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Please Help: Cat Left Out in the Cold

AutumnRain

Jogging around the block
Joined
3/2/17
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914
Real Name
Kelsey
There is a cat that was outside tonight. It was midnight, and according to my weather app, it says it feels like 16 degrees Fahrenheit. The cat looks to be very healthy and doesn't appear to be malnourished. It is also very friendly. I can tell that it's someone's pet. The issue, is that some of my neighbors don't seem to have a problem with leaving cats out in this cold. It's not the first time I've seen this happen, although it was about 32 degrees those times. This cat is also not neutered, so to keep it from spraying all over my home, I put it in my basement, which is heated. I gave it a bowl of water and dog food. (The only thing remotely like cat food that I have here). It's crying though and I feel so bad for it. Will he be okay down there?

I have a foster dog, that I'm in the process of adopting, who got neutered later in life and has marked places in my home. He just barely stopped, so I don't want to have him trying to cover up the cat's marking too, which is why the cat is in the basement. He just sounds so sad that it hurts my heart. I haven't ever seen this particular cat out this late, so maybe his owners just couldn't get him inside. Did I do the right thing? I'm worried that they might think something happened to him. I'm going to let him out in the morning when it's warm enough to do so.
 

Sodapop&Co.

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10/4/18
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736
Location
AB, CA, Earth
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Sarah
It's good of you to take him in <3 but that's not too cold. If he looked to be handling it well - thick coat, not trembling, not begging to come inside - I honestly wouldn't worry about leaving him outside. Maybe it isn't the exact same but farm cats here stay outside sometime's into the -30Cs if they are healthy and they do fine - just need lots to eat. They also have places to go to escape the cold but cats are quite hardy if they're already used to being outside. They'd be unhappy being kept inside actually; would rather live the way they're used to outside. I think either decision is fine - he'll be ok for the night but if you let him out I bet he'll go either to his house or to a spot where he can stay warm.
 

Annie's Mommie

Jogging around the block
Joined
6/27/18
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672
Location
Greenwood. IN
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Anita
We have neighbors who let their cat roam the neighborhood. Several other neighbors have complained about the cat messing in their yards and then someone stepping in it. My problem is that the cat kills birds. I raised two wild birds this spring and released them when they were ready to go own their own. I have caught the cat stalking birds in my yard several times. It is illegal to allow pets to roam free in our town. I am tempted to capture the cat and take it to another town to the pound. One does not let their loved pets roam.
 

Monica

Biking along the boulevard
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Hell, NV
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Monica
My rather small (and I mean small! less than 100 homes) neighborhood has feral cats that roam around. I don't know how many kittens make it to adult-hood, I've only seen one cat thus far (surprisingly, but also sadly) killed by a car. They live outside 24/7 and we can have anything from below freezing to above 100°, depending upon the time of year.

If it were up to me though.... they'd all be indoors! I think only one or two of them that roam freely are actual pets...
 

AutumnRain

Jogging around the block
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3/2/17
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Kelsey
@Monica, I'm pleasantly surprised, that they're so resilient. My cats were indoor cats, but my sister's cat went outside until night time. My mother always said he had to come in at night so he wouldn't freeze, so I thought it was dangerous for them to be out there if it was really cold. I'm happy to be wrong about that, that's for sure. I will be a lot less worried when I see them out late at night in the winter months now.
 

Monaco

Rollerblading along the road
Joined
9/15/19
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1,185
Location
Oklahoma
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Kelly Hill
@Monica, I'm pleasantly surprised, that they're so resilient. My cats were indoor cats, but my sister's cat went outside until night time. My mother always said he had to come in at night so he wouldn't freeze, so I thought it was dangerous for them to be out there if it was really cold. I'm happy to be wrong about that, that's for sure. I will be a lot less worried when I see them out late at night in the winter months now.
I wouldn't be able to resist one asking to come in either. Our barn cats would occasionally show up at the door, but it was rare. I just gave them a lot of calories and they usually wanted out again soon after. You're sweet to watch out for them.
 

camelotshadow

Joyriding the Neighborhood
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18,255
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S California
Maybe put out a cardboard box on its side so the front is open with a towel or some newspapers in it. Actually newspaper & cardboard are very good at insulating...It will help keep the cats body heat in if the box is not too big so it they can curl up /& place it in a sheltered spot near a wall/ out of the wind so the opening is next to the wall///Will really help the kitty out & its free to go when it wants
 
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