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I've agreed to rehome a cat and I know nothing!

(32 Posts)
colleysmill Sun 28-Jan-18 10:08:25

So any advice welcome!

Some friends of ours are emigrating and aren't able to take their cat with them so we've agreed to take him in. He is about 8 yrs old and used to a busy noisy family (so no concerns there) Currently the cat and the family live less than a mile from our house (same village)

Dh has had cats before and is very of the It'll be fine opinion but I just wondered if anyone has any advice or could point me in the direction of some good info on settling cats.


thecatneuterer Sun 28-Jan-18 10:52:17

The most important thing, especially as his old home isn't far away, is to make sure you keep him inside for at least four weeks to get used to his new home and to increase the likelihood he won't just wander off.

Cats can get through the tiniest gaps in windows so you will need to make sure that the windows stay closed in any rooms he has access to and you are incredibly careful about opening doors.

Also get the microchip details changed over, or get him chipped if he isn't already before you take him or at least in the first few days.

colleysmill Sun 28-Jan-18 12:24:37

Thabks ever so much for your reply - I had thought 2 weeks woukd be long enough but we will go for 4.

RandomMess Sun 28-Jan-18 12:34:53

You will a litter tray, have their food bowl somewhere else and their water bowl in a 3rd location. Get a lazer toy and a few other ones as they may be bored if used to going out.

Every time you put food out whistle and call the cat. We give a bit of wet food every evening as a treat and open access to dry food.

When you let cat out keep it in overnight (more get stolen or ran over at night etc). This is when the whistle training comes in - open door, whistle, cat turns up and give food/treat. They soon learn the routine and coming running when you whistle as it becomes wired into their subconscious grin

I would ask current neighbours to insure said cat for the rest of its life...

Want2beme Sun 28-Jan-18 13:37:05

RandomMess love the whistle idea. When I lived in Spain, I noticed that a lot of families had an individual whistle sound to get their family member's attention, if they were out of sight - ingenious.

colleysmill stating the obvious, but bring all of his stuff to yours, cat bed, tree, bowls, etc, as they will have familiar smells for him. Don't let him out at night & get him a bird stick toy and he'll be your friend forever. Good luck.

RandomMess Sun 28-Jan-18 13:41:08

I did the whistle and give food trick (cats were 2 when we got them) because it's how my friends dog was trained, bl**dy genius idea!!! It works so well boy cat appears still half asleep sometimes he's too sleepy to eat the wet food and his sister wolfs the lot down!

TheSecondOfHerName Sun 28-Jan-18 13:41:40

YY to keeping him in for at least 4 weeks, or else he will try to go back to his old home as soon as you let him out.

Once you start letting him out, do so just before dinner so he'll come back for his dinner. The current advice is to keep cats in overnight, so you'll need a litter tray for the foreseeable future.

Get his Microchip registration changed to your contact details.

Find out what vet he's registered with and make sure they have your contact details.

Find out who he is insured with and see if they will change ownership to you without increasing premiums (important for a middle-aged cat).

TheSecondOfHerName Sun 28-Jan-18 13:43:34

I'd recommend feeding him the same type of food as the current owners are giving him, then if you want to change, do so gradually.

Same with the type of litter.

For the transition period, a feliway diffuser would help him to cope with the stress.

TheSecondOfHerName Sun 28-Jan-18 13:45:27

We wear a jangly bracelet when feeding our cat. As soon as she hears the bracelet, she appears very rapidly!

colleysmill Sun 28-Jan-18 16:24:54

Thanks everyone I'm liking the whistle idea! I had planned to ask for all the bits and bobs to accompany him but I hadn't thought about the food aspect. We are planning to do a handover in half term which gives us 2 weeks while they are still in their current home in case anything goes awry.

I'm quite excited now but not as excited as ds is. There is a tinge of sadness though for him as the family's ds is his best friend but taking in the cat is helping soften the blow!

