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Who decides who a cat lives with?

(6 Posts)
Ginda Tue 09-Oct-12 21:56:03

...the cat, or its owner?

Background:

I am was a cat-hater. Would shoo them away. But a year ago a neighbourhood cat kept hanging round my door. I work FT and an out 12 hours a day but every day for about a week she was there when I got home. It was cold so I let her in one night. She had a collar so I went and knocked on the door of where she "lived" but no one was there. No one was there for days and eventually I knocked next door, who said the cat's owners regularly went away for days at a time but someone did pop in to feed the cat.

The cat carried on sitting outside my house and I started letting her in in the evenings. She was a sweet little thing and more like a dog than a cat - she needs company. She would follow me round the house all the time. I fed her. She doesn't eat much.

Three months went by like this until eventually the cat's owners moved house to a different house across the road. The tag on the cat's collar did not change for 2 months and then her collar disappeared. I wanted to get her one with our address but didn't in case her real family didn't like it. One day she appeared with a new collar with their new address on. She stayed away for a few days but then came back and since then she hasn't gone again.

I love her. The DCs love her. We all want her to be our cat. I know quite a few people who have "acquired" a cat that just one day appeared and wouldn't leave - it's just that in this case I know where her owners live.

Next year we are relocating. I want to take the cat. Obviously I can't just take her. But am afraid of going to discuss it with her owners in case they think I have stolen her already. So, cat owners: if I turned up on your doorstep in these circumstances, asking if we could agree that your cat was now my cat, do you think you would say yes?

MaryZed Tue 09-Oct-12 22:00:43

The cat, usually, but only if the owners don't care.

Having said that, if the cat's original owners ask you to stop letting her in and feeding her, you have to stick to that.

I would be pretty pissed off with you if it was my cat, sorry. My neighbours keep feeding our cat and letting him in, which is a pain because he is allergic to the catfood they give him and we have to pay the vet fees angry.

You have to talk to them, but be prepared to accept that they may be delighted that you are moving as they might also love the cat and want to have her back.

When you move, you can get another cat.

NotShortImFunSized Tue 09-Oct-12 22:02:36

Tbh it sounds like they're not really bothered! I'd go and explain about the cat wanting to spend all it's time at your house and ask them what they would like you to do. Tell them that you don't mind her being there and that you love her etc and they may very well tell you to keep her!

I have now had a cat for the last 3 years. She just wandered in one day when she was 8 months old and never left grin Found her owner and they couldn't have cared less. Poor puss.

uggmum Tue 09-Oct-12 22:09:50

It looks like the cat has decided. If it hasn't gone back to your neighbours house for a while and they haven't put up any ''missing posters' I would assume that they are not really bothered with it.

However, I would go and see them and discuss it. Welcoming a cat into your home is one thing, but moving and taking it with you is another.

DeliaRose Tue 09-Oct-12 22:12:49

I would be furious if I found out you were feeding my cat.

I'm not sure what I would say if you turned up one day asking if you could have it, not sure I'd be polite

Ginda Tue 09-Oct-12 22:41:53

Yes I forgot to say: when she started coming, they never put up any posters. Also, when I spoke to their neighbour about where they were all the time, I told her my address and that the cat kept hanging around there and sort of expected that she would tell the owners this (she confirmed she knew them) but they never came knocking for the cat.

I am certain they know she is at my house most of the time. We live in a small village and my DCs go to primary school with a child who is the grandchild of the cat's owners. DS says he has told this boy the cat is at ours. So they must know, but have never come round.

If she was my cat and I knew where she was and I wanted her back, I'd bloody well go and demand her back, wouldn't you?

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