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Shutting the cat away

(31 Posts)
Aranea Fri 08-Mar-13 17:00:22

I feel horrible. Dd1's best friend is frightened of cats and we have a very lively and playful 8 month old kitten. I agreed to shut her in my bedroom, and she has miaowed for the best part of an hour, trying to open the door. I went in and got some very intense cat love, lots of purring and cuddles, but I've had to leave her there again now so I can feed the DC. Oooff, I don't want to do this again but I suppose I have to, don't I? WWYD??

Lonecatwithkitten Sat 09-Mar-13 08:53:57

My first posh arrogant boy came to me from a family who said he was going to eat their children needless to say he didn't eat a single child in the years he lived with me.
More seriously DD had a friend who was frightened of the cats I explained to her that if she ignored them they would ignore gradually over about 4 years she became more comfortable with them and now actively seeks them out.

sashh Sat 09-Mar-13 06:40:09

Maybe it's a cultural thing not liking/being scared of cats.

I was shopping a few weeks ago and at the till there was an African lady with two small children distributing her shopping between them to walk home. The smallest one had to hold the carrier bag level with his chin to stop it dragging on the floor so I asked if they wanted a lift.

It was only two streets away but when we pulled up there was a black cat on the wheelie bin and she said something about hoping it would go.

I told her black cats are lucky in England and she could not understand that at all.

tabulahrasa Fri 08-Mar-13 19:34:10

Dogs are much more predictable than cats - massively different body languages and way of approaching people, and much more boisterous, but I find cats much more unpredictable.

My BIL is scared of my cats - He's 6 foot, my cats are 3 kgs each, they don't bite or scratch and one's terrified of people who don't live here and hides behind the couch, the other mostly sleeps, yet he still spends visits watching them warily...I'm not quite sure what it is he thinks they're going to do? Some sort of tiny coordinated sneak attack?

issey6cats Fri 08-Mar-13 19:12:48

is with catneuterer i have four cats one dog and occasional foster cats so anyone coming here has to like cats but usually my cats see the grandchildren walking down the front path and they form an orderly queue at the back door lol, but can understand that some children are wary of cats, one of my grandaughters loves cats but when she was little my girl cat decided she was a target and swiped her every time she came near, nowadays said madam curls up on her lap truce called

thecatneuterer Fri 08-Mar-13 18:40:19

Cats come well above human guests in the ranking in my homesmile If visitors don't show themselves to be sufficiently cat-friendly they don't get invited back ....

Aranea Fri 08-Mar-13 18:38:57

wine soon... Friend has gone but now DD1 has found DD2's mother's day card and brought it out of its hiding place, asking what it is. Cue total meltdown from poor DD2 who has been so excited and secretive about it. Floods of tears from both girls. Fortunately now resolved. Bedtime is in sight...

Sparklingbrook Fri 08-Mar-13 18:35:23

Oh no. I just let Sparkling cat do whatever she wants. I have never asked anyone if they liked cats or not. But most visitors ask to see her.

I have never seen a cat go up to a visitor and bite and scratch them like dogs do.

Areyoumadorisitme Fri 08-Mar-13 18:33:27

I am surprised that some people can't see how people can be afraid of cats. We have two cats and have done for 11 years now but before that I really wasn't keen on them.

If you don't know any cats they can seem really unpredictable and people know they can bite and scratch. Ok, very few do in reality but if you haven't had exposure to them you wouldn't know that or be comfortable with it.

I always ask people if they are ok with cats when they come here, I remember people saying "oh he's only playing" when I was nervous of dogs, I just ended up getting more scared. I don't want to do that to visitors to our home. One of our cats jumps on everyone's lap given the chance but that can make people really nervous.

I shut the cats in the kitchen when someone nervous or allergic comes, at the end of the day much as I love them human guests come first.

Sparklingbrook Fri 08-Mar-13 18:30:10

Has she gone? Is it wine o'clock?

Aranea Fri 08-Mar-13 18:28:46

Sparkling, all I can say is confused

Sparklingbrook Fri 08-Mar-13 18:27:18

Aranea is this child attention seeking? Why did she go in knowing the cat was in there?

