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 Post subject: Vent: re other people's stupidity
PostPosted: Tue Feb 22, 2011 12:14 pm 
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So I have an acquaintance (a family) who let one of their cats outside. In the first place, I am a big anti-outdoor cat person (at least, in the city. If you have a farm, your barn cat is okay with me). Apparently, this family's neighbor is outdoor cat opposed too, or at the very least, opposed to this cat going into their garden and using it as a litterbox. So after the neighbor complains, the family decides to put kitty on a leash outside.

The poor kitty hanged herself on her leash trying to jump over the fence :( I feel terrible for the poor kitty, but in the back of my mind, I have that bisque-y terrible voice saying 'You shouldn't have let her out in the first place; in the second place, why wouldn't you properly measure the leash to make sure it only went to the fence line and not past?'

They've announced it all over facebook and while I have no obligation to say anything about it, it really irks me that they're blaming the neighbor for it "All because the neighbor complained." I would like to say 'Sorry for your loss' but I can't without also saying 'But it was entirely preventable and you in no way have any right to blame your neighbors.'

So, am I a total jerk? You can tell me, I can take it.


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 Post subject: Re: Vent: re other people's stupidity
PostPosted: Tue Feb 22, 2011 12:41 pm 
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Do you have cats? If so, what about a private message that says something like:

"I'm so sorry for the loss of your cat. If something like that happened to my cat, I know I'd be heartbroken.

I would like to let my cat roam, but after I learned that the average lifespan for indoor/outdoor cats is only 4 years, versus 14 years for indoor cats, I decided to keep mine inside. There are just too many hazards for kitties outside- whether they're tied up or not."

Or maybe it's too soon for something like that? Other ppkers may have advice on how to say it gently.

My family let our cats out for years, and it never occurred to me (until a thread on the old ppk) that it wasn't a good idea. Even after three family cats, and my college roommate's cat, died as a result of being able to go outside. I'm not sure how I would have reacted if someone had confronted me about it, but as they're posting it all over Facebook, it doesn't seem out of line to send them a message about it.

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 Post subject: Re: Vent: re other people's stupidity
PostPosted: Tue Feb 22, 2011 1:46 pm 
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That is truly sad. I can't even imagine leaving my cat or dog outside on a leash knowing that too many things could go wrong. However, I think it is a little tasteless to post a harsh message on Facebook while they're grieving. Perhaps just send them a message saying you're sorry for their loss...and then down the road approach the subject with them after the shock and raw emotions wear off a little bit?


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 Post subject: Re: Vent: re other people's stupidity
PostPosted: Tue Feb 22, 2011 2:11 pm 
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clippityclopboom wrote:
Perhaps just send them a message saying you're sorry for their loss...and then down the road approach the subject with them after the shock and raw emotions wear off a little bit?


Same thought here. I'd imagine they're feeling pretty raw about it right now, and probably aren't going to be very receptive to anything else.

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 Post subject: Re: Vent: re other people's stupidity
PostPosted: Tue Feb 22, 2011 2:44 pm 
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I so sorry for that poor kitty. I can only imagine the people's intentions were not to harm their kitty, but to let outside. They were certainly negligent in making the leash too long. I'm such a worrier when it comes to my cats, that I would not have put my cat outside without supervising. I can only imagine how they must feel though.

Too bad the neighbors were complaining. It sounds like these people are just acting out in their grief. Don't forget they are grieving and probably have terrible guilt. Perhaps message them some support but with compassion discuss how to avoid this ever happening again.


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 Post subject: Re: Vent: re other people's stupidity
PostPosted: Tue Feb 22, 2011 2:50 pm 
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I'm not planning on posting anything about it at all. They certainly are feeling guilty and sad and me being a jerk wouldn't help at all; these things just make me sad/mad because it's 100% preventable.

I do have 2 cats, they go out on our deck in the summer under supervision only. They aren't even allowed onto the lawn.


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 Post subject: Re: Vent: re other people's stupidity
PostPosted: Tue Feb 22, 2011 7:29 pm 
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ugh, that crushes my heart. Poor kitty.
It sucks that people think they are doing their cat a favour by letting them out unsupervised. It's far too dangerous in a city or suburban setting for them to be out there, roaming around.
Like gato said, they're probably pretty upset about it right now so they're probably not going to be too receptive to any "you should've known better"s.

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 Post subject: Re: Vent: re other people's stupidity
PostPosted: Wed Feb 23, 2011 10:06 pm 
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Do they have other cats? If so I would tactfully give them suggestions a little ways down the road about how to prevent it in the future. Using a breakaway collar, or better yet a harness, only letting them out while supervised and as has been mentioned shortening the rope! I'm sorry for the poor kitty.

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 Post subject: Re: Vent: re other people's stupidity
PostPosted: Thu Feb 24, 2011 2:56 pm 
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Oh, that's terrible! I had a similar situation in my neighborhood- one of the houses I walk past all the time had a cute new puppy several years ago. It was always running around on the sidewalk and in the street. Then one day the puppy is gone and a spray-painted memorial on the street in front of the house tells me that he was the victim of a hit-and-run. Which is horrible, and doesn't get the driver off the hook. But I can't help but wonder if that could have been helped if the puppy was on a leash, supervised, and wasn't allowed to run into the road? It's a puppy- it doesn't have the common sense or understanding of how the world works (or what streets are for) that humans do.

ETA: I have no idea how to approach a situation like that and am equally curious. You don't want to be callous, and it's definitely tragic, but so preventable!

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