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I don't like cats but my family wants one - help please!

(28 Posts)
Elf Fri 18-Jul-08 21:16:58

Hi. DH loves cats, the dcs really fancy something that can play with them more than guinea pigs.

I don't like cats

We can't cope with looking after a dog, although I do like dogs.

Is there any other option? Or do you have any experiences with getting a cat that you didn't want?

Things are getting close to boiling point here. Please help.

BTW my objections are, I don't like them, you can't sit down without getting hair all over you, other cats come into your house, they wake you up, just all that stuff.

LaPaz Sat 19-Jul-08 01:57:30

cats are great. I know lots of converts


But what about a rabbit? Lots of people keep them like cats - ie have them hopping around house

Joolyjoolyjoo Sat 19-Jul-08 02:16:51

Hmm- I like cats, but they are a particularly bad choice for people who don't like them. Because they KNOW the people who don't like them and go out of their way to wind them up! My mum hated cats, and everywhere we went cats were drawn to her- it was freaky! In our house we had 3 at one point. My DH didn't really like them, but tolerated them. They always slept on HIS clothes, sat in HIS seat etc etc. Don't do it!!

sushistar Sat 19-Jul-08 02:18:31

Cats are wonderful creatures. My dh wanted a dog, I wanted a cat, we got a cat, and he's a complete convert. She's wonderful and WAY less work than a dog, but as much fun.

Elf Sat 19-Jul-08 07:29:37

Thank you for your thoughts. I guess it could go either way, but it is a hideous situation.

heronsfly Sat 19-Jul-08 07:36:34

We have always had cats,they rule our house smile
We have never had a strange cat in our house,our two turn into spitting furies if another cat even looks over the fence.
One of ours is pure white and leaves hair everywhere,but the other is short haired black and white and hardly moults at all.
They dont wake us up.they sleep on kids beds,but have got a cat flap.
The only downside for me is the worry they cause when they dont come home,might be ill ect,but I suppose thats because they are such a big part of our family.

Lozza70 Sat 19-Jul-08 07:41:43

I'm a cat fan but if you are not it can be difficult. My DH has been converted since we started going out together but I think it can depend on the cat's personality and with a new kitten you never know. You have to be able to cope with and get over the inital furniture scratching and from there on manage the slightly more hoovering to keep fur under control. They are really loving though in a more in control way than a dog.

They are way easier to look after than dogs though. No walks, dog washing etc. You can even leave them at home for a night or two while you are away and don't need to put them into kennels, with a timer cat feeder of course.

Big decision though taking on a new pet, you cannot be pushed into it.

eemie Sat 19-Jul-08 08:00:05

I always hated cats, found them repellent.
My dd was born loving them. Practically her first words were 'can we have a cat?'
I said 'we'll talk about it when you're eight' (thought that day would never come).

When she was eight I reluctantly brought home a little rescue cat and I've completely fallen in love with her.

She's actually quite dog-like - intelligent and affectionate, comes when she's called, rushes up to give you a great welcome when you come home.

I wish I'd known years ago that cats could be so lovely smile.

stroppyknickers Sat 19-Jul-08 08:01:10

I always wanted a cat and now I wish we didn't have one sad because:
She has trashed our new carpet.
She has trashed (within 6 hours) my birthday present ( a rug)
We have banned her from upstairs because of hairs/cats/babies and now the hall door has to be kept shut
She comes in thro the kitchen window (yuk) on hot days
Hair is everywhere
I have to catch her to put anti flea stuff on her which she hates.
My petty list could go on and on and on.

misdee Sat 19-Jul-08 08:08:35

i love cats.

my dd's love cat.

BUT all three of them are allergic to them sad

heronsfly Sat 19-Jul-08 08:10:51

My cats wouldent dream of jumping in the kitchen window,much to much hard work,much easier to stand outside back door and mew loudly and sadly till one of there slaves opens the door for them grin

cluckyagain Sat 19-Jul-08 08:11:24

One of my 4 month old kittens is currently purring and rubbing herself against me as I write this. My dh and dc wanted a cat and I eventually gave in to having 2 kittens - I'm completely hooked! They are daft, loving, hysterically funny together, easy to look after (once allowed out - a PITA before that!) They follow the children everywhere, go on the trampoline with them, slide down the slide (I kid you not) and go for walks with us....I can't remember the house before them!!

stroppyknickers Sat 19-Jul-08 08:17:23

Haha heronsfly. Mine knows I'd never hear her...grin

eemie Sat 19-Jul-08 08:24:02

Too right Heronsfly. Ours has a cat flap but prefers to have the staff open doors for her. My dh is her slave. She sits and looks at a door and he drops what he's doing and rushes to open it for her.

QuintessentialShadows Sat 19-Jul-08 08:31:07

If you like cats I am sure you can easily put up with all the little inconveniences such as cat hair everywhere and cats on the window sill, and all the "care and maintenance" such as worming, neutering, and what not.

If you dont then it might just be a chore.

