Red Phone: Please don’t pick up my kitty

Red Phone: Low branches need to be cut

I am a cat owner and consider myself a good one at that. My two
cats are spayed and up to date with shots. For the most part my
cats never leave the back yard. And if they do go out front it is
usually because we are out there.
“I am a cat owner and consider myself a good one at that. My two cats are spayed and up to date with shots. For the most part my cats never leave the back yard. And if they do go out front it is usually because we are out there. The problem I have with them is the collars. I buy them new ones and they lose them two days later. I try to get new ones as soon as possible, but it is not always right away. My kids would be heart broken if someone trapped them because their collar fell off and they roamed into the front yard when we weren’t home.”

& Red Phone: Dear Straying From Home, unfortunately you may may be out of luck unless you want to keep your kitty locked in all day or keep a supply of collars on hand.

Collars are designed with a quick-release feature so that cats do not choke themselves if they become entangled.

One option you have for identifying a pet is to have a microchip inserted under the skin, said Pete Keesling, a retired veterinarian who writes a pet column every other week.

“Certainly, the microchips that are used today are the safest and best way to ID a kitty,” Keesling said. “I must say that in all these years, we have only seen a small number of kitties that have been chipped. I wish more people with outside cats would take advantage of this technology.”

Since the microchips are placed by hypodermic needle under the skin, they are not visible, Keesling said. While any shelter will be able to read the microchip, this won’t help when your neighbor picks up your cat and disposes of it away from a shelter.

“I know of several cases where someone came in to have their new pet vaccinated and chipped only to find out that he already had a chip and was someone’s pet when this new family found him,” Keesling said. “That scenario makes for an emotional mess when the new family has to return this guy to his original family.”

Some people have had success using tattoos on dogs, but not with cats. But there is no central registry, so there is no guarantee that the dog would be returned any way, Keesling said.

Just a reminder – the Gilroy Police will issue traps for people who want to eliminate stray cats in their area but won’t accept cats to be dropped off as mentioned in a previous Red Phone. You can contact Town Cats in Morgan Hill at 779-5761 or you might want to check out the Cat Resource Center at 335-4357.

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