What do do with the stray cat my neighbor feeds?

My wife and I just bought a house a few months ago. We love the neighborhood - its relatively upscale but not snooty, etc, but…

…stray cats bound. We’ve been waken up in the middle of the night by them fighting, mating (one of the worse sounds in the world), and otherwise causing ruckus. They also poop in the yard without burying it, and it stinks when it rains.

For some time, we thought this was primarily the work of one un-nuetered male that we saw quite frequently (we call him Morris). We were determined to put an end to the sleepless nights, so we borrowed a trap from the local animal control. You trap a stray, they come pick it up, no questions asked.

We caught 5 different cats, all untagged and “unfixed” and quite mean, but not Morris. And I saw him poop in the garden a few days ago, which really pissed me off. He did it just like a dog - just raised a leg and “plop,” right onto the sqaush.

So, I really have it out for this cat and was planning on getting the trap back from animal control. Only problem is I saw my neighbor feeding him yesterday.

What to do? I’d really like to get rid of this damn cat once and for all, but I’m afraid I’ll piss off my neighbor. Its not his cat per se (he’s got two other indoor cats), but it appears that he’s taken a liking to Morris.

Advice? Should I trap him on the sly and not say anything? I was thinking of approaching him about it, but if he takes offense then he’ll know who to blame when Morris stops showing up for dinner.

BTW - I am not a cat hater, and don’t feel like I’m doing a disservice - stray breed more strays, most of which dies from disease, starvation, tangles w/ other animals, etc.

I’d trap the cat if possible and not involve the neighbor. Another option to keep cats away is to spread mothballs or garlic in the gardens they frequent - or so I’ve been told.

Good luck.

I’d talk to your neighbor. Explain what this cat is doing to your yard. Mention that you’ve seen him feeding him and ask him to please keep his cat out of your yard. If he professes that it isn’t his cat thank him, then get your trap, catch the cat, and call animal control.

If the neighbor complains look quizically at him, then remind him that he said it wasn’t his.

That’s what I’d do.

Tark’s a genius.

I agree with Tark as well. Just this morning I called our Animal Control about getting a trap placed. The dispatcher estimated it will be a six week wait, there is a line ahead of me.

And oh, they will release kittens under six months, because the city law does not require a license before that age, and they might be picking up a pet. is that foolish or what? I killed two with a car, I’ve observed these cats for weeks, as has my next door neighbor, and they won’t take out word for it. Well, my dad has a squirrel trap, that may catch a kitten in the meantime.

I feel a petition to the city council coming on.

Tark say smart thing.

Do what Tark say.

One other thing, you mentioned the cats pooped in your garden, right? I’d advise against eating the stuff in there. Carnivore feces often contains parasites (and since the cats were strays, that is a definite possibility), which may now be present in your garden.

Good advice…

Tark, this is the path that I wanted to take, but then I was worried about neighborly relations. I am the new guy, after all. I have no idea how long he’s been feeding this cat, but it is definitely a stray (unfixed, no ID, very mangy, and I’ve seen him blocks away).

Cleophus… eww. Even if I wash all the veggies? Do the parasites actually get inside?

Well, not to freak anyone out, but human migrant workers dump in the fields they’re working in…and we’re all still here, aren’t we? I guess I’m not that scared of germs. I bet washing them would be just fine. Or maybe some of that special vegetable washing stuff.

This website highlights the problems with contamination of food crops with carnivore feces. No mention if the parasites burrow inside the fruits, though. Personally, I’d throw them away and not take chances, but hopefully another Doper will come along and give more information on washing effectiveness.

I think that as long as food from the garden is thoroughly washed it should be fine, microbes and parasite larvae don’t burrow inside. However, the biggest problem would be working in the garden itself and picking something up from the possibly contaminated soil. The larval forms of parasite worms can burrow into your skin and cause much discomfort. And, though not a common occurence, it’s possible to pick up toxoplasmosis from cat waste.
Of course, even in a garden with no animal waste there are still microbes that can cause infection if introduced into a cut or scratch. Just use commonsense, gloves and plenty of soap to wash afterwards. For otherwise healthy people the risk is small.