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Stray cat dilemma


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#1 someoneanon

Posted 21 November 2019 - 10:36 AM

We recently had a stray cat come to our house and it is emaciated but friendly. We have feed her and checked for desexing/microchip tattooes. We haven't seen any. We are planning on taking her to get checked. I have checked out all local facebook groups and found no listing for a missing cat matching her description and went back as far as June. We have been feeding and petting her over the past few days. Due to the extreme weather we brought her into the house where it was cool and she could get food and water.

But here is the dilemma.

I kind of want to keep her. My kids have been falling in love with her. But I rent and we are not being allowed permission for pets, even though we have asked a few times. We have entered our 3rd year here. I also know that the landlords have allowed pets in the past.

I'm considering keeping her but leaving her as an outdoor cat but bringing her in overnight and during the day when she wants. But I guess I morally feel wrong to do this as the landlord has said no to pets (mainly dogs). I also think that even though tenants should have the right to have a pet, the landlord has the right to have a say on this currently, so am aware of it potentially jeopardising our living arrangements. I also don't like having outdoor cats. I think it is wrong for the environment.

I'm worried about taking her to a shelter in case she gets put to sleep. I know the RSPCA AWL and most shelters in SA are kill shelters who will likely put her down.

Financially, we can afford pet food and would be able to cover some vet bills. However, we would not be able to financially afford a sudden expense and vet bills can be huge.

I am in two minds and need to make a call either way. So WDYT?

#2 kadoodle

Posted 21 November 2019 - 10:57 AM

Would the landlord be sympathetic to the exact situation? It’s worth asking.

#3 WannabeMasterchef

Posted 21 November 2019 - 11:33 AM

Are you allowed outdoor cats in your council?  Some have changed recently in SA.  Also laws have changed that all animals must be desexed and microchipped. Can you afford that?

http://goodcatsa.com...and-cat-reforms

Personally I would take the cat to a shelter.

Edited by WannabeMasterchef, 21 November 2019 - 11:35 AM.


#4 born.a.girl

Posted 21 November 2019 - 11:41 AM

Sometimes it's tricky to turn an outdoor cat into an indoor cat.

We didn't succeed with one, and we went through many litres of urinoff in the process.   He was in the laundry overnight because otherwise he'd yowl his head off at the back door, and inevitably pee on something in protest.

In regard to vet fees being expensive, yes, some are, but I also believe some treatments are carried out which are not in the best interests of the cat.   We recently had to say goodbye to one of ours with a neurological condition.  Our vet bluntly said 'you wouldn't be doing it for him' when I asked about treatment. It would have involved brain surgery, chemo and/or radiotherapy.  And it would extend his 'life' by no more than two years.  Yet people do it.  In the meantime, another healthy cat has been pts at a shelter because there are too many there.

So keep in mind that if a cat's treatment needs are beyond you, and they are going to live a miserable life without the treatment, the kindest thing is to let them go.


I don't think microchipping has tattoos, does it?  Just neutering.  The nearest vet will scan the cat for you and tell you if it has a microchip.

#5 seayork2002

Posted 21 November 2019 - 11:49 AM

I would not keep the cat unless I had actual permission - if you got the permission then you would need to proceed with all medical/registration things that need doing

if you are willing to do that then great!

added- as the other posters have correctly said is you don't know if it has an owner already so I would do all you can on that front first.

Edited by seayork2002, 21 November 2019 - 12:02 PM.


#6 K.heather

Posted 21 November 2019 - 11:51 AM

I did this, feral stray cat turned up in the garden one day so I started feeding her and let her inside and have gotten her desexed. Fingers crossed the landlord has some compassion, can you pay a pet bond or the like? Good luck.x. strays are awesome mine is so loving and now fat haha.

#7 Etta

Posted 21 November 2019 - 11:55 AM

Have you taken her to the vet to check for a microchip? She won't have a tattoo from this but she could have been missing for a long time or from somewhere a long way away. I would take her to the vet ASAP to find out if she is microchipped.

