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cat being released

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
HEy there fellow cat lovers. Ive only made one other thread about fencing my cat if you read any of it. I rescued a 8 month old cat from a shelter. I had twelve from growing up years now im 20 and i wanted a cat again. His name is Zero and the only problem is my father dislikes cats. He wont purposely kill any animal but he wont tolerate them for a long time. I lost too many cats in the past becuase of jerk neighbors and all that. Now i have good neighbors who love animals and they wont kill my animals. Well my plan was to finally put my cat outside so i bought a 500 ft underground cat fence. Well it came and i tried the collar on my cat and zero hated it with a passion. He refused to wear it at all. I tried for 2 weeks but he refused. And i dont want him to live in a tiny cage outside so im thinking of just letting him outside to roam. My girlfriend has 8 cats outside her house and they have lived solid for 6 years and they have fields and woods just like i do. Now the other cats i had were born outside and were raised outside so they learned instincts. My question and my plea for help is how should i let my cat out, just open the door and say go? lol i really dont wanna do that is there any tactics i can use to show him what is our land and where is food is and where the door is so he can come in when its too cold? I just want him to try and stay close to our house. We have 2 acres and 4 acres of woods but not a lot of deer and coons and loose dogs so im not worried of him gettin beat up. He is fixed but has all his shots and still has his claws im going to keep having his shots updated and 2 check ups a year as usual. He has no interest in other cats, a male and a female cat both came up to a window his was sitting in and he wouldnt even look at them or sniff them. HE didnt give them the time of day he would look at me like hey can you get these dumb cats away from me please lol. So i dont think he is going to look for fights with females for a good time or to defend a male name. So like i said can anyone help me with some training techniques or some tips on how to keep Zero near the house and not in the woods or into trouble? Any help would really be valued please help me out if you can. Sorry this is really long i just wanted some tips. Thanks
God bless

post #2 of 16
Why do you feel you need to let him out? It's wonderful that your girlfriend has had such good luck -- but letting your cat outside exposes him to all sorts of dangers. It is virtually certain that he would live a much longer and healthier life indoors.

I appreciate that you're looking for ideas on how to keep your cat as safe as possible outdoors... but the only real safety is inside. Good luck!
post #3 of 16
Sorry but I still say its better to keep him inside. If you are not living with your father, why do you need to put the cat outside? Inside cats live a heck of a lot longer then 6 yrs!

If there are other stray cats around, they still could pick fights with your cat and expose him to FELV/FIP. Not to mention you risk fleas, ticks (Lyme disease), etc. There is no guarentee that the cat will return to the house. You can put food out and call the cat and make it on a schedule, but IMO its not fair to just put him outside all the time. Why have the cat if you are not gonna keep in inside with you?

The shelters I know in Maryland are against adopting cats that will be allowed outside - so if you signed a paper from them saying you'd keep the cat inside all the time, you are violating their rules.
post #4 of 16
If you cannot keep your kitty inside, I would strongly suggest trying to re-home him or return him to the shelter.

To just put him outside now is cruel and inhumane IMO. It's not fair to the kitty to treat him/her like that. And as the other poster says, 6 years is not a very long life for a cat so your girlfriend's cats aren't all that lucky. Cats kept indoors and cared for can and do live into their late teens and sometimes longer.
post #5 of 16
Thread Starter 
thats the thing whoever posted up there i do still live at home so my dad doesnt like my cat being in the basement, hes very picky and he doesnt want the cat near the laundry or his room or near any part of the kitchen but see i live in the basement and i keep an eye on him and he really just sits around the tv, he doesnt have to be on my lap but he just likes to know he is in the room with some people and feel like he is getting somewhat noticed so i dont know what to do , i dont want to give him up unless i could find someone who would watch him for another year till i move out lol i wish i had a friend that would do that. my girl already has way to many.
im not trying to be cruel and force my cat to fleas and other crap like that im not that kind of person i just dont want to hear it from my dad and have to constantly chase zero and pick him up from going near anything of my dads in the basement, if i had some kind of like kid fence to put up i would but where am i gonna find one 14 feet long to like block him from certain points he would just jump it. so if anyone has another idea let me know please.
post #6 of 16
Wait did you mean he isn't fixed but has shots? Absolutely do not let him outside until he is fixed. He WILL fight eventually if he is left intact not to mention impregnate other females around. I don't have a problem with outdoor cats if you live in a safe area, but PLEASE make sure he is neutered before he even steps foot outside. He will also start spraying too if he is left intact which I am sure will piss your dad off even more.
post #7 of 16
Jen, if he got the cat from one of the shelters - its is neutered. IMO under the circumstances, he shouldn't have adopted the cat till he moved out of his father's house. Not fair to the cat.
post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 
you guys dont have to get mad at me and yes he is fixed i dont know what i mistyped but he is. sorry i asked for help im just trying to do something right not get more people mad at me
post #9 of 16
Um, no one is mad at you. I just asked you to clarify whether or not he is fixed, it was worded oddly (you said "he is fixed BUT he has all his shots" sounds like it could hae been a typo there) and you mentioned about getting into fights with females for a good time...i just wanted to make sure I understood you.
post #10 of 16
Just pointing out the risks you will face if you allow him to roam free. And no guarentee that he will stay on the property.

