Tuesday 6 May 2014

Cat Ownership – Sharing The Responsibility (with strangers)

Cat Ownership – Sharing The Responsibility (with strangers)

Do you think that there should be a website which puts together (a) people who own a cat or cats but who don't have the time to look after their cat properly and (b) people who don't own a cat but who would like to look after a cat for a part of the week?

A couple of people have set up a website which does just that with respect to dogs.  People who own a dog subscribe to the website and pay a fee.  They present their dog on the website as attractively as possible.  Then people who haven't got the dog visit the site, have a look at all the dogs on the website and select one which they like.  They “favourite" a particular dog and the dog's owner can then favourite back any one of the visitors who wishes to care for their dog for a period of time. There is match but they are still strangers at the outset.  There is also the possibility for fraud and criminal behavior.

I know that there are differences in the personalities of dogs and cats but does that difference have any impact on the potential success of a cat website along the lines of the dog website that I have mentioned?

In the modern world, a lot of people end up not having enough time to give to their cat or dog proper caretaking and company.  They need help and one way of putting people together and finding help is on the internet.

The new dog borrowing website has recognised this modern trend.  Essentially, it is based on the principle that people should share their pets rather than possessed and own them.

Interestingly, this is exactly what happens in places like Turkey.  In Turkey there are what I call "community cats". These are cats which live in the community moving from person-to-person and place to place with no single person owning the cat.  Let's remind ourselves that in the West, in places such as America and Europe, cats are treated as being owned by a person and being possessed by that person.  That concept is not good and therefore perhaps a better concept is to share a cat.

This new dog sharing website is here.  You make your own mind up.  Some people will say that if a cat owner wants to share her domestic cat with a stranger then she's not the right person to own a domestic cat.  Other people will say that it is a good idea.

An obvious downside is that cats get used to certain surroundings and therefore to move from place to place may be too disruptive.  However, as mentioned, many cats share homes and facilities willingly so this argument is not that strong.

I am sure people will probably come to the conclusion that it won't work for cats but it does for dogs and I thought dogs were a man's best friend - not any man but a particular individual.

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