#8 WannabeMasterchef

Posted 21 November 2019 - 11:57 AM

 K.heather, on 21 November 2019 - 11:51 AM, said:

I did this, feral stray cat turned up in the garden one day so I started feeding her and let her inside and have gotten her desexed. Fingers crossed the landlord has some compassion, can you pay a pet bond or the like? Good luck.x. strays are awesome mine is so loving and now fat haha.

Theres some links off of that website I posted about helping tenants negotiate pets in SA. Might help OP.

#9 laridae

Posted 21 November 2019 - 12:00 PM

Ok, first. You don't know for sure this cat doesn't already have an owner. So you need to take it to the vet and see if it's got a chip. If not, you can always take it home again. Second. Please advertise that you've found a cat and put the picture on those groups you've been looking at. For all you know, the cat goes home when she's not at your house and the owners doesn't think she is lost. Or she could have travelled a long way.
if after all that it still appears she has no owner, I think I'd approach the landlord. They may say no pets, but that may mean they don't want a dog there. If you approach with a specific situation they may be flexible.

Edited by laridae, 21 November 2019 - 12:04 PM.


#10 K.heather

Posted 21 November 2019 - 12:03 PM

Mine was a bit different, yes a stray etc but one day I was outside with the cat and my neighbour is like hey that's my cat and her name is .... Turned out neighbour had let her have two litters before age one and now my cat is 24/7 with me, apparently her brother is also hanging around and yes I did report neighbour for neglect. Not once has my cat tried to go next door as she was very under weight etc.

#11 JingleBlitzenBalls

Posted 21 November 2019 - 12:27 PM

After microchippong etc, maybe your landlord would be OK if you built a cat run for her.

I do get why LLs dont allow cats or dogs - cats can make the house smell if the owners arent diligent and dogs can destroy things (for the same reason).

If you are a good tenant and can show that having the animal wont damage their property - factually stating what actions you will take to ensure this, - then maybe you will have a better chance of being allowed

#12 FearsomeFeralFreak

Posted 21 November 2019 - 01:15 PM

Good tenants are gold so hopefully that works in your favour and you say the landlord has allowed pets in the past.
I would write a request, mentioning how much your kids already love the cat (nothing wrong with tugging at the heart string) and see how you go
Please don't take the cat to a shelter unless you have exhausted all other options, chances are high that it will be put to sleep.

#13 #notallcats

Posted 21 November 2019 - 03:17 PM

I'd be reluctant to ask the LL in case they said no, and then you're a bit stuck.  It's not like you went out and purchased a cat, he came to you.  I'd definitely keep him, he sounds adorable.

As for vet fees, yes it does happen.  But often it's years inbetween unless you get a bit of bad luck, or they are getting on.  My cat is four and has only been to the vet when we first found her as a small kitten.  Nothing for 3+ years.  Previous cat was only seeing the vet occassionally towards the end of a very long life.  This is especially true for indoor or mainly indoor cats.  Unfortunately your cat may have had a hard life so that may impact his health but I wouldn't worry about it too much, most are quite resilient.

#14 BornToLove

Posted 21 November 2019 - 04:31 PM

Re:vet fees, check with your council about desexing and micro chipping. I know ours offers a clinic once or twice a year for reduced cost.

You should also look into costs for annual vaccines and worming tablets as it will be outdoors.

#15 Lallalla

Posted 21 November 2019 - 05:16 PM

I can’t answer on the tenancy thing. But our local RSPCA would be willing to take the cat, look for its owners and then give you first chance at adopting. Which for an adult cat who needs desexing, microchipping and vaccinating, is a good deal. On the other hand my cat who came from there 9 years later still thinks he’s going back when I take him to the vet...

