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Discussion Starter #1
Sorry guys, I just feel the need to vent a little anger here...
My parents have 5 outdoor cats, 2 older that are spayed and neutered and 3 males that are about 1 1/2 years old and not neutered (2 are my Stormy's brothers). These cats need to be taken care of but my mom's view seems to be "I have so much to take care of, I will feed these cats, but I don't have the time/effort to take them and do all this stuff." And she does have a lot to take care of but STILL. My 15 year old brother insists that "his cats" will not have their manhood taken away. I have tried to persuade him with websites and talking to him that this is the best thing for them and does not make them any less males. You'd think I was try to get HIM neutered! And my dad...who means well, but never gets anything done due to short term memory loss. A stray female dog adopted us this summer and he still has not taken her to the vet for shots and to get spayed. I keep telling him to do it, but the farthest he has gotten is buying dog shampoo because he wanted to bathe her before he took her to the vet. This was several months ago. I guess maybe it interferes with watching westerns and CNN all day. :x
It just irks me that my own family is being so irresponsible with their pets! I understand not everyone is going to be as loony as I am over my babes, but I really expect more from them! But of course if I say anything all I will get is complaints from my mom about how busy she already is with everything else and how my dad never remembers to do anything that he says he will! Argh! I am not home enough to do it myself (only holidays) or else I might just take them in myself.
Oh yeah and Mom is allergic so she really shouldn't be doing it, Dad should, but never does.
I just think of how much joy my kitties give me and how much I love them. Is it asking too much to get them spayed and get them their shots?!
Sorry guys and thanks for listening.
 

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:roll:

I sigh and roll my eyes with you.

I can't say I've ever seen or experienced any such behavior towards any animals, personally, but I know it exists. Just watch Animal Planet's "Pet Precint" or... ****, I forget the titles. You know the shows if you watch Animal Planet as much as we do, lol - the show's where they follow SPCA and Humane Society and Pet Police people around, as they try to help and save all the animals? Those shows are like a car crash - sad and painful to watch, but you can't help but look. We (me and my Sis) get so angry watching those things, seeing how badly some people can treat such adorable little creatures. It's one of the many reasons I've lost faith in the human race...

Anyway, on to what you can do about your problem family:

I understand where your brother is coming from - every guy does - don't ask any of us to explain it, we can't. :p However I have a way for you to convince him that it's best form them to be neutered. First, have you relayed the facts that if neutered within a year or so, (earlier the better) they have a decreased chance of lukemia? If that doesn't do it - extending thier life spans and sparring them the torture and agony of possible disease - then try this. The cats are outdoor cats, yes? Well, dare him (no man can resist a dare, lol) to keep his cats inside, with him, while they're in heat. Our cats are indoor cats. Let me tell you, having them go nutty, running around, clawing at the windows, et cetera, is enough to get anyone to see that it's more torment than anything else to leave them un-nuetered or un-spayed. If neither of those arguements work, I'd challenge his pet-parental abilities, as he seems more concerned about his boys winning future potential pissing contests, then being healthy and happy.

As to your father and mother. Not sure what to do there. I'd say one time when your home, take the Dog yourself, but you said your only there on holidays and I doubt they're open then... Hmm - if your vet charges for missing appointments, make an appointment and tell your dad only a couple hours before the appointment. Hehe. Men like saving money and hate paying it for something they didn't use. That might work. If he misses it and has to pay for it, then make another and he'll be sure to make that one.

Your Mom sounds like my Mom - always busy. But my Mom's never been an animal person. My grandmother was the type to say "Now be careful, don't move to fast, or the dog will attack you." every time they came around an animal. So she was warped away from liking anything non-human as a kid. Being around Boo and Drizzle is slowly, but surely, reversing that damage. Though don't ask her to feed them, clean up after them, or pick them up. She's only picked them up less than a handful of times and only when she has too. But she does love them. They're her "Grandkittens" :D and she admits it. Hehe.

