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Old 02-21-2012, 06:17 PM
 
5,531 posts, read 6,721,170 times
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I certainly wouldn't pay that a$$ of a petsitter!


I certainly hope Toby comes home soon. at least, he has his claws---good for you! even though Toby is an indoor cat, you left him his claws. I NEVER declawed my cats, for just that reason. if they ever got out or escaped, at least they have their basic defense. yes, I've had some furniture "mistreated" but furniture can be replaced.

Keep sitting food outside, and, do you have any used litter? Try sitting that around, along with, perhaps used laundry, towels, sheets, that have your scent. Keep looking, many cats come back months later!
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Old 02-21-2012, 06:28 PM
 
Location: Cambridge, MA
4,139 posts, read 6,523,404 times
Reputation: 4920
I also had to learn the hard way that a collar with ID should always be on a cat even if microchipping was done. Weasie got her chip in the fall of 2004. Between that and her widespread notoriety in our neighborhood I gained a false sense of security. Then, starting late this past October, either a "second kittenhood" born of old age or some kind of psychological response to the liver cancer she contracted during summer - or some combination - kicked in. With her unerring sense of which persons would be kind and which ones had yet to be met, she started regularly making new acquaintances. Twice in November I had to spend sleepless nights, after sending word to the microchip company, before she returned home. Once a nice lady in a large apartment building around the corner had been conned into taking her in. The other time, Weeze detected a pair of promising new prospects passing by the corner at the end of our block on their way home. She followed (and was carried by) them to their house over a half-mile distant. Luckily she'd become well known by the city Animal Control office due to all the calls they received about her. The briefest description would bring the response "Oh, that's Weasie. Here's her owner's name and phone number." Hearing me recount the tales of Weasie's "B & B Adventures," another neighbor gave me some collars to write her name and our phone digits on. Before colder temperatures and her worsening condition kept her inside most of the time, one of them came in handy more than once.

I'm not posting to instill a guilt trip. The message is that over the span of nearly two decades my cat always wound up back where she belonged, collar or no. Much more likely than not this will happen with Toby too. If the word has gone out around the neighborhood and the area shelters are aware, he'll be found some way somehow. I've sent word to Weasie in her new unseen form to nudge him back home.

FORGIVE YOURSELF for not finding a fully capable catsitter. I went through quite a few m'self in nineteen years. Only two were perfect matches - then one left the state, which meant I boarded Weasie at the vet clinic when the other wasn't available. All of the sitters I tried were friends if not also neighbors. In 1998 I got home from visiting family for Christmas to find a series of increasingly anxious messages on my answering machine. (Remember those? LOL) She had "accosted" (in his words) a guy who lived around the corner by running from beneath a parked car as he walked past on Christmas night - typical MO. Unbeknownst to him, she followed him home after he'd given her some attention and bidden her farewell. ("When I opened the door, she SHOT into the house.") For three nights he looked after her while wondering when I'd return his calls. After Weeze and I had reunited, I confronted the person who'd been entrusted with her care. "Hey, I didn't think too much of her not being home. She knows where she lives." Bear in mind - this is the same person who brought her to live with me! How could I have known that he wouldn't take better care of her than that? Plenty of other "well meaning" people would dump a week's worth of food onto her dishes and not tend to the litter box for days at a time. As if I wouldn't notice - and, if I somehow didn't, that Weasie wouldn't give me an earful about it. I'd always civilly thank the person(s), take back the spare set of keys, and not call on them for the same favor again. To show gratitude I never paid the sitters in cash, but instead in kind through a meal or event tickets or what have you. Nowadays there are of course individuals who mind pets for a living, but that option was never one I wanted to pursue. Weasie deserved not only the basics of everyday living, but also somebody who she knew and who was happy to spend some quality time with her. I'm sure the OP had these same thoughts when leaving for vacation this time.

"TMI" as always - but that's the Suth'na in me.
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Old 02-21-2012, 06:34 PM
 
Location: Redondo Beach, CA
7,140 posts, read 4,441,524 times
Reputation: 7016
Quote:
Originally Posted by CSD610 View Post

Why in the world would you have a pet sitter for a cat? If the cat does not go outside and is litter trained I see no reason to pay someone to be at your home with the cat. Leave a few litter boxes out and several bowls in different rooms of food and water. Cats are very self sufficient and have no need to be left with someone. A total waste of money in my opinion.
Let me guess - you don't own a cat and never have (please say this is so).

We have (or had) a pet sitter because we were planning on being gone for 9 days, not 2. Even if I left out 9 litter boxes, they'd still be stinking up the house. Litter boxes should be cleaned out twice per day.

