Confused on how to handle this
My husband and I have been married for 14 years. For most of it he was in the military and gone a lot. Now that he is out we moved back home and I got pregnant, so we are staying with his Father-In-Law for now. Most of the time it is fine and easier on everyone. I have 4 cats, all older and only one is not declawed. The rest were declawed when I got them. My father in law has stated on numerous occasions that if any cat scratched my now 10 month old daughter he will kill it. He has said this about his ex-wife's new kitten as well. Neither have come close enough to scratched her yet and have always moved away from her. He constantly talks about how he has done it before. His ex has talked about this incident as well. My husband never voices an opinion about this and let his talk this way. I am an animal lover and it breaks my heart when he says this. I have tried to ask him to stop numerous times and he refuses to. He will always turn things around so it is my fault or makes me feel like a bad mother. I love my daughter and would never let either cat harm her and I always keep an eye on them. I am started to resent my husband for not saying anything and it is becoming an issue between us. Declawing her will stop some comments but I don't think it will stop all of them. Part of the issue is I have very little trust of people who hurt animals and talk about doing so repeatedly. I don't know how to get my husband to listen or to get my father-in-law to let us handle the situation as parents.
Maybe your father in law had a bad experience with a cat? did he say why he had done it before? And I'm with you on loving animals. I also have a cat, I never had her de clawed and you would know when you see my furniture! But cats as you already know like to have their own space at times, when they are not in the mood for a cuddle. They let you know when they do! But they can also get jealous.
Your cat has been your baby and may have been getting all the attention before your baby daughter came along, and your baby could unintentionally hurt her and that paired with jealousy, your cat could lash out. And perhaps your father in law is going on so much to stress that point. If that is the case well he could say it in a nicer fashion. He knows you love cats so it's not very nice to be repeatedly saying it.
Have you told him that no cat or thing will get a chance to hurt your baby, that you are her mother and wouldn't let anything happen. And tell him that your baby is in no harm from the cats as your baby is never left alone with them,( I'm assuming that is the case)
And did your husband always listen to his father? did he have his own voice or did he always follow on what your father in law wanted? Could it be a case that maybe because your husband was in the military, that his discipline is now instilled so much, that out of respect to his father he wont disagree with him. Or what are your husbands views on it, does he like your cats as much as you? Would he be upset if anything happened to them?
Are your cats allowed into the baby room? if not do you have a screen on the door or window so they don't get in. I think if your father in law sees that you are very careful and protective over your baby and that your baby comes before any of your cats, eventually he will see that he doesn't need to worry so much.
Thank you for the reply. A cat his family owned years ago did scratch his oldest daughter when he did it. He may have had other bad experiences. I will try and keep this in mind. I know he also just hates animals to begin with. Out cat is an indoor cat she only claws up the leg of a cheap table we bought years ago and doesn't touch any of the other furniture. My father in law has expensive furniture and wooden floors and she has never touched it, amazingly. I have stated numerous time that my daughter comes first and I will never allow anything to happen to her. I have worried about them lashing out due to jealousy. I try and set time aside for them only while my husband plays with my daughter when he gets home from work.
My husband did always do what his father says due to his upbringing and the military. My father did the same to me, but one day he started demanding too much and so I had to stand up to him. I am just worried that it will become a situation that my father in laws opinions will be taken into account and mine ignored regarding our daughter.
No the cats are not allowed in the baby room. When we brought her home we slowly introduced them. We did have her sleep in our room at first and left the door open for the cats. They learned the boundaries pretty quickly. We taught them not to jump into the bassinet weeks before she was born.