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Discussion Starter #1
My neighbour just got back from their holiday and came over with gifts. We have always helped each other with watering the plants, clearing the newspaper, mails etc whenever any of us leave for holiday.

While chatting, I talked about the trouble of looking for boarding for ET, and surprisingly, my neighbour said I can leave ET with her if I needed to go away, she and hubby are not afraid of cats. I asked if she has any allergy, cos she has loads of medical condition but her reply was no. Her married son has a dog and they do come visit with the dog every once in a while and she's said she was ok and can handle.

I'm not sure, having a dog visiting only once in a while and never handled a cat before and leaving a cat there with that much hair flying around, hubby didn't feel comfortable cos he said they probably didn't know what having a cat staying around is all about.

So, we were toying with the idea of them coming into the house. Hubby is comfortable with that, he didn't mind leaving the keys with them. Oh, how happy was I, at least I can have ET stay home for once.

Would you leave a cat with someone who has never dealt with or handled a cat before, especially a scaredy one? I guess, all I ask for is someone to feed and clear the poop, that shouldn't be too difficult, am I right? I did mention about clearing the poop, neighbour said "no problem". Is there anything else I should be aware of, leaving a cat with a non-cat person?
 

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I *MIGHT* be ok with them coming to my house to care for the boys.... but I'd have to trust them and know them REALLY well.

I wouldn't ever take them to someone else's house. I wouldn't feel safe that way.
 

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My Dad usually checks on my cats when I'm out of town (and vice versa). He's pretty close to me, so he's usually my go-to. My Mom and sisters have checked on them too, but they're all over an hour away, so it's kind of an imposition. Apart from really close friends, I don't think I'd be ok with someone watching them.

I'd be ok with them staying at my Dad's house, but both of my sisters and my Mom have dogs, so I definitely wouldn't leave them there. I don't think I'd let them stay at anyone else's house though...
 

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My neighbor takes care of the cats and keeps a key to our place for emergencies and she's allergic to cats lol... she loves my cats though... she got drunk and kept kissing asia... her face swelled up lol

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I have boarded my kitties in the past- never again, my tortie baby was terrified the whole week, and it was a NICE place.
I usually do have someone come in, feed Pazu, play with him, scoop the box, give a treat or two. They also bring in the mail, water the plants, check on the house, make sure the furnace is going, etc,...
I had a dog person watch Pazu, but she is also a really good ANIMAL person! yk? She is allergic to cats, prefers dogs and horses, but would definitely be able to deal with taking him to the vet in an emergency.
I'd be much more comfortable with someone coming in than taking Pazu to someone else's house.
 

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Why not have the neighbor come over and get to know your cats? I wouldn't want to trust someone with my cats without knowing how they interact with them.

I'd rather have someone come over, clean the litter boxes, and put out fresh food and water. I wouldn't want to stress the cats by putting them in a new place with unfamiliar people.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for all the input. I should think having ET at home would be most ideal. I'm not sure how my neighbour feels about that cos we didn't talk about having them come into the house last night. Hubby is concerned about the wife's medical condition if we were to leave ET in their home. But then, I would feel kinda uneasy if they leave their house keys with me, so I'm not sure if they feel the same.

Moreover, I can't even call them a dog person, they have never even taken care of one. Just having a dog over for 1, 2 hours only OCCASIONALLY is a totally different story. Moreover, ET is a real scaredy cat. There is still a wee bit of uneasiness in me and I can't tell exactly what it is, but that is really the best solution if things do work out. Maybe I should just let ET familiarise with them before I decide, I don't know, the major issue is still, "they have never handled a dog/cat" and "will ET bite stranger".
 

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Snowy how long do you plan on being gone?
As long as you show them where he hides, just so they can get a visual check on him, I wouldn't worry to much about him biting them as he'll just want to hide while they are there!
As far as knowing is he ok, they can get a good feel of that by seeing that he's eating and using the litter box and drinking water (pee clumps will show that!)
ET will do so much better in his own house with all the familiar scents and sounds!
I would think he'd be fine...
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
Hubby will be leaving for a family trip the next couple days which I have opted out, but he's been talking about us joining his friend's family for a longer trip, approx 8days. I had been undecided, but if neighbour is willing to come over, that probably will help alot. I never expected my neighbour to even suggested it, never, cos I never wanna impose on anybody who is afraid of animals, but I'm sure glad she offered, at least I now know she isn't against the idea of taking care of a cat. My mom, sis-in-law, niece, nephew for one, will not hesitate to help us with anything, the only exception is, taking care of our fishes and ET, they never like animals, lol...so I know, I wouldn't even dare mention to anybody who has never had pets in their life.

Maybe, ya, I shouldn't worry too much, ET will probably be hiding when they are around. Thanks for all the assurance that he will probably be fine and happier staying home, even with a non-pet person.

I talked about paying them for the job, but neighbour will not hear of it. I know they are not short of $, but paying them would make me feel better. Maybe, I'll talk to them again about this kinda arrangement - them coming into the house instead of ET going over and at least accepting a monetary token from me. This is different from the previous help I get from them when the son helped me with servicing the computer. I bought them pizza back then, but its different this time. I'll need to pay someone to come in anyway and I wanna at least pay them $.
 

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I would feel kinda uneasy if they leave their house keys with me, so I'm not sure if they feel the same.
Why is that?

I think getting to know a neighbour and keeping a spare pair of keys at their place is a great idea, until my neighbours moved last summer that was the setup here for the last ~50 years. Meanwhile, the house one over leaves their will with us when they go on vacation... which they do frequently. And we pick up their mail while they're gone, too. Even cut their grass once when it started getting long...

