about her concerns that her cats were being fed elsewhere isn't it disingenuous not to mention that you see them in your NDN's house? confused

A1Mum Tue 09-Jun-15 19:56:33

I think I may try and find a tactful way of slipping into the chit chat "your cats look very much like the neighbour s, two doors down - I can't tell them apart"? Or something along those lines. I don't want to offend anyone but as you say, if it was a cat of mine I would want to know.
Thank you all for your input. Much appreciated. :-)

corgiology Tue 09-Jun-15 20:01:58

Or you could take responsibility for your animal?

Let it out on a lead (yes, it can be done) or cat proof your garden so it can't get out.

Cat owners hate people interfering with their pets but let their pets go and do whatever they want to others! Can't have it both ways.

taxi4ballet Tue 09-Jun-15 20:22:29

We once had a cat who would go missing and reappear not hungry. Eventually we attached a tag to her collar (in very tiny writing!) with our address and phone number to ask that the neighbour contact us.

She very kindly did, and we had a chat, she said the cat was constantly pestering them, and would spend all her time there if they let her. The neighbour said she wouldn't feed the cat any more. But - the cat had other ideas and for months she kept on going to their house.

Eventually we all gave in and decided that since the cat had obviously chosen the humans she wanted to live with, that she would become their cat instead of ours.

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