Controlling A Cats Territory
Home Dangers To Your Cat
Letting Your Cat Outside
Your Cat In The Garden
A Missing Cat
Leaving Your Cat
Travelling With Your Cat
Changing Countries With Your Cat



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Cat Welfare


A Missing Cat

Many owners know the feeling of panic when their cat does not return home. It is natural to assume the worst, but reflection will bring to mind a number of times which have been false alarms. Some cats are natural wanderers and will go off for days at a time. Your cat may have found something interesting to watch or a stray cat, which situation requires a long period of each pretending to be unaware of the other. It may even be that the cat has been overcome by a desire to sleep, and having found a quiet and comfortable spot has settled down and is not listening for any calling.

If after sometime, however, your cat has not appeared, you may need to take some action. Make sure you have a powerful torch ready, in case you have to look for your cat in the dark.

The first thing to do is think about when and where the cat was last seen. It is worth having a good look indoors to start with. The cat's favourite places should be checked, followed by a thorough look around the house. Cats are very good at pushing doors open, but having difficulty pulling one back to get out from the other side. You should search the room at floor level, thereby getting down to the cats eye view, which will show you all the nooks and crannies under beds and furniture, which cats love. In bedrooms turn back the bedding to make sure the cat is not there and the tops of wardrobes and cupboards should be checked; a loud noise might have made the cat hide in and out-of-the-way place.

If you can't find the cat indoors, you should start looking outside. Choose a quiet moment for calling, and listen carefully for a response. The garden should be searched, along with neighbouring properties, paying attention to sheds, garages, coal bunkers, greenhouses and other areas where the cat might have got trapped. Check the front garden and roadside hedges in case the cat is injured as it will want to hide to recover.

If none of this produces a result, the next move must be to widen the search, and you need to publicise to find more  information. People like the milkman, postman, newspaper delivery boy will be visiting most houses in the local area and can be asked to keep eyes and ears open for any news. It is worth contacting the local police station as they are aware of things around the neighbourhood. It is also wise to give details of the cat to the local RSPCA inspector and local veterinary surgeons, as good-hearted people often take injured cats for treatment. In some areas animal welfare organisations keep a register of lost and found cats.

Notices should be placed in local shops and any convenient trees, telegraph posts and fences. The local papers and radio station may be willing to help with publicity. You can deliver leaflets to houses in the neighbourhood. The pub is also a good point for spreading and finding out information.

If these measures produce no result, there is little more that can be done. Cats have been known to reappear after long absences, but this is an outside chance, and comfort must be taken in recalling times in the long and happy relationship rather than the sadness of departure.


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