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Indoor or outdoor? - Page 2

post #31 of 39
Mine are indoor only, it's actually pretty safe for cats around here as the whole area is pedestrianised with trees and undergrowth around the paths and no roads, no ferals, and just a few indoor/outdoor cats, but with 2 purebreds and a very unusual looking moggy they would be targets for theft.
post #32 of 39
Well, I thought this thread might be a good place for me to start out here. I have a lot of experience from both sides, so I'll be happy to share my opinion here.

Right now I have a 7 month year old black american shorthair with a little white star on his chest. His name is Buster, and he is of feral lineage. His mama was feral, and he lived the first few weeks of his life on the streets. I found him at about three weeks of age, and his mom had been (purposely) killed. He has been hand raised by my boyfriend and I, and lives entirely indoors. Despite his feral history, he has no interest in ever going outside. He's very healthy and happy, and has a little perch by the window. That's all he seems to want. We recently took him outside under our supervision, and as soon as my boyfriend knelt down next to him and set him down, he crept under his legs and leaned up against his knee and just hunkered down there and refused to leave our side. When my boyfriend stood up, Buster just laid next to his feet. I don't know if we just got an odd feral, but he seemed to have gotten enough of the outdoors when he was a little baby.

I've had a lot of indoor/outdoor cats and a few indoor only. One indoor lived to twenty and died of old age. My indoor/outdoor... We experienced a lot of problems. We faced a risk that many people don't even think about-- cats being stolen. Literally. I've lost two cats to other people. They removed their collars and tags and replaced them with their own. Alex and Little Miss Bee both were stolen from me. We need to remember what a risk people are. Not just people in cars, but people. I have heard and seen so many horrible things.. People are extremely cruel. They steal, torture, beat, poison, and shoot cats just for the fun of it. And they do the same to dogs. Unfortunately we still face this risk at times with indoor cats.
My neighbor was recently robbed, and when she went to her microwave.. She found her cat inside of it. I'd really not say anymore about that. It was terrible. People can really suck.

Another risk people don't often think of is cats becoming feral. I have a neighbor who owned six cats. Two of them were stolen at one point, but have since been returned. Two other ones were once 100% indoor cats, and then became indoor/outdoor. One day, they just didn't come back. When they found the kitties, they wanted nothing to do with them and were very mean and spitty and ran away. They had become too feral.

(I do live in Las Vegas, however, so it may be very different from other places... Indoor/outdoor or 100% outdoor is extremely common here, though. Very few people have purely indoor cats.)

I am totally for indoor with supervised or limited outdoor access, or 100% indoor living. I do not like indoor/outdoor or 100% outdoor. IMO, it's just not safe enough. But yeah. I just love my babies and I want the best for them, and I don't want them to ever experience the cruelty of people because I let them wander too far. And risks can happen anywhere, not just in cities.

I HOPE YOUR KITTY FINDS HIS WAY HOME! I know the feeling of waiting for your baby to come back, so I understand. Don't worry, it is NOT your fault. I'm sending lots of love your way.
post #33 of 39
Two things: (1) For some unfortunate reason, internet forums seem to bring out the very worst in a lot of folks. I once made the "horrible" error of stating my disappointment that a particular breed of cat I had at the time was not getting anywhere as large as my "paid for" expectations. WELL! I really got lambasted good over that one. Apparently I was not greatful enough for what I had - a healthy cat. I'm sorry you had to experience what you did when making an innocent comment about your cat. (2) -- In or out? It would seem ok on a farm, but I can tell you this much: If there are any coyotes around, and there probably are, your cat will end up being eaten by them. In fact, it can readily occur in many suburan areas -- and some folks might have experienced it in a city. Ah, yes, . . . the freedom to come an go as one pleases. As in our human world, so it is in the animal world: Freedom often has it's price. A form of gurantee that your cat will be around for a long time, will probably mean keeping it indoors. Anthing less, unfortunately, is widely accepted as a gamble. Good luck!
post #34 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by goxner View Post
If there are any coyotes around, and there probably are
I can assure you that in the UK, which is where most people let their cats have free access to the outdoors and have said so on this thread, there almost certainly aren't. Or any other wild predators that are going to whisk your cat away and eat it for that matter. Don't assume that the risks are the same for everyone on the forum.
post #35 of 39
I have always made sure that where is live is not near any busy roads. It has always been in the middle of a housing estate where my cats could and do follow me to the shops if they wished to. However i did have a 6 month old kitten go missing a week after being spayed. I had a cat flap but had never left it open at night. As i believe night time is the most dangerous time for a cat and when bad things can happen. (We thought it was possibly a fox that took her. As lots of other cats were going missing at the time.) I had gone to bed and when i got up in the morning 1 cat was sat on a chair under the dining table quivering and the kitten was no where to be seen. I learnt my lesson after this. And never let my cats out at night. They are all called in by 10pm uk time and the doors locked. My cats do enjoy going out and can come and go as they please. My older cats Sophie has been going out since she was 1 year old and Shyla since she was also 1 year old. They are aged 10 years old and 9 years old now. And still enjoy going out but dont go so far nowadays. IMO cats should be allowed to be cats and go out exploring, playing, climbing tree's and running round burning off energy. But i do understand that it is just too dangerous for some cats to go out. And especially show cats and pedigrees, are kept indoors and given all the stimulation they need for a healthy active life.

