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To take in neighbours cat

(27 Posts)
tigermama1 Wed 04-Nov-15 15:53:16

I've lived in my house for 7 years and have watched neighbours move in and out. About 6 months ago a young couple moved into the house round the corner whose garden comes onto the back of mine. They have loud parties almost every weekend which the police have been called to a few times and smoke dope in their garden quite a lot and the smell travels in through my open windows.

I leave my back door open quite often as my cat goes in and out and a young cat (just under a year old looking) came wondering in one day searching for food and started drinking from my cat's water bowl. I have refrained from feeding this young cat but she keeps coming back, especially late at night when it's cold. She has a tag on her collar and she belongs to the young couple round the corner. She doesn't look very well cared for, is always dehydrated, has fleas, scabby skin and is very skinny.

I have been resisting the urge to go round and say something to them as not sure how they will react. I'm concerned for this poor kitty's welfare as they seem like the type of people that would put spending money on booze and drugs before feeding their cat. Should I offer to have her if they can't afford to keep her or get the RSPCA involved as she looks like she is deteriorating slowly

Seeyounearertime Wed 04-Nov-15 16:05:39

I'm a bit animal centric so I'd disregard this advice.

I'd get the cat, remove the collar, feed and water and take to local shelter and claim you found her in the road.

OnlyLovers Wed 04-Nov-15 16:05:49

Poor cat and good for you!

I'd say try the RSPCA, but I must be clear that I don't have any experience with them and don't have cats. Maybe someone else will come along with some good advice if this thread is a bit more active.

Part of me would also like to say just start feeding the cat; before long it will 'belong' to you. wink But that's not very ethical...

CatThiefKeith Wed 04-Nov-15 16:08:20

What? No, of course you can't steal their cat! And most shelters are full to oveflowing so I doubt you would have much luck there tbh

The cat could, for all you know, have a health condition that is being treated. (Diabetes springs to mind as an immediate possibility) And most cats get fleas from time to time.

You can't assume that because they smoke dope and like loud music they wouldn't get their cat to the vets if it needed it.

What you could do, if you are genuinely concerned, is speak to them, nicely, and ask if the cat is ok as it has been crying at your door at night. Tread carefully though, as the owner of a small black 3 legged skinny cat there is nothing more likely to make me see red than some well meaning soul suggesting I don't feed him/look after him properly!

OnlyLovers Wed 04-Nov-15 16:15:00

All right, Keith, keep your hair on! I wasn't being massively serious with my suggestion; I thought I got that across. Clearly not.

tigermama1 Wed 04-Nov-15 16:25:38

I don't want to steal their cat, even though she is a cute lovely little thing. I would hate it if someone took my cat in and claimed her as their own. I'm just extremely concerned for her health, she's been coming round for a month and is gradually getting worse. I can't stand to see an animal be badly treated and it appears she is rarely ever home, she is always here searching desperately for a source of food and water

Writerwannabe83 Wed 04-Nov-15 16:29:43

I would steal the cat grin

I once found a really thin cat, fleas, scabby ears etc sitting at the bottom of my garden and although he had a collar on (with no identifying information) he looked poorly and homeless. I took him to the vets to get microchipped but there was no chip.

I took him back with me, took his collar off as it was so tight it was rubbing away his fur and gave him some food and water.

A few days later he reappeared with a new collar on so I knew he must belong to someone. I put another collar one (to get the owners attention) and attached a message asking them to call me.

A few hours later the owner phoned me, they lived on the same street. As we got talking I felt pretty incensed actually that they didn't care what state the cat was in. They also told me the cat isn't allowed inside the house because it upsets the dog sad

The cat continued to visit and I fed him. Because it was winter and freezing I bought him a kennel with fleece blankets and put it in our garden so he had somewhere warm to go seeing as his owners didn't let him in.

As the months passed I took on more responsibility for the cat, I even took him to the vets and paid for his appointment and treatment when he had a nasty abscess under his eye. I had previously mentioned this to his owners who had proceeded to do nothing about it.

I would text the owners frequently to let them know the cat was at mine or it was unwell etc and they didn't care.

One day I thought "fu*k it" and I let the cat into the house where he made himself quite at home. A few days later I took him to the vets and had him microchipped with my details.

The cat practically never left and I never text his owners again. Not surprisingly they never text me to see if he was with me seeing as they wouldn't have seen him for days.

I feel absolutely no guilt whatsoever.

Animals need kindness and if you think the cat is being neglected or mistreated then absolutely show it some love.

There may be some very much loved cats out there with medical reasons for looking scrawny, dirty and having fleas hmm but the likelihood is more that they have owners who just don't care about it.

MarkingMyPlace9 Wed 04-Nov-15 16:32:25

Can I just say aswell, just because She seems to be looking for Food and Water at yours, doesn't mean She's not being Fed at Home. I let my 3 Cats out each Morning and the first thing they all do is run to the Outside Water Barrel and Drink like they havn't Drunk for Days!! They have a fresh clean Water Fountain inside!! One of them also goes next Door a lot (Luckily were friendly with them and they know what He's like) Looking for Food, again, He has a constant supply of Dry Food here, and Wet Food given to them of an Evening.
Try talking to the couple.
I used to have Parties and play loud Music when I was younger - didn't mean I wasn't approachable wink

Fratelli Wed 04-Nov-15 16:53:26

All cats look for food and water. We've had a few well looked after cats (we know the owners) come in our back door and eat and drink from the cat bowls. Many cats have multiple homes.

You could try talking to the owners and maybe suggest a good vet? If you contact the rspca they usually require evidence.

