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Difficult descision-should I rehome my cats?

(19 Posts)
LittleB Wed 17-Apr-13 13:16:00

We got our cats, a pair, sisters, a year ago, and they are stilll very nervous of my DS who is 2. He is very gentle with them when I hold them still, he strokes them carefully, but he is quite noisy and runs about and they stay well out of his way whenever he's around, either hiding in the utility room or out in the garden - but they don't go out when its wet, they are mainly indoor cats. They are fine with my DD who is 7, but I hoped they would have got used to DS after a year. But I feel sorry for them as they spend most of the time hiding away. We are also now on a waiting list for a rescue dog, we have had dogs most of our life but not for just over a year, our cats used to live with a dog in a previous home apprently but are nervous when we have visiting dogs, I wonder if this may just be the last straw for them. They are very affectionate in the evenings when ds is asleep and when he has his nap (now). I wonder whether it would be kinder to take them back to the rescue centre where we got them from to find a quieter home for them. They are only 5 and are both beautiful long haired torties, both in good health - only seen the vets for boosters while I've had them-so I hope they'd find a new home quickly. What do you think I should do?

LizaRose Wed 17-Apr-13 13:20:36

You've already made a commitment to love and care for 2 cats. They've already been discarded by at least 1 home. Why are you taking on another pet when you're current ones are likely not to be able to cope with it?

LizaRose Wed 17-Apr-13 13:21:15

*your, not you're

cozietoesie Wed 17-Apr-13 13:22:28

Sounds to me as if you're on the uphill from here. They stay out of DS's way during the day which is sensible and then come for cuddles and socializing when he's not. As he gets older, and hopefully calmer in the house, they should be around more. Seems OK to me rather than the possible trauma of yet another new home or homes.

Are they showing any signs of distress or is it just you thinking that they might be? And out of interest, why are you getting a dog if you think it will be too much for them? (It may not be at all.)

Lucyellensmum95 Wed 17-Apr-13 13:26:00

What should you do next? Call the dog rescuse centre and tell them, that on reflection, you don't think you can have a dog after all!!! 1. Because you have a boisterous and noisy DS who makes your current pets nervous and 2. Becaue it sounds to me like you are bored with the cats now and want to move on and get a dog.


Floralnomad Wed 17-Apr-13 13:29:48

You're cats relationship with your son will only improve as he gets older and calmer and at the moment they stay out of his way so there's no real issue apart from the incoming dog . I think you set a very poor example to your children if you dispose of your cats then take on a dog it makes it look like animals are just that ,disposable . I would hope that if this is the line you follow you tell the dog rescue place because to be frank I doubt that they'd let you have a dog with this kind of lack of commitment .

Fluffycloudland77 Wed 17-Apr-13 13:30:36

They will get on better with your Ds as he gets older, pets are family and are not disposable.

If you get a dog please avoid Terriers, they have a higher prey drive than, for example, a gun dog breed eg Labrador or spaniels.

HootShoot Wed 17-Apr-13 13:32:31

I too don't understand why you would get another pet if you are concerned about the affect it will have on your cats? I think being taken back to the home could have a negative impact on them. Three homes in five years is pretty sad.

They sound quite sensible to me, keeping out of the wayfof your ds in the day then out for cuddles at night, my cat does the same, I don't think he is unhappy though. Are there any other reasons you think they are unhappy?

LizaRose Wed 17-Apr-13 13:33:27

Don't forget that if your cats go back to rescue and get a lovely home, that's a home that some other cat or cats in need will miss out on.

Lucyellensmum95 Wed 17-Apr-13 13:37:59

If you rehome your DS, then the cats wont need a new home and provided you get a dog with a low prey instinct, it will be fine - sorted.

Quak Wed 17-Apr-13 13:39:05

Don't rehome them - like liza said, they've already been let down by at least one other home. Your cats, althogh bothered by your ds are used to him and have a strategy for dealing with him. As your ds gets older and calmer the cats will come out more.
I'd reconsider the dog too. Your poor cats. My cats like my dog because she is calm and leaves them alone. They don't like dogs - just the one they know won't hurt them. Will your new dog be like that? You have taken on these cats, it is not ok to just get rid of them.

LittleB Wed 17-Apr-13 13:47:47

Ok, don't flame me for wanting to get a dog, me and ds have always had dogs, and knew we would want to get a dog again soon, that is why we got cats that had lived with a dog before, we've also had rescue dogs before, my last one died young from cancer and I was very upset by it which is why we've waited a while before rehoming another dog. We wouldn't get a terrier, we are waiting for a dog from either a gun dog rescue or a failed guide dog, both know about the cats and have done home visits. My ds is not boistrous, he is very gentle with all our animals (we also have chickens and a hamster) but he is a typical 2 yr old, and runs around and cries out 'hello pussy cats' and they run. But if the general consensus seems to be that cats are very happy keeping to themselves for most of the day, just cuddles in the evening, then thats good news for me. I don't think of them as disposable, I said it was a descision I was considering and wanted opinions. They aren't showing any signs of being unhappy, they do spend alot of time cuddled up together.

Phineyj Wed 17-Apr-13 13:53:34

I think it will get better and it sounds like your DS is gaining good skills with animals. We had two rescue cats and although one settled in straight away, the other remained nervous especially around children and dogs the whole 10 years we had her. I think the rescue organisation would be deeply unimpressed if you returned the cats for this reason, and so would I. Your cats sound quite happy to me and they do need to sleep some massive proportion of the time anyway.

Lucyellensmum95 Wed 17-Apr-13 13:54:16

Quite noisy and runs about = boisterous, boisterous is not a criticism, its what 2 year old boys do!

The problem really wont be from the dog, it will be from the cats, if they are nervy anyway they will run and the dog will chase. Its what they do. To be fair, most dog cat intros go along the lines of - dog sees cat, investigates tentitively, cat runs, dog follows, corners cat, cat swipes dogs nose, spits, jumps up on the kitchen work top and glares at dog. Dog realises who is boss and leaves the cat alone afterwards.

cozietoesie Wed 17-Apr-13 14:00:58

Retrievers are reasonable dogs for living with cats - the cats will normally have them licked into shape within a day or so.

Your cats sounds happy enough to me if there's nothing else apart from their sensibly absenting themselves when DS is on the go.

LittleB Wed 17-Apr-13 14:06:45

Thank you for the constructive advice. I'm glad that the consensus of opinion is that my cats are fine, and not unhappy. I did only say I wondered if they would be happier elsewhere, but your general opinion seems to be that they are just fine, and things will get better as ds gets older.
(Lucyellensmumu-he is not boisterous with our animals (boisterous means rough and noisy; noisily jolly or rowdy; clamorous; unrestrained - dictionary definition) and I will ignore your unhelpful advice about rehoming my ds.)

Lucyellensmum95 Wed 17-Apr-13 14:14:53

........i was joking hmm

cozietoesie Wed 17-Apr-13 14:16:18

I think LittleB is feeling very sensitive about her whole situation, Lucyellensmum. Don't worry.

Owllady Wed 17-Apr-13 14:19:23

no no lucyellen you were being serious I can tell
all norty boys must be rehomed immediately! They are obtuse and difficult and don't like cuddles until after dark. What is the point of them?

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