Yuppie couple in Silicon Valley complain about feral cat fleas to neighbor who feeds two of them

By Dana

Intro by Michael: this is a comment from Dana in Silicon Valley, California, USA, about helping feral cats which I have upgraded to an article because I think it touches a nerve. It certainly does for me. As I see it, it is about modern life and how it is is more brutal and competitive and how it has distanced itself from nature.

Feral cat of Silicon Valley
Feral cat of Silicon Valley
Until September 7th I will give 10 cents to an animal charity for every comment written by visitors. It is a way visitors can contribute to animal welfare without much effort and no financial cost. Please comment. It helps this website too which at heart is about cat welfare.

“What does not fit in, is out.” I live in narcissistic superficial, trendy Silicon Valley and more and more I feel like the old timer with the old dog in “Of Mice and Men.” I have lived in my condo for over 13 years and no one ever ratted to the HOA (Homeowner Association – apartment management) that I fed 4 fixed feral cats (I have helped home so many others, those that could be homed).

Now I am down to 2 old toms cats. A new yuppie type couple moved in diagonally across from me and the guy is all polite and smiles while badgering me to stop feeding these last 2 because “its a public area and they bring fleas and disease.”

I moved one cat to another feeding area per his request but hoped that if I picked up food and other signs of his existence more carefully after the one on my door step it would be enough of an improvement in relations. No. Another knock on the door. Its not about picking up the food before nightfall or cleaning up the poop. Its the fleas – he insists the fleas are assaulting him every time he leaves his house.

My common sense feeling is a) I doubt it and b) it’s the OUTDOORS. It has bugs. And if it doesn’t stop “I’ll have to contact HOA”. He said it with a smile I’d like to wipe off his face.

Meanwhile, he owns a yappy dog that I have never complained about, because I am “live and let live”. But HOA will side with him, I’m nothing but an ageing outlaw “catwoman” – trying to survive in an over crowded area with manic values, that is building on every available postage stamp sized lot these days, bulldozers tearing up the earth for profit, adding to congestion for the sake of the almighty $ – while trying to offer food to two apparently worthless Toms.

This couple is everything I can’t stand about this valley: unforgiving, no heart. If its not young, sanitized, trendy and the latest and you’re not keeping up its “wrong”. That’s how I feel some days and I think feral cats have become a symbol of that, just like the aging dog in “Of Mice and Men.” Shoot it, euthanize it. It doesn’t belong, it serves no purpose, put it out of OUR misery (a feral cat survives for its own sake, not ours. I think that angers a lot of people who feel they should control everything in their environment. A cat does not exist for them).

And by the same token…if its human, price it out of the valley if it doesn’t fit in and conform. Ironically, trendy ole Silicon Valley has been and still is home to many industries (including military — though I’m not trying to wax political here!) that have done much to destroy the environment locally and abroad.

And yes, some of this money-making chaos includes indirectly the promoting of disease and fleas elsewhere! But its so much easier to focus on a poor frumpy old cat and make it the scapegoat isn’t it? Rather than look at our own part in the planets woes.

Dana

PS: I believe in fixing cats, and I prefer they live indoors these days for the sake of the birds – and they’re own safety, people are cruel – but the ferals are no more dirty and diseased then the rest of nature – nature is sloppy and beautiful and imperfect. Unfortunately this valley is all about money, shopping mauls, clogged dirty highways, smog, and owning the latest piece of manufactured shiny-ness to prove you’re own worthiness in the eyes of your fellow consumers. Those of us barely keeping up, such as little old ladies and cats are looked down on. Very sad.

Photo source: gkimagery.com – thanks.




18 thoughts on “Yuppie couple in Silicon Valley complain about feral cat fleas to neighbor who feeds two of them”

  1. Yuppies and dogs are why I love cats. Yuppies and dogs are both annoying! Why have a noisy dog when you can have a (mostly) quiet cat!! And I have to wonder if, based on another comment about the dog, of this yuppie does anything to prevent fleas at all. Maybe he uses green/ecofriendly products, which rarely do much at all but sure cost a lot!

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  2. I say the Good Lord screwed up when he let the apes out of the trees. I live in a rural area in the desert and have neighbors I would gladly do without. It’s all about them and what they think is correct. I wonder how they would fare if dumped in a remote area and had to fend for themselves. I don’t think they would last. People are getting so snotty and “I’m right and you’re wrong.” I have helped cats, dogs and birds survive in this area where they are dumped by those who have no morals or common sense. God help this planet!

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    • Absolutely, Susan. This planet is doomed. But, I doubt that any god is to blame or will be the cause of our demise. We only have ourselves to blame. There is no recovery to be had at all. We are recycling for no reason. It’s too late. We will combust at some point. We have been warned about global warming, but many ignore. I doubt that we will see it. But, I grieve for our later generations, and all of the beloved animals, who will toast.

