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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-22-2011, 12:44 AM Thread Starter
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Unhappy Help! Should I re-home my cat?

I haven't posted in years and a lot has happened since then. We moved our cat (Pixel) across the country, had a baby, and then moved back. Now we are going to Europe for an extended time and not sure what to do with our cat. That's the short story.

long story:
She handled the first move just fine, but when my husband starting traveling for work she started having anxiety. Every time he traveled, she would vomit and have bloody stools. When my dh and I went on trips together, we left her with a pet-sitter. Inevitably we would come home to piles of feces, and then I would have to work for weeks to get her to go in the box again.

I hate to admit it, but when baby came along, Pixel really became a burden to me. I remember being pregnant and thinking "I hope I can love my daughter as much as I love my cat" but since the baby, I have really only tolerated the cat. It sounds horrible, but our life has just been crazy, too crazy for Pixel. Pixel can not stand my now 19 month old daughter. Everyone said it would get better but so far it hasn't. She hides from her all day and only comes out when dd is asleep at night. She still had the above mentioned accidents and it was so hard to deal with cleaning up after her as a SAHM alone all day with a baby, no family around, and dh in another country. But I did it. I also discussed all this with her vet and she was prescribed anti-depressants. I have never been able to give them to her consistently. She took pill pockets for about a week before she caught on and will NOT take them in food. With a pill popper, it takes DH and I both to constrain her to get them in. Like I said, she has the anxiety most when DH is gone, and then there is no one to help with the pills.

Through all that I dealt with it even though I wasn't a happy pet owner. I feel like I made a commitment to her and I always said I would never give up my pet just because I moved or had a baby.

So now we are in a really crazy situation. We are between homes and living with my parents temporarily until my husband starts a work assignment in Europe. It will be 2 - 6 month assignment and we will split the time between 2 or more locations. My parents did NOT want the cat here. They dog-sit for my brother about once a week and travel a lot themselves. I asked everyone I know to watch my cat but no one was interested. Now Pixel has been at my parents house for over a month. She mostly stays in the basement (to avoid my dd) and if my mom goes down there for anything (like doing the laundry) she attacks and draws blood. She is notorious for scratching couches and has destroyed a couch down there. (She refuses to use scratching posts or cardboard) And then yesterday she came upstairs and peed in the living room. No idea why except that it was right after a visit from the dog. I feel terrible about the idea of leaving my parents in this situation. I looked into boarding her, but it looks like that would be about $750 a month which is not reasonable for us. My dh and I keep going back and forth about re-homing her. I honestly don't think she is happy with us. She doesn't like our lifestyle or certain family members of ours! On the other hand, once we are back from Europe (whenever that is) we are planning to get a house and for dh to stop traveling. I feel like in that situation we would be better equipped to handle Pixel's needs. (we have always lived in small apts)

OMG sorry for the novel but I want you all to understand where I'm coming from! Please share any advice you have. Any ideas for cheap boarding, or tips for re-homing will be greatly appreciated. TIA!
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-22-2011, 12:58 AM
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sounds like ur kitty has sepration anixety, and is stressed out, which is completely understandable as right now theres no stable setting in her life, she has u and a home one min and then u guys are traveling and she is alone again. If you do decide to rehome her i suggest an older couple with no kids, and are home a lot of the time.This may help her. However if you choose to keep her there has to be stablility somewhere for her to feel adleast secure.Another thing you mentioned about giving pills to her, you could always talk to your vet, about getting maybe a diffrent type of medication like, an injection or something ? and i would definetly talk to a vet about her going to the washroom everywhere even thou shes stressed out ect, there has to be something else wrong for her to go to the washroom like that everywhere when usually she is littre trainned.

