Anyone have guilt from death of a "foster" cat?

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momof3b1g

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Yes you nailed everything I'm feeling. A holiday morning. Just had to have a car go by while he was in the road. I wonder ifbhe darted out. Was he walking along the roadside and purposely hit. Did he get hit farther down and collapse near our driveway. Makes me sad as he was just a foot or so from our yard. Had we taken him in Sunday night. Even if we let them out in the am. He may have stayed in our yard. Had I left her out there. He would have come back and stayed. The rescue took the little girl last Wednesday. Nobody claimed her. I still don't understand how someone could just throw them out to find for themselves :/
 
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momof3b1g

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Had i only gone back outside and waited for him. He was alive. He was somewhere. I could have gotten him to the front yard. :( so much I could have done. Im starting to think it was cuz the little girl was gone idk here is a picture. They wanted in. I couldn't bring them in 😭
 

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fionasmom

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The randomness of this kind of loss is very hard to deal with. A deathbed goodbye is much easier. Right now in my neighborhood there are desperate signs and notices on Nextdoor, FB, and other social media for the return/finding of an indoor only cat who walked out onto the balcony of their second floor bedroom, jumped on the railing, lost his balance and fell. Sad, but theoretically the cat should have been on the ground, possibly only stunned. Family was home, saw it, ran downstairs, cat is gone. Offering a $500 reward which has now been amended for only a sighing of the cat. Search parties have been organized each night. This is a totally urban area, so the cat did not crawl off into the woods. I feel terrible when I see their new signs every day and I never even knew this cat or family. One minute they had a beloved indoor only pet and the next he vanished into thin air.
 
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momof3b1g

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I dont see how anyone can TNR. I know why they do it. But I always hated leaving cats outside. And this is one reason why. Maybe feral cats are more street smart. This guy was to nice and probably didn't understand cars. I thought they were indoor cats as they were well kept. But they were not chipped or fixed. But very friendly but didn't seem scared of outdoor noises cars etc. My indoor cats don't like going outside. Maybe some cats are just different. My stress level is bad enough caring for them for a week. Hoping them come back every day. Just wish I could have kept him quarantined to the yard. Plenty of room to roam. Yet he has to cross the street. If only........ 😭
 

fionasmom

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Ferals are different in that most of the true ferals have no chance of a home as they are much closer to a wild animal than a pet. Some certainly cross over into companion animals, but the bottom line is that in helping them not reproduce you are doing them a huge favor.
 
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momof3b1g

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Ferals are different in that most of the true ferals have no chance of a home as they are much closer to a wild animal than a pet. Some certainly cross over into companion animals, but the bottom line is that in helping them not reproduce you are doing them a huge favor.
Yes I know that. I just can't stomach leaving outside to fend for themselves. But yea the friendly ones are harder to leave out. Many strays are just scared.
 
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momof3b1g

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4am and I just can't sleep. My mind keeps thinking of what I should have done. Ugh I don't go looking for trouble. I hate how this is thrown on me. I am scard for life. This is worse then ive ever had before. Or sure feels that way. Im thinking of an outdoor enclosure. But seeing we are rural. I worry someone could try and feed the cats poison. Not sure they would. But hate with them being outside and a enclosure would be so obvious. We live on a corner. Ugh yea I worry alot. But there are 2 many idiots in this world.
 

fionasmom

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Stages of Grieving

Cornell University has posted the above page to help people with moving through the stages of grief over losing a pet. Attached to the page is a number to call if you want to speak to them. However, that is entirely up to you.

It can be very hard to move beyond the loss of an animal and often that loss can be perceived as harder than the loss of a human for a lot of reasons. The fact that you did not have this cat for very long and lost him early are probably making this harder than having the 14 year old dog who dies from old age.

I see you point about a completely exposed outdoor enclosure and only you know if you think that the cats inside could come to harm.
 
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momof3b1g

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Stages of Grieving

Cornell University has posted the above page to help people with moving through the stages of grief over losing a pet. Attached to the page is a number to call if you want to speak to them. However, that is entirely up to you.

It can be very hard to move beyond the loss of an animal and often that loss can be perceived as harder than the loss of a human for a lot of reasons. The fact that you did not have this cat for very long and lost him early are probably making this harder than having the 14 year old dog who dies from old age.

I see you point about a completely exposed outdoor enclosure and only you know if you think that the cats inside could come to harm.
Thank you. Yes a lot is guilt had I just brought him in. Wether the reason I didn't. But had I put them in my bathroom and they got into the medicine cabinet I would be upset too. Can't win. I guess a crate inside my home would have been best. But like most people we are not equipped to care for stray cats that show up. I didn't have a large enough place for 2 cats and they really needed to be separated
 
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momof3b1g

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I lay here at 5:30 am can't sleep and the sun is rising already. It was only a week but so much happened during that time. My stomach has knots. And feeling even more guilty that my actions caused his death. I wish I had thought to entice him with some food. Would he had come home sooner. Had I not taken little kitty in would he come back or stayed. If I hadn't taken them in the 2 mornings prior. Would he gave come back. He didn't seem to mind being in the carrier and walked right in. But maybe thats why he didn't show up the next morning. I will forever question my actions. I still can't believe he is gone. I also feel guilt I took her friend away. Does she understand what happened. Hopefully she makes some friends at the shelter.
 

fionasmom

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The variables with a cat you have only had for a week are huge. This is not your long standing pet whose actions you could predict. The answer to all your questions could be yes or no. Given that you think that these two were dumped, it is very likely that he was unsure of what was going on which added one more thing into the mix. All of his actions are very hard to explain which has nothing to do with you. You definitely helped him and his friend in what was an unfortunate experience....them being dumped, not anything you did.
 