Cats aren't necessarily smart enough to just go to the next clean box once they've dirtied one box. No, they'll go to the box they're most familiar with, find it unpleasant and do their business on the floor outside the box. Or on the bed because they're angry. And now what you have is a cat with a behavioral problem that you may not be able to cure it of, even with hundreds of dollars worth of special calming sprays, vet visits, different litter, etc.

Plus, my cats crave attention. They love to play - they'll even dig their favorite toys out of their toy box, carry them over to us in their teeth, drop it at our feet and drive us crazy until we play with them. They love being brushed and having their butts scratched while they're on their tippie-toes on their scratchie box.

Contrary to popular myth, cats are not solitary creatures.
Quote:
Originally Posted by subject2change View Post

Lots of cats are NOT that independent. And what is the point of your post? If somebody wants to do something that you consider a waste of money, that's their right. The OP is a caring cat owner, obviously, and it's very sad that people are posting just to bash her for no reason.

Toby, come home!
Thanks, subject2change. But I wasn't paying her. She was doing this as a favor and so she could chill at our beach house, as well as a return favor for me giving her cooking lessons for the past several weeks. We've had her stay before and we always bring her back a very nice gift (last time was a Murano bead necklace from Denmark).

This time I'm tempted to go to her apartment and smear cat poo all over her front door.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marylandkitten View Post

750 acres of farmland, and 5 months later, I still put food out every night for my lost little Moo. Don't give up hope. Please. You'll get a much better sense of accomplishment when you can come home personally and help search for him yourself. Not being there is pretty emotionally crippling right now.
I remember when little Moo went missing, but I don't remember her being gone 5 months. Wow. I was so excited when she came home to you.

Thomas is on a plane as I type, flying home to relieve that little cussword that starts with a B of any responsibility at our house. I had to tell her to get her cussword that starts with an S out of my house, lock it up, leave my key and get the cussword that starts with an H out. You know she actually got nasty with me for daring to be angry that she refused to respond to any of my voice messages or texts? Then the cussword that starts with a B blocked my email. Then the cussword that starts with a B blocked my text messages.

I have real friends who have been over to the house several times now, doing everything they can to help. One of them spotted Toby on the patio, but he spooked and ran off into the backyard neighbor's house where he went last time he ran off (the time he escaped through my legs and we found him 45 minutes later). I'm absolutely certain that Thomas will be able to find him and get him back in the house.

I'm just outraged that this woman caused this much chaos for so many people, and when I told her that I'd make her pay for his ticket home if she didn't pick up the phone and call me, she dared to tell me not to "threaten" her. Cussword that starts with a B (or worse).

I talked to her mother, whom I've been friends with for 35 years (since the pet sitter was 6 months old) and she said, "Welcome to what I have to put up with from her. Sorry I can't help, but she blocked me, too." Unbelievable.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jasper12 View Post

Jill61, I hope your Toby Kitty comes home to you, safe and sound. That is my wish. There is not much I can do to help you, but I started a thread for you, and Toby.
"Tell your story about a cat that you adopted", because I want you to know that even if you don't find Toby Kitty (I hope you do), but realize maybe he is safe and being well taken care of by someone who will love him as much as you do.

Maybe those stories can ease your pain, as you imagine him safe and being loved, and maybe someday, he will come home again.
That is just the nicest thing, Jasper. I'll go check it out. But I'm sure Toby is very near our yard and wants to get back in the house. When Thomas gets home later, I have no doubt that he'll be able to get the little bugger back in, if not tonight, then tomorrow.

And since he took the whole week off work to spend with me here in St. Louis, he'll be around all day, every day to keep up the luring and searching until we do get him back. Toby ain't no dummy - he knows where his treats are. The little cussword that starts with a B just didn't care enough to do whatever it took to get him to come back. Obviously his daddy does.

Thanks again, everyone, for all the kind words and prayers for Toby's return.
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Old 02-21-2012, 06:45 PM
 
Location: Redondo Beach, CA
7,140 posts, read 4,441,524 times
Reputation: 7016
Quote:
Originally Posted by MaryleeII View Post

I certainly wouldn't pay that a$$ of a petsitter!


I certainly hope Toby comes home soon. at least, he has his claws---good for you! even though Toby is an indoor cat, you left him his claws. I NEVER declawed my cats, for just that reason. if they ever got out or escaped, at least they have their basic defense. yes, I've had some furniture "mistreated" but furniture can be replaced.

