Having recently seen in a local newspaper an article about the rehoming of a cat that was not looked after properly by his owner as he was left for three weeks with a broken leg because the cat owner couldn't afford the vet's fee (we should have a NHS for pets to avoid such situations as vets can be really expensive without necessary providing the required care for the pets) and then after I saw on BBC South news and read on the website also about Sgt Podge, the cat that is being left to roam all night and then he is being picked by the 'proud' owner at the same spot and at the same time every morning after he has wondered for nearly 2 miles away from home, it kinda made me feel very sorry for the apparently very stressed cats and also wondering whether these people should have allowed to have pets in the first place.
Particularly the 'baffled owner' of Sgt Podge (what kind of name is this for any living creature anyway?) who can't seem to be able to figure out why her cat got into this habit.
Maybe because she has allowed it to become a habit (cats can be trained to follow routine and schedule)? Or perhaps because the cat shouldn't be outside at night in the first place or even simply because Sg Podge is not really happy with his current 'owner' and home? Since the lady has already another 5 cats it is quite possible that Sgt Podge doesn't like living under the same roof with so many cats and has found another more suitable home where he doesn't have to compete over territorial and hierarchical issues?
Cats that are being neutered and they are happy with their home environment and particularly cats of that age do not wonder that far away, it isn't a normal behaviour for a domesticated cat (my own ex-stray cat doesn't even bother to look at the door when it is open let alone wanting to venture outside and wander...)...and I speak from experience as I advise on cat behavioural issues.
The lady instead of phoning the BBC to have her story told and filmed she should acted like a responsible pet owner and she should have instead asked an expert for some advice on her cat's behaviour and have tried to keep her cats indoors at night and not allow them to roam at night time, a time when many cats are known to face many dangers in not only in big cities and towns but also rural areas as they are frequently seriously injured or die from traffic accidents animal attacks and human cruelty during the dark hours. Cat owners should be responsible for their pets' actions and behaviour and they should not just behind common beliefs of independent and hard to train or control cats as cats like dogs are domesticated animals who live in our environment whether we like it or not.