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Maunzi's In Trouble (Yet Again)

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
A while ago, I wrote about a cat, Maunzi, a female three-year-old black DSH who belongs to my mother and the youngest of my sisters (who still lives with my mother).

Maunzi is spayed and vaccinated for rabies, but has not been declawed. She's had her kitten shots but no boosters. My mother is generally a decent pet owner, except for one (rather major) flaw: She believes that "Cats Are Happier Outdoors".

1. This is untrue. I've known quite a few happy indoor cats.
2. Two of our cats--the two in my signature--have already died because they were let outside. Tiger died of FeLV, and Daffy died of wounds received in a fight with another animal.

You'd think that my mother would learn, after those incidents, that "Cats Do Not Live Long Outdoors", but she still holds to her former belief.

A while ago, I posted that my mother wanted Maunzi to go outside; and had begun putting her out. After a while, and some sympathetic replies, I reported that Maunzi refused to go out, and mewed to be let in every time Mom tried; and I (and perhaps you) was quite relieved.

But I just talked to my little sister; she had just turned eleven and I'd sent her a package she was saying "thank you" for; and she said that Mom had managed to put Maunzi outside after all.

After a while of this "putting the cat out repeatedly" thing, it turns out Maunzi has gotten used to it, and, instead of crying, simply sits on the porch, waiting to be let back in.

I pointed out to my mother that cats, as a species, tend towards exploration; and that Maunzi would surely widen her horizons if she were not brought back inside. Mother insisted that Maunzi would never venture past the porch.

I know cats. I know even a sedentary, chubby lap cat like Maunzi will end up exploring, eventually. She isn't the smartest cat--she lives mostly for the next belly rub--and I'm not entirely sure she'd survive such exploration. On top of that, Mother says they're living in a rather bad neighborhood, where there are a lot of drugs (and presumably people hard-up enough for money to sell cats to labs); and they're right next to the town's shopping district, so naturally there are a lot of cars, too.

At least they collar Maunzi when she's out; and they've spayed and not declawed her. That's one victory.

What now? Is there anything I can do, other than hope?
post #2 of 6
What an awful dilema!

Perhaps print out some of the articles around about why it's best to keep a cat inside. As you give then to your mother, gently say, "Please read these Mom." Maybe a gentle approach will make her more willing to open her mind to others.
post #3 of 6
I personally believe that; " Deciding to keep your cats indoors can be a difficult choice, but it is one of the best choices you can make for your cats."
Indoor Cat Facts
Indoor Cats Live Longer, Live Better

Your cat may tell you the great outdoors is lot of fun - grass to roll in, trees to climb. However, cats, like children, depend on us to recognize
danger and protect them from harm.

In addition to grass and fresh air, the outdoors poses many risks to your pets. Lethal risks that can be completely avoided:

TRAFFIC: To listen to some people, a pet's "getting hit by a car" is just part of pet ownership. Your pet is not likely to agree....

POISON: Cat's don't usually resist the temptation of checking out neighbors' yards, the hoods of their cars, and their flower beds. Although it is illegal and inhumane, some people put out a poisonous substance to get rid of those pawprints on a car. Poison also may be put out for other animals, and pets are accidentally poisoned, such as by eating poisoned mice.

CRUELTY: Unfortunate, but true, there are more than enough people in this world who are intentionally cruel to animals.

INJURIES: If your pet goes outside, it risks injurious or deadly fights with other animals, and also exposure to those animal's diseases. Bite
wounds often abcess, resulting in a serious injury for your pet, and a veterinary bill for you.

DISEASE: Even if your pet is vaccinated, it runs the risk of serious diseases: * Leukemia - The vaccine for feline leukemia, although valuable, provides about 80% - 85% protection, leaving your pet still at some risk of contacting leukemia, a deadly disease transmitted basically by saliva, from another cat. * FIV - Feline Immunodeficiency Virus - FIV is a disease that compromises the immune system of the cat. There is no vaccine for FIV, and there is no cure. FIV is generally transmitted between cats by biting. A blood test determines if the cat is FIV positive. Scientific evidence indicates FIV is not communicable to humans. A number of stray cats are FIV positive, and your cat runs a significant risk of FIV contact with these outdoor cats. For more information regarding FIV, contact your veterinarian.

No cat, no neighborhood, is immune from these dangers. Give your cat a long, safe, healthy life - indoors!

Make Life Inside Fun -- Toys, playtime with you, a window to look out of, scratching posts, and a few twigs of catnip from time to time more than compensate for the risks your cat faces outdoors.
This article is from the Community Animal Welfare Society.
post #4 of 6
post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 
I sent some of those links to my mother...

post #6 of 6
Thread Starter 
Okay, she's ignoring them... I know because she sent me a reply to the e-mail I sent her, and talked about things that had nothing to do with Maunzi at all...

Anyway, I'm going to write her again, summarize the info in my own words (maybe that will make her more likely to listen) and recommend leash-training, window seats, or a chicken-wire kitty corral...

If she doesn't listen then, all I really *can* do is pray.

I don't get it though--some people let their cats out because their cats beg to be let out; and some cats go stir-crazy and *can't* be kept in without extensive training; but Maunzi is happy to be inside. Why doesn't my mom just accept that she's lucky and take advantage of it to keep the cat safe!?
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