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Can't sleep thinking about neighbour's cat...

67 replies

chages · 29/09/2022 00:02

DP thinks I'm being ridiculous.

This cat never seems to be in during the day, but she's super affectionate and loving (never seen a friendlier cat). She desperately runs to me every time I open the door for cuddles.
I know that she never seems to be let in during the day/evening as she is always in sight in our garden! Even during heavy rain showers when the owners are home, she's there.
I've found it a bit questionable that a cat who is so loving and affectionate is out constantly anyway.

She's been trying more and more to get into our house so she's certainly not not wanting to be indoors.

Anyway, I just had to open the front door quickly (11.30pm) and she sprinted into our house - drenched and freezing from rain and wind, even though we know they're home.
I gave her a cuddle but had to put her back outside and now I can't sleep because I just feel horrendous about it. She doesn't seem to find shelter in the rain/wind either as she's constantly waiting so close to our front door. Just can't stop thinking about her being wet and freezing out there.

DP said I'm being ridiculous about it and overly concerned. Maybe I'm being soft.

Is it acceptable for an owner to leave a cat out through all terrain when it seems desperate to be inside? I don't even know what protocol is with cats really as a dog owner.

OP posts:
SarahAndQuack · 29/09/2022 00:10

You sound as if you think she's neglected. Is she well fed? Healthy looking? If so, can you say to your neighbours she's constantly pestering you?

Keep in mind she may not care about getting wet. I have two gorgeous, friendly kittens. They love water. We've got a pond and they enjoy a dip, and if it rains hard, they are unlikely to come in unless they want to. One of them likes to sit by a dripping tap, catching the water in her paw, too.

OTOH, our neighbours have a cat who is constantly trying to get into our house. He's come in through open windows and any door; we have a cat flap that only opens for our girls' chips, but he has got in by pushing in right beside them. He's a well loved cat and very friendly - but cats love to go where they're not wanted!

I think probably this cat you're seeing is perfectly ok at home.

Donotgogentle · 29/09/2022 00:10

If your only evidence is the cat trying to get into your house I wouldn’t worry.

Our neighbour’s cat comes into our house almost every day. He’s an adored family pet with a cat flap, he just likes a wander.

If you’re concerned then mention it to the neighbours and see what they say. The cat probably has a cat flap.

Ihatethenewlook · 29/09/2022 00:11

No it’s not acceptable. There’s nothing you can legally do about it though. Yabu in not having that cat tucked up in bed with you right now. Not even joking, that cat would be fed, dry and curled up somewhere warm in my house right now.

Backstreetsbackalrightdadada · 29/09/2022 00:11

No! Poor cat, she should be inside. Especially when it’s wet and cold… plus foxes can sometimes scare them at night, they don’t sleep well outside (unless lounging in the sun in the day). Definitely bring her in! Sure she’d love a quiet spot :) Kind of you to think of her

eyeteevee · 29/09/2022 00:14

My neighbours at is never in the house either, it lives with 3 (that we know of) other families in the area. They found out on Facebook after the cat was injured and a post was put up looking for its owners!!

DorritLittle · 29/09/2022 00:16

Just bring her in OP. I probably would. Although I have two outdoors cats and they are perfectly OK outdoors but they prefer being outside.

WagathaChristieMystery · 29/09/2022 00:16

I agree with @Backstreetsbackalrightdadada and @Ihatethenewlook . Can you have a chat with the neighbours and mention to them that the cat is outside your house in all weather, and you’re worried about her when it’s cold and rainy, so you just want to make sure everything is okay? Poor little mite :(

RelativePitch · 29/09/2022 00:17

My neighbours have a lovely cat, generally one of them is there to let him in (they don't have a cat flap)but sometimes if they are both out and it's raining or really cold I let him into our house. He gets on with our Ddog and Dcat. We never feed him though. I'd be so tempted to let that cat sleep over. They love being warm and snuggly.

chages · 29/09/2022 00:20

I was desperate to keep her in as she was so happy on our blankets and reluctant to go back outside, but my dog can smell her from the other room and was starting to cause a racket with her crying, sniffing and nudging the door with her nose! But I just felt heartbroken putting her back outside.

I may have to chat with the neighbours, but I just didn't know if I was being over-dramatic and they don't seem to be the type to be receptive about it.

OP posts:
MsPincher · 29/09/2022 00:21

Our cat goes to others house and won’t come in sometimes. He’s just got his own way

Dollydea · 29/09/2022 00:25

This could be my cat from what you've said 😂 we brought him back from Cyprus with us, he lived in the playground at my daughters old school so is used to being mauled and petted, especially by children.
He loves attention but also loves being outside as much he does being inside, he's even been known to jump through parked car windows for a cuddle.
We try to keep him in as much as possible now he's in the U.K. but any time a window or door is left open then he's out like a flash even if it's raining hard.

Just mention it to your neighbour, they might not even realise she's out at night if they leave the cat flap open.

takealettermsjones · 29/09/2022 00:28

I'd definitely be worrying like you OP! But just keep in mind cats can be arseholes, and I say that as an owner of two adorable ones who are both curled up on me right now 😆 They do tend to moan to ramp up the sympathy (crying for food five minutes after being fed, etc). It might be nothing. But I'd probably want to speak to the owners.

