First Lost Cat
I was just chatting to two people at the apartment complex where I have bought an apartment. One was a nice middle-aged lady. I just bumped into her on the way to the flat. I said, “Hi, I’m Michael. I just bought flat 2”. She said, “have you seen a LaPerm cat? Do you know what a LaPerm cat is?”
I said, “I know a bit about cats”. She replied, “I have lost a LaPerm cat. She went missing last Wednesday.” (that was 2 days ago). “I was looking after her for the owner”.
She was calm about it. I thought sh*t. I thought (but did not say) forget the fact that she has lost a rare American cat breed that is probably worth about £1,000, what about the emotional trauma that is about to happen when the cat’s owner (caretaker) returns tomorrow?
The lady said that she hoped the owner’s voice would entice her cat to return. Perhaps it will be that easy. However, if this lady had been looking after my cat and on my return she had casually told me that she had lost Charlie I would be distraught and apoplectic. Perhaps I am more concerned about my cat than some other people are about their cats?
A person looking after someone’s cat must keep the cat in and great care must be exercised in that task at all times. If there is a secure enclosure: fine, the cat can go out, but to let a cat out under these circumstances could mean the death of the cat. This cat is in a strange place (neighbour’s home) and likely to be slightly confused and stressed at the very least. When outside anything could happen. This is London. Busy roads. Hazards everywhere. This is a beloved family member. You can’t lose her.
A Second Lost Cat
At the same place, I ended up chatting to another neighbour. He said that the lady above me had moved to a house not that far away. I think she had moved in with her boyfriend of longstanding.
She has two Siamese cat companions (see one of them in the photo above). The neighbour told me that one of the Siamese cats had got out of the new home and was lost! Hell fire and damnation. That cat was probably trying to get back to the territory that he knew really well. I have met this cat. He visits other flats and so on. He is a regular feature of the place and clearly enjoyed the freedoms. The grounds are large and the road a long way off.
However, to get back he would have to cross busy roads. It would give me the heebie jeebies to think about it. I am sure the woman is very upset by this.
Both cats are lost at the time of writing this. I have promised the people who I spoke to that if I saw either of the cats I would try and recover him/her and get them home.
Moral: always take extra special precautions under the circumstances described above. Ask yourself if you can absolutely trust a neighbour to look after your cat. I would not allow my cat to be looked after by a neighbour unless I knew the person exceptionally well. I just could not relax.
It is a very serious job looking after someone’s cat. There is an emotional connection. I don’t think the lady looking after the LaPerm really comprehended that.
Associated: Finding a lost cat.