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Indoor or Not

post #1 of 64
Thread Starter 
I read all the post in all threads,and I keep hearing some people are always telling others keep your cats inside! Well in my family of 5 cats 3 are indoor and outdoor,and all 3 are fixed,and never leave the yard!
They go out and sit on the deck or the deck rail.So am I wrong to do this? I think not!If you want to keep your cats do so but stop trying to make other people feel wrong because they don't.
My oldest cat is 7 years old,and she only wants to go out on warm days and sit on the deck,where it is shady,I live in a mobile home in a mobile home park,which has a speed limit of 15 miles and people don;t even do that because the park is full of kids.And if you ever lived in a mobile home you know how hot they are inside.And Cheyanne was a baby when I got her and she has lived here all her life.
So IMO do what is right for you!And your cats.
post #2 of 64
personally, I prefer cats to be inside, with that said some cats don't want to be inside. Ashton, lilly, sherbert, and snowwhite are my outside babies, and the three new kittens and neo and moe are inside only. I just feel safer with the cats inside. but that is just imo.
post #3 of 64
The fact is that it is generally accepted that it is safer for a cat to be kept indoors....less risk of disease, getting hit by a car, or hurt by a person who just doesn't like cats. At the Humane Society where I adopted my 2, you are asked to sign an agreement that you will keep your cats indoors.
post #4 of 64
Thread Starter 
Like I said they go out in the day time to sit on the deck when we are home,and the door is open,never when we are gone or at night,and the nonspayed pets they never go out.Cloud Dancer is sitting on the deck rail right now.
post #5 of 64
My Onyx is a walking example of why kitties are generally much safer inside only. He was an indoor/outdoor kitty for the first few years of his life, and despite being neutered, constantly got picked on by other cats that came into our yard.

Hes had three surgeries due to bite wounds, one that came very close to piercing his spinal cord. Now Onyx is an inside only cat and has gone from a nervous, jumpy cat (probably from always having to be on the alert for intruders in his yard who meant him harm) to a laid back, mellow guy. He's perfectly happy to sit in the window and watch the world go by.

Over the years I've had cats of mine hit by cars, and I live in a very rural area. Its heartbreaking to lose a much loved pet that way.

So, IMO, its much safer to keep kitties in a safe, controlled environment where the dangers are few. I invested in a fish tank (or Kitty TV) and put bird feeders by the windows outside to entertain my babies, and they have their own toy box as well as scratching posts and sunny windowsills to lie on. I think if they could thank me for keeping them inside and safe, they would.
post #6 of 64
Too many crazy drivers on my street and I hear catfights, all the time. We also have coyotes, nearby. Except for Rowdy, mine don't want to go out, anyway.
post #7 of 64
My Mom had 5 cats. One was hit by a car outside and died, one was attacked by two dogs and seriously injured (if Mom would not have heard the fighting, Pee Dee would have died). Another was trapped in a neighbors garage for a week without food.

This is all I needed to hear to have my cats be indoor kitties. We are fortunate enough to have a screened in back yard (a lanai) so they go outdoors with the security of a fence.

Please protect your kitties. I know it is hard and you feel like you are denying them of outdoor pleasures, but all in all it is for thier safety. You could open a window and get a window seat for them, they really like that and they can enjoy the outdoors without the dangers.

post #8 of 64
has been stolen, killed by cars, or got into fights leading to injury. I feel much better keeping my babies inside, away from danger. I am planning to put up a screened in area in the back yard for them this summer with a cat door so they can come and go as they please.
post #9 of 64
I do believe that there are some cats who just aren't happy indoors, but I imagine that would mostly be feral cats. Most kitties, however, are fairly amenable to being inside cats. My Mocha was a feral, hadn't ever been inside a house before I took her in. Even so, she has not acted as if she wanted to escape in the month that she's been here. And as mentioned by others, there are lots of good compromises that can be made. (I'm not preaching at you Sherral, I just don't like it when cat owners let their cats roam all over and don't worry)
post #10 of 64
Thread Starter 
I did not say I let them roam they sit on my deck WHEN I AM HOME AND THE DOOR IS OPEN .
post #11 of 64
I don't think anyone is picking on your or saying that you are wrong. I think in some issues, it's best to agree to disagree. I do believe the others are saying that because they are speaking of people who don't care what happens to the cat. There are some owners that have a cat just for the sake of having a cat and are not owners because they want the best for their cats. I don't believe that anyone is saying you are a bad cat owner. We all know how much you love your cats and you wouldn't do anything to harm them intentionally.
post #12 of 64
Thread Starter 
Thanks shell
post #13 of 64
*sigh* The nonclarifying clarification monster strikes again... I meant that you WEREN'T one of the owners I had in mind... sorry, rereading it, I can see that I was just muddying the waters even more! I was actually thinking of the owners of my feral kitty's mom. They let her roam and she's unspayed too.

