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Questions from new cat owner

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
We had this stray cat hanging around for about 2 1/2 months. My neighbor tried to take him in but he kept waking her up in the middle of the night to go out, and they would go away on weekends and leave it to fend for itself. Finally I decided to take it in. My neighbor said it was a female. I took it to the vet to be checkout out. Turns out is was a fixed male about 2 years old. He is well behaved and hasn't caused any issues.. Except, he likes going outside. Can you make an outdoor cat and indoor cat? I've been letting him out for an hour or so in the morning, then again right before dark. He doesn't wake me up in the middle of the night and this seems to work out. However our DEED RESTRICTED community forbids outdoor cats as the complex is designated a bird sanctuary. We spend a lot of time on our screened in patio. He ripped out the screens a couple of times the first week trying to get out, but they've been replaced and he doesn't even try that any more. I'd like to keep him in, but I think the outdoor play time has made this transition much easier for him. And I just go outside and shake a bag of cat food and he comes running home.

I was also wondering about his body language.. when they hunch their back in that "holloween" cat stance (minus the claws) with his tail standing straight up, what does that mean? Any insight would be appreciated.

post #2 of 5
The hunched back is a "trying to scare you" thing that makes them appear bigger and more frightening to the enemy. Don't think it works well but its really funny to watch young kittens do this

As far as him outside - you CAN make them an inside cat but it takes patience and time. You might look into training him to a harness/leash and walk around outside a little or invest in a cat enclosure where he can sit outside for a few hrs but be safe.

Either way, you need to supervise his outside time and not be letting him roam free unsupervised.
post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 
Hmm.. that is surprising. he seems so content wonder why he'd want to scare us..

I guess the screened patio would work for the cat enclosure thing. It's quite big, completely secure he does spend A LOT of time out there. He seems to be a great hunter, I've seen him climb up the screens and catch a dragon fly, as well as easily catch lizards. And when he wants to come in he just stands at the sliding glass door till some one opens it, same when he wants to go out. He is fasinated with the pool also. Although I always though cats hated water, he is often found on the lying on the top step of the ladder
post #4 of 5
The hunch could also be a "cat-back" stretch. The way to tell is if the hairs along the spine are standing up. Then it's the intimidation posture.
post #5 of 5
My male hunches when he's trying to get around me, i.e. wants food, wants more food, etc., and is being 'shy' (like when he is ever shy otherwise!). But you need to be firm about the in/out stuff, because the longer you let it go on (and chance his not returning one day), the more entrenched his habits will be. Sure he'll be a nuisance for a while, but it's better than being kicked out of the condo I'm sure (at least they do let you keep cats).
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