I trap feral cats to neuter then release them. Recently I trapped a cat that was obviously tame. After his surgery I opted to keep him in the house so I could find a home for him. (We live near a university and cat dumping is common.)
He turned out to be a great cat. Very friendly and easy going. After a few days I started wondering about keeping him for the kids except my husband doesn't want a cat.
Then he scratched, batted, or mouthed my 3 year old when I wasn't around. Four times he hurt her. I called some rescue groups to see if they could take him right away but it was the holiday weekend.
He hadn't hurt her in days. I started wondering if it was all related to being in a new environment, having surgery, etc. Then he discovered the doggie door and would go outside during the day. There were no problems and my daughter adores this cat.
This morning the cat and our 12 pound dog were playing together. Then the cat snuggled with me and the kids in bed. I told my husband I thought we should keep the cat as long as there are no more injuries and he agreed. This afternoon he gave our 3 year old a 4 or 5 inch scratch. Having had cat scratch fever, this concerns me for lots of reasons. We asked her what she did and she demonstrated a way of holding him that seems like it would cause a cat to protect itself.
My daughter's safety is top concern. In time she will learn to be more gentle with the cat (he can put up with what our 6 year old does, just not our 3 year old.) However, we don't know how long that will be. He's a nice cat, generally.
So any thoughts on what we should do?