February 19th, 2006, 09:37 PM
Sorry this is kinda long...:o
A couple of months ago a cat started hanging outside meowing and wanting in. He would meow so much I thought he was a female in heat! I figured he was a stray in need of a home I but went away for a month and figured he probably wouldn’t be there when I got back. Well I was wrong, he was outside my bedroom window every night when I returned, meowing so loud it would wake me up. A couple of weeks ago I let him inside and fed him and put a collar on him with my phone number, in case he belongs to someone so they can call me and let me know. A week later nobody has called and I take him to the vet and get him neutered. A few days ago the collar goes missing, I assume Chaplin just got it caught on something but today it shows up again with a number and “mon chat” written on it. So apparently he does have a home after all and I have neutered someone else’s cat!!! :eek:
So now I have no idea what to do. He was estimated by the vet at 2 years old, yet free to wander around un-neutered. He’s also had cuts on his ears and tail, has fleas, and was boney. But despite this neglect someone owns him so there’s nothing I can do right? I am going to have to phone this number back and I have no idea what to expect or what to say! What if they don’t know he’s neutered yet? What if they do and are pissed? And what am I supposed to do about Chaplin? Just force him out and ignore him when he meows outside my window at night? He is free to come and go as he chooses yet he has chosen to sleep here every single night since I let him in two weeks ago. And during the day he is usually either lying on my bed, or on my balcony sunning if it is warm. He has obviously decided to live here, but I feel like he isn’t my cat so I have no right to keep him. Do I just let him come in so long as he wants to? Even if I returned him, he obviously knows his way home and back here so he’d just come back again. His collar came off last Wednesday and only back on today so I’m assuming he only went back home today for them to put it back on…
Anyways I would really love some advice as I have no idea what to do here! What do I say when I call them? Please help!
February 19th, 2006, 10:14 PM
Well, I can only tell you what I would do.
First of all, cats that are found on your property are considered to be stray, and you may do with them as you wish.
To me, a cat wandering outside and intact is homeless. Since you cared for him and neutered him, to me he's yours and you have the vet records to prove it.
Keep him in the house. After all, he could very easily have been run over, poisoned, killed by dogs or mean people in his wandering and his owner would never know, and seemingly doesn't care, considering the condition he was in.
This poor guy deserves better. Keep him.:) And don't bother calling either.
February 19th, 2006, 10:36 PM
Oh I like that !! Great advice !! If he doesn't go out again (where it's dangerous for kitties anyway) he can stay at your house where he belongs.
DON'T CALL !!!!
February 19th, 2006, 11:20 PM
Should I just not answer if they call again? I'm going to Ontario early tomorrow morning for the week (my sister is looking after Chaplin while I'm gone) so at least I won't have to really make any decisions until I get back... I still feel bad though. I don't like feeling like I've taken someone's cat, but I'd also feel aweful leaving him to a neglectful home! I'm trying to figure out which is the less of two evils here :( But I mean if I let him come and go as he pleases and he keeps coming back, I'm not really taking anyone's cat right? Just feeding and sheltering him? But then I move in July and will have to decide whether to take him or not... Also they have my phone number and therefore can get my name and address thanks to reverse look-up which is a bit of a pain. But legally they can't do anything for neutering can they? I mean, I suppose I could even deny I was the one who did it if it came to that... I should have just not put my phone number on the collar and stayed blissfully ignorant of his previous home.:rolleyes:
February 19th, 2006, 11:27 PM
The deciding factor here should be what is best for the cat? Obviously, keeping him indoors and denying all knowledge of his whereabouts if they should call would be in his best interests. Yes, you sheltered him. But he disappeared. Right?
