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We live on wooded acreage in West Central Florida. We have mostly-tame cats that live on the front porch and 3 in the house. Two (now only one) that live in the house go out part of the time. About two months ago some of the porch cats disappeared. We have no idea what happened to them. We haven't seen or heard any strange dogs around. There's no large wildlife predators around here that we know of. No more have gone missing since then.

Kiki went out usually late in the day and sometimes didn't want to come in. She stayed out sometimes but close to the house and was usually on the back step in the morning. I went to get her twice one night last week but she didn't want to come in. It was the last time I saw her. I had her since she was a kitten. She was born here 10-1/2 years ago and was happy and healthy. She would never just take off. Weather was mild the night she stayed out. If it was cold or wet I wouldn't have left her out. In the morning when she didn't come to my calls right away I knew something was wrong. I was panicked by dark and the weather turned rainy and cold. I lost hope after the second day.

I'm sick over it and haven't been able to get past it yet. And I feel like it's my fault letting her stay out. I just didn't think enough about what had happened two months ago. The porch cats wander around the property but Kiki usually stayed close and I never thought there would be a problem.

I can't seem to get over it that if only I'd have made her come in she'd still be here. Sorry to lay this on anyone here but other people
don't understand. There's no one around here I could talk to about it. I'm not even sure why I'm doing this but I thought it might help
to tell what happened.

Regards
KrazyCats
 

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Much sympathy to you, KrazyCats. I'm going through something similar.

A month ago I adopted a barn cat who needed to be relocated (barn being sold and destroyed). Beautiful sweet adult cat, surprisingly friendly and tame. First time she got outdoors she was gone gone gone. I keep looking and hoping... :(

Here, the dangers would be free roaming dogs, coyotes, and hawks.
 

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When I was a kid, my parents were given a beautiful long-haired cat named Butterball. But they didn't "believe" in letting pets inside, so she stayed outside. They also didn't believe in going to the vet or buying pet food... they gave the pets table scraps, and if they wanted more then "they could go in the woods and kill something".

Butterball would roam like Kiki, but always came home. But after about 2 years, she just disappeared one night.

Months and months later, I was mowing an elderly neighbors yard and saw Butterball in his window! It turned out that she was going to their house every night for real pet food and treats, and after awhile they just brought her in and kept her. I never told my parents about that... they obviously didn't care too much about her, and she was in a much happier and healthier home!

The point is that it might not be bad news or anything, Kiki could have just been taken in by another family that doesn't know about you. The fact that she didn't want to come in twice last week could be because she didn't want to miss out on her treats.
 

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Bobcats and owls are another outside danger. I'm very sorry to hear that KiKi did not come home, hopefully she may still turn up later. My last indoor/outdoor cat, a Russian Blue/Manx mix, was attacked by two stray dogs that fractured his leg. He was 16 y.o. at the time, and tho we had the vet fix him up with plates, etc. he succumbed to the trauma and died of a heart attack four days later. My family, especially our daughter was devastated as he was really "her" cat. I vowed I'd never have another indoor/outdoor cat again as I realized that was the only way to keep them save from dangers outside is to keep them inside. The only way my cats get outside is in a cat stroller that keeps them safe.
 

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Other than my sincere sympathies I have no personal experience to share about indoor/outdoor cats. But it seems as the world has become a more potentially hostile place (there was no 'stranger danger' when I was a child) the same holds true for our little furry friends. Florida and other areas are experiencing more wildlife encroachment as WE squeeze them with our over-developing ways. And there have always been humans and their inconsideration, even violence. In England it's common for people to "let the cat out"- 80% say they do. In the documentary "The Lion in your Living Room" a case is made that it is stifling not to let them out. But reality is such that many of us never want our kitties to be anywhere but the controlled environs of our homes. So in my usual roundabout way I'm saying PLEASE don't beat yourself up over this. As much as we want we can only do so much. Hoping for the best outcome.
 

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Thank you for replying eldercat. I hope your cat comes home.

Thanks for your reply and sharing csdude55. I wish it would be something like that but it would never happen with Kiki. She was rarely out of my sight from the house or out of earshot and would never go near a stranger. She did not let anyone near her except my wife and I, even family who have visited for years.

Thanks catloverami. Sorry for your cat as well. I doubt there's any hope for Kiki. She'd never go away from the house if she was ok. I have one that never goes out and one that does but not over night since this happened.

Thanks DizzysDad. I do suspect a predator. We're on 20 acres of woods. There are coyotes in most of Florida. We've had them here in the past but have not heard any sounds in a long time. We've lost baby goats in the past and suspected coyotes but never lost any cats like this year. We still have one in/out cat but after this I won't let her stay out at night ever again.
 
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