Tag: cat safety

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.

Guy Kicks Girlfriend Out After She Admits To Tossing Cat Outside

Reddit’s “Am I The Asshole?” is described as a “catharsis for the frustrated moral philosopher in all of us, and a place to finally find out if you were wrong in an argument that’s been bothering you.” It’s also a goldmine for people who wish they could read an advice columnist’s slush pile.

On Tuesday, a user asked the community if he’s “the asshole” for kicking his girlfriend out of his home after she tried to get rid of the kitty by “pick[ing] him up and put[ting] him outside to wander off.” Here’s the full post:

According to the OP, his cat didn’t do anything to prompt his girlfriend from booting the little guy.

“She knows he can’t survive outside… She didn’t seem to have any regrets about her actions and no, she never lived with cats before,” the poster added in response to follow-up questions from the community. “She said she couldn’t stand cats and that she couldn’t live with one.”

A few users pointed out that kicking a house cat with no survival skills out of a home is not only dangerous, but kicking a black cat out on or near Halloween could have tragic consequences. As for the original poster, he says he’s placed Raven in the temporary care of a friend until his girlfriend moves out, as he’s worried she might try to hurt the cat — or throw him out again — out of spite.

Others said he was doing the right thing even if Raven wasn’t in danger.

“If she thinks it’s acceptable to do that with something as important as a pet, then she thinks she can do that with any aspect of your life she doesn’t like,” one user wrote. “The cat is important, but almost irrelevant in the scope of red flags she’s throwing out.”

For whatever reason, even though women are more likely to be cat caretakers than men — and men are statistically more likely to take their relationship frustration out on pets, especially cats — the last few viral stories about relationship conflicts over cats have implicated women. Obviously if the situation had been reversed, the boyfriend should have been thrown out, or the girlfriend should have left with her cat. Gender isn’t the issue here: The issue is jerks who take their frustrations out on innocent animals.

Reason #53 To Keep Your Cats Indoors: Vigilantes

One bad thing about having Google News alerts for cat-related stories is the sheer, sickening volume of articles about cats who are maimed, tortured, killed by vigilante lunatics, dispatched by overzealous birders, shot with BB guns or arrows, poisoned with antifreeze, murdered as proxies in domestic violence incidents, kicked like soccer balls by juvenile psychopaths, or tragically killed by someone’s epic stupidity.

The amount of violence directed at felines is mind-boggling, and it doesn’t reflect well on the US: For example in Istanbul, a city of more than 15 million people, there are some 130,000 cats living on the streets, not including pets. While many ‘Mericans see an animal and think “Let’s shoot it!” the people of Turkey are overwhelmingly compassionate, going to incredible lengths to make sure street cats are fed, watered, sheltered and have access to veterinary care.

Today’s story fits in the “vigilante lunatics” category.

It’s not clear if the person in question simply hates cats or is acting out of some misguided campaign to “protect” small wildlife, but we do know that a would-be cat killer is threatening to kill outdoor kitties in Joplin, Missouri, a city about 230 miles east of Oklahoma City.

photo of british shorthair cat sitting on grass field
Credit: Kirsten Bu00fchne/Pexels

The suspect slapped warning letters and posters on the front doors of homes along four separate streets between 2:40 and 5 a.m. on Monday, local police said.

Cops haven’t released the full text of the letters, but said the letter-writer threatened to kill any stray or feral cats he or she comes across in the neighborhood. Likewise, while police did say images of the letter-writer were captured on doorbell cameras, they’re holding the identifying details close to the vest right now, which they may do for any number of reasons.

One of the homeowner who received the letter said he fears his two missing cats are now dead. Another neighbor said the letters follow similar threats by a woman wearing a red jacket, who told some people in the neighborhood to keep their cats inside or else.

“The lady, she was walking up and down the streets going door to door telling everybody that they better watch out for our cats because they were going to start being euthanized,” the neighbor told WKSN, the local NBC affiliate.

Joplin police are offering $2,500 to anyone with information that leads to the arrest of the letter-writer.

‘Elon Musk Killed My Cats,’ Britney Spears’ Sister Claims

Coronavirus. Unprecedented income inequality. Instability. Millions of religious minorities wasting away in Chinese government concentration camps.

The world is a mess right now and sometimes it’s difficult to know where to start, but thankfully Jamie Lynn Spears — unintelligible mumbler, erstwhile country music singer and younger sister of Britney — is here to set our priorities straight.

“The Tesla is a secret cat killer, and it’s a problem that we really gotta fix,” a purple-haired Spears told her followers in a video she uploaded to Instagram a few days ago.

“We have now lost — I don’t want to tell you how many cats — because they don’t hear the Tesla crank and unfortunate things happen and it’s really devastating and tragic for everyone involved,” Spears said.

Perfectly understandable. I mean, who doesn’t run over a cat or six while backing out of the driveway? And who wants to be bothered with actually caring for cats and keeping them indoors when you can tell your 2.1 million Instagram followers that a corporation is at fault?