Sorry for the essay. But thats my pennies worth.
post #36 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by shellyt1301 View Post
I have always made sure that where is live is not near any busy roads. It has always been in the middle of a housing estate where my cats could and do follow me to the shops if they wished to. However i did have a 6 month old kitten go missing a week after being spayed. I had a cat flap but had never left it open at night. As i believe night time is the most dangerous time for a cat and when bad things can happen. (We thought it was possibly a fox that took her. As lots of other cats were going missing at the time.) I had gone to bed and when i got up in the morning 1 cat was sat on a chair under the dining table quivering and the kitten was no where to be seen. I learnt my lesson after this. And never let my cats out at night. They are all called in by 10pm uk time and the doors locked. My cats do enjoy going out and can come and go as they please. My older cats Sophie has been going out since she was 1 year old and Shyla since she was also 1 year old. They are aged 10 years old and 9 years old now. And still enjoy going out but dont go so far nowadays. IMO cats should be allowed to be cats and go out exploring, playing, climbing tree's and running round burning off energy. But i do understand that it is just too dangerous for some cats to go out. And especially show cats and pedigrees, are kept indoors and given all the stimulation they need for a healthy active life.

Sorry for the essay. But thats my pennies worth.
It would be nice to live in a place that is relatively cat-safe. Especially being able to have them follow you into shops!
post #37 of 39
My cats are indoor only. In our area they could get killed by dogs, coyotes, javelina, etc. We even had a mountain lion around here. If they went away from our property (we have 6 acres) they could get stolen or hit by cars. Plus, they've been indoor only cats and are petite, I know they have strong instincts, but I don't think they could defend themselves.
In the 5 years my neighbors lived with us, they had 5 or 6 cats altogether and only one did not get killed or go missing.
I always prefer cats to be indoors (with proper stimulation of course), but there are some cats that can just not tolerate being inside. It is extremely hard to make an outdoor cat become an indoor cat.
When I was young we took in a cat with an aloof, almost feral personality, and she was so miserable inside we had to let her be outside. She was so incredibly miserable to be inside all the time, she ripped screens, scratched up the windows and doors, etc. So we let her outside and she still came in through a kitty door and things were much better for her.
I'm very much primarilty in favor of indoor cats, but there are also a lot of complicated variables and situations.
post #38 of 39
Hi and welcome to TCS I am really sorry your kitty went missing.

My personal thoughts are that kitties are much safer indoors at this day in age. It doesn't matter if you live in the woods or live in the city in the US. They live much longer on average as indoor kitties. Indoor kitties aren't exposed to the diseases that outdoor cats are, no fleas, ticks, heartworm, and other communicable diseases. They aren't exposed to being injured or killed by wild life if you live on land, or getting in fights with other loose cats or getting injured by dogs. And that doesn't even include people, many people are not tolerant of cats on their property, if you do a quick search on this site you will see that. Many cats get injured or lose their lives from humans. I know a neighbor that killed several people’s indoor outdoor kitties since they kept bothering and teasing his dogs and his garden. Some neighbors just trap the cats; other set out poison or shoot them.
Kids sometimes pick on cats and are cruel. When you let your cat roam, you no longer have any control over what happens to your cat, as your cat will leave your property and you won't know what is going on.

They have less chance of getting ran over by cars as well, both rural and city have traffic, although the chance of them accidentally getting ran over goes up if you live in more populated places, also the chance they will get stuck going up into someone's car. They have less chance of being shot at it you live in the woods and it is hunting season if they are kept indoors rather than allowed to roam around. There is less places for them to go that are dangerous if they are kept indoors. Less chance for accidents, because accidents are just that, accidents. They aren't meant to happen, but presented with the right opportunities the chances for accidents to happen go up.

Cat feces in public gardens and other places is a valid health hazard, not to mention gross. Kitties love to use the bathroom in gardens and some like to dig and mess with gardens. And cats have had a bad impact on nature, killing lots of birds, lizards, etc. just because they can. That is what cats do. Also, there are poisonous plants that they could get into.

My cat is hairless and her skin doesn't do well as an outdoor kitty, but even if she did have hair for the reasons above I would keep her inside. I wish she could be indoor/outdoor, as I understand the positions of those that do have their kitties indoor/outdoor and respect their decision and hope they would respect mine that my kitty cannot go outdoors. And not every cat is as lucky to have a home to call their very own, with humans devoted to getting them toys, playing with them daily, getting them cat trees, and making sure their needs are met so they are happy indoors. I feel sorry for the ferals and strays living outdoors all the time with no soft beds or place to really call their own.

The only way my kitty could be indoor/outdoor is if I built a cat safe pen for her or take her out on harness and lead.
post #39 of 39
As you will find there are all sorts of different opinions on this subject from all of the TCS members!

Personally all my cats are indoor. I'm way too attached to them to let them out side and drastically increase their chances of being killed. I live on a corner lot and by a school, so you can guess how busy the streets are around me. Also I have two neighbors who have dogs that are know to be "cat killers". They are great dogs untill they see your little kitty! The neighbors have also warned me not to let my Chihuahua go around their dogs because he would be "fair game" to their dogs! So my kitties are strickly inside
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