I'm originally from Maryland. I know the shelter rules. They don't want the cats to be outside. How soon can you move to your own place so you can keep him inside where he belongs?
post #11 of 16
It sounds to me like your cat is actually in more danger being inside because of your father. If I understand correctly, you have a large area where he can roam without encroaching on your neighbors. As long as your cat is neutered and has been vaccinated against diseases he can catch outdoors, and is protected against parasites, and you can provide suitable shelter, and it's relatively safe (i.e. traffic and such) then I'll have to say go ahead and let him out. That's a lot of ifs. And keep in mind he might not actually want to be outside. Then you need to have a backup plan. But if you decide to go ahead and do this, then all you have to do is just let him go out and keep close tabs on what he's doing for a few days. He'll probably just hang around the house and go out hunting a couple times a day.

I don't think a cat needs to be kept inside under all circumstances. I think there are times and places where a cat can be let out. So long as the owner can still be an adequate caretaker. I don't agree that cats "belong" inside. Let's remember cats are outdoor animals after all, and the reasons we keep them inside may not be reasons that the cat finds important. Looking at this from a cat's point of view, sometimes cats are just happier outside, even with the dangers and rigours that shorten their lives. A short happy life is better than a long unhappy life. This is a decision that doesn't have one right answer for everyone, and I won't censure someone who allows a cat to roam if it's done for the right reasons and with good caretakership.
post #12 of 16
Hi Zero

Although I keep my cats indoors because it's safer for them, I'm not totally opposed to indoor/outdoor cats, but before I give you some tips on letting your cat outside, I think there are 3 things you need to consider. Forgive me if I'm just repeating what has already be said or come across as preachy (I don't mean to be!).

1. Check whether the shelter you adopted him from stipulated that he should be an indoor cat. If they did then that forms part of the contract between them and you, and would be legally binding. If that's the case you really need to keep him indoors or return him to the shelter if that's not possible.

2. re your father - if the cat has to be outside because your father dislikes cats, how will he react if your kitten damages furniture or goes to the toilet in the house? These kind of things do happen sometimes and if you are living with your father, it's important that he is prepared to accept having a cat around, even if that cat is outside a lot of the time.

3. Consider carefully the envirnment where you live. How safe is it in terms of cars, other cats, other animals that might hurt a cat etc? It is never going to be totally safe and when we choose whether to keep our cats indoors or allow them access outside, it is always a compromise. Total safety v total freedom. But if you are going to let your cat outside you need to be sure it's reasonably safe.

If you still want to allow your cat outdoors then it's best to keep him inside for a few weeks first so that he learns that that is is home and that that is where he is fed. Make sure he responds to his name or to a sound such as a bag of dry food being shaken. The first time you allow him outside make sure it's before he's fed so that he's hungry, and supervise him. Then call him back in for something to eat. He'll gradually venture further and further away to explore his territory but try to get him into the habit of coming in at mealtimes and responding when you call him. And make sure he always has access to somewhere warm and dry.

Good luck with whatever you decide to do.
post #13 of 16
(what urbantigers said -- too long to quote.) Excellent post, excellent advice.
post #14 of 16

Just to clarify on the "where he belongs" thing - if he signed the paper from the shelter saying the cat would be kept indoors, then that is where he belongs.

Otherwise, he's violating the shelter rules which is wrong.
post #15 of 16
You're correct on that.
post #16 of 16
Hi Zen. I know where you are coming from and I believe in letting cats out if it is as safe as you can make it - no roads, dogs, predators or anything you can think of that is unsafe, Sadly, we can never be sure, I moved a year ago to a house that I thought was completely safe, only to lose a cat I adored to poison only two months later. Since then my cats go out on leashes for walks, or free under close supervision and only three of them do that -ones I know will come as soon as I call them, and who rarely wander far from the house.

When I train a cat to go out, usually around 6 months old, I start them on a leash and harness, taking them all round the house and garden. These walks can take several weeks. I never let them go out alone until I am sure they can find their way back from the edges of my property or beyond. But you can never be sure a cat will not wander - some go 2 miles or more from home on a regular basis.

If your cat is older it may be unfair to let him out as he will be very scared to be out. He may run away from the house or back inside - either is possible. He will not be streetwise, or attuned to the noises and stimuli outside. And there are always dangers - sometimes ones we never thought of, as I know to my cost. You have to balance all this against your other problems and concerns, and above all think about what is best for your cat. Good luck.
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