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Linda Simmon
Linda Simmon, Veterinarian
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 4866
Experience:  MVB MRCVS
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About 2-3 years ago a cat kept coming to my door. We thought

Customer Question

Hi, about 2-3 years ago a cat kept coming to my door. We thought it was a stray but belonged to someone else on the street. It followed one of my cats round like a shadow. I took a pic and put it on a local Facebook page and the person down the road said it was their cat. The reason I asked was if i had been a stray I would have taken it to the cats protection.
However, it was always either at my front or back door and hanging around with my cats and this went on for about 1 year.
When it came to the summer months it would jump through windows or come in due to the doors being open all the time. So it would be eating my cats food or finding hiding places to sleep in.
1 year ago I contacted the owner and said it was always in my garden (she had put a post up to say it had been missing for weeks). She came round to collect it – it didn’t want to go. She said she would keep it in to get it use to being at its original home. The next morning it was back at my door so I let her know. She didn’t try to come and collect it or contact me again. However since then it has lived here.
The person who owns it is totally unapproachable and pretty much fallen out with everyone on the street. She has told one of my neighbours she has a new cat as she said her original cat lives with me now. So she does know.
However I am constantly worried as it is very much at home here now and part of our family. However I am conscious it has not had a check up with the vet like I do each year with my 2 other cats.
However I am scared if I take it to the vet they will take it off me and try to contact her. I think it is chipped (purely because I think she mentioned it once).
I don’t think it was well looked after and was very timid but is very much part of our family now. So even though I feel really bad about it I would feel worse if she tried to take it back as I feel it’s very unfair on the cat.
I am a massive cat person having had them all my life and I treat them as family. I feel guilty and torn and it is really worrying me now.
I am not sure what to do, please can you advise?
JA: Hi there. I'll do all I can to help. Have you tried anything so far that helps the cat with her timidity?
Customer: the cat is less timid now it is settled here so thats not really the problem
JA: What's the cat's name?
Customer: George
JA: Is there anything else the Vet should know?
Customer: No I have given a pretty thorough explanation I think
Submitted: 13 days ago.
Category: Vet
Expert:  Linda Simmon replied 13 days ago.
Hello, you are through to Dr Linda, a UK based vet.
Thank you for your question.Ultimately, cats are deemed as "property" and the owner is the person who the microchip is currently registered to.
It is easy to transfer ownership but you need consent of the original owner. If the original owner isn't willing to give consent, we would assume theh desire to own the cat and I wouldn't advise stopping this. I completely appreciate the cat chooses to come to your home but it must be the owner's decision what happens with their cat. If you approach them and they are keen to change ownership, they simply need to call the microchip company. If they aren't happy to give up being the owner, this is their right.Having said this, you say this cat hasn't had a vet check. If you feel it isn't being taken care of medically (and is perhaps not neutered, not treated for parasites or not vaccinated), a charity such as the RSPCA should be notified. They would be able to help; usually by contacting the registered owner and advising them on how to help their cat.You say you're scared of taking the cat to the vet but it is not the vet's job to determine if you are the owner. Their priority is the cat and their health.I do hope this helps.
Expert:  Linda Simmon replied 13 days ago.
I'm just checking in to ensure this is all OK ?
If there is anything else, please let me know.Take care!