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  3. My very best friend lives in the Silicon Valley. He’s in the tech industry and lives there to be somewhat close to work, although he still drives an hour each way. He makes good money, but is paying a ridiculous amount of child/spousal support of $5000 a month. And he has the two girls every weekend!

    Recently he asked if I’d consider living with him because he’s getting custody of his girls. (8 & 13) He also knows I’d like to find another living situation, so it could help both of us. He also said I could pay whatever rent I could afford. My gut reaction was “no way”, but I told him I’d think about it. I did enough research to know that this was not an area I’d feel comfortable in. I drive a beat up, but dependable 97 Toyota 4 Runner. Imagine the flack he’d get from that!
    My clothes are from thrift stores, and I seldom dress up for anything. I wouldn’t fit in at all, so I declined his offer. He said we could re-visit the possibility in a year or so. I doubt if I’ll feel differently.

    Material values are the norm in that area, and also Marin County, which isn’t far from me. I live in Sonoma County, which is being gentrified also. People who’ve lived here all their lives are having to move because they can’t afford to live here. It’s only going to get worse. I fear homelessness more than anything. My kitty and I couldn’t make it on the street, so I’d have to find a way out.

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    • I feel for you Sandra. I actually am actively looking for another area where I’d like to move to… and I’m considering so many factors, whether it’s cat-friendly, affordable (I also live meagerly; drive a small ’91 pickup and a ’97 Ford Escort, and shop at thrift stores), and a decent climate… possibly all the way to rural where the sounds and congestion of the city are only a memory – including complaining cat-haters like your neighbor. It would have to be within driving distance to a cat-friendly veterinarian though.

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      • Albert, I actually live in a nice, quiet senior mobile home park,in Northern California and fortunately most of the residents have cats or dogs or both, so I don’t have cat haters nearby. But they’re close. We had a cat recently shot with a hunting arrow. She got herself home, and after lots of vet bills, she’s surviving, but hopefully her guardians are now keeping her in.

        My main stress is my landlord who lives with me. He’s not a cat hater, or I wouldn’t be able to rent a room, but he’s a hoarder,inconsiderate, and a manipulator. Fortunately, he’s gone much of the time, which helps. I stay in my room a lot, with my cat. It’s our only sanctuary, away from him.

        I take my cat out with halter and leash every day. The last vet I went to was an hour away, but worth the drive. He only charged $200 for what other vets were asking $1000 for. He’s an old country vet who specializes in dental. He’s semi retired, and only takes referrals. He listened to me about drugs, and agreed. It was a first for me, after taking my cat to 4 other vets for second opinions.

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        • So sorry, Sandra. You must be really strapped for cash to have the landlord living with you. But, “hoarder, inconsiderate, and a manipulator” sounds dreadful.
          At least, the neighborhood is pet friendly.
          What is the deal with these bows/arrows now? Perhaps, they should be licensed too. Or, are they?

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          • The person who shot the cat with a bow and hunting arrow is obviously a hunter of small animals, which include cats. I don’t know if they have to be licensed, but there’s a $5000 reward for anyone leading to the arrest and conviction of this cruel person. It’s being offered by the Animal Defense League, which is only a mile from me. I had suggested that the cat’s guardian contact them, and they did.

            Money is so tight that I’m hoping that someone who knows something will turn this person in.

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    • I applaud you for being who you are.
      Since being forced to stop working due to illness, I live frugally, and most of my clothing is bought at Goodwill.
      I’m not certain of your age; but, for me, I wouldn’t be able to deal with young children.
      He may be a great guy, but it sounds like he needs a nanny in lieu of or low rent.
      RUN!!!

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  4. I’d like to know who this person is. Is this a real story or fiction? He might win with the HOA, but peer pressure in other areas of this person’s life can be the answer. Any hackers out there who want to help? That’s your solution; a hacker who cares about animals. You won’t have to loon too far, it’s Silicon Valley after al!

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  5. His dog probably picks up fleas when he walks him. Analogy with “Of Mice and Men” is insightful.
    Yet I worry about the cat on your doorstep — please lure him inside or even trap if necessary. He is in danger, as is the other aging tom if this neighbor knows he’s still there. Have had great luck with introducing aged ferals to the great indoors — they’re ready for a rest.
    Another piece of (probably unwanted) advice: If I were you I’d sell up & move to a truly civilized (in the best sense of the word) area. Planned communities can really stifle the spirit.

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  6. This young man is spoiled stupid, arrogant and neurotically self centered. When I first began reading your story, I automatically predicted that he had a dog and it may have a flea infestation he has blamed the feral cats for transferring ? He spends his hours in a controlled environment and thinks he’s superior. This is not a happy household for him, the dog or the wife.
    Some men carry their ego’s all the way to the bank !

    Eva_Keep a close watch on this viscous animal]

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