Sparklingbrook Fri 08-Mar-13 18:26:38

It's from the DCs favourite programme Mr T's World's Craziest Fools catneuterer. Your experience made me wonder if it was the same one. grin The cat is innocently playing with a ball of wool and the whole family is terrified. grin

Aranea Fri 08-Mar-13 18:23:04

Oof. After all that, I shut the cat in the kitchen and told the DC she was there. DD's friend said she wanted to go in for some reason, so I said that was fine, but the cat was in there. And she WENT IN!! I don't think I will offer to do this again, she seems anxious but on the strength of that I don't think she is frightened enough to warrant all this. AIBU?

cozietoesie Fri 08-Mar-13 18:20:48

I really wouldn't recommend 'semi-engineering' a confrontation between the animal and the child. Phobias are by their nature not rational - so whether the animal could/would actually harm them or not is not relevant.

I'd think to keep the kitten shut away for today and have a word with the child's mum for future visits.

thecatneuterer Fri 08-Mar-13 18:18:59

Ha ha. No and how did you find that? I half wondered if it was the same call, but then my family were African not Indian. It's a worry to think that this has happened more than once .... I love the cartoon of the two grown men 'children' cowering in the bathroom ....

Sparklingbrook Fri 08-Mar-13 18:16:20

I know what you mean Bertie. I am very wary of dogs. But I had a bit of an incident so that made me worse. They seem very unpredictable to me.

BertieBotts Fri 08-Mar-13 18:14:46

I'm a bit nervous of dogs because I don't know dogs and I can't predict how they are likely to react in any situation, so I feel nervous around them in case I inadvertently upset them enough for them to attack me. (I'm much better since getting together with DP who is a real dog lover, but I'm still not certain.)

Perhaps it's the same for people who are afraid of cats? Obviously a cat can't seriously hurt you like a dog can, but being scratched isn't a nice prospect, especially for a child. And some people are afraid of being touched by even more harmless things like mice and spiders, so why not cats?

I love cats and can see how they're totally harmless but when I look at it in the context of my nervousness about dogs it makes more sense.

Sparklingbrook Fri 08-Mar-13 18:13:21

Have you seen this catneuterer? grin

thecatneuterer Fri 08-Mar-13 18:07:51

Good for the cat. I reminds me of a job I was called to (as a cat charity volunteer) a few weeks ago. A family had called the Police to report that a panther(yes really) had got into their bathroom and they were terrified. They had barricaded the door and the mother and children were sheltering in the front room. The Police of course told them to go away and suggested they try a cat charity. We were afraid that they might try to harm said panther so off I went. I opened the bathroom door and there was a medium sized, very friendly black moggy that had somehow managed to get in through the window but couldn't get back out. I said to the family that there was nothing to be afraid of and I would just pick the cat up and put it out through the back door. One of the children wanted to have a look but the mother screamed at the child that it was dangerous and shut all the children away, screaming and crying with fear, while I put the cat outside. so now that mother has created more children who are afraid of cats. It's all so bonkers and makes my blood boil.

That story doesn't of course help your situation at all but it does illustrate the madness of this. But then of course some people do have genuine phobias about all sorts of things, which aren't necessarily caused by their parents. Fear of buttons for example - equally bonkers but still a genuine fear.

I'm not really sure what the point of this post was smile

Lucyellensmum95 Fri 08-Mar-13 17:57:26

I think "accidentally" letting the cat in is the way to go. The girl will soon learn that the cat means her no harm.

Aranea Fri 08-Mar-13 17:53:49

Cat just took matters into her own paws and opened the door! I am quite impressed.

Aranea Fri 08-Mar-13 17:39:40

She's still miaowing sad

She will live, lljkk, I know, I'm just feeling really mean. And torn between that feeling, and the knowledge that she is only a cat and a child's anxiety should take priority.

Aranea Fri 08-Mar-13 17:13:27

Exactly sparkling, I do feel that visitors on the whole should adapt a bit to our home, but I don't want DD to be unable to have her friend over if she really has dug her toes in over this. Friend is here till 6, so not too much later. I just don't relish the thought of spending future playdates shut in my room comforting the cat!

Catneuterer, it's hard, I'm a non-panderer in principle with my own children, and initially I thought she would get used to the kitten, but it hasn't happened. sad

lljkk Fri 08-Mar-13 17:09:27

The cat will live. Make sure you leave her a litter tray or she'll manifest her displeasure.

Sparklingbrook Fri 08-Mar-13 17:09:08

How can people be scared of cats catneuterer? I have no idea what they think the cat will do. DS1 had a friend when they were little who was terrified of them. Sparkling Cat chose to go out though because DS2's friend was so noisy and naughty.

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