#16 Romeo Void

Posted 21 November 2019 - 06:56 PM

She may belong to a neighbour and is just trawling looking for more food/company.  Emaciation might be from age or hyperthyroid disease?  Or he/she is a genuin stray.  I would be inclined to keep feeding the stray and enjoy it's company. If asked by a landlord I'd answer truthfully...it's a stray.

#17 Druidmom

Posted 21 November 2019 - 07:28 PM

I am a foster carer for a rescue group in Adelaide. The RSPCA and AWL are at capacity to the point of telling people to go to rescues for surrendering. The problem is that it is the peak of kitten season and all 40-odd rescue groups are at capacity as well. We have taken in more as they come in but are beyond strained. Please take her to get checked for a chip etc. There is a desexing clinic in Allenby Gardens and there is also C.A.T.S for help in desexing.
I would contact the LL again and explain the situation to the specific cat. Hopefully, they will say yes.

#18 Chicken Pie

Posted 21 November 2019 - 07:47 PM

SA Dog Rescue are no kill

#19 someoneanon

Posted 22 November 2019 - 08:37 AM

Thanks all for the advice. I am following up on getting her checked for microchip. I think it might have a home already with a neighbour. I don't know though as they are weird and I don't like approaching them as they cause issues for us with our landlord (They rang to complain about bin lid banging :/ ).
I figure I will take it to the vet and go from there.

I will not take her on as a pet. I honestly don't think it would be right for us to do that at this stage. i will make sure that if she is a stray we will get her rehomed.

#20 SeaPrincess

Posted 22 November 2019 - 08:46 AM

Our cat was surrendered to our vet, who microchipped her, sterilised her and cared for her for a week while they tried to find her home, then put her up for adoption. We saw the post on their Facebook page and brought her home. The vet might be able to assist.

#21 born.a.girl

Posted 22 November 2019 - 10:59 AM

 someoneanon, on 22 November 2019 - 08:37 AM, said:

Thanks all for the advice. I am following up on getting her checked for microchip. I think it might have a home already with a neighbour. I don't know though as they are weird and I don't like approaching them as they cause issues for us with our landlord (They rang to complain about bin lid banging :/ ).
I figure I will take it to the vet and go from there.

I will not take her on as a pet. I honestly don't think it would be right for us to do that at this stage. i will make sure that if she is a stray we will get her rehomed.


If our wheelie bin is in without the lid closed, and it's a windy day, the banging of the lid drives me bonkers, as for a long while it was right outside my home office.

That said, if it was the neighbour's bin, I'd politely ask them if they minded me closing the  banging bin lid when that happened as I was having trouble concentrating.   Taking it to the estate agent is quite bizarre.

#22 someoneanon

Posted 23 November 2019 - 08:25 AM

So the cat was lying next to me on the couch last night.
I may have a cat?

#23 laridae

Posted 23 November 2019 - 08:44 AM

I see so many stories posted on our states lost pet register page of cats that have finally turned up months after their owners lost it. Some many many kilometres away. Usually some well meaning person has 'adopted' it rather than getting it checked for a microchip.

#24 *Spikey*

Posted 23 November 2019 - 08:52 AM

Yeah, its amazing how many people think that letting their cats roam is going to ensure cat fidelity, lol.

"My cat is lost".

No. Your cat found a better deal.

#25 DM. 2012

Posted 23 November 2019 - 09:51 AM

View Postsomeoneanon, on 23 November 2019 - 08:25 AM, said:

So the cat was lying next to me on the couch last night.
I may have a cat?

When I was a kid a stray walked into our house.  We already had a cat plus another cat that was a stray.  My Mum said no we can’t keep him, she advertised that we had found him (no internet then), no one claimed him so Mum said she would take him to the RSPCA.  One night He was sitting on Mum’s lap stretched up her chest with his head on her shoulder, my Dad said to me “look at that, she’s not taking him to the RSPCA.”  They had him for over 15 years.  He was such a lovely cat.




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