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People who don't like cats

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
One of my co-workers is currently living in a friend's apartment while that friend is working in another city for a year. The friend has, and left, a cat (Goblin) in the apartment. Plans changed, and the friend is not going to come back and live in this city, but will go somewhere else entirely next fall and is planning on taking Goblin to the new city. The co-worker recently asked me if I wanted another cat, on a temporary basis. I don't: my apartment isn't particularly large, I'm only allowed to have two cats, and I have two cats who get along well with each other.

I've heard stories (from the original owner) that Goblin is amazing with children and allows them to hang all over him and play with him and such. I haven't heard that Goblin is misbehaving at all (not scratching, not urinating outside of the box), just that Goblin meows too much. And that Goblin meows more now than right after the co-worker moved in. It's just that my co-worker is not a cat person, and does not want to DO anything to make Goblin happy.

I asked if Goblin had any toys and was told "I don't know" which I interpret as a clear "no". After suggesting toys and getting the reply "I don't have the money to buy toys for my children, much less for a cat" I suggested newspaper on the floor and a laser pointer. The co-worker seemed impressed and surprised that very good toys could be made essentially for free, but the co-worker said "I don't want to play with the cat".

I'm thinking of 1) buying self-play toys (like a turbo scratcher) and giving them to the co-worker and 2) inviting myself over to play with Goblin, and maybe teach the 5 (?) year old child how to play with Goblin. I do have a few other people in mind who might want to take care of the cat for a few months, so hopefully this will all be moot.

But, in the meantime, does anyone have any suggestions of free self-play toys that don't come with risks (tying a ball of newspaper to a door knob with yarn is cheap and a lot of fun, but the yarn can be broken and sections swallowed), self-play toys I could buy, or with things non-cat people can do with cats? It does sound like Goblin is simply lonely, even living in an apartment with two adults and two children (and there are twins on the way).
post #2 of 8
Poor Goblin. Is there any chance you can get permission from the landlord to house a third cat, since it's only temporary?
post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 
I'm honestly not interested in doing so. My mother-in-law is a bonafide cat hoarder, and my spouse has serious cat-hoarding tendencies. So I'm very afraid that "just one more" could become a precedent. Additionally, I do the very strong emotional attachment to a small number of cats thing, which means having the number of cats that is good for the place I have and for cat politics in my apartment is important. Artemis had trouble even sharing the apartment with her sister Athena last year, because of Artemis's asthma. The asthma is currently under control, but if it flared up again and I had three cats in the apartment ... it just doesn't sound like a good idea. Also, I don't have a car, I often live alone (my spouse goes elsewhere for graduate student) and it's quite important to me that I be able to carry both cats, in carriers, in case of an emergency. As it is, I often feel guilty that I don't give Artemis and Athena enough human-attention. The fact that they have each other is really helpful, but they meow for my attention when I'm home. Yes, if Goblin got along with one or both of them, that might help lonely Goblin, but that's a big if, especially for a short-term situation.

All of that said, the apartment complex I live in is policy driven, so the only way to have more than two cats is to lie.
post #4 of 8
I think it's pretty sad that this person left their kitty with someone who wasn't going to care for them as they would, even worse one who doesn't like cats! It's not just about self entertainment for the kitty, if they basically want very little to do with him, chances are they aren't going to insure proper diet, fresh water, clean litter, the basics. There is sure to be some stress and emotional effects on Goblin, obviously already displayed by meowing. If this, sorry to say, jerk who is watching him is already complaining to this point, he is most likely treating Goblin worse then he is admitting.
I completely understand your circumstances with your kitties and living, but if you can find Goblin another temporary home, which possibly could be permanent, that would be best for both of you! Once again sorry to say, but both of your co workers sound like jerks, one for leaving him with another who wants absolutely nothing to do with him.
Until you can find another home, try to instill the importance of proper feeding, water, and clean litter. Any other suggestions this person won't do because they simply don't give a ##@*!
post #5 of 8
How far away is Goblin's owner? Is s/he aware of what's going on? If not, maybe someone should tell them and they may want to come take him with them.


Also, as far as cheap toys, tell him cats looooove boxes. My cats are also happy with a pen they can bat around the floor.

Also, can you tell him that if he wants Goblin to cool it with the meowing, he's going to have to show him some friendliness and attention as a trade-off?

I hope this guy gets visited by 3 ghosts next Christmas.
post #6 of 8
Thread Starter 
The co-worker is extremely capable in the department of animal care and will not stint on food, water, and litter box maintenance, and is skilled at using behavior and physical condition as ways of evaluating an animal's health and well-being. The cat's original owner is the world-traveling type, and it's frankly a bit inappropriate the he owns a cat in the first place. But he does have a stay-at-home wife and two children, and I'm sure the family as a whole usually provides good care for Goblin.

I think my co-worker is quite aware that Goblin needs more love than his family is showing Goblin, and that's why the co-worker is looking for a cat lover to take care of Goblin. It's not me or you-all, but this co-worker, who brought up the idea that a home that loves Goblin would be a good place for Goblin. I suspect that Goblin will either be flown out to live his owner or Goblin will be housed by a cat-lover around here.

In the meantime, suggestions about boxes and pens (and grocery bags) as self-play toys are useful, and I'd love to hear any other ideas you all have.
post #7 of 8
Oh no, poor Goblin!! I wonder how his owner came to the conclusion that the current foster is the best person to take care of him. I agree with cheylink that it would be much better to find Goblin another foster, and soon! Don't know how long the poor kitty's been lonely and bored Bless you for caring about him, he really needs a friend like you right now.
post #8 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by Enuja View Post
The co-worker is extremely capable in the department of animal care and will not stint on food, water, and litter box maintenance, and is skilled at using behavior and physical condition as ways of evaluating an animal's health and well-being. The cat's original owner is the world-traveling type, and it's frankly a bit inappropriate the he owns a cat in the first place. But he does have a stay-at-home wife and two children, and I'm sure the family as a whole usually provides good care for Goblin.

I think my co-worker is quite aware that Goblin needs more love than his family is showing Goblin, and that's why the co-worker is looking for a cat lover to take care of Goblin. It's not me or you-all, but this co-worker, who brought up the idea that a home that loves Goblin would be a good place for Goblin. I suspect that Goblin will either be flown out to live his owner or Goblin will be housed by a cat-lover around here.

In the meantime, suggestions about boxes and pens (and grocery bags) as self-play toys are useful, and I'd love to hear any other ideas you all have.
Some favorite home made toys that Maia loves are boxes, especially connected in a long tunnel formation, bags (just remove the handles first), foil balls, plastic bottle seals (the curly piece from opening milk or water), string tied together in a spider like toy, shoe laces, Socks filled with catnip......
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