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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-22-2011, 01:22 AM Thread Starter
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I agree that she needs a stable environment without kids, but how would I go about finding that? Post an ad on Craigslist? We've been through so much together that it's really hard for me to imagine giving her to a stranger. Nobody I know will take her, though.
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-22-2011, 01:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by natasha elise View Post
I agree that she needs a stable environment without kids, but how would I go about finding that? Post an ad on Craigslist? We've been through so much together that it's really hard for me to imagine giving her to a stranger. Nobody I know will take her, though.
if ur gonna post on craigslist or kijiji or the internet i suggest that you make an adoption application interview people dont just let her go to anyone, make it sorta like a contract if they cant keep her shes to come back to u, and ask that they keep u updated, i just went through this with one of my cats philly. scan the house before u let her go to that home to make sure that it is a save and friendly enviroment for ur kitty. its definetly hard to let them go but sometimes we have no other choice but to do whats best for them

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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-22-2011, 01:23 PM
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From my understanding of the post, the best thing for the cat is to re-home her. Obviously it is a hard decision but keeping her because you made the commitment is not translating to her. She doesn't understand that mode of thought, let alone english language! For her, if she is suffering from anxiety, depression, stress it's something that should be corrected with a new and stable environment. Many animals change when baby comes along because all the attention once given to them is now on this whining, crying, bundle of milk and powder scented mini-human. The baby can pull and tug on the cat, if they get close enough, and cats just don't necessarily like it. (I mean, my old cat Dusti assisted in my niece's learning to sit up as she would grab his fur and pull herslef up. It was really cute) So I mean, where some cats differ is their tolerance for such things.

In the best interest of the cat, rehome her. If you feel obliged when you move back and get a house, adopt a new cat and your daughter will be old enough to have forgotten Pixel and not have bad feelings towards animals, maybe even create a strong bond. But it really sounds like her problems will be long lasting. You said yourself that Pixel has become a burden and you're not happy. These vibes can be easily caught on by her especially if you get angry and take it out on her. Happy pheremones might help her in adjusting to her new home. I second that if you are putting up an ad on an online classified site to make it clear that you will be probing somewhat. You can find good examples of what to ask when looking for a home online. If you feel nobody will take her because of her 'problems' specify in the ads that the cat needs extra care. Some people may not want to keep contact with you once they take her, however. \
The buddy who took my turtles said he would keep minimal contact and only emails me like once a year. It's not on everybody's checklist to be keeping touch in their own busy lives bc you had to re-home your pet. So just putting that out there.

It sucks to re-home. I felt a bit of depression when my turtles left but keeping the good memories alive will help you through.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-22-2011, 10:00 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you both for offering your insight. It really helps to get support from fellow pet owners. I agree that re-homing her is best for her. I still feel guilty about it and I know I will miss her. :/ Do you have any ideas for finding a home other than posting a classified?
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-22-2011, 11:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by natasha elise View Post
Thank you both for offering your insight. It really helps to get support from fellow pet owners. I agree that re-homing her is best for her. I still feel guilty about it and I know I will miss her. :/ Do you have any ideas for finding a home other than posting a classified?
you could maybe contact your local shelter and see if they can help you find a home for kitty.

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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-23-2011, 09:19 AM
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When I re-homed my turtles (health issues) I put up classifieds. Online kijiji.ca I put up pics and stated that they would be released to an experienced home (for a cat most people have experience) and at a small donation to me which I intended on donating to the rescue. I also stated in the ad that I would require a vet reference and that they were not to be given as a gift or to kids.... I got contacted by some woman who clearly couldn't read who wanted them for her 11 year old son O>o After that nobody contacted me. I ended up fostering my own turtles for the rescue until they found a home. The man who took them built them an indoors pool and introduced them to his 2 other turts. I have no doubt they're okay.

So, word of wisdom, don't put so much info in your ad!!! lol Even though you want a vet reference or even want to meet the person before committing to them, only tell them on the phone when they call. In the ad be clear and short written. Something like: Pixel cat, <age>, home with no children, etc. . . So anyone interested will call you and then you can spring the references on them and that you feel comfortable meeting them first before any commtments etc.. It's a lot harder for them to get out of it that way, you know? Like, reading online if they're intimidated by giving a reference they just simply will not reply to the ad.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-04-2011, 02:59 AM
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That's too tough but sometimes, had to. Re-home is good solution knowing there will be more burden.. wishing well for your future plans..

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