Autistic girl has no plans to put cat out in the cold. Stop asking. Update post 32, 83 - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 88 Old 12-15-2007, 04:53 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Help Help Help. We were followed home by a cat. DH and I are not cat/pet people. We used to rescue feral kittens and bring them to a woman who got them medical attention and found homes for them, but we've never had one as a houseguest.

A very sweet gray-and-white cat (sex and breed unknown) followed us home in the icy weather tonight. I have provided him with a bit of tuna and water, taken a digital photo of him and posted it on "lost pet" sites. He is asleep on one of my floor cushions. I plan to put him, the cushion, the food & water, and a plastic wash basin/"litterbox" into the bathroom for the night.

What do I do now? DH and I are allergic. I don't know what to use for litter until the store opens. I am researching cats like mad on the net, but I don't know what I should do for this animal.

He seems healthy, super-friendly, and very tame. I want to find his owners. I cannot have a cat. Cannot cannot cannot.

What do I do? Should I shred newspaper in the plastic box? What do cats like?

DH is tired and losing his mind. I can't sleep with the cat here. It's very obsessive--not the cat; I mean that I am quite obsessive about what to do with him. I'm afraid we're about to have a fight. DH and I, that is.
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#2 of 88 Old 12-15-2007, 05:04 AM
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the cat is cute. dirt or soil will work for temporary litter. he's warm, fed, and has a place to wee. go get some sleep, you've done all you can do for now.
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#3 of 88 Old 12-15-2007, 05:04 AM
 
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Do you have a sandbox? Cat's love sand, peagravel...or just dirt.

Heather married to my highschool sweetheart 6/7/02 :cop: Mother to Dani age 14 and Timmy age 10 Nadia 1/29 :
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#4 of 88 Old 12-15-2007, 05:10 AM
 
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you could put newspaper or dirt in the box. locking him up is fine, actually, it's better than fine. It's good for them to be contained in a new space.

no worries (ha, easier said than done) but you can take him somewhere tomorrow, or monday at the latest. people will understand how you could not leave him out in the ice, but cannot have him.

vacuuming will help with the dander. some cats are not very allergy inducing. hopefully this is one of them.

I think he looks like a boy cat.

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#5 of 88 Old 12-15-2007, 07:40 AM
 
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He's super cute! My husband and I are both allergic and two years ago we got suckered in by a kitty who looks very similar to him (though ours has spots! And there is NO DOUBT he's a boy lol)

Doesn't Craigslist have a pets area? You could post an ad or ask for help there maybe, as well as seeing if there are any no-kill cat rescue places in your area.

Dirt would work great in the litter box or potting soil. Or if he's anything like all the cats I've had, leave a plastic grocery bag or two in there. Or preferably for him I'm sure...anywhere you least want peed on.

If anyone in your house can stand it, you could try petting/rubbing him with a towel or something similar. I think that's supposed to cut down at least some on the dander.

Good luck!!
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#6 of 88 Old 12-15-2007, 07:42 AM
 
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If you let him out in the morning, he may go home...
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#7 of 88 Old 12-15-2007, 09:04 AM
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When I worked for a vet, we used shredded newspaper for cats who had bandaged feet (instead of litter). if you put enough in, it works great. Dirt can be very messy in your house.

Good luck!
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#8 of 88 Old 12-15-2007, 10:26 AM
 
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He looks pretty well fed, chances are he has a nice home Let him out today and see if he goes home.
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#9 of 88 Old 12-15-2007, 12:11 PM
 
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My advice is to become super attached to the cat and begin making long term plans. If possible, your children should instantly fall in love with said cat. In my experience, once this happens, the rightful owners will show up.

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#10 of 88 Old 12-15-2007, 12:50 PM
 
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My advice is to become super attached to the cat and begin making long term plans. If possible, your children should instantly fall in love with said cat. In my experience, once this happens, the rightful owners will show up.
Yes, that. And make sure you spend a lot of money on supplies and medical attention too.
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#11 of 88 Old 12-15-2007, 12:50 PM
 
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Craigslist will work well for re-homing lost cats. Since you are allergic, you could do this at the same time as looking for the former owner... if they turn up later, give the number of the new owners and let them hash it out.