BUT, these things can be overcome. The cat be trained. If she knows not to come upstairs, she wont. If she has her special place to sleep and what she needs, you may well find the cat prefers that area.

As for things like keeping the hall door shot - you can get a catflat.
Cat hair? Invest in a good vacuum cleaner such as a miele, with a cat and dog hair extra strenght functionality with allergy filter.
Other cats WILL not come into your house.
As your cat is maturingg, she will mark your garden as her territory and hopefully other cats will stay away.
If they dont, and they fight? Throw a bucket of cold water over them. Most effectful.
If you find that other male cats spray your front door, keep a fine line of pepper under your door, they will for sure stay away.

And most importantly, in your cat negotiations, ensure you agree your dh (who is enthusiastic for cats) will take on all the chores with the cat together with the children. A cat is not a play thing you get just for fun. The children should be prepared to help out, and take responsibility for the cat, and if they are no, you can say: "Fine, I sense you are not quite mature for the responsibility of animal keeping, let us discuss again in a year or two".

Do read up on cats. They can be marvellous and loving friends.

belgo Sat 19-Jul-08 08:37:05

I love cats. We always had one when I was a child,and have never had a problem with other cats coming into the house. Never got woken up by the cat either as the cat always slept in the garage at night.

But if you really don't like them, I think it's unfair for you to have to have one.

How would your dh feel if you told him he had to hoover every day, with a good hoover as Quintess suggests?

My dh is allergic to cats and we can't get one. I do'nt think my children will miss out.

noddyholder Sat 19-Jul-08 09:00:44

We have 2 cats i love them such good company.get a decent hoover and you'll be fine They don't make much mess anyway

cluckyagain Sat 19-Jul-08 13:55:56

Quintessential - other cats WILL come into your house!! (well MAY at least)

cluelessnchaos Sat 19-Jul-08 14:02:39

I used to hate cats, they would always sit on my lap dig their claws in, anyway after a disastrous incident with a rabbit guinea pig and a friends dog we agreed to get a rescue cat, actually I took two becausethey were the last two and I didnt want to split them up, they are fantastic, they now pretty much take care of themselves. We have just been on holiday for 3 weeks and I just had a friend come in and top up their food and water every day. They cuddle into me like dogs, every night I shut them into the kitchen or let them out so they dont ever wake us up, no other cat has ever come in, they leave dead things for us by the door which dd1 disposes of for a £1 a corpse. The worst thing about them is they fight with feral cats and get injured which costs me £26 a pop to get them antibiotics.

QuintessentialShadows Sat 19-Jul-08 14:05:15

Clucky - 16 years of owning cats, NO cat came into our house after we got our own. Before then? Oh yes, all the time!

QuintessentialShadows Sat 19-Jul-08 14:05:18

Clucky - 16 years of owning cats, NO cat came into our house after we got our own. Before then? Oh yes, all the time!

QuintessentialShadows Sat 19-Jul-08 14:05:40

sorry blush double posting

WigWamBam Sat 19-Jul-08 14:08:42

What you have to bear in mind is that you will be the person who ends up looking after the cat - clearing up the remains of mice, clearing up the vomit, de-fleaing the cat. Which is fine if you are a cat-lover, but which will drive you barmy if you don't like cats in the first place. If their main carer (and even if your family promise that they will look after the cat, you will still end up doing it all) doesn't love them, their home won't be a particularly nice place to be. And you will end up feeling resentful, which may mean you dislike the cat even more.

There is also no guarantee that the children will be able to play with the cat. Mine hasn't come within twenty five yards of my daughter since the day she was born ... and she's seven now.

boredveryverybored Sat 19-Jul-08 14:23:45

I think it's pot luck, depending on the cat you get. They are all so different, the problems you're anticipating may not transpire, however others might!
If you're not overly keen and you do end up going for a cat, I would say get a young adult from a rescue centre. Where you can speak to the staff about the cats personality, temperament etc and get an idea of what they're likely to be like.
I have always had a cat, can honestly say no other cats have ever come into our house while we've had one.
There are some cats that hardly moult, some cats that don't hunt at all, and some cats that are very stupid and will play with the kids grin
I have a persian atm, she moults a lot which is a pain, but she is very laid back, DD(7) carries her around like a dolly and she cares not a bit. She doesn't hunt (is scared of everything that moves blush)
and is all round generally a lovely animal.
I think I'd visit a rescue centre - without kids!! and have a look around, talk to the staff and see what you think before you make up your mind

Elf Sun 20-Jul-08 09:20:40

Well, thanks everyone for your experiences, those were just the kind of things I wanted to hear - real life issues.

I think Quintessential was right when she said the less nice things are fine if you like cats but a PITA if you don't. I don't mind in the least doing yukky things for the dcs but I do not want to with a cat.

The good thing is that I know DH WILL do the chores when he is here but he will be at work a lot so I guess I will have to do it then. I like the idea of paying £1 per removal of mouse etc corpse.

Anyway, many thanks for the various tips etc, my ruminating will go on but with more insider info, much appreciated.

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