Want2beme Sun 28-Jan-18 16:50:44

I think you're right OP. Leaving him with you will make their move so much easier, knowing he'll be in a home where he's loved. He's 48 in human years! You're doing a lovely thing flowers

EachandEveryone Sun 28-Jan-18 18:30:05

I would query the insurance as well as you see doing them a favour really.

DrRisotto Sun 28-Jan-18 18:39:13

I don't know if he's a confident cat or not OP, but it might be worth 'giving' him a small room at first, where he can be on his own, where he can feel safe with his food and boxes and things. Then let him out gradually.

MycatsaPirate Sun 28-Jan-18 18:45:33

He will train you in no time. grin

Second the 4 week rule. Feliway diffuser, cat nip (dried stuff on a flat scratch board), litter tray, food, treats, toys. Don't bother with a cat bed, they mostly refuse to use it and prefer a sofa or a radiator.

Get a cat tree if he doesn't have one to come with him. In the winter months ours don't tend to venture out much and prefer to just hang out on the tree looking out of the window. They also have cat tunnels and cardboard boxes to play in.

Our living room looks like a playroom for cats. There are toys everywhere!

freshstart24 Sun 28-Jan-18 21:53:05

Definitely keepmhim on for 4 weeks. Plus prime the new occupants of his old home to look out for him. He will not understand that your home is his new permanent home, so keep him in for a decent period of home and take precautions in case he decides to wander to his old home.

You won't regret getting him, nothing beats a cat!

colleysmill Mon 29-Jan-18 09:08:14

I've added current insurance info to the list of questions to ask!

It's really helped my ds and their children with the idea of them moving away. Ds has been after a dog or cat for a while (and we just dont have the time for a dog at the moment)

colleysmill Thu 08-Feb-18 18:18:34

Hello! So we have a handover date (slight delay as there were some thyroid concerns but that's all negative phew) Cat currently is not insured so im of the opinion we ought to get some. Dh on the other hand thinks we might struggle with an older cat and to set some savings aside for emergencies.

I'd always thought insurance was a must? And where would I start looking? Is supermarket insurance Ok?

TheSecondOfHerName Thu 08-Feb-18 18:44:29

You can find comparison tables online which show you what you're getting for each type of insurance. You get what you pay for, going from supermarket versions up to PetPlan and everything in between.

Setting aside money for veterinary care is also an option. We have insured our current cat but did the putting savings aside method for previous cat (lived to 17, luckily was never injured and only had v.minor health issues).

Depending on how far you would go to treat serious illnesses / injuries (rather than euthanise) you might need to be able to come up with £1000 to £2000 at fairly short notice.

TheSecondOfHerName Thu 08-Feb-18 18:47:25

Some useful info here

Wolfiefan Thu 08-Feb-18 18:48:28

Depends. We never insured our old cats but were both working and had no kids. We had money to spare. We now have two loopy young girls and I don't work.
Old girl's medication was £60 a month in her later years. It's not just about big accidents or emergencies.

MikeUniformMike Thu 08-Feb-18 18:51:23

Get all his medical details and when he was last wormed.

Glitteryfrog Fri 09-Feb-18 11:35:31

We adopted a middle aged cat and insurance wasn't too bad.

colleysmill Wed 21-Feb-18 20:07:59

Thank you all so much for the advice (and I've been reading lots of threads on here).

He's been with us about a week and we are all smitten! One accident (which I think was my fault as I moved the litter tray outside )but other than that he's been really good and seems to have settled quite quickly.

He's now getting much more assertive and has been desperate to get outside. Today he upped the anti and despite our very best efforts has got out the house 3 times (my heart was in my mouth when dh text me) but he's come back every time within 30 - 45 mins and has not really gone far - just pottered round the outside and in the garden.

But yes despite all the worry today he's wonderful. I'm completely turned into a cat person grin

Want2beme Wed 21-Feb-18 20:15:04

That's great news. So lovely that he's got a safe home with you.

colleysmill Wed 21-Feb-18 20:21:48

For an older chap he's pretty fast! And he's soon figured us all out and found a safe spot behind the sofa to disappear to when he's had enough of the dc. He's fitted in just fine smile

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