Keep sitting food outside, and, do you have any used litter? Try sitting that around, along with, perhaps used laundry, towels, sheets, that have your scent. Keep looking, many cats come back months later!
We weren't paying her anyway. She was supposed to be a friend of sorts - kind of like a niece. I'd been giving her cooking lessons (even took her shopping for the kitchen supplies she'd need and taught her what they were for and how to use them), and she was watching the cats in return.

I'd never take their claws out, either. We keep them trimmed and he has learned what he's allowed to scratch and what he's not, and we give him plenty of scratching opportunities (a tall cat post with carpet and jute, two scratching boxes, a hanging jute scratching thingie - he's set), so he leaves the furniture alone now (there was only one chair he ever bothered, and I hated it and wanted it reupholstered anyway! )
Quote:
Originally Posted by goyguy View Post

I also had to learn the hard way that a collar with ID should always be on a cat even if microchipping was done. Weasie got her chip in the fall of 2004. Between that and her widespread notoriety in our neighborhood I gained a false sense of security. Then, starting late this past October, either a "second kittenhood" born of old age or some kind of psychological response to the liver cancer she contracted during summer - or some combination - kicked in. With her unerring sense of which persons would be kind and which ones had yet to be met, she started regularly making new acquaintances. Twice in November I had to spend sleepless nights, after sending word to the microchip company, before she returned home. Once a nice lady in a large apartment building around the corner had been conned into taking her in. The other time, Weeze detected a pair of promising new prospects passing by the corner at the end of our block on their way home. She followed (and was carried by) them to their house over a half-mile distant. Luckily she'd become well known by the city Animal Control office due to all the calls they received about her. The briefest description would bring the response "Oh, that's Weasie. Here's her owner's name and phone number." Hearing me recount the tales of Weasie's "B & B Adventures," another neighbor gave me some collars to write her name and our phone digits on. Before colder temperatures and her worsening condition kept her inside most of the time, one of them came in handy more than once.

I'm not posting to instill a guilt trip. The message is that over the span of nearly two decades my cat always wound up back where she belonged, collar or no. Much more likely than not this will happen with Toby too. If the word has gone out around the neighborhood and the area shelters are aware, he'll be found some way somehow. I've sent word to Weasie in her new unseen form to nudge him back home.

FORGIVE YOURSELF for not finding a fully capable catsitter. I went through quite a few m'self in nineteen years. Only two were perfect matches - then one left the state, which meant I boarded Weasie at the vet clinic when the other wasn't available. All of the sitters I tried were friends if not also neighbors. In 1998 I got home from visiting family for Christmas to find a series of increasingly anxious messages on my answering machine. (Remember those? LOL) She had "accosted" (in his words) a guy who lived around the corner by running from beneath a parked car as he walked past on Christmas night - typical MO. Unbeknownst to him, she followed him home after he'd given her some attention and bidden her farewell. ("When I opened the door, she SHOT into the house.") For three nights he looked after her while wondering when I'd return his calls. After Weeze and I had reunited, I confronted the person who'd been entrusted with her care. "Hey, I didn't think too much of her not being home. She knows where she lives." Bear in mind - this is the same person who brought her to live with me! How could I have known that he wouldn't take better care of her than that? Plenty of other "well meaning" people would dump a week's worth of food onto her dishes and not tend to the litter box for days at a time. As if I wouldn't notice - and, if I somehow didn't, that Weasie wouldn't give me an earful about it. I'd always civilly thank the person(s), take back the spare set of keys, and not call on them for the same favor again. To show gratitude I never paid the sitters in cash, but instead in kind through a meal or event tickets or what have you. Nowadays there are of course individuals who mind pets for a living, but that option was never one I wanted to pursue. Weasie deserved not only the basics of everyday living, but also somebody who she knew and who was happy to spend some quality time with her. I'm sure the OP had these same thoughts when leaving for vacation this time.

"TMI" as always - but that's the Suth'na in me.
I've had my share of pet sitters from hell, too. One time I used a vet tech from my vet's office. He and a friend got drunk and thought it would be funny to see if it was true that a cat would walk in circles if you cut one side of its whiskers off. He also killed my fish, dumping half the jar of food in their tank, then left their rotting corpses for me to clean up.

But here's the thing - I actually have a reliable, loving, wonderful, awesome pet sitter that I usually hire and pay to sit. But even with 3 months notice, she was already booked for this exact week for another one of her regular customers.

Toby is at and around our house. We know he's there and that when my husband gets home he'll have him captured in no time. It just sucks that it cost us $300+ and inconvenienced at least 10 people because of one person's irresponsibility.
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Old 02-21-2012, 07:32 PM
 
5,531 posts, read 6,721,170 times
Reputation: 6682
Try this:

National Association of Professional Pet Sitters

You plug in your zip code and find professional pet sitters. You might then want to double-check them on angies list.

