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Found kitten - what would you do?

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
I found a kitten last week, sitting in a bush down the street in front of an empty house and yelling at the top of his little lungs.

He was probably about 4 months old, and absolutely gorgeous - a beautiful richly colored brown tabby, with the swirled markings instead of stripes - he looked a lot like Baby Harley He wasn't wearing a collar or tags.

He was very sweet and friendly - I picked him up & asked a few neighbors if they knew who he belonged to. No one could tell me.

My cats would have been very upset if I brought home another cat, not to mention the risk of disease from an unknown kitten, so bringing him home with me was out of the question. My vet works with the Humane Society and would have taken him for me and held him until we could find the owner or get him into that shelter, but he was closed, so that option was out.

I ended up taking him to the no-kill shelter nearby to ask if they would check him for a microchip, and miracle of miracles, they told me they would take him (for a fee). I asked the shelter if they would hold him for a few days to see if the owner claimed him. They hemmed & hawed about it and said that if the owner came asking about him they would give him to them, but they planned to put him up for adoption ASAP. I got the feeling they felt that an owner who would let a kitten his age outside didn't deserve to get the kitten back. They also didn't scan him for a chip because they said it was unlikely anyone would microchip an outdoor kitten like that, especially since he was unneutered at 4 months.

I decided to pay the fee & leave the kitten with them anyways.

Odds are high that he'd been dumped (our city has a huge problem with strays & dumped animals), but I felt bad about taking him if he belonged to someone, but at the same time I don't think I'd have been able to live with myself if I'd taken him back where he came from and then found him as a kitty pancake on the road later. I haven't seen any posters or ads so far about a missing kitten, so if he's lost, someone isn't looking for him very hard.

Do you think I might have stolen someone's cat? If you were in that situation, what would you have done?
post #2 of 13
I was in your position last year. A three mn old or so black kitten darted into a busy city street - I actually ran into the street, held my hand up and halted traffic, and scooped the kitten up.

He was litter trained and v. friendly, yet in a fairly non-residential section of a busy downtown area. So...how did he get there? Obviously he had been owned.

My parents fostered him for 10 days (in a catless house) while I searched the lost pet ads everyday. If he was from a distant neighborhood I wouldnt see any posters where he was found, so I would hope his owner would put an ad out too.

A no-kill shelter agreed to take him, but a friend of mine opted to take him instead.

Honestly, no matter the true status of the cat...the important thing is he be healthy and cared for. Even if his real family is heartbroken, if indeed he has one, I'm sure they'd be relieved he is OK.
post #3 of 13
i think thats awful that they wouldnt scan for a microchip!
post #4 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thank you. I was pretty torn about it, but wanted him to be safe above all.

MK, I do agree it was awful that they wouldn't scan. I don't doubt that they love animals, but some of the things they do (or won't do) just make me

but honestly I was just thankful I had a place to take him where he wouldn't be PTS.
post #5 of 13
I would have taken him too. (Although knowing me I probably would have ended up keeping him ) If he was someone's cat that just let him out, shame on them...he's too little to fend for himself. If he was someone's cat and he got out accidentally, if that were my cat I'd be calling/visiting every shelter and vet looking for him, and putting up lost cat posters all over. Our no kill cat place will post an ad and scan for a microchip before they just adopt a cat out...
post #6 of 13
The fact that he was sitting in front of an empty house crying makes me think the people who lived there moved and just left the poor little baby there. I think you did the right thing!
post #7 of 13
I would of took the kitten also that is one of the many reasons why pet cats shouldnt be allowed to roam free. Lost and found ads are free in my area I would placed an ad saying I found the kitten and put where I took the kitten.
post #8 of 13
She would have ahd a home with me if at all possible. if not then i would have fostered her until she could find a furever home. its so sad they wouldnt scan her.
post #9 of 13
i WAS in that position, twice! both Cable & Java are foundlings...Cable was barely 8 weeks old, skinny, covered w/fleas - i took her home, had her vetted & didn't even look for the owner. Java was hanging around our parking lot here at the school - again, took her home, had her vetted - but she was in pretty good health, no fleas, so i left word at the office that if anyone came looking for her & would return her [after the vet reimbursement!]. no one ever came looking for her - i figure she was dumped. i don't even know of a no-kill shelter anywhere around here. if i was in a position where i felt i couldn't keep a foundling, i'd look hard for one, tho!
post #10 of 13
If you haven't seen any signs up asking for the lost kitten I wouldn't worry about it. Usually if they are wanted the owners put up signs or place an ad in the paper looking for them. I think you did the right thing.
post #11 of 13
I took my neighbors kitty because he was being starved to death. Poor little guy had fleas, and stickers all in his hair. I put food out and then brought him in.. unfortunatly I didn't know about the fleas or I would have taken him to vet before I brought him in for the night. I did get him into the vet the next day for all his test for leukemia. I had to treat all my cats for fleas. George has a good home here now, and never has to worry about starving again!!!!
post #12 of 13
I've done the same thing. I found a himalayan kitten.. about 7-9 months old. I asked around bout couldn't find his owners. He was flea infested, not neutered, and was covered in scabs. I broguht him into the house and locked him in my room inside the dog crate. ( I wasn't sure if he sprayed or not and didn't want to risk my cats starting up.
My sisters friend ended up coming and picking him up that night.
post #13 of 13
I've come across situations like this more times than I'd care to mention. I take the cat home (and stick him in a separate room if there is any question about his health status), and if I think there is a reasonable possibility that he is a lost pet, I post a few simple handwritten "Found Cat - Call xxx-xxxx" signs in the area.

In your case you should go to the local Animal Control and file a "found cat" report so it is on record and the cat's people can find him if they are looking for him.
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