“Like, one of those noises”

Thankfully, Jamie Lynn has a solution, which she also shared with her followers.

“So since the Tesla is so quiet, maybe you could, like, make one of those noises that, like, bother cat or animal ears when it cranks up, so that, like, they know something’s happening and they aren’t caught off guard, and things don’t end in a very tragic way,” Spears continued, indicating she’s spent a lot of time ruminating on this issue. “So, Elon Musk, let’s figure this out, B, because you owe me a couple of cats.”

Like other celebrities, Spears was apparently expecting to air her thoughts and have the entire internet break into a slow clap and say “You’re so right! Hooray for you!” And like other celebrities, Spears deleted the video and furiously backpedaled when people started questioning her claims.

Jamie Lynn Spears at Walmart
Jamie Lynn Spears, net worth $6 million, sister of Britney Spears (net worth $59 million), shopping at Walmart.

The first thing people wanted to know was: Just how many cats did Jamie Lynn lose to Evil Elon Musk and the Teslarizer?

Was it 1) “I don’t want to tell you how many cats” as Spears first indicated, 2) “A couple of cats” as Spears claimed in a follow-up video, or 3) Zero cats, as Spears claimed in a follow-up post to her follow-up video?

After looking into the camera and flatly declaring that Elon Musk owes her “a couple cats,” as if they’re replaceable products, Spears wrote that she “did not run over any cats” and Tesla is “not to be blamed.”

Let’s collab, yo. I got mad ideas!

“I was only making a suggestion about something I think would be extremely helpful, and the geniuses at @Teslamotors are the best to go to for said issue,” she concluded, suggesting Tesla should contact her to “collaborate” on a solution.

We’re sure the industry-disrupting engineers and other geniuses working for Tesla would have been thrilled to collaborate with a mind of Spears’ caliber, but alas they won’t get the opportunity.

That’s because Teslas and other electric cars are already required by law to make a persistent sound when traveling at low speeds, a tweak made at the behest of the American Council of the Blind.

Although Spears got a bit shy after she didn’t receive the ovation she was expecting and refused to clarify how many cats she’s killed with her Teslas, we know the number is at least one. In another recent video, Spears’ similarly purple-haired toddler is seen saying her cat, Turkey (*sniff*), was “in heaven.”

We are sorry Turkey had the misfortune of being adopted by a living indictment of the American education system, and we hope rescue and shelter organizations within 50 miles of Spears’ trailer decline to adopt cats out to her in the future, lest they end up on Musk’s tab.

And if you think we’re being too harsh on Spears, we’d ask you: What kind of world do we live in when someone is allowed to casually kill animals through her own negligence with complete impunity? We’re talking about life here, not broken toys or kitchen appliances.

Does Your Cat Tolerate A Collar?

Even indoor cats should wear collars, according to a pair of veterinarians who spoke with PopSugar.

Megan McCorkel, a veterinarian who writes for Better With Cats, said collars can make a difference if the unexpected happens and your cat gets outside:

While it might not seem as necessary to put a collar on an indoor cat as an outdoor cat, accidents can still happen, Dr. McCorkel said. Even indoor-only cats can venture out of the house unexpectedly. However, because indoor-only cats don’t have the street savviness of outdoor felines, they might be in a bit of panic when they first get out, she explained. Luckily, a collar helps people realize that your stressed-out kitty doesn’t belong outside, prompting them to return your lost cat home safely and quickly. “I think of a collar on an indoor cat like an insurance plan,” Dr. McCorkel said. “I hope I don’t need it, but when I do, I’ll be glad it’s there.”

The last time I tried to put a collar on Buddy was six years ago, and he was miserable with it on. At the time I tried the gradual approach, leaving it on him for short spurts and giving him extra treats and praise when he had it on.

Eventually I left it on Bud for the better part of a day. He whined and cried and never forgot it was around his neck.

Finally he managed to contort himself so he could get a hind paw underneath the collar and pull on it with his front paws. He trilled with anticipation, sliding it up his neck toward his ears — then lost his grip, and the collar snapped back like a rubber band.

I will never forget his shriek of unmistakable frustration in that moment. I knew he was miserable, and I took the collar off immediately.

Screenshot_2020-12-05 Cat-wearing-a-collar-Vets-Now webp (WEBP Image, 1333 × 1000 pixels) — Scaled (96%)

Right now I’m not worried about him getting outside because I live in an apartment building, meaning Bud would have to get through three or four sets of doors, and primarily because he wants nothing to do with the outdoors. As an indoor cat, Buddy gets overwhelmed by the sights, sounds and smells outside, and that’s when he’s on his harness with me as his safety blanket. He enjoys sunbathing on the balcony, but he won’t even step out there unless it’s a perfect 75-degree day.

I’ve made the determination that it’s not worth making him suffer. That could change in the future when my living circumstances are different.

What about your cats? Do they tolerate collars? Do you think they’re necessary?