That said I have also been out in thunderstorms in my slippers, torrential rain plastering my hair to my face, pulling my frightened cats out of hedges to bring them back inside. So I might have turned a blind eye to the snuggling and spoken to the owners tomorrow, cat in hand 😊

JustLyra · 29/09/2022 00:33

Cats can be arseholes. Mine has a favourite trick of refusing to come in back door cat flap, open side door or garage window (can access house) when it’s raining then sitting at the front door wailing like an abandoned and abused soul.

Mention it to them by all means, but don’t encourage a cat to enter a home with dogs. Strongly discourage it, for its own safety.

SarahAndQuack · 29/09/2022 00:34

They don't sleep well outside?!

Tell that to mine who loves to doze away the day in the middle of the hedge. TBF mine were feral kittens rescued at four weeks old, but you can be sure, they'll either be snuggled up in my daughter's bed or sleeping outside - they seem to think both are equally comfy.

HRTQueen · 29/09/2022 00:42

We have a cat like this he often tries to get in and is left outside in all weathers

ive let him in a few times it annoys my cat a little

I would let her in and allow her to cuddle up where she feels comfortable (probably on your bed)

Wombat100 · 29/09/2022 00:58

YANBU. I would be tempted to just let her stay next time she comes in. If your dog won’t like it could you possibly set her up with a little shelter/a space in your shed if you have one? That way at least she can take shelter, especially with the cold weather coming up. Poor little thing.

The owners sound like muppets. Why have a cat if you won’t let it inside?

KosherDill · 29/09/2022 01:25

The cat clearly is neglected.

If you have the funds, buy a heated electric cat hut. Several years ago a three-legged stray in my vicinity kept coming around the house; I couldn't take it in as I had three Chihuahua puppies at the time, in a small home.

Literally within hours of me plugging in the hut (you do need an outdoor power point, though in this weather the unheated hut would be fine) the cat was in it, looking out through the clear vinyl flap at a cold drenching December rain. I felt SO good. She found it so quickly that clearly she was looking for shelter. I think I put a dish of tuna inside, and water, to lure her.

Long term, yes, please deal with the neighbour, but if you want to offer solace and comfort to the poor thing, order one of those huts from Amazon, if your budget permits.

People who leave animals out to the elements are vile.

Fraaahnces · 29/09/2022 01:31

Do you think your dog would hurt the cat? I’d just gradually let it move to your place

ChelseaRobertsofMalibu · 29/09/2022 01:39

Ohh just let her in! Take her upstairs for the night, away from your dog. At least let the poor thing have one night being warm & dry

EveryFlightBeginsWithAFall · 29/09/2022 01:51

My cat often goes in next doors. He can get in here whenever he chooses but often decides to stay out. He came in half an hour ago and plonked his wet self down on my head

mountainsunsets · 29/09/2022 06:44

People who leave animals out to the elements are vile.

I don't disagree, but on the flip side, lots of cats do choose to stay outside in bad weather and often choose not to go to their own homes, but someone else's instead.** They can be furry little arseholes.

My own cat has chosen to sit in the garden in the pissing rain instead of coming inside - if I went to pick him up to bring him in, she'd scrabble over my shoulder and run back out.

If this was a dog being chained up with no choice I'd agree it's vile but cats are stubborn and will do go where they please.

Cotswoldmama · 29/09/2022 06:51

It sounds a bit like my cat. As far as I know she doesn't go into anyone's house but if anyone calls her she will come running! She lives attention. I can see her sleeping in our neighbours garden sometimes too. She has a cat flap but is getting a bit old and forgetful so sometimes sits by the back door miaowing!
My neighbours very happy, very well fed cat (we called her fatty catty) used to appear on our dining room table on winter mornings when we came down stairs!

BuzzBeeEmoticon · 29/09/2022 06:54

No this is not acceptable. Cats do choose to be outside in the cold, wind etc but it’s very unlikely a cat would choose to stay out in the pouring rain.

One of our neighbours cats is left like this. I’ve watched them shut the door in its face multiple times when its tried to get in (they don’t have a cat flap, I don’t understand this either). We put a kennel outside with a self heating mat in it so it has somewhere to go if its cold or it’s raining. Could this be an option? It was about £60 from Etsy but for my peace of mind it was worth it!

Hesleepswiththefishes · 29/09/2022 07:05

My cat sleeps all day and prowls all night, she 10 and I do worry about other cats/foxes as she gets older

however as others have said cats are dicks and she will wail sitting on the window ledge at the front of house for all to see in the rain when she can come and go through catflap at anytime

she also lies flat out on the pavement and looks dead which gives people a fright

Icequeen01 · 29/09/2022 07:06

We had this with a neighbours' cat and it broke our hearts watching her outside in all weathers. Our own two cats were petrified of her as she was quite feisty with other cats having often been in fights when she strayed onto another cats' territory.

We couldn't bear it one winter when it was freezing cold and she was peering through the catflap at us so we started letting her in and feeding her. The little chirrup noises she used to make when she was snuggled up in the warm on my DS's bed made us determined to take her in permanently. We wrote a letter and spoke to the neighbours who initially were reluctant to sign her over (even though they never bothered about her). Eventually they agreed and she's been with us for about 4 years now. She has an uneasy truce with my two other cats and they try to avoid her when they can (although one desperately wants to be her friend but she's not having it!) and she has her own "places" in the house. All our surrounding neighbours were delighted when they heard we had taken her in as they had been concerned about her too.

Definitely speak to your neighbours first if you feel you are able to take her in. Situations like this break my heart.

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