Sue, My Dear Cat Sitter, I Love You!

Have I mentioned how much I love my cat sitter?

Not only has she fed and watered Buddy almost every time I’ve been away these last few years, she’s done a great job and she even continues to watch Buddy despite the fact that Bud attacked hertwice.

She doesn’t play with him anymore since the second incident, and I don’t blame her. He’s known her since he was a kitten, for crying out loud. I’m sure he attacked her out of bratty frustration that she wasn’t me coming through the door, not because he was scared an unknown intruder was coming in.

Still, Sue’s so good that she was reluctant to tell me Bud attacked her because she didn’t want me to think there was a problem.

I appreciate Sue even more after reading this Reddit post about a couple who entrusted their neighbor’s 16-year-old son to watch their cat and dog while they were away for a few days.

Here’s the gist of it straight from the source:

He was supposed to let the dog out twice a day and keep an eye on the food and water. The cat is an indoor cat and he was to feed her.

Two days in he lost our key so I had to give him the garage code so he could get in.

We got home after 4 days and the cat was no where to be found. I called him and asked when the last time was he saw the cat, he told me that morning. Well we knew the cat was gone and checked our security cameras. We saw her at 5:30am on the camera outside so at a minimum she had been out since the day before. (I can see the history of when the garage opens and closes in our app) and he hasn’t been there that early. I had also checked her litter box and it was pretty clean, so she was probably gone for 2 nights.

When I told him the cat was gone he did come over and offer to go look for her and took off in his car. We saw him come back on our camera with a grocery store bag, so not sure if he actually went looking for her or not like he claimed.

We left the door open over night and she did come home and is fine. There was a good chance she couldn’t have, as we live 1 street over from open space where a pack of coyotes frequent and she is only 8lbs so a lot of other animals could have gotten her too.

Here’s the main part: we decided not to pay him. It’s a pay what you want agreement and given that we now need to rekey the house and he lost our cat we didn’t feel that he took his responsibilities seriously. And the bigger the mistake the bigger the consequence. You may say, well any job would have to still pay you. Yes, but they also can deduct or charge you the cost of damages which in this case will be more than what we would have paid him and we aren’t asking for it, just not paying him. Is that wrong?

The story was posted to the popular AITA subreddit, short for Am I The Asshole?, a place where people can solicit advice from strangers on whether they were justified for acting a certain way in a situation, or whether they were in fact “the asshole.”

Most people who responded said no, the poster and her husband are not in the wrong, and for the most part I agree.

In their situation, if my cat had come back, I would have given the kid something just to keep the peace with the neighbors and never hire him again, but I can see their side of it too. It’s expensive to get a locksmith, probably at least $200 if they only have two doors.

If the cat hadn’t come back, however, my rage would be incandescent. Nuclear. Scratch that. It would be beyond supernova level, akin to a gamma ray burst visible from millions of light years away, with a perpetual afterglow drifting in the void between galaxies. I would not be able to forgive myself nor shake the thought of my little Buddy lost, hungry, alone and terrified, and not knowing what happened to him.

It’s time to send Sue another bottle of wine and a card reminding her just how much I appreciate her.

19 thoughts on “Sue, My Dear Cat Sitter, I Love You!”

  1. I am a petsitter. I am ALWAYS super careful a pet never escaped. Accidents do happen. No doubt. My sister forgot to close garden door i had a mini breakdown. Took 8 hours for my cat to get back in. I tried grabbing him and bit me really bad. I just had to wait it out and he came back in because after 8 hours he was hungry.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I just read this story on Bored Panda. One.This teen lied numerous times. I would not pay him. Two.NEVER hire a teenager to pet sit. I was let go for teens next door to former clients. Twice. Cats escaped and never found. On my block a teen was careless and cat escaped next door to me.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I looked at the Bored Panda version. Very difficult to follow. It’s a shame that SEO ranking is based on how effectively a site’s operators manipulate search algorithms rather than the quality of content.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Hey there Big Buddy I am with you! I would go SUPERNOVA over anyone who ever lost one of my beloved 4 leggeds.
    I think that couple should have given a token as the cat came back; but I would let everyone know that young man is NOT to be trusted. Then again, should they have trusted a 16 year old BOY? Do not mean to sound prejuidical; but teens can be unreliable at the best of times! Trust me, I was a Teen & at times VERY unreliable. I have always hired Professional Sitters.
    I wonder what shape the dog was in?
    So Big Buddy send that extra bottle of wine! And THANK YOU Sue for taking such good care of Buddy aka Budster 😉
    And Buddy my man cat please be nice to Miss Sue….please!?!?!?
    ((hugs)) BellaSita Mum (Sherri-Ellen) & ***purrss*** BellaDharma

    Liked by 2 people

  4. What kind of attack did Buddy launch? Understandably it’s dangerous to cat-sit a meowscular beast like Buddy, who can do considerable damage with just one flick of his massive paws …

    Liked by 2 people

    1. The second time, he swiped at her but he didn’t connect. I think he just attacked her straight up when she came in. Not sure about the first time. She was so nice about it, she didn’t want to tell me at first because she didn’t want me to think Bud was being bad. Which he was, of course lol.


      1. See, the cat taking a swipe at me wouldn’t even faze me. I’d just be like, “Whoa! Kitties in a pissy mood I see!” Well, ok then!” and go about doing what I gotta do.

        I cat sat for a friend that had a temperamental cat named Mooshie (that’s Swedish for Cat, I was told), and he’d do things like what Buddy does. He gave me a run for my money, I tell ya, but I loved catsitting him because he was such a character.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Yeah for some people it might be a dealbreaker, but like you said, some cats are characters.

        All cats are different, just like people. I don’t mind Bud’s mercurial side because the good far outweighs the bad, and he’s my cat. I’m grateful he’s with me and didn’t end up with someone who would have surrendered him to a shelter.

        Sometimes he’s such an asshole, he makes me laugh until there are tears in my eyes. I see the humor in it. Ultimately I know he loves me and he’s also a very good boy in many other ways.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. I would lose my everliving mind! My kitties have never been out and this is a horrible place for outside cats. More than that though, I rescued mine from a kill shelter. The day I got them I promised them they would never have to be afraid of anything ever again. I cannot break my word to them.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yes, that’s exactly it. Aside from the horrible feeling of knowing something might have happened to them or they could be lost, scared and confused, it also feels like a huge betrayal. I’m glad the cat came back to the couple in the AITA thread.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Yeah, Sue sounds great bc she loves Little Buddy and she’s reliable. I need someone who’s a dedicated cat person and I hope I find someone soon. My cat baby is scared to death by his current cat sitter.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Bella and Bertie have no real bother about whoever opens the door and feeds them and pretty much zero loyalty to us. However, we are the “preferred” servants, which we can tell as they stay in a bit more when we feed them, whereas visitor servants tell us they simply eat and leave. However, our loyalty to them is unwavering, totally dedicated and 100% love.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh I’m sure they feel quite a bit of loyalty to you, it’s just that MI6 cats have busy days. You know, meetings with the King, Mycroft calling them to Scotland Yard for briefings, coordinating with Larry, His Majesty’s greatest agent, and so on.

      Liked by 1 person

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