You may want to take it to a vet to check for a microchip, if found they can call the owners ASAP.
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#12 of 88 Old 12-15-2007, 01:43 PM
 
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I agree that looks like a well-fed cat who probably has a home and owners.

A freeloader, in other words!

How did you survive the night?

Mom of two girls.
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#13 of 88 Old 12-15-2007, 01:45 PM
 
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Originally Posted by fallriverfox View Post
My advice is to become super attached to the cat and begin making long term plans. If possible, your children should instantly fall in love with said cat. In my experience, once this happens, the rightful owners will show up.
Yep!
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#14 of 88 Old 12-15-2007, 03:10 PM - Thread Starter
 
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None of the no-kill shelters in my area will take any more animals. Of course. Because it's freezing outside.

Because I can't have nameless creatures roaming around, but don't know how to check the cat's sex, he/she is now, for our purposes, called Sage. Sage now has litter and dry food. Sage is welcome to stay for the 72-hour lost pet reporting period unless he/she begins making trouble. If that happens, or after 72 hours, Sage is going to be temporarily re-home to a cat-friendly friend in Brooklyn while a permanent home, or Sage's owners, are found.

I am not letting a cat outside to "find its way home" in 27-degree weather. I have a real problem with the "outdoor-cat" fallacy in general. Honestly, if Sage WERE my cat and had escaped last night, I would have been out looking. However, if there's some sweet old lady in tears because Sage escaped out of a window, I want to try to reunite them.

We really can't keep this cat. Anyone in NYC want a really sweet, perfectly behaved cat, provided I can't find the owner?
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#15 of 88 Old 12-15-2007, 03:12 PM - Thread Starter
 
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One more question: If I stock the bathroom with litterbox, food, water, and my floor cushion that Sage seems to have adopted, is it inhumane to shut Sage in the bathroom when I'm out and at night? I worry about my bird (small green Felix) and the pee factor.
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#16 of 88 Old 12-15-2007, 03:19 PM
 
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One more question: If I stock the bathroom with litterbox, food, water, and my floor cushion that Sage seems to have adopted, is it inhumane to shut Sage in the bathroom when I'm out and at night? I worry about my bird (small green Felix) and the pee factor.
It is not inhumane. It may become problematic if the cat meows and scratches to get out and generally becomes a noise issue. But, that's what I do with kittens during box training.

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#17 of 88 Old 12-15-2007, 03:23 PM
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He looks pretty well fed, chances are he has a nice home Let him out today and see if he goes home.
:

My boss (the vet) used to say every other "stray" was really a cat just out for a walk.

In one case, a family bought in a "stray" and we recognized it as a patient belonging to another client! We assisted in kitty's return to his rightful home.

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#18 of 88 Old 12-15-2007, 03:27 PM - Thread Starter
 
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:

My boss (the vet) used to say every other "stray" was really a cat just out for a walk.

In one case, a family bought in a "stray" and we recognized it as a patient belonging to another client! We assisted in kitty's return to his rightful home.

I live in NYC. I'm not putting a cat out in sub-freezing weather to "find his way home." I will do my best to find his owner, but said owner will be getting an earful from me if they let their city cat go out on "walks." A big earful.
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#19 of 88 Old 12-15-2007, 06:41 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I registered Sage as lost with the local animal control, so they have my contact info. I have to say, really, this cat is no trouble at all...
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#20 of 88 Old 12-15-2007, 06:48 PM
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Can you take Sage to a vet to check for a sub-dermal tag? Those are linked with phone/address of the owner. If you were closer to me, I'd take him/her. To sex him/her, turn him over and look. Testicles are hard to miss and a penis sticks out a little more. The advice I read for sexing kittens was: if it looks like a semi-colon girl, colon boy but that advice never made much sense to me.
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#21 of 88 Old 12-15-2007, 06:52 PM
 
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Can you take Sage to a vet to check for a sub-dermal tag? Those are linked with phone/address of the owner.
That's good advice, that is.

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#22 of 88 Old 12-15-2007, 07:01 PM
 
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One more question: If I stock the bathroom with litterbox, food, water, and my floor cushion that Sage seems to have adopted, is it inhumane to shut Sage in the bathroom when I'm out and at night? I worry about my bird (small green Felix) and the pee factor.
No, not inhumane at all. Good for you for looking after him/her!

