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Philosophical Question: Indoor or Indoor/Outdoor

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
My previous cat was 100% indoor. Mainly because when i first got her I lived in an appt, then I moved to a small house with a tiny yard, then finally to a big house with a big yard...but by that time she was so used to being indoors that she was only interested in going into the yard if we were there, then would come inside when we did (she NEVER wandered). We always knew where she was and everyone was happy. My feeling at that time was that cats should stay indoors where it is safe. Btw she lived to be 17.

Now I have taken in a pregnant stray (due in about 1-2 weeks). The dilemna my husband and I are discussing is whether to let her outside after she has the kittens (she won't be spayed until 12 wks post birth). My husband thinks it is cruel to keep her inside since she loves the outdoors and we live in southern California where the weather is beautiful and sunny most of the time. Right now we are keeping her inside all the time because we don't want her to have her kittens outside. I let her into the yard daily to enjoy the sun with total supervision, but I make her come inside when I do because she tends to roam.

Philosophical Question, which scenario is better:

1. Force her to stay inside for at least 3 months after the kittens are born when she will be spayed and possibly permanently (she wants to go outside)

OR

2. Allow her to go outside with all its risks, and have her spayed at 12 weeks regardless of whether she is pregnant or not (we do NOT want more kittens).

I want her to be safe, but she does not like being cooped up inside the house (and we have a big house)...but she wants to enjoy the great outdoors and mingle with her cat friends. The risk in letting her out is that she is a roamer and I'm worried she'll wander away and get hurt, lost, etc. but I do want her to be happy. What do you guys think?
post #2 of 9
If you've got a porch/deck and you have money or someone handy in the family, you can enclose the whole porch/deck with screens so your cat can go outside, but cant wander off.
post #3 of 9
If creating some type of outdoor enclosure for her is practical, I'd do that. Obviously inside of an outdoor enclosure you can create all kinds of things to climb or different levels - depends upon your financial resources and your level of interest or ability. But there are some really cool things out there that can make it fun and interesting for your kitty:

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

http://www.thecatsden.net/
http://bandobi.com/index.asp?gclid=C...FQJ4HgodJxB_sA
http://www.pawsupply.com/kittywalk.html
http://www.just4cats.com/
http://www.cats-on-line.com/

....and a sponsor of The Cat Site: http://www.purrfectfence.com/

If an outdoor enclosure isn't an option, I'd keep her inside with the kittens until you spay her and release her (if that's what you're doing).

Laurie
post #4 of 9
I second Laurie.
If you can't have enclosure, then keep her inside until she is spayed.

Be aware, though....
After being inside that long, she may be agitated when she is let out again.
She may go hiding for a while and may not show herself for a while.
(That's what I am going through now!!! )

Good luck!
post #5 of 9
I agree that she should stay in till at least a few days after the spay. Once she is spayed, she may not wander as far so you would both be happy.
post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks, guys, these were great ideas. We have an almost enclosed back porch and we put some old screens up to block off the open areas. We have a large 5 story cat house out there and I added some plants and things to give it an outside feel, plus lots of little hiding places since she loves to hide. She still wants to get out into the grass and go catting around the neighborhood mingling with her cat friends, but this is going to have to do for now...
post #7 of 9
Make sure the plants are not poisonous to her.

And as to the grass - you can grow flats of it. We did becuase our gang loved to graze on it. You could just put several flats out for her to walk on or lie down in. Or eat.

Laurie
post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LDG View Post
Make sure the plants are not poisonous to her.

And as to the grass - you can grow flats of it. We did becuase our gang loved to graze on it. You could just put several flats out for her to walk on or lie down in. Or eat.

Laurie
Thanks, LDG! Yes all the plants are cat safe and you gave me a great idea. I think I'll grow some cat grass for her in a large flat planter. She just had her litter today (4 little kittens!) so she might not want to venture out for a while.

post #9 of 9
Oh look at her! A very happy looking mama. I agree - doubt you need to worry about her wanting out and around for a couple of weeks. Should be enough time to get that grass growing!

Such a wonderful thing you're doing.

Laurie
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