what to do about the cat?

newontarionianSeptember 30, 2008

we are almost at the stage of getting an agent after repairing and decluttering for a month .. ouch.

we have a dog and a cat.

i plan to take the dog outdoors with us when the agent takes a buyer through the house, but what on earth does one do about the cat who probably wont be able to be found in time! (his litter box is coming with us too!)

may i leave him in the home and just tell the agent that the cat is hiding somewhere? i doubt anyone will actually see him but i surely dont want to keep mum as i want no trauma to happen accidentially! lol

thanks

diane

:-)

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sue36

If he really won't come when you call him (my 2 will usually come running if I call their names enthusiastically, if that doesn't work I bang a knife against a food dish, that always does it), I would put a note on the door.

Do something cute like, "There is a cat in this house. Somewhere. He may be hiding, or he may come out to greet you. Please don't let him out. Thank you."

Why take the litter box with you? I'd just keep it extremely clean. There really isn't much else you can do if you really can't find the cat, other than leave him locked in a certain room or basement all the time. Mine would be less than pleased with that.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2008 at 10:03AM
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chris8796

I would take the extra couple of minutes to find the cat and take it in a pet carrier with me.

If I couldn't find the cat or the cat wouldn't come when called, I would get a new cat. I expect some common courtesy from the cat in exchange for room, board and cleaning up after.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2008 at 12:37PM
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satine_gw

Chris8796, I am going to assume you don't own a cat! Expecting common courtesy from a cat-that's a laugh. Satine

    Bookmark   September 30, 2008 at 12:53PM
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chris8796

I've had the same cat for 17 yrs. I usually have the opposite problem and can't get her to leave me alone. I got rid of two other cats (her adult kids) during her reign. One was for poor decision making and the other was because he had too many recurring medical problems (put down).

    Bookmark   September 30, 2008 at 1:03PM
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jojoco

the owner of a house I am listing has two cats. She worries that they will get out due to carelessness. On the MLS I clearly note that the cats are there and they are INDOOR cats. Still, the owner, at my request, made signs and put them on all the access doors. I chuckled when I saw them:
"Despite what they may tell you, the cats are not allowed outside".
She has a great sense of humor.
Hang signs and make sure your agent notes the cat on the MLS.
Good luck.
Jo

    Bookmark   September 30, 2008 at 1:36PM
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satine_gw

Chris8796, I am going to assume you don't own a cat! Expecting common courtesy from a cat-that's a laugh. Satine

    Bookmark   September 30, 2008 at 1:47PM
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trianglejohn

When the day draws near that you know the showing will start you could isolate the cat to a room or two where you know you can find him/her and then crate it and take it outside or just put the notes on that door.

Cat allergies are nothing to sneeze at.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2008 at 2:55PM
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newontarionian

goodness .. i never thought i would get such funny yet interesting comments regarding poor ole snoring pc (named for 'pretty cat' if you ask me or 'personal computer' if you ask my hubby). in fact, pc is an indoor/outdoor cat who lives a duel life of sleeping all day and running around the neighborhood all night.

i am rather impressed to see that so many cats are reliably responsive to following their human's requests. pc looks at me and .. well .. basically he seems to be saying, "say it to the paw, girl friend!" more than directly 'listening.'

that humorous sign is hysterical. i will probably go that way rather than seek out a hidden pussy cat!

thanks for all your thoughts!!!

diane
:-)

    Bookmark   September 30, 2008 at 3:50PM
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Carol_from_ny

If you are at all attached to the cat I strongly recommend you crate the cat. EVEN with signs and reminders "stuff happens".
Make it a nice experience for the cat. Give it cat nip or a treat after coming and after it's stay in the carrier.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2008 at 5:38PM
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devorah

Since your cat is Indoor/Outdoor, I don't think you will have a problem. It doesn't sound like you are terribly worried about the cat getting out - more about people being startled by the sudden appearance of the cat. I have always had cats and it has never been an issue. I have never had a litter box beyond infancy so I didn't have to deal with that. If it makes you feel any better, my cats only come if they are called near dinner time - otherwise they just give me the fish eye and go back to snoozing.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2008 at 5:59PM
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patser

May I suggest a different thing to consider - If I was a potential buyer going to a house and I found out that there was a loose cat in the house, I would not look at the house.

I hear what everyone is saying about looking out for the cat, but there are some, like me, who do not like cats and don't want to be around them. For that reason, I'd crate pc.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2008 at 6:04PM
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marys1000

Wow patser - that's pretty rigid.

I'd worry about the cat regardless. There are a lot of weird people out there not to mention shysters. (My parents got sued when some people said our dog scared them so badly they walked over to some stairs to fall down - the dog was on the other side of a glass door, insurance company paid 5,000 out of court).
I think I'd take the flexible approach.
For appts I'd tell your realtor you prefer time to find the cat. You should get at least an hour notice. If the people show up while your still looking they can wait in the driveway till you pack him up.
For lock box showings when your not home I would try to crate him before you leave - but tell your realtor you need to know the night before you leave for work.
And for those inevitable showings where you get no notice and the whole system seems to fall apart - have those signs up 24/7 and keep the litter as clean as possible.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2008 at 8:38PM
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gibby2015

We were just looking at homes due to a possible job relocation. Lots of people had cats and some were just laying around sleeping and others were more friendly. None were unfriendly. We didn't mind since we have cats and we were careful about making sure they didn't get out. I'm sure people who don't like cats might not appreciate one coming up and looking for attention but I'd think they'd just shoo the cat away.