AliceInUnderpants Wed 04-Nov-15 17:30:31

Last year our cat appeared on a local FB page, a neighbour in our street had taken her in and thought she was homeless or neglected as she was so skinny and hungry.
No, she was dying. Her kidneys were failing, and this is how it presents at the stage she was at. She'd only been out for a half hour!!

MistressMia Thu 05-Nov-15 00:16:18

Feed it & give it some flea treatment.

Do this regularly & see what happens over the next few weeks. If its condition improves, clearly it is being neglected, in which case take it in.

GrizzlebertGrumbledink Thu 05-Nov-15 00:19:48

Mine does an excellent starving impression even if I know she's just been fed. Keep on judging their lifestyle but don't steal their pet. If you're so worried why don't you talk to them?

ValiantMouse Thu 05-Nov-15 00:38:53

The RSPCA will do fuck all unless they can make money from it. CPL will be more likely to give you some good advice. I'd speak to the neighbours and mention that the cat keeps coming to your house. Feel them out- they might be willing to hand him/her over to you!

Pipestheghost Thu 05-Nov-15 00:46:18

Op, see if you can have this moved to 'the litter tray' where lots of seasoned cat folk can advise you smile

munkisocks Thu 05-Nov-15 00:50:56

I'd feed her, remove the collar and put your own collar on her. Calling rspca does fuck all, believe me we've tried!! They never come out. You could always go round with the cat without the collar and ask if it's theirs lol. If they seem uncaring bloody keep her!

We have a cat near us that seems homeless. He comes in our cat flap with our cats and sleeps on door mat when weather gets bad. I usually lock dog away so he can come in but I haven't seen him since winter and I am a bit worried about him.

MistressMia Thu 05-Nov-15 00:55:06

The cat is visibly deteriorating. Yes it could be ill, but this is a young cat so not likely to have some chronic terminal illness.

Just feed it & treat it rather than let it slowly starve. Neighbours may /may not be irresponsible owners. If it improves you'll have your answer.

I'd err on the side of caution and do what is best for the cat first and not let it suffer further while procrastinating about talking / not talking to neighbours.

LeftMyRidingCropInTheMortuary Thu 05-Nov-15 01:23:17

Good for you, OP, doing something about this.
Ironic that CatThiefKeith says not to steal the cat!!
Taking it to a shelter pretending you found it won't work if it's already microchipped with other Wayne & Waynetta's owners' details.

Skinny cat doesn't = bad owners but skinny cat + fleas = bad owners.
And you can just tell if it's neglected by the way it acts in itself ifyswim.
Chat to them and try and ascertain if they give a toss. If not, steal it for yourself/rehome it yourself.

Yambabe Thu 05-Nov-15 01:55:07

Another vote for talk to them.

I have a cat with a really nasty skin condition. He looks awful, and has been under the vet (fortnightly visits) for over a year - we have only just found a combination of meds which is starting to clear it up.

My cat-loving neighbours know me, know my cat and know the situation. Despite this I have had 3 visits from the RSPCA since his skin became visibly bad due to anonymous reports. Total waste of their time and mine.

Maybe the young couple are new to cat-owning and need a few pointers to help them care for her better? Worst case you might get invited to a good party..... wink

KatharineClifton Thu 05-Nov-15 02:09:53

You know what you need to do, a cat needs flea treatment, food, water and comfort. You can give it.

Senpai Thu 05-Nov-15 02:24:07

Animals (and children!) are excellent at creating theatrics about how hungry they are 5 minutes after they eat.

I'd honestly go talk to the owners. The cat could have a medical condition.

If they're smoking dope, they'll probably be chill. or paranoid you're out to steal their cat hard to call.

Mermaidhair Thu 05-Nov-15 02:31:09

Tigermama , you know what the cat is like. Please feed and water it if you can and see if the condition improves. I would also flea treat it. If I saw a cat like that I would do the same and then decide later what to do.

hebihebi Thu 05-Nov-15 04:23:51

My cat ended up practically obese from all the dinners it was eating at our various neighbors houses. I had to keep him in until he lost a bit of the weight. He has breakfast at home then shoots straight off to the elderly lady across the roads house for seconds. He also sleeps in her shed. He really does a good job of making me look like a bad owner. I'm not, I swear! He's just, he's a cat.

I agree with the sensible people who have told you to pop round for a chat with the owners.

MistressMia Thu 05-Nov-15 08:06:41

Big difference between feeding an obviously well fed cat and one that's skinny and losing more weight.

Sometimes the sensible thing to do is not a one size fits all standard response of 'could be ill'. It could also be neglected and starved.

Go & talk to them by all means but in the interim just give it a meal as soon you next see it.

LittleLionMansMummy Thu 05-Nov-15 08:32:38

Someone called the RSPCA to our house. We have 3 cats, one of them has long fur and looks skinny despite eating 3-4 bowls of food per day. She's always felt bony compared to her sister, and every summer needs a shave when she's spending a lot of time outdoors as she doesn't tolerate brushing well and ends up with matted fur. She's well cared for, regularly vaccinated, wormed and de-fleaed and has maintained the same the same weight since adulthood. It was extremely distressing to have the RSPCA turn up one day due to an anonymous report and it upset us very much. We would have much preferred the person to have knocked on our door and spoken to us so we could have reassured them. I would suggest speaking to your neighbours and explaining that the cat is frequently at yours and asking if it is OK health wise. Explain that it seems hungry but you don't want to start feeding it. If it continues when you've spoken with them, I'd call the RSPCA.

whois Thu 05-Nov-15 08:39:10

Turns out both of my cats used to go next door and across street and go in and eat their cat food. My cats were very well fed and slightly on the podgy side but always claimed to be starving if they thought there was a chance of food!

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