AIBU to think my ex- lodger has stolen my cat??(119 Posts)
I know it sounds insane but I really think he might have done. Please bear with me, it's a long story, but I need to explain all the details for you to get the full picture.
He moved in with me, my 2 kids, and my cat, 3 months ago, he was a friend of a friend, about 28, and seemed nice and normal. He soon grew very fond of our cat and was always saying how much he loved her and was often skypeing his sister overseas to show her off....
However after a month or so it emerged that he was a stoner - and although he obviously
wasn't smoking it in the house, his room smelt of weed. He was also doing dopey things like leaving the back door wide open and going out. I gave him a couple of warnings to sort it out but after a couple of weeks nothing had changed.
I then saw 2 weekends ago that he had spilt a load of red wine on the beige carpet in his room and just dumped a pile of cat litter on it, and also that he was using one of my daughter's storage boxes full of her schoolwork, which he had taken from the living room, as a bedside table. This was the last straw so I told him I needed to leave.
His response (via text) was that "it was just a disused box" and that he didn't see why it was a problem. Not sorry, and no explanation of the wine stain, so I told him he was being really disrespectful and gave him 2 weeks notice.
That night he came home while we were all in bed. I heard him come in then fell asleep. My daughter woke me up minutes later to say that weed smoke was coming in through her bedroom window. He was sitting outside his bedroom, on the flat roof above the kitchen, smoking a joint!!
I was furious and told him to leave ASAP. He apologised for that, but also said the same thing again about the box, and that he felt I was getting at him constantly and being unfairly demanding.
This was 2 weeks ago. I have been working away a lot and my kids have been with their dad 3/4 days a week so we haven't seen him since the night of the confrontation , but I could see he had been gradually moving his stuff out and staying elsewhere.
Cut to last night - I was in London and he texted me to say he had moved the last of his stuff out - was leaving the key - and did I know where the cat was. He asked if it was 'with the girls' which I thought was strange because if the kids are not at mine, they obviously don't take the cat with them.
I said not to worry, that she had probably had a wander and that I would be back soon.
He said that if I would be home soon he would wait to say goodbye, which I again thought was a little odd as he had been avoiding me for the last fortnight . I didn't get back to him and he texted to say he was leaving 20 minutes or so later.
I came back from work this evening - no cat.
My daughters last saw her yesterday at 4.30 pm, she had been in the house with them all day and they had fed her and then gone to their dad's.
I have asked all the neighbours - nothing - it's totally uncharacteristic of her to vanish like this. I texted the lodger to ask when he saw her and he kept saying the back gate was open (it was, it's broken but has been for a few weeks) and that he had been trying to tell me that he was concerned. Also that he had spent an hour looking around the house for her and that he would come by after work tomorrow and help look for her.
My daughter then said a couple of hours ago " What if xxxx took her?" My head has been in a spin ever since.
Has he been spinning a big lie, making out the cat was already missing last night and checking to see when I would be home, then nabbing the cat because he became really attached to it / is a bit unhinged / wants to get back at me - or is that just nuts?
It almost doesn't seem possible to me that he would have taken it, but at the same time, it is almost too much of a coincidence that the cat disappears the night that the lodger, who seems to feel he's been wronged by me, and is capable of both taking our stuff ( the box) and erratic behaviour ( the smoking on the roof) moves out.
I don't have a forwarding address for him and don't want him to know I am suspicious of him, so don't know what to do next. Phone the police?? Or is that totally crazy and am I just being paranoid?
Thanks for listening
I have no idea what you can do but I do t think you sound crazy or paranoid. Is your friend closer to you or him? Can they help you out quietly without letting him know you suspect him?
I think its a pretty big stretch using a box in the house as a bedside table to stealing your cat!
I know it sounds crazy, I hope I'm wrong and she'll just saunter in tomorrow, I think it's just that the whole thing with him was kind of unsettling and unpredictable and he's pretty off-key, so I'm not sure what he's capable of.
His friend is off travelling the world now so no use in helping out unfortunately. Thanks though.
