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outdoor cat?

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
hi there,
i have a four month old domestic short hair cat and i'm contemplating letting her be an outdoor/indoor cat. right now she's an indoor cat but i frequently let her roam the backyard, as we have quite a large backyard. i have previously had two other cats when i was younger, they were outdoor cats, they both lived to 14 and 16, and died of natural causes. so i'm assuming my new kitty will be just as street smart... she is dying to go outside, she loves to be in the sun and chase butterflies but i'm wondering if it's a smart idea or not.
all help would be greatly appreciated.
post #2 of 12
"dying to go out" is about right. With today's dangers, its NOT a wise thing to let them outside unsupervised. Too many cruel people out there, dogs, kids, cars.

If you really want to let them out - then train to a harness/leash and supervise them or build/buy a cat enclosure they can sit outside in for a few hours. But you are asking for trouble by allowing them outside and not supervise them.

BTW I do hope you will not be letting your female outside without being spayed! Kittens as young as 4 months old can and do become pregnant.
post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 
Oh, of course she is spayed. I live in a very nice area, full of mainly old people, so the only thing I would have to be worried about are cars and perhaps the two deaf corgi's that live next door. haha.
However, I do believe you are underestimating the intelligence of our four legged friends.
post #4 of 12
I agree why not leash train your kitty or maybe look into buying/making an enclosure so you know she is completely safe?
My current kitties have never been out but that is because I've lost 4 cats to the outside world. Plus I live next to 3 major roads so its not even an option!
post #5 of 12
I know a lot of people say it's not recommendable BUT, I feel so guilty and I think it's more natural if they go outside...................

My sister had 2 indoor cats only and one died of being overweight (he was 30 lbs!! Mine are 13 lbs.......... (lack of exercise?)
post #6 of 12
seems like your mind is set and you're just looking for someone to agree with you. personally i wouldn't take the chance. sure, the cats are smart but that doesn't mean humans are kind.
post #7 of 12
Seems you've set your mind to letting the cat out. What happens when the cat disappears and doesn't come home and you never find out if she's alive or dead? Or someone doesn't stop in time and your cat is dead or seriously hurt in the middle of the road? Or someone leaves some poison out (antifreeze, etc.) and the cat dies?

Will the next cat you get be indoors or outdoors? Or will you wise up and train to a harness/leash or cat enclosure now for the safety of your cat?
post #8 of 12
What about an enclosure for her? Then she can be outside and safe!

Here are some links - there are pretty fabulous things out there.

....and a sponsor of The Cat Site:

post #9 of 12
Do it!
But you must understand the risk.

I know cats are safe indoors, but lots of them do fine outdoor also.

My first cat got hit by car when I was 15.
I still feel guilty about it because she was trying to get my attention so much that time, but I chased her away. She decided to play with my neighbor cat and 2 hours later, she was dead.

I am letting my 4 cats out in the spring because we can not keep them inside due to my husband allergy.

post #10 of 12
Originally Posted by Kazy View Post
I am letting my 4 cats out in the spring because we can not keep them inside due to my husband allergy.
Just a quick reply to the allergy issues with ideas if you aren't already using these tips.

I am very allergic to cats. I have problems with breathing, hives, itchy eyes - and we have six indoor-only cats. I had enough trouble when one of the ferals from the colony disappeared - let alone the idea of one of our pets disappearing. So if you don't want to risk your cats' lives, there are many things you can do about the allergies.

The first thing I do is take Zyrtec. It's prescription and IT WORKS. I also have a prescription steroid cream (ultravete) that I use for the hives when I get them.

But if your hubby doesn't want to take meds, there are still lots of things to do that help.

We have a HEPA filter in every room of the house (except the kitchen) and two in the bedroom.

Vacuuming every day or every other day helps a lot - including the furniture and any curtains.

Blinds instead of curtains where possible help.

We put attractive throw blankets on the back of couches and loungers so the cats lie on them and we wash them weekly. They're easy to pick up and put away when company comes over.

Brushing the cats every day helps I can't tell you how much. Especially if you use a curry comb. Then wipe them down with kitty wipes.

Just FYI.

post #11 of 12
The option of the cat safe enclosures is a great recommendation, if you don't want to leash her!

It is no more natural in this day and age to let a cat roam free then it is to let a dog roam free. There are so many dangers that IMHO it just isn't worth the life and health of our charges.

Cats want to go outside? Dogs want to go outside? Heck kids want to run across a busy parking lot without their parent... Same difference all the way around IMO. We make these choices b/c we are the party responsible for our loved ones safety.

You say your friends cat is obese b/c it's indoors, I have 6 indoor cats (and various fosters) and of which none of them are 30 lbs, or even near 20 lbs for that matter. Food choices go a long way with obesity, not to mention various medical ailments that could contribute as well. On top of that they do need exercise, which can be provided with (cat) trees indoor to climb, and toys to play with, I find that "Da Bird" cat toy cannot be ignored by the laziet of felines, and will get them moving and losing weight! Not to mention the mental stimulation it offers to interact and play with them.

I am absolutely NOT attacking you, just giving you my honest opinion and all and all, it is no one's choice but your own. But you are doing your cat no favors by allowing her outside. Even if you live by a street that you do not deem to be "that busy", it only takes one single car to kill a cat.
post #12 of 12
For the allergies - try wiping each cat daily with distilled water. It will help lessen the allergies.

And along with the "indoor = obese cat" - that's only cause they overfeed, free fee and the cat doesn't exercise. You can keep your cat healthy and at the proper weight without letting them run around outside. They just trade the grass/trees for the staircase, cat treehouse, sofa, etc.

All of my cats were indoor cats (except for Mitten and he was supervised outside) - NONE of them were fat cats - they all were at the proper weight for their size and they enjoyed a long and healthy life too.
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