I've had all sorts of "experiences' with pet sitters, including the "feed once" type. I've come home to two bowls full of stale dry cat food and no water, idiots who let the cat out to go "potty" even though I showed them the litter box, etc.

Once we came home to a missing cat. The pet sitter was very upfront about it, she said she couldn't locate Buttons, so she sat food outside as well as inside, looked several times a day, and was as upset as we were. After she left and we came back, I found buttons. he had clawed his way into the back of the sofa, I noticed stuffing on the floor. When I pulled him out, he was barely breathing. we took him to the vet, fortunately he was ok, just needed some IV fluid for dehydration, etc. Poor baby was just frightened silly without mama!

Having a pet puts a real crimp on your traveling. Some do just fine, others freak out, like Buttons. when I was a kid, we traveled frequently, for 1-3 weeks at a time. We just left the cats outside, gave neighbors food to give them. they had food and water on the porch, and Dad left a broken board under the porch open so they could run in away from predators, etc. The cats were always ok, perhaps better than being locked up in the house. Of course, we do things differently now. Too bad we can't trust our neighbors like we used to
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Old 02-21-2012, 07:33 PM
 
Location: I'm not lost, I'm exploring!
3,403 posts, read 9,343,736 times
Reputation: 5614
I think your status says you live in Ca.. I was going to offer to drive over and start my ultra-kitty-search-a-thon until you get there. ..but I don't think my truck would make it that far!

You need to get home! To find your baby Toby!
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Old 02-21-2012, 08:58 PM
 
Location: El Paso, TX
2,806 posts, read 4,158,535 times
Reputation: 3158
It stinks that your husband has to go home early, but as you said, he'll have the best chance of getting Toby back inside. That "almost niece" of yours is something else...wow...blocking instead of apologizing and doing whatever she can to FIX the situation she created through her own negligence...just wow. I'd copy all the responses here and send them to her house so she can see how many people think she's being a total irresponsible jerk in this whole situation...we all make mistakes, but it's how we handle and own up to those mistakes that really counts. Forgiveness is easy when the recipient is genuinely sorry and honest, but when they get defensive and act like they've done nothing wrong, they burn bridges, which only leads to regret. Maybe this will turn out to be a valuable lesson for her, in realizing that there are consequences for acting like a spoiled brat, and that if she keeps it up she'll be pretty thin on people she can turn to when she needs a friend or some help. I believe karma is real, and unfortunately some people never learn to connect the undesirable things that happen to them with the unsavory things they've done to others in the past. Sending prayers galore for your husband to find Toby safe and sound in record time upon his return...(((HUGS)))
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Old 02-21-2012, 09:23 PM
 
4,325 posts, read 5,009,918 times
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I'm still praying for your Toby, and have many other people praying too. I'm glad your husband is going home. I hope when I get up tomorrow morning there is a happy ending to this nightmare.

xx
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Old 02-21-2012, 09:39 PM
 
1,851 posts, read 1,439,753 times
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It's been so hard just reading this thread (I didn't see it until this afternoon) and every time I tried to post I felt sick.

I can't EVEN imagine how it would feel to be 2000 miles away when Toby isn't where he should be.

Before I claimed Saber as my cat, he was allowed out at all hours of the day and night. I would stay awake listening for him to come back in safely, and also listening in case he needed help when he was out at night. I was a nervous wreck waiting by the open window, or out in the backyard with a flashlight at 4 a.m.

Toby has been seen, and your husband will be home soon to let him in and give him the loving he deserves. It's good you weren't out of the country.

luvmycat just posted almost word for word my thoughts about "the catsitter".

We have a similar person in our extended family, she took advantage of people for years, yet no one ever warned the next person. I lived in a different state and wasn't aware of her manipulations and lack of responsibility, or I would have simply told the truth and put an end to her free rides.
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Old 02-22-2012, 08:16 AM
 
5,088 posts, read 5,140,508 times
Reputation: 6426
Geez, hope you find your cat. I had a petsitter from hel* sit the very 1st time years ago when I had 3 cats. One of our cats vomited up small spots everywhere around the house, maybe 15 spots. The idiot didn't even clean it up. I came home to that, and from being out of the country for 2 weeks. I had to scrape some spots with a butter knife, then call a carpet cleaning guy. And, it was Thanksgiving week to boot so had to really wait. Her reply,"It was just too hard for me to keep up with it all."
But, I'll say a prayer to St. Francis for you and your cat.
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