Cathartic Ink

putting my own spin on things

Safe Haven for Wandering Pets?



TheBoy and I currently have no pets. Fish! went to the big fishbowl in the sky last August at the ripe old age of 2.5. We really want a dog but alas, they’re not allowed where we currently live. We could have a cat, but while we like cats, we’re not so sure we want to be cat owners. Plus, there’s no good place for a litterbox and we’d have to pay a $300 fee to have one. Yeah, no.

However, word seems to have gotten out that our apartment is a good place for the cats of the apartment complex to take shelter from the cold in. Wednesday night as I was preparing mashed potatoes we started to hear a yowling cat outside our door. Thinking he might be hurt we let him in to give him a once over. It was only after letting him in that we had no idea what to do. We decided to call the apartment manager’s cell phone. Luckily the apartment manager recognized our description of the furry visitor. Turns out his name is Ollie and we were instructed as to where he lives. I carried a very happy, very large Ollie all the way to his apartment only to discover that his owners weren’t home. Deciding that I couldn’t leave him outside without knowing that he was a wanderer [it is not required that cats stay inside in our complex and several cats have the run of the place] I carried him all the way back to our apartment where we called the manager again and confirmed that he would be fine to turn loose. We let him sniff his way around for a few more minutes before sending him out. He protested a few times then headed home.

This evening, TheBoy and I decided to order a pizza for dinner. Just after the pizza was delivered, I was dealing with the pizza in the living room when TheBoy yelped in surprise. When I asked what was wrong, he told me that we “had a visitor.” Now, having grown up in a house with a wood stove and a chimney in a rural part of the world, “we have a visitor” generally meant bird, bat or mouse. I was really hoping it wasn’t any of those but couldn’t figure out what it might have been. Turns out that a big, fluffy orange cat [one I had seen wandering the complex before] let himself in while the pizza was being delivered. I picked him up and petted him for a few minutes before I let him out again. He was very sweet and seemed indignant about being turned out in the cold but I’d rather not steal someone’s cat tonight.

One thing that struck me as weird about both of these wandering cats is that neither one was wearing a collar. Although I suppose if you’re naive enough to let your cat wander loose in an apartment complex located on a busy road you’re probably not very concerned with collars and tags. I can’t make them do so, obviously, but it sure seems like the smart thing to do, since we live in a medium sized complex and most people don’t talk to each other.


  1. Amy

    You have the neon sign that tells every cat in the neighborhood that you have a vacancy. We had one of those for a while. It seemed like every time we opened the door, there was a cat trying to sneak in!