a Taj MuttHall Dog Diary: Keep your pets at home. Thank you.

Thursday, June 06, 2019

Keep your pets at home. Thank you.

SUMMARY: I do not want your cats in my yard. Any part of my yard.

I have been unhappy about this ever since I got a yard, which is a long time, indeed. Because the same problems keep coming up. So, if you've heard me rant about this before--or even if you haven't but just don't want to hear a rant, stop here, scroll to the end to see pretty cat photos, then go have a nice cup of tea, and read something fun.

Today this started because a neighbor asked other neighbors to keep their cats out of her yard. Wow, a lot of people landed on her. "Don't you like cats?" "It's not hurting anything." "They are excellent at catching rodents and bugs; you should be glad to have them." Like that.

What ever happened to consideration for people you live among? (Oh, right, people have been complaining about this for thousands of years. Dammit.)

Actual photo of ancient Roman neighbors arguing about cats in each other's yards.

And this: "How do you expect them to keep their cat out of your yard?" I try not to let my blood boil. Probably the same people who think that cats can't walk on leash and can't learn tricks or do anything else that the cat might find interesting.

So I'm putting my long response here.

My dog is an excellent ratter (and catches bugs, too). And he loves being out and about. And he likes people. So I guess no one would mind if he roamed free in the area to reduce the rodent population?


  • I hate finding cat poop in my garden beds and planters when I'm working in them--why should I go out of my way all the time to protect front and back yard from invasive cats to protect my health and the quality of my yard? It's my yard, not theirs!
  • I hate having cats sitting in my tree or on my fence all day while my dogs make a racket about it (sure, I could take them inside for several hours until the cat decides to leave, but it's my yard, come on, not yours or your cat's).
  • I hate that, when I had a dog who was an intense hunter, she didn't distinguish among any small furry critters who ran through the yard, such as rats, mice, or cats that people irresponsibly let run loose.
  • I hate when I've seen a cat with a dead bird or found feathers in my yard from what I suspect to be a cat's kill--I have birdbaths and bird feeders and I want the birds, not the cats, in my yard.
  • I hate nearly running over cats when I'm backing out of my driveway, or when they run in front of me as I drive down the street in the evening.

Too bad about feral cats if they're injured or killed by dogs, cars, other cats, raccoons, or coyotes, or are trapped and turned in to a shelter where no one adopts it and then who knows what happens to it. But if you care about your But if you care about your beautiful, loving, sweet pets of any kind, keep them safe. And out of my yard. Thank you.

If these are your beautiful cats--take care of them! You adopted them; take responsibility!


  1. I agree. We have a lady about 1/2 mile away who is feeding growing numbers of cats on her front porch. I suspect there are a couple dozen. Maybe more. Once a few years ago I saw one of them, he had distinctive markings, under our deck, stalking my birdfeeders. I was not happy. He was cute...but still. I saw his body out on the road a few days later, hit, I'm sure, by a car. I was sad, but not that sad. We live a long way from her but we occasionally have a red cat go through our back yard. Most of the cats on her porch are red. I often wonder what her direct neighbors think. ANYWAY, I love my birds too, and don't want a cat in my back yard. I already have hawks and fox and, I'm sure, an occasional coyote. When I had cats they were inside cats, because I knew the life span of an outdoor cat is short. I don't let my dog run lose, though many do around here, I've had to call a neighbor to come get her dog who was peeing on my flowers. She was embarrassed, but he was out again the next day. The whole, my pets get to run on your property is a problem.

    1. I agree. If we were all rural with huge unfenced properties or something like that, I could understand it somewhat. I mean, barn cats really are generally farm cats, taking care of rodents everywhere and they're important. And then hard to keep in your own property, I suppose.