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momof3b1g

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The variables with a cat you have only had for a week are huge. This is not your long standing pet whose actions you could predict. The answer to all your questions could be yes or no. Given that you think that these two were dumped, it is very likely that he was unsure of what was going on which added one more thing into the mix. All of his actions are very hard to explain which has nothing to do with you. You definitely helped him and his friend in what was an unfortunate experience....them being dumped, not anything you did.
Yea but I could have taken them in. Some people in my area know ive usually take cats in. But they were innocent. I could have saved him by not letting them out to run free. I didn't have a safe place to keep them that long. And had to think of my own pets. It just saddens me they were not dirty ole stray cats. They were soft furred, no ear mites. He didn't deserve to die. I just wish I had done more. I didn't directly kill him. But indirectly. I told dh they were not safe outside. If we just had a place to keep them for just the last 2 days. I know an unfixed male cat roams. I just hoped feeding them and giving them attention would be enough to keep them in my yard. The girl stayed close the boy not so much. Which is normal for cats. They needed to be indoors. They seemed to friendly to stay safe
 

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There is one sad ending to this story but your point about your own cat's well being is very correct. If they had contracted something, or a fight broke out, you would have regretted bringing them in. It is one of those situations which could have gone so many ways. There is a young woman posting right now about how bringing a rescue dog into the house, a friendly dog, resulted in the death of her most beloved cat.
 
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momof3b1g

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There is one sad ending to this story but your point about your own cat's well being is very correct. If they had contracted something, or a fight broke out, you would have regretted bringing them in. It is one of those situations which could have gone so many ways. There is a young woman posting right now about how bringing a rescue dog into the house, a friendly dog, resulted in the death of her most beloved cat.
I never keep them in the same room as my cats. Always quarantined. Ive had to rescue cats for years as I have at least one show up every year. There are just so many things I could have done. Maybe I would have regretted bringing them in. But I regretted leaving them out. Can't win
 
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momof3b1g

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Why is this so hard? I thought i was doing what's best. But best for little kitty. Could have caused the big kitty is life. Had he only come back. I would have taken him in too. I hate mornings. I have to face the reality and it wasn't a bad dream. It's been 2 weeks today and I just fill like a piece of garbage by not realizing the consequences of taking one kitty away would cause the other kitty to go looking for her 😭
I thought he knew to come back. He had been getting fed and attention every day
 

fionasmom

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There are cyclical times of the day when grief hits harder. I have had friends who went for grief counseling after the loss of animals and said that certain times of the day were worse. I don't think that you are letting yourself see that this was not your fault.
 
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momof3b1g

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There are cyclical times of the day when grief hits harder. I have had friends who went for grief counseling after the loss of animals and said that certain times of the day were worse. I don't think that you are letting yourself see that this was not your fault.
It depends what you mean by not my fault. Were they my cats no. Did I hit them no. But I had the chance to prevent it. Especially if by bringing in the small cat. It made him not come back up to the house and stay gone. Possibly looking for her. Then yes I feel responsible in part. Part of its guilt, part is sadness that he didn't deserve to die. Some of it is anger at my dh who said they would be fine outside. I told him numerous times we need a place to keep them till Wednesday so they were not running off. I had a lady that offered to take them. But I don't know her well enough and the 2 people I asked didn't either. Nobody could back her up as being a responsible rescue. So yea I feel some what responsible for not being able to save him. I wish I had stay out just a bit longer. He was it shortly after I went in. Had I brought out some smelly food. Maybe he would have come running. While feeding my cats I saw a cat in the yard. But could not go yell for him. He was to such a beautiful healthy and friendly cat. To see that happen it just tragic and heartbreaking. Ive been saving cats in my yard for a good 10 years if not more. Just wish I could have done more. A long week of keeping him safe. Sadly 2 days before gone like that.
 

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Thought about you lots last night. We were invited to our next door neighbor's home for margaritas (to thank us for kitty sitting for her) - and as we sat on her porch we watched in absolute horror as one of our remaining 3 TNR guys (Aspen) who stay with us cross the VERY busy road right next to her house (it's only 2 lane - and in a neighborhood -- but people fly down it at about 40-45 mph) !!! All 3 of us literally held our breath as he darted halfway across the road and then stopped in the middle, waiting for a car to pass him before continuing across. We all 3 thought we were actually going to see him get hit while we were watching - even hubby was in tears!!!!!!! Since that's how Brady died, I was almost inconsolable. He is "street smart" - - - but that certainly doesn't make him invincible (which Brady was proof of!). There's a wooded ravine on the other side - which is where we're sure he goes (and we certainly understand the lure of that). As I'd said - we've tried SO hard to get these last 3 inside 24/7 in tribute to Brady - but with the warm weather being back, getting them to even come inside for meals is a battle.

And like you - - my mind just whirled all night last night - - plus I threw in 2 good old-fashioned panic attacks for good measure. What aren't we enough for Aspen? He definitely loves us dearly - - - but being a feral who's been outside for about 7 years now, the lure of outside is really strong for him. My poor hubby has to listen repeatedly to my panicked "what if we....?" discussions.

It's hard. Beyond hard. And no matter what the situation, at least for me, there's always a running commentary in the back of my mind of "why didn't I just...." A good place you really might want to take a look at (there are all kinds of options on it) is a grief resource page on the website for Best Friends Animal Society. Here's the link to that specific page:
tinyurl.com/PetGriefResources

Know that you've got people here who get it - and are happy to listen. :alright:
 
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