As to how to get her to take care of them more... does she love them? The cats? Do they give her kitty hugs? Meow at her? Love her, snuggle her, ever? Play and ammuse her? That's how my Mom began to love our cats. She saw how cute and adorable and loving they where and began to reciprocate...

Hope some of this helps. 8)
 

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I would try to take them myself but then again I would probably have to pay for it out of my own pocket and since you're only there on Holidays I would book it way ahead of time. A lot of vet places are booked fast or are closed. The only thing that might get your brother to change his mind is to tell him about the spraying around the house and such. Hope everything works out for you, you're doing a responsible job trying to get your family to take care of the pets and also to neuter them. Good Luck :p
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Well, to answer the questions. My mom likes the cats but she doesn't get up close to them because she is allergic to them. That is why the cats are outdoor only. When I bring Stormy home, I try to keep her mostly in my bedroom, brushed a lot, and my mom takes her allergy meds and suffers a bit.
I don't think my family is as bad as animal precinct or anything, there's no abuse or anything like that! They love the pets, but being outdoors, they come and go. Lots of people in the area view it as they should only worry about spaying females because they are the ones who have kittens. There is less of a reason to neuter males.
Unfortunately I doubt the vet will be open any day that I am able to be home. The soonest time might be *maybe* January 2nd would be on the only non-holiday day.
BUT I did talk to my brother and managed to convince him that his kitties needed to be neutered! :D I gave him more detail about how they might be hurt in fights, get lost because they will be roaming more and how many kitties die each year because of pet overpopulation. So now he is willing and I just have to hope he will get my dad to do. I told him that he needed to keep reminding him about it. They don't even have an excuse about not being able to afford it either because there is a vet in the area that is SO cheap. He is old enough to be retired but takes care of animals because he loves them so much and basically does it at cost or cheaper. It was only $10 for me to get a rabies and one other shot (don't rememeber which, maybe for the respiratory diseases) and get Stormy dewormed!
If they haven't done anything by Thanksgiving I will make my dad decide on a day to do it and make the appointment. I'm not sure but we may need several actually...I don't think we have enough carriers for 3 cats and one dog.

Edit: Keep in mind my brother is only 15 even though he considers them "his" cats. He is the one who really plays with them but of course he doesn't take them to the vet himself! I just want him (since he is the only one home) to force my parents to take the kitties and dog to the vet.
OH yeah and one more thing. My parents absolutely love Stormy. I think they would love the other cats even more if they were indoors all the time like she is when I bring her home. She sat in my dad's lap every morning and my dad and mom enjoyed watching her play. But because of my mom's allergies their cats aren't indoors and you just don't see as much of them and in my opinion, don't form as much of a bond when they are outdoors. :(
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Just wanted to give an update on the situation. I confronted my dad about the whole thing. Unfortunately, he thought I was just trying to pick a fight (we love each other, but don't get along too well more often than not).
I told him he needed to get the dog spayed and the cats neutered and he told me that we really didn't need all these animals. And I said well you DO have them and now you are responsable for them unless you want to find them new homes. And 2 of the 3 cats that need to be neutered my little brother is attached to, so good luck on that. So he countered that since the cats are males they can't get pregnant anyway. I told him about the fighting that happens when they are not altered and reminded him of two previous male cats we had, that we had neutered. And he said oh but I liked those cats. Now this is where I got really mad. I yelled at him that he would like these cats too if he gave them a chance and that he can't just ignore them because they are ours now. Like it or not, there is no animal shelter around here and that is not an option. So I ended up leaving the room. My mom had heard the whole thing and came up to me and told me that she would talk to him later. I started to cry and told her that it I couldn't stand the way people treated animals like they were something that they could just throw away when they didn't want them or ignore them or whatever. She knew I was upset and said that they would get the cats neutered one at a time in the near future.
I understand that they are busy and that they really didn't intend to have 5 cats. They all just sort of showed up. That tends to happen in an area where there is no animal shelter. When people can't or don't want to take care of their pets, they just dump them off somewhere. So then my parents feel sorry for them and feed them, but they don't want to follow up and do anything more for them. But I guess they will now and if not I will try to do it myself when I am home sometime. Better late than never.
My dad did come up and tell me that I was a very kind hearted person. I guess that was his apology, I don't know.
Since I got back, my mom told me that they will be giving the dog to a woman who lost her dog a few months ago. So that's good. The woman is lonely and this dog needs more attention than she is getting right now, so I'm glad that she will be getting a good home.
 