February 19th, 2006, 11:29 PM
You could say you sheltered him because you felt sorry for him because you have a cat that looks so incredibly similar to him, but then he ran away and you haven't seen him since.;)
February 19th, 2006, 11:51 PM
Thing is I don't really think it would be a good idea to keep him indoors right now. All he would have is my bedroom as we are still in the introduction phase with Poe, and I just don't feel it would be fair to keep him in a small room when he is used to absolute freedom. He is also quite noisey when he wants out, and this sometimes happens early in the morning and he won't stop until I let him out so I also have to think of the best interest of my bf and I, who like to sleep past dawn. There aren't any other rooms to keep him in as downstairs belongs to the dog, who Chaplin hates, and upstairs belongs to Poe, who hates Chaplin . I have been keeping him in more and more, and he has been meowing to get out less and less, but I think he will have to remain indoor/outdoor until I move. When I move in July I can then keep him indoors and he will actually have space to run around inside :)
I could always answer if they call again and say I don't see him around anymore and even if he goes back there for a visit once and a while they will never know where he goes the rest of the time...
February 20th, 2006, 03:14 AM
I agree with Lucky! He is your cat - according to the law and I would just explain that tio the other oerson who supposedly owned him. "Mon Chat" could have been written by anyone - it is meaningless in court but your vet records have great meaning!
February 20th, 2006, 08:16 AM
No question in my mind,Chaplin has chosen you as his his mom and you saved many unwanted kittens from being born:thumbs up
February 20th, 2006, 08:20 AM
Keep Chaplin...he's yours and he chose you. Do not feel guilty about taking good care of a cat.
February 20th, 2006, 09:55 AM
All he would have is my bedroom as we are still in the introduction phase with Poe, and I just don't feel it would be fair to keep him in a small room when he is used to absolute freedom.
Every single cat we take in has to be locked in one room, sometimes for many months, and ALL these cats are used to complete freedom as well - freedom to get run over, contract disease, create kittens, get chased or shot with BB guns, taken to the SPCA and killed, etc etc
You can see that being in one room is not so bad after all.:D
If you hadn't taken this guy in, he was near the end of his lifespan anyway, since outdoor cats (especially in the city) are lucky if they reach 3 years old.
If this person calls you, you haven't seen her cat. Tell her he was probably run over.
February 20th, 2006, 10:45 AM
If Chaplin was thin, had fleas, was scabby, was un-neutered and allowed to wander then his previous owners shouldn't have had the poor little guy.Talk about irresponsible. He's obviously chosen you over them - smart guy - cats instinctively know where they're better off so keep him in. Can you cage him at night in another part of the house where he can't wake you up at dawn? Your moving day isn't that far off. He's a very lucky cat to have found you.
February 20th, 2006, 11:25 AM
Posession is 9/10ths of the law. Whomever had the audacity to place a note claming ownership, yet let him outside uncared for, thin, flea ridden, and unneutered, needs to be ignored if they should try to call a 2nd time. It's difficult to find space to let everyone work out their differences, but I'm afraid (as you are too I can tell) if you let him back out, something dreadful will happen.
February 20th, 2006, 04:42 PM
Kayla,I forgot to add,you are wonderful for taking such good care of him,he is 100% yours in my view:thumbs up
February 20th, 2006, 06:15 PM
My experience was similar to yours, Kayla. I took in an abandoned cat-- bone-thin, matted long coat, intact, ears full of mites. After the vaccinations, the waiting period, the operation to get him neutered etc. I received a message from a member here that there was a man from the neighbourhood who had been looking for his cat everywhere. I replied that anyone who had left an intact male cat outside-- a cat who was not at all wild, and would have come if called-- had lost all right to the cat.
I considered for a moment asking him to meet the cat, and to reimburse me all the money I had spent on Shaku, but I have to confess that it was too late, I was already deeply attached to the little bugger. He's one of the greatest cats I've ever met.
February 20th, 2006, 06:38 PM
Our City's law is this.
. Note: Keeping a found animal for more than 72 hours, not including the day it is found, may be viewed by Animal Services as an acceptance of responsibility and ownership by the finding party.
So if your laws are the same, this cat is yours!!;)
February 24th, 2006, 07:13 AM
OK, I have to admit I am a little relieved everyone thinks I should keep him, I didn't want to have to shut him out and make him go elsewhere! I think I will try calling this number anyways just to get the person's story though, since there could be reasons I can't see that Chaplin was outside and uncared for. I kind of doubt any reason would be good enough but would like to give them benefit of the doubt. And maybe I can squeeze some info out like his age, last vaccination etc. I don't have to tell them he's still here though, I can say haven't seen him for days ;)