When you live in Portugal, it doesn’t matter if you buy or rent, you can be certain of two things. There will be obnoxiously barking dogs within one or two properties of yours and your house or apartment will be equipped with a cat.
The dogs you can’t do anything about. They are usually safe and sound in your neighbor’s backyard garden protecting whatever their little doggie brains decide need their fierce alert. That lets the other dogs know they have to sound the alarm and at any time of the day, and mostly in the middle of the night. The village is probably awaken thinking “#%@*% Dogs!”
The cat has usually lived at your new house before you have, so it has squatting rights. It won’t leave. Whether you love or detest cats, this cat will be as good as yours. If it doesn’t have a name, you will name it, you will pet it, and you will feed it and worry about it and make it little beds out of the cold and rain. The house cat in Salir used to follow us down to the local bar and wait for us to walk home. How could you not love a cat like that?
Our new house came with a roughly year old kitty named Shakiri, we changed her name to Kira and the citizen is now fighting off the other cats that came around and putting her on a schedule. She is terribly sweet and I think she should get fixed but the citizen wants to wait until May or July when they have the “free-ish” neutering program in Lagos. From what I am seeing from our flirty little kitty, there will be more cute baby house cats by then.
I am a dog person, but I welcome the cats. In all the places in Portugal I have lived, and these are old places, there is not a hint of a rodent problem. Heck, in my Florida house we had fruit rats galore!
Kira is a nice substitute for a Labrador, she is very pet able. She talks to me and I can travel without guilt. When it’s time to move on, she will be the next person’s cat, we have to remember, she belongs to the house, not us.