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According to my vet, the average life span of an intact tom allowed outside is TWO YEARs! I was giving my vet the same argument until my Blacky (many years ago) had to have surgery for an abscess that went in both sides of his back, nearly touching the spinal cord. It was such delicate surgery the whole staff wanted to observe. This was probably Blacky's third surgery, and hundreds of dollars to a young couple who barely had enough to live on. The worst of is was that I would almost certainly lose this beloved cat soon. I had him neutered at that time, and Blacky lived until 16 years old. No more fights with Toms, females, cars and dogs on the way to find a female in heat. I saved his life. He was very special, and I really wanted what was best for him. I just wasn't aware of these facts.

Also, they might consider the fact that a Tom can easily impregnate two females a week. In a few months, with four kittens a litter, there will be another 128 or so more kittens killed (I don't use the word euthanasia, because this is killing because of carelessness, not mercy killing) at the shelters and by people coming for "Kittens-free to a good home"- to sell for medical research and pretending to love kittens- because Dad and brother want their Tom intact. It's a shame that you had the argument, because these are facts, statistics to which I'm sure they wouldn't want to contribute. I'm sure they are intelligent, well meaning people who, like me, are unaware. Please write to your local shelters and get the figures on cats and kittens put down weekly. I think they'll be shocked. Also ask for information on why the animals are killed. If you live near a good sized city, the statistics will shock all of you and break your hearts.

Try to smooth over feelings, wait a while and save these facts. Good luck and God bless you and all the little kittens and cats who will die-because of ONE intact tomcat.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
There are no shelters in the area. I think the closest one would be maybe an hour and half away? Right now, the only humane society in the area operates using foster parents. I called them about the dog when she first showed up to ask if they had room to take her in and they didn't. I imagine it is the same situation for the cats. They are trying to raise money to open up a real shelter but I'm afraid they are still a long way from their goal. It is a rural area and there is no organizations (that I know of) that are trying to take care of the stray/feral population. The problem isn't just my family, it's so many others also. :(
I think it's more a matter of laziness than anything else...not wanting to take the time to make the appointments, take them in, pick them up and watch them closely for a few days. But if they don't do it, I will do it myself. It might actually work out well if I helped since they only have one carrier. If I contributed a couple of mine, we might could get all three of the boys done at once.
In the meantime, I'd like to find some good literature and statistics on toms fighting, the problems it can cause for them, the overpopulation of cats, and so forth. Something I can print out and send to them. These cats are already a year and a half old and they actually hang around the house more than most toms would, but still there is no telling what is going on when they ARE away. The thing is, they did get one of our cats neutered after he was getting into fights and getting hurt. I guess they weren't bothering with these cats since they haven't been getting hurt...YET.
By the way the cats are two DLH orange tabbys Marvin and Pete, who are my Stormy's brothers. And then there is a DSH white cat called Whitey (short for Mighty Whitey), he looks like a more muscular version of Moby. Then there are Felicity (DLH orange tabby, Stormy, Marvin and Pete's mother) who is already spayed and Frisky (DSH orange tabby) who is already neutered. I'll try to get some pics of them sometime and post them.
 

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You can get some information about stray cats and kittens from the shelters in Austin or any large city. And the internet is full of information about intact toms and their problems. My problem is typical. Of course others get run over by cars or just disappear, and the owners never know what happened. Simple math will prove the number of kittens they might produce. My estimate was based on one Tom impregnating only 2 females a week. They can tell from miles away when there is a female in heat.
 
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