Having someone living around you that you can depend on for little things like this is nice.

I'll echo what others have said though about the whole idea of keeping ET at your house, not theirs. No need for the stress it'll cause ET, and imposing on them with your cat when they're not cat people doesn't sound like the greatest plan.
 

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Snowy offering to pay them is wonderful, however if they refuse, you could get them a favorite bottle of wine, if they like that kind of thing or get them a gift certificate to a special restaurant, there are many ways to show your appreciation! :p:D
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Why is that?
hahaha...probably the culture. None of my friends, relatives and anyone I know, leave their house keys with neighbours. Mail box key is fine, my neighbour left me their mailbox key when they were gone for a very long period cos our mailboxes do get flooded with advertisement flyers so much so, important mails can't get in.

Snowy offering to pay them is wonderful, however if they refuse, you could get them a favorite bottle of wine, if they like that kind of thing or get them a gift certificate to a special restaurant, there are many ways to show your appreciation! :p:D
haha...I haven't thought of that, thanks for mentioning.

Thanks all, urgh...that sort of settles things abit, I know what I need to do next. I'm sure very happy, happy that I can finally get help, happy that hubby approves of this arrangement.
 

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As long as they are willing to come in and spend some time with ET so he gets to know them before you go. You really don't want a situation where he runs and hides every time they come in. If they can't find him and he's sick, it may go undetected for days. They need to be able to lay eyes on him every day.

Also, you should educate them on things they should be on the lookout for. For example...that it's a problem if they scoop the box and don't find any pee balls. If he doesn't eat for more than a day. etc. etc. Non pet owners will have no idea what red flags to be watching for, so you need to provide a list.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
if you get along with them....and can trust them....i think its a great idea. :)
It isn't me, its hubby, whether he is comfortable with leaving house keys with our neighbours. We have 2 neighbours, I am certainly ok with the 2, and I have talked about it with hubby, he says he's fine with the 2 neighbours whom we have known for over 20years.

As long as they are willing to come in and spend some time with ET so he gets to know them before you go. You really don't want a situation where he runs and hides every time they come in. If they can't find him and he's sick, it may go undetected for days. They need to be able to lay eyes on him every day.

Also, you should educate them on things they should be on the lookout for. For example...that it's a problem if they scoop the box and don't find any pee balls. If he doesn't eat for more than a day. etc. etc. Non pet owners will have no idea what red flags to be watching for, so you need to provide a list.
Yes, another of my concern with a non-pet especially a non-cat person, they wouldn't know what to look out for. But ok, I'll have them socialise, but I'm very doubtful about ET, he is eh...totally afraid of strangers, but who knows, if he sees that they meant no harm, he will probably come out? I don't know. Anyway, will work out a list for them, thanks for highlighting.
 

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Snowy: where are you located? I am located in Bremerton, WA. It may be best to get someone from this cat forum who knows about cats and fish to look after them. I would feel better knowing that someone who knows about cats and fish is looking after them.

When my mom went on vacation, she had me stay at her house and watch her dog and cats. I also could go back and forth between my mom's place and mine to care for my animals as well.

If I was going somewhere, I would want someone I really trusted to look after my animals. I would also write down how to take care of them, like how much food to feed them and set out the amount to feed for the duration of my vacation. Also leave the number for the vet in case any emergency comes up.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Yes, ideally, if I can have someone experienced come in, but it has always been a problem with hubby, he isn't comfortable with handing over the house keys to a total stranger, however experienced the other person is, so the solution has always been boarding. Now that he okayed having my neighbour over, that's something I should be elated about. But having said that, I would have to try a short trip 1st, with my neighbour coming in just to see how things goes before even thinking of going on a longer trip.

For longer trip (8days), I need to rethink and decide which is more important, leaving ET home with an inexperienced neighbour who may not even know if he gets into trouble, as Doodlebug mentioned, or boarding with someone experienced, in which case I know for sure he is well taken care of.
 

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I would be fine with them taking in my baby(s). I would rather someone stay at my house with them, but frankly I don't know any single people or a couple willing to do that. The second best option is boarding at a close friend's house. Are you going to be out of cell phone range?? If so, it might be unnerving otherwise tell them to call you if they have questions or concerns about the list of instructions you give them anytime day or night. You just might make cat lovers out of them!
 

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You really don't want a situation where he runs and hides every time they come in. If they can't find him and he's sick, it may go undetected for days. They need to be able to lay eyes on him every day.
This may not be possible even when the person is a cat person, although it definitely is worrisome. I get a good friend to watch my cats, and at the end of January when we went away for 4 days she came in twice a day and stayed for awhile each time. She never once caught sight of Mystique, she saw Penny once, and she saw Sunny briefly each day when she walked in the door, long enough for his eyes to get that wide 'You're not my mom' look and dash off.

She owns cats, came to my house multiple times before we left, etc. My cats still will not cooperate. But for a short trip, I didn't want to disrupt them and take them in to be boarded so I took the risk.
 

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I am catsitting my BF's cats right now while they are on a 10 day vacation. We've done this for them for years. We go over there at least once a week for dinner and socializing, and these cats know me VERY well. One of them still hides the entire time I am over there alone. Only on day 3 this time did she peek out and nibble some wet food for me - as long as I didn't come within 10 feet of her. When her momma is gone she goes into a funk and nothing I can do helps. Not much I can do about it.

I have keys to 2 of my neighbor's houses and they have ours - plus each other's security keypad #'s. We have wonderful friends/neighbors here in my neighborhood. I trust them implicitly.
 
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