How to Deal With a Neighbour Who Keeps Taking Your Cat In
I came across this situation recently, one of my friends kept asking me what to do regarding her neighbor who kept taking her cat into her home without her consent and it got me thinking about the matter.
It is deeply concerning that pet theft is a prevalent issue in our society today. Reports of individuals taking their neighbor’s cat without consent are all too common, with some perpetrators justifying their actions by claiming they can provide better care or alleging neglect by the pet’s rightful owner. In reality, pet theft is a violation of property rights and a lack of respect for another person’s belongings. If you are experiencing this situation with your neighbor repeatedly taking your cat, it is imperative that you address the matter promptly to prevent the situation from escalating.
Your neighbor taking your cat in without your permission is a violation of property rights and a clear indication of a lack of respect for my belongings. It is imperative that I address this issue promptly to prevent it from becoming a recurring and potentially escalating situation
It’s of course very frustrating when your cat keeps going missing due to your neighbour. Unfortunately, this is a common problem for many cat owners. Cats will at times visit many different neighbours, mainly just because they are been fed by them. Unfortunately, a lot of people don’t realize what they are doing when they feed another person’s cat never mind when they decide to let them into their home.
If you believe that you are going to experience problems with your neighbour you should take steps in advance to ensure you can prove the cat legally belongs to you. This includes getting your cat microchipped. This will help later down the line if you begin to experience issues.
Helpful tips and tricks to prevent your neighbor from taking your cat
- Keep your cat indoors or in a secure outdoor area with a high fence.
- Make sure your cat has proper identification, such as a microchip or collar with a tag that includes your name and phone number.
- Consider installing a security camera to monitor your property.
- Keep records of your cat’s whereabouts, vet visits, and other important information.
- Report suspicious behavior to the authorities.
Talk to Your Neighbour Directly About Taking Your Cat
There’s no point to jump to extreme measures from the get-go. It could be that your neighbour has no ill intent and is just trying to help your cat with some spare food and isn’t aware of what they are doing. Explain clearly that you want them to stop and that it’s bothering you.
It’s important here to be extremely direct, that you want it to stop completely. There’s no reason to be rude here. But there’s also no point to sugarcoat the issue. Direct and honest communication is essential.
However, If the neighbour already knows it’s your cat and continues to feed it regardless you might want to tell them that your cat is on a special diet for health reasons and by feeding it they will make it sick. Although I’m not an advocate for lying, a little deception is better than starting a big issue with your neighbour if you believe them to be an unreasonable person.
After talking to your neighbour, clearly and specifically about how you want it to stop. Reflect on their reaction, do you believe that they listened? If you think it’s going to continue being an issue you can escalate to other options.
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Optional: Consider Keeping Your Cat Inside if Possible
If you think that your neighbour is going to continue to attempt to continue taking your cat in without your knowledge you might want to consider keeping your cat inside. I know this isn’t ideal for many people as cats love the outdoors, but if it’s a choice between keeping them inside or someone else stealing them, then it might be worth considering.
Indoor cat life isn’t always that bad. You can still make sure that your cat is happy indoors. First, you can get them some toys to keep them amused such as a scratching post or some climbing posts. Secondly, you can create a space for them where they feel safe. You can make them a comfy bed in a hidden quiet room.
There are many things you can do to try to make your cat’s life nicer at home. It’s ultimately up to you to do what you think is best.
Gather Evidence, Proof of Ownership, and Reapproach.
If after speaking to our neighbour originally they continue to take your cat in, then you’ll need to take some further steps to protect your cat.
The first thing you should start to do is gather evidence. This can be things such as videos or pictures of your cat being taken in by your neighbour or even better video footage of them being returned. This will help you in the future if you decide to take legal action.
You should also make sure you have proof of ownership for your cat. Gather things such as vet records that show your cat is registered under your name. Ensure your cat is microchipped and make sure you have plenty of photos and videos.
Once you have spent some time gathering evidence you should reapproach your neighbour. This time you should be more assertive in your approach and make it clear that if they decide to continue taking your cat then you will pursue legal action.
The threat of this is usually enough to get people to stop. You can explain that pet is technically legal property and that what they are doing is theft which is a crime. If they seem unresponsive to this then you can either escalate the problem further or try to somehow prevent your cat from going outside to their house.
Get the Authorities Involved if You Believe Your Neighbor Is Stealing Your Cat
The final and last step that you should take if nothing changes is getting the authorities involved. Call the police and explain the situation and provide them with the evidence. The police will usually come to your neighbour’s houses and talk to them about the situation and hopefully, at this point, it should be enough to get them to stop. However, if the police are unable to get the point across you can attempt to take your neighbour to court. This is usually the last resort which can be very time-consuming and costly.
The reality is if after all these attempts your neighbour is still not complying they most likely have some serious personal issues and are not going to listen regardless of what you do. If this is the case then it’s up to you to protect your cat by preventing them from going outside or maybe even moving house. Obviously, these are not practical solutions but it ultimately depends on how important your cat is to you. Lots of people steal cats, and once they’re gone it can be extremely difficult to get them back. So be cautious in your approach.
My Neighbor Stole My Cat – What to Do?
If you believe that your neighbor is stealing your cat, its important to take action straight away to retrieve your cat and bring the situation to a close. It’s essential to always gather evidence such as witness statements, vet bills, and security footage. If your neighbor denies stealing your cat, you can contact the police and file a claim in small claims court. You can also try to reach out to local animal organizations to assist in the recovery of your cat. Remember to act in a lawful way and remain calm at all times.