Mom to (5) (9)
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#23 of 88 Old 12-16-2007, 12:12 AM
 
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I live in NYC. I'm not putting a cat out in sub-freezing weather to "find his way home." I will do my best to find his owner, but said owner will be getting an earful from me if they let their city cat go out on "walks." A big earful.
Most cats, if they have adequate nourishment and have been outside from the start of the season change, will develop a thick enough coat to be fine in the winter, as long as they have a shelter from the wind and elements. My cat is a 365-day outside cat and is fine.

However, this cat you found looks like an indoor cat-- his coat doesn't look very thick and he doesn't appear very muscular (outdoor cats do a lot more jumping and roaming). My guess is that he accidentally got outside... putting him outside again might make him more lost. Could you put up signs around the neighborhood?

Checking him for fleas might also tell you if he is an owned cat or a stray-- chances are an owned cat will have flea drops. Watch out that you all don't get fleas!
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#24 of 88 Old 12-16-2007, 12:34 AM
 
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You need to let the cat out, IMO. Seriously. If she really is homeless she will stick around. But she looks healthy and well fed and it is not up to you to decide if she should be an indoor/outdoor cat or not. My cats go out and if someone took one of them and wouldn't let it home for days I would be livid.
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#25 of 88 Old 12-16-2007, 12:40 AM
 
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You need to let the cat out, IMO. Seriously. If she really is homeless she will stick around. But she looks healthy and well fed and it is not up to you to decide if she should be an indoor/outdoor cat or not. My cats go out and if someone took one of them and wouldn't let it home for days I would be livid.
My cats don't go out but I still have to give this a huge : !!!

~Marie : Mom to DS(11), DS(10), DD(8), DD(4), DD(2), & Happily Married to DH 12 yrs.!
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#26 of 88 Old 12-16-2007, 12:45 AM
 
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You need to let the cat out, IMO. Seriously. If she really is homeless she will stick around. But she looks healthy and well fed and it is not up to you to decide if she should be an indoor/outdoor cat or not. My cats go out and if someone took one of them and wouldn't let it home for days I would be livid.
Uh, no. I'm in north Jersey, so I know what the weather is like here right now. Good on you for keeping that cat in while you search for the owner.

Actually I'll be in The City tomorrow (going into Brooklyn by way of the PATH from Jersey. I'm not sure if there's anything I can do to help (can't take the cat, sadly, I already have three) but if you think of anything you might need from an experienced cat person let me know. I'm in The City all the time.
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#27 of 88 Old 12-16-2007, 12:46 AM
 
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I'm in Ontario and my cats go out, voluntarily, for short periods every day. Even in the snow and cold. Of course you wouldn't let the cat out at night, but keeping it for days on end is really ethically wrong when it very likely has a home close by.
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#28 of 88 Old 12-16-2007, 12:51 AM
 
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I'm in Ontario and my cats go out, voluntarily, for short periods every day. Even in the snow and cold. Of course you wouldn't let the cat out at night, but keeping it for days on end is really ethically wrong when it very likely has a home close by.
I know what you're saying, and I'm not trying to start an indoor/outdoor cat debate. In NYC nearly all cats are indoor, and so unprepared for subfreezing weather. If this is an indoor cat, throwing it out in the weather we're having to find it's way home could be a death sentence. If this were my cat and I discovered (somehow) that someone had found it and taken it in, then thrown it out to wander home alone/die in the below freezing temps, I'd be livid. I think in this case it's better to be safe than sorry, and keep the cat in.
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#29 of 88 Old 12-16-2007, 12:54 AM
 
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If you let the cat out in the daytime and it has no home to go to, it will come back IMO. If you keep it in and don't let it go home, where is it going to end up? A shelter or something? While someone frets and wonders where their cat is?
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#30 of 88 Old 12-16-2007, 01:00 AM
 
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If you let the cat out in the daytime and it has no home to go to, it will come back IMO. If you keep it in and don't let it go home, where is it going to end up? A shelter or something? While someone frets and wonders where their cat is?
If you let it out in the daytime it MAY come back. Or it may freeze, or get hit by a car, or badly injured by another animal, or taken in by an inhumane person.

If the someone who lost their cat really wants to find it, they'll contact the local humane society or other lost pet agencies that the OP has already contacted.
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