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Neighbor cat issue - what to do?

About two weeks ago a very cute little cat started coming by our house. She's a little tuxedo kitten and absolutely adorable and sweet. We have a lot of cats around our neighborhood, but this one is extra awesome and friendly. And a kitten. So we started cuddling her and playing with her a bit outside. We love her. We want to keep her, but it's obvious that she's owned since she has a collar and tag. But she's outside all the time, which is especially problematic this week since it's been really cold outside (okay, cold for Texas, in the 30s at night and only into the 40s during the day). She's so tiny that we worry about her staying warm enough, so we've put a wool blanket out on a chair on the porch and she often naps in it. She seems to be inside at night because she doesn't come when we call her right before we go to bed (and she comes running to play/cuddle pretty much any other time of the day) but from first thing in the morning until well after dark, she's outside in the cold.

I found out today that she belongs to our next-door neighbors. This isn't surprising, since they also have a dog that they leave outside all day and night. And he barks a lot, so we're very aware of him being outside. He seems to have been inside a bit in the last few days because of the cold, but he basically lives outside in their tiny little run of a backyard and he never seems to get to go on walks or get played with.


So these neighbors are really bad at owning pets responsibly, and now they're doing it to an adorably cute kitten that I love to pieces. I've talked about it a little with the other neighbors, but no one has decided to take the lead on approaching these people to express concern over their mistreatment of their pets. I thought about just calling Animal Control, but I don't want to be a jerk. I mean, I still have to live next door to them.

What would you all do? I'm a very non-confrontational person by nature, so the thought of talking to them about it is hard for me, but I also hate the thought of these poor animals being miserable. Advice?

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