Morality of Catnapping?
Hey guys -
Okay, here's the situation. A couple of weeks ago, this stray kitty started showing up in my neck of the neighborhood. Real scrawny thing, might have tooth problems (sometimes trouble eating we're guessing), loaded down with fleas and generally in a sad state. He's a real friendly fellow, will let you pet him, occasionally pick him up, is not afraid of people whatsoever - clearly he was someone's kitty.
This goes on for a while, our house and the next door neighbor feeding him (her? We're not quite sure), leaving out water and generally doing what we can to help this guy get along. The neighbor even gets him a flea collar and some of the frontline spray to help control the fleas.
So we're just on the cusp of taking him in, getting him to a vet to see if he's chipped and perhaps trying to find him a good home once we take care of him a bit. But it turns out that one day the neighbor was out grooming him when a lady walked past and goes "I see you met Thomas". It turns out that the cat belongs to her daughter - who is currently in Lebanon with her husband.
The delemma is - this is really breaking my heart. The guy is clearly neglected and in need of a good home - come on, moving to Lebanon and just leaving your cat out in the wild? That aint right. But we've now confirmed that it is indeed someone's kitty. If the rolls were reversed, and it was my boy that someone abducted and arranged a good home for, I would be devastated - but then I would never let my boy get into such a sad state of disrepair!
So . . . what do I do? Do I leave him alone? Do I just keep feeding him and taking care of the fleas? Do I abduct him and find someone who will love him?
The tentative plan - if we go ahead (which we're not entirely sold on yet) is we catnap Thomas, get him to the vet to perhaps clean him up and see if he's okay (and check for chipping), keep him in the garage for a couple of weeks to get some food into him for the coming winter and keep an eye out if "Help! My cat is lost" posters go up around the neighborhood. If nothing develops on that front, either see if we can integrate him into the household or find him someone who will love him.