That should be "don't think". I'm sure iPhone has some deliberate autocheck changes.
Well, people who are lying often over talk, and embellish things, in trying to appear innocent. I would not ask him, or call police, but I would search for the cat, stalk him on facebook for clues, and report her lost. Is she chipped? Hope the cat shows up, and this is just a weird coincidence.
The whole 'Do you know where the cat is?' bit makes me think you could be correct. It's like he's trying to pave the way to feign innocence.
Is it possible that he accidentally let the cat out the house and made up a story about the cat already being missing to cover his arse?
It is a bit strange isn't it, to ask where the cat is, then suggest it may be with my kids? It felt odd when I got the message last night, and feels odder now.
She is chipped yes, she kept pulling her collar off so doesn't have that on now.
If he has got her I'm pretty sure he'd be looking after her well, he's very fond of her, but I'm just feeling upset about it all, and know the kids will be distraught in the morning if she isn't back..... I've had an awful couple of months and this is just the icing on the bloody crapcake!
Keeping everything crossed that she strolls back through the cat flap tonight....
And Newman, thank you for clarifying, thought it seemed a little harsh!
Acrossthepond the cat comes and goes through the catflap so letting
It out into the back garden would be fine but if he did something daft with her or scared her she might have run off, it's true.....
Sounds fishy to me too. Over talking about a cat and leading you to the conclusion she's missing.
I would see if he does come round after work to help look for her.
Has she ever gone out for a long period of time before?
It does sound odd though. I really hope she turns up
Thanks all for your concern. I'll see if he turns up tomorrow - I feel like if he does I'm going to be like a detective, scrutinising his every move to see if he seems genuine!
She's only been going outside for the last 3 months or so and always comes in through the cat flap as soon as we're home, wanting food and strokes 😞. She once got stuck in the next door neighbour's garden but we found her really quickly. It's just the timing of it all that seems so odd.
Cats can get very unsettled when changes occur, and him moving his stuff out could easily have that effect on her. She has probably gone for a wander until the fuss dies down, and she'll be back soon.
You can ask him for a forwarding address for mail purposes, and then creep round there and search....
Yes that would make sense Memoires, but he really had only a couple of bin bag's worth of stuff here by last night, no furniture or anything so I can't imagine it would have been that unsettling.
I do have some mail of his here so I think it's reasonable to ask for a forwarding address and would be pretty fishy if he showed any reluctance in giving it wouldn't it?
Yes, get his new address, and then report your concerns at your local police station.
If he does have her, and is fond of her, sooner or later he'll take her to the vet, so perhaps you could email her photo and description to local vets along with the fact that she's chipped.
Woke up hoping this was a bad dream.....but the cat still isn't here and the kids are properly gutted. Really can't deal with this on top of being a single mum with a full time job and all the other shit that's going on. I know I've got a lot to be grateful for and its just a cat but she's OUR cat and I just want her home 😔
Cats are people too! She's part of your family.
Ask him for a forwarding address, for the post, if he doesn't give it, then I'd say you've got more weight to your suspicions.
Really hope your cat comes home today
She is Memoire! Never thought I would get so attached to a pet but it doesn't feel right without her here, especially with all this unpleasant circumstances around her disappearing....
Ophiotaurus - unfortunately not, he's off travelling now and we're not close friends - neither are they I don't think so he won't be able to help I don't think. Thanks though
Not sure whether I should text him asking for a forwarding address and risk arouusing his suspicions that I think he has the cat? Or wait and see if he comes to look her for her tonight as he said he would and ask him then?
The last thing I want to happen is for him to think I'm onto him and somehow get rid of the cat. I really hope I'm wrong and he's totally innocent but want to play it safe just in case....
My god he sounds like a nightmare! I think he has took her.
I'm not sure what you should do
I think he's stolen her
I agree re the forwarding address. As well as emailing the picture to all the local vets, look on facebook for missing pets pages and post her on that. Say you think she's been stolen. People are very active on my local one.
Can you stalk him on facebook too?
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