Arrgh! Not sure what we should do!
So in a couple of weeks my husband and I are going on a long weekend vacation and will be gone for about 3 1/2 days. We have 4 cats and we have a pet door. One is old and doesn't go outside at all, but the other three do. 2 of the 3 stay fairly close to the house. We have beepers on them that go up to 400 feet and can usually ping them as being nearby and they usually only stay out for about 1/2 hour and then come in. However, our fourth one is an adventurer. She will go out and be gone for hours and we can't ping her. I am always relieved to see her when she returns. We've also been trying to keep them in overnight although sometimes that doesn't work because they don't all come in when we're going to bed.
Adding to the stress of the situation, we have new neighbors across the street. Well, they've been here for over a year but they have issues with cats in their yard. The woman is friendly, but the guy won't even look our way or acknowledge us when we're out. The only time he has spoken to us or our next door neighbors is when he's found poop in their yard or cat urine sprayed on their front door and accuses our cats or their cat of doing it. Well there are several people that have their cats wander and there is also a stray or two that I think is the culprit because they've gotten into our house and sprayed as well. Anyways they set out a trap in their driveway behind a pile of gravel they had there. We didn't know about it but our next door neighbor said she was looking outside one day and saw him set it up and alerted us. Well one night a few days later our cat apparently got into it and I was out of town but my husband came home from work and didn't see her and beeped her and could hear the beeping and then she meowed really loud. Well this was 10PM at night so he just went over and let her out of the trap and didn't even tell them. A few days later the guy apparently moved the trap to the back or put it away, we aren't sure.
So our neighbors are coming over to feed the cats twice a day while we're gone. Our dilemma is do we shut the pet door and keep them in the entire time we're gone or let them come and go. I know the obvious answer should be to keep them in, but they've never even been kept in for a full day before and even at night and we are in the living room and shut them in they start scratching at the front door to go out. I think 2 of the 4 will go absolutely bonkers being kept inside for that long. I am afraid we'd come back to shredded couches and pee on the floor since I think the 3 of the 4 just go to the bathroom outside. And I don't want to have it be a burden on the neighbors to let them roam during the day and then try to get them all inside in the evening. I also don't want to be worrying the whole time that one of them got trapped in the neighbors cage!