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My Cat Has Moved Next Door (Now What? What Can I Do?)

If your cat has moved in next door you may be wondering why or if you are just being paranoid.

Why has my cat moved in next door?

Your cat may have moved in next door because your neighbor is quite hospitable, friendly, and offered it some food. The same way your cat was attracted to your friendliness is the same way they can be led next door.

So, now you know why. But, how can you get your cat back? Can cats live between two houses? How can you stop this from ever happening again? Keep reading for these answers, and so much…

 

How can I get my cat back home?

My cat has moved next door.

Cat in a box.

To get your cat back you will need to do a couple of things, as follows:

01. Improve your living environment

If your cat has gone it is because it has seen something more interesting next door. Therefore, it’s not just worth getting it back right away until you have improved their living conditions.

It could be something simple like keeping the litter tray clean (Click here to see my best self-cleaning litter trays), relocating your existing one, or buying another one.

02. Entice your cat back

Once you feel that your cat has a better offer back at home you need to entice it back home. You can try and offer it some food, get some great toys (Click here to see the reviews, on Amazon #Ad) and offer to play with it, etc.

03. Speak to your neighbors

If all fails you can just go and speak with your neighbor. If they are reasonable people they should put up no resistance to giving your cat back. Assuming you can identify the cat using a collar and ID tag or using a microchip they should be happy to hand it over.

However, if you have problems with your neighbor and fear they have done this purposely you may need some help to resolve this domestic issue.

How can I prevent my cat from moving next door?

If you get your cat back it’s important to make sure that this will not happen again. So, here are some things to do to prevent this from happening again:

01. Ask your neighbor to cooperate (if possible)

If you have reasonable neighbors then the best thing is to ask them to cooperate with you going forward. In particular, as them not to feed or encourage your cat over to their home. Also, ask them to push your cat away if it hangs around their home.

This does not have to be physically moving it. It can simply be by shouting at it or waving their arms to make it feel unwelcome. It may feel cruel from their standpoint but it needs to be done if you want to keep your cat.

02. Keep your cat well fed

One of the big issues is not keeping your cat fed well. If you fear this is one of the reasons it left home make sure this doesn’t happen going forward. Try a different food brand, adjusting its feeding schedule, etc.

Regarding the latter, you could simply switch it from scheduled meal times to free-feeding. This may keep it fulfilled. However, if you do go this route make sure you do not offer unlimited food and risk obesity.

You can still ration out the food you offer each day, are you with me?

03. Build rapport with your cat

Building rapport is often underestimated. If your cat really loves you it will not want to run off just for some food next door. So, work on this. Admittedly it’s not an exact science, it is more of an art. You need to play with your cat more, stroke it, etc.

And, the important thing is to see how your cat responds to these offers of love. Are you with me?

Can cats live between two houses?

Cats are more likely to feel comfortable and live in one home at a time. This does not mean that they will not visit another home, for example, next door, regularly.

If your cat is spending nights away from home it’s safe to assume that it has moved in next door rather than living in two locations.

It’s the same for us humans. If you have a loving auntie you may love her and visit her regularly, right? But, moving in? That is a bigger deal.

How do you prove a cat is yours?

Earlier I mentioned discussing the issue with your neighbor and proving ownership, remember? Well, to do this you need a way to prove this, right? Well, here are some ways to do this:

01. Microchipping

Microchipping cats is becoming more common now. In these situations of disputed ownership, this can be a big help. If you can prove you are the owner of the cat registered to that unique chip ID there is literally no more debate about who owns it.

02. Simple ID collar

Using a simple cat collar (Click here to see one that is unlikely t come off) can be a great way to prove ownership. The ID tag may seem like an old-fashioned technique when you have microchips but it still works and is faster to ID your cat.

Remember, you need to take some time to contact the microchip company to verify the ID. But, a collar with an ID tag is instant. And, why not have the collar anyway, regardless of any microchip in your cat?

03. Expenses relating to your cat

Another clever way to prove ownership is to produce invoices or records of payments relating to your cat. This could be pet insurance documents, vet bills, etc. This will show that you have invested in the cat and clearly the owner.

Is it OK to feed the neighbors cat?

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Top 10 Cat Breeds video

It is not a good idea to feed your neighbor’s cat. It may seem like a nice thing to do. And, if it’s one-off it won’t hurt. But, if you are doing this regularly it can cause issues for the cat owner.

This is because of the following:

  • Affects their appetite
  • May have allegeries
  • May be on a special diet

Affects their appetite

If you are feeding the cat and then it returns home with a full belly can you imagine what might happen? You got it! It may not eat dinner at home or eat less.

This can have consequences down the line. The owner may assume it doesn’t need as much food going forward or worry that it is not well.

I remember my mother telling me not to fill my belly with biscuits before dinner. When I was young, I didn’t get it, but this is a perfect example of the same impact, are you with me?

May have allegories

When you feed a cat you have n idea if it has allergies or health problems. Meaning, there could be certain foods that they cannot eat. And, in your act of kindness, you could be feeding it the wrong food.

Maybe on a special diet

Cat obesity is a big problem these days and there could be a real chance that the cat you are feeding is being fed a special diet to avoid this. So, you could affect this by feeding them.

What do you do if someone won’t give your pet back?

If you have tried to get your cat back and your neighbor (Click here if your neighbor is unhappy with your cat pooping everywhere) is not cooperating you will need to seek legal advice or contact the police. As long as you can prove ownership just heating this is likely to make them return your cat.

What can you do if your neighbor steals your cat?

If your neighbor has stolen your cat and you are sure it’s important to report it. Also, if you have witnesses of this it will help your case even more.

 

Lindsey Browlingdon