Biggest thing for me would be making sure the litter box is cleaned daily and that there are no cat odors in the house. One house we looked at had a heavy perfumey smell that gave me the creeps - made me think they were trying to mask bad pet odors. Another place had a really nasty litter box in the utility area - that kind of grossed me out but if I liked the house it sure wouldn't deter me from buying. A pervasive pet odor might though.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2008 at 10:59PM
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katclaws_mo

chris8796, "I got rid of two other cats (her adult kids) . One was for "poor decision making" .....LOLOL

    Bookmark   September 30, 2008 at 11:32PM
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newontarionian

i am sooooooooo impressed with all the thoughtful responses i have received from everyone. you have definately given me tons to consider!

i plan to totally discuss your thoughts and suggestions with my husband .. and perhaps our future real estate agent.

all i know at this particular point is that i am soooo glad that i wrote this email in the first place!

thanks ever so much!
diane
:-)

    Bookmark   October 1, 2008 at 6:22AM
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stir_fryi

patser: If I was a potential buyer going to a house and I found out that there was a loose cat in the house, I would not look at the house.

A "loose cat"?? That strike me as funny. Most cats could either care less you are in their house, or like mine, will be under the bed until you leave. That said, I have never known a cat to randomly attack a stranger.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2008 at 8:50AM
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patser

I'm allergic to cats, I don't like cats, I'm afraid of cats. I wouldn't go in the house...loose or however it's referred to:)

We all have our phobias and this is mine.

Seriously, though, I know other people who are like me and would not go into a house. So all I was just suggesting is that a seller could lose potential buyers.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2008 at 9:56AM
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xamsx

There are many people like patser who will not consider viewing a home with animals. It is not ridged, it can be due to allergies or phobias. People on this forum have long noted that sellers may lose a percentage of viewers strictly due to a pet being in the house. It is the "price" we pay for having animals.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2008 at 11:14AM
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graywings123

If you can't capture the cat and take him with you, then a sign is the next best thing - a pleasant sign such as Sue36 suggests. People who are allergic to cats will stop at the doorway, but they would be unlikely to buy your house anyhow.

We had a cat who was just impossible to find. And even when you found her, she managed to stay out just out of arm's reach.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2008 at 11:17AM
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triciae

Hey, it could be worse. This could be your kitty...

/t

Here is a link that might be useful: Here, Kitty Kitty...

    Bookmark   October 1, 2008 at 11:52AM
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qdognj

Nobody believes a cat is a pet,do they ;)

Now a dog,thats a REAL pet..

Qdog

    Bookmark   October 1, 2008 at 12:16PM
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trianglejohn

I told my vet the other day that its a good thing my ancient arthritic cat only has four toes on each of her front paws - otherwise I would get a middle toe salute whenever I got close to her!!! Put the food down and walk away and nobody'll get hurt. Of course she's purrfectly behaved in front of the vet. She must have heard of other reasons people take old pets to the vet besides a booster shot.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2008 at 1:51PM
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lmhartman

We sold our house this summer and have an indoor/outdoor cat. We just had signs posted at both the front and back doors letting people know that the cat was allowed either in or out as she pleased, we didn't want anyone to worry if they let her out. We cleaned her (rarely used) litter box daily. We did move our cat's DRY food into the basement rather than keep it in the kitchen as per our agents suggestion.

As to people not looking at our house due to the cat. Our agent never relayed anything negative about having our cat in the house during showings, or anything negative in follow-ups from other realtors. The house was on the market for 6 weeks, we had probably 30ish showings/previews and 3 open houses.

For those who may be afraid of cats and/or have allergies, yes, as sellers we may have limited the number of potential buyers by keeping our cat while the house was for sale. It never occurred to us not to and we never would have sent her off to a kennel for weeks on end. However buyers with pet issues are limited in the houses they are able to see as well and may well pass up the perfect house because of it.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2008 at 7:02PM
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newontarionian

i very much appreciated the thoughtfulness with which people responded to my question. having rescued pets farrrr outweigh any problems they may present!

thanks again to all who have helped ... a lot!
diane
:-)

    Bookmark   October 2, 2008 at 6:06AM
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susana_2006

When I bought a house last year, the owner had a cat and a dog. Cat was inside and dog out. No problems during the showing.

At inspection, the owner was out of town. He had someone taking care of animals in his absense. But during inspection, that person was at work. No problem -- he asked my realtor to make sure that cat stayed inside and the dog stay in the fenced back yard. This was, of course, very easy. So I really wouldn't anticipate problems. Most buyers are understanding and willing to cooperate with pet issues.
Susan

    Bookmark   October 2, 2008 at 12:14PM
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popi_gw

I am in the process of buying and selling. I looked at a house with a kitty litter tray in the laundry, which was off the kitchen.

Turned me right off !! Didn't like the litter on show.

I would not leave it on show !

I have a cat in my house, but she is such a scardey cat I think she will just hide in terror if someone came to look at the house.

She is house-trained and goes outside to do her business, through a cat flap. Isn't she clever !

My problem is, that I am moving to a smaller house and there won't be room for a cat....so...I have to consider getting rid of her, which I am not happy about !

    Bookmark   October 2, 2008 at 7:05PM
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cearbhaill

I packed up three cats and two dogs and took them with me for each showing.
If nothing else it acclimated them very well to car rides for the 1200 mile move :)

I also cleaned the litter boxes and hid them away in bottom cabinets each time. No one would ever have known there were animals in the home.

    Bookmark   October 3, 2008 at 4:37PM
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susanjn

"...I am moving to a smaller house and there won't be room for a cat..."

How much room do you need for a cat?

    Bookmark   October 4, 2008 at 8:30PM
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