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Old 06-18-2015, 01:21 PM
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Does the U. S. Navy still have ship's cats?

I was reading an article in Wikipedia about cats on ships, military ships in particular. It said that the British Navy no longer allows cats on ships; has the American military done likewise? (I hope not.)
Old 06-18-2015, 01:24 PM
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Oops!

Mr./Ms. Moderator, please move this to General Questions, where I MEANT to put it!
Old 06-18-2015, 01:24 PM
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Don't know but this message board has cats.
Reported for forum change.
Old 06-18-2015, 01:27 PM
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Moving thread from ATMB to General Questions.
Old 06-18-2015, 01:47 PM
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In my 28+ years in the Navy I've never seen a cat on a ship (or a dog for that matter) nor have I ever heard of it (but I have heard of dogs).

I have seen CO's dogs (including mine) at shore commands however.

Last edited by spifflog; 06-18-2015 at 01:48 PM.
Old 06-18-2015, 02:38 PM
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Originally Posted by spifflog View Post
In my 28+ years in the Navy I've never seen a cat on a ship (or a dog for that matter) nor have I ever heard of it[...]
This bodes ill for a time-honored tradition--and for the cats.
Old 06-18-2015, 02:44 PM
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20 years in, never saw an "official" ship's cat. We did have a couple of "pet" pigeons that we picked up in Gaeta on the USS Mount Whitney. They had nested somewhere in the aft part of the ship. When we were at sea, they would fly laps around the ship together. That was until we were conducting helo operations in the North Sea and one of them flew through the tail rotor while it was operating. Then we had 1 pet pigeon, that made it all the way back to Gaeta. It spent a total of 5.5 months with the ship, as we puttered around Northern Europe and the Med.
Old 06-18-2015, 04:22 PM
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Cat's didn't always fare so well. Poor Mrs. Chippy.
Old 06-18-2015, 05:08 PM
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Are rats still a problem on Navy ships?
Old 06-18-2015, 07:27 PM
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Related question: Do Navy vessels still use those rat - guard disks on the mooring ropes?
Old 06-18-2015, 11:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Peter Morris View Post
Are rats still a problem on Navy ships?
Much less, now that they have refrigeration & freezers on ships. Food is much more securely locked away, in places that are much harder for rats to access. So with less food, there is much less reason for rats to be aboard ships. And thus much less need for cats on ships.

And I don't think the US Navy ever had 'official' ships cats. They were there, but nothing official about it. No doubt the officers knew about them, but didn't get bothered about it. If that kept the sailors happier, the officers were glad to ignore it officially.
Old 06-18-2015, 11:57 PM
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Not the same thing, but the unit that a friend of mine was in had an infantry dog in Vietnam. They found him wandering through the minefield on the edge of the camp. A Lieutenant was going to shoot him, but his men talked him out of it. They managed to coax him out of the minefield without anything going Kablooey. The dog was given the name Private Dud. The dog stayed with the unit after my friend got shipped back stateside, so not sure what happened to him after that.
Old 06-19-2015, 12:09 AM
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Originally Posted by engineer_comp_geek View Post
The dog was given the name Private Dud. The dog stayed with the unit after my friend got shipped back stateside, so not sure what happened to him after that.
I have heard stories of charities springing up in the US to help soldiers from Iraq/Afghanistan bring dogs they befriended back to the states.

Don't think there are a lot of them but there are some feel good stories about it floating about. I thought the US military was trying to be at least a teeny bit better about stuff like this (good PR, not because they officially care).

Unfortunately no word on Private Dud (great name).
Old 06-19-2015, 12:40 AM
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Quote:
Do Navy vessels still use those rat - guard disks on the mooring ropes?
I don't know, but at least some cruise ships do, suggesting that they may still be a good anti-rat device.
Old 06-19-2015, 01:37 AM
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Or a good pro-passenger device. If the paying customers expect a ship's cat, then you have a ship's cat.
Old 06-19-2015, 02:46 AM
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A ship's cat I was lucky enough to know.
Old 06-19-2015, 03:11 AM
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We had a dog as a crewmember at the LORAN station I was on. SNDG Stache. We got him when he was an SA.

Oh, and occasionally, while at sea, someone might catch a seabat and keep it as a pet.
Old 06-19-2015, 06:01 AM
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I thought all ships use rat guards. It is close to impossible to eliminate water rats.
Old 06-19-2015, 07:48 AM
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Yep, (U.S.) Navy ships still use rat guards.
Old 06-19-2015, 10:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Robot Arm View Post
A ship's cat I was lucky enough to know.
You and that crew lost a real friend.
Old 06-19-2015, 11:04 AM
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The Royal Navy banned animals in 1975. Before that there was a long tradition of ships cats and many stories are here:
http://purr-n-fur.org.uk/featuring/war02.html

Quote:
Sadly, since 1975 the British Royal Navy has banned cats, and indeed all animals, from its ships. It's a far cry from the days of Louis XIV's French Navy in the seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries, when it is reported that all French ships were ordered to carry two cats for rodent-control duties.
Old 06-19-2015, 11:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dougie_monty View Post
Related question: Do Navy vessels still use those rat - guard disks on the mooring ropes?
Quote:
Originally Posted by susan View Post
I don't know, but at least some cruise ships do, suggesting that they may still be a good anti-rat device.
This classic ship-size structure in NYC still does. Rats everywhere trying to get in.

ETA: Actually, some have slipped through, nibbling as a team at the poles holding the disks.

Last edited by Leo Bloom; 06-19-2015 at 11:58 AM.
Old 06-19-2015, 12:08 PM
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Excellent rat statuary. Thanks.
Old 06-19-2015, 01:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leo Bloom View Post
[...]

ETA: Actually, some have slipped through, nibbling as a team at the poles holding the disks.
That's a foolish thing to do. Most likely the rodents will cut the line in two, landing in the drink.

Last edited by dougie_monty; 06-19-2015 at 01:05 PM.
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