I completely understand letting them out on the deck, supervised. That's no big deal.
post #14 of 64
Thread Starter 
Thanks Willie WZ Sometimes I read things into thing that are not there.
post #15 of 64
Most know I have indoor/outdoor cats. Yes, I have lost some to outdoor hazards, and if they were not all feral at one time, if there were not so many, if I didn't live where I do, etc..etc...I would only have inside cats and not so many.

Sherril, this is a hot-button issue and there are usually conflicts that come up when this topic is introduced. I was run off of a cat board by hatred because I have outside cats. My oldest cat will be 12 next year, I have a few that are 9 years old. I hear all the time that the average span of an outdoor cat is less than 3 years. If you can get them through those first three years, it is considered a miracle. I guess I have a few miracles running around then.
post #16 of 64
Rowdy goes out, with a harness and leash.
post #17 of 64
Thread Starter 
I am going to try Grayski on a leash ,he has never been out side.
post #18 of 64
All 5 of my cats are indoors only. I dont think it's right to let any animal run around loose. Personally, if you ask for my opinion, anyone who lets them run around does not care about the animal, whether it be a cat, dog, bunny. There are too many hazards out there. Why risk it?
post #19 of 64
Personally, and in my situation being in a city by a major road and in an apartment complex, my cats are indoors only, thank you very much!

I think a lot of it depends on the situation. I certainly don't think that Mary Anne and Debby are bad cat owners because they have outside cats. They live in rural areas, so many of the dangers that cats where I live would face just aren't as prevalent there. Letting cats outside for a bit, supervised, in a garden or a deck probably isn't dangerous for them at all. There's always an off chance, but there's an off chance my cats will get into the cleaning supplies no matter how cautious I am about putting them away.

I agree with the others, though. It is the "owners" who get a cat, especially in an urban area, and just turn it loose and put out food every once in a while....those are the irresponsible people who make everyone so jumpy about this topic.
post #20 of 64
Most of our kitties are outside cats. Shorty is both inside/outside, Rascal used to be, but now he is always outside, and Pepe and Zeb are both outside. Rascal has enough fur to cover 10 cats, never mind himself, and they all sleep together in the bales when it is cold outside. They are happier outside, in my opinion. If we had them inside, we would have to have so much stuff for them, and nature is better for them. Just so you all know, I live in a very small town of only maybe 125 ppl (including farms!), and everyone knows whose cats are whose, and they get fed like 10 times a day by everyone around, and fresh water, and attention. Nature is the best occupier (not the right word, but I can't think of a better one right now). Pepe and Zeb are scared to come inside....they won't, even when it is like -30c outside. Rascal will, but then he always wants back out like 10 minutes later. Shorty just doesn't go outside in the winter time....she's spoiled lol She just came in when I got home at 1am, ate a bit, had a drink of water, and went back out. She likes to be outside at nite time better. I don't personally see anything wrong with the cats being outside in the country, I don't think I would like it in the city, but for right now in the country/small itty bitty town life, outside is the best.
post #21 of 64
Spike is an indoor only cat. I live on a main street (not exactly a big city or anything, but busy enough), and it wouldn't be safe for me to let him out. I do my best to make sure he's not bored... lots of playtime, windows to look out of, a cat tree to climb, etc. I just want him safe, healthy, and happy. So, I guess I would tend to lean towards the idea that indoor only is safer in most circumstances, but there are some cases where it's completely understandable why someone would have outdoor cats. Heidi's references were the two that came to my mind immediately.
post #22 of 64
All of my cats stay indoors except for Majesty. I adopted her from a breeder and she lived on a huge farm. I kept her inside for 2 months and she hated it! She refused to eat and go to the litter box. She is my outdoor kitty, and has been for almost a year. She never goes near the road, and she hardly ever gets into a cat fight. I would never force her to live indoors where she's not happy. I would hate to be cooped up in a house all day, so I no how she must feel. She comes inside to sleep on my brothers bed every night, and she eats inside. People that live around me would never hurt a cat, and there isn't many raccoons around. I have seen 3 raccoons in the past 7 years that I have lived here. You should all be happy! I saved Majesty from a breeder who beat her with chains! She was abused by humans so badly, she feared everyone. I am happy to say that Majesty is a very loving cat now. I care for her alot, more that anyone could ever know. I saved her life, now she just needs to be happy!

I don't feel that it is a good idea to let your cat outside. If they are supervised or on a harness, why not? Cats enjoy a little bit of fresh air once in a while. I take most of my cats out on a harness. I take them to the park and in my yard. Some of my cats are afraid of the outdoors, they have never been outside so they fear it. What if they ever did get outside? What would happen?

Peppurr, my 2 year old male, ran out the door and under the house. He was stuck there for 2 days with no food or water. When I found him, he bit and scratched me. He was so terrified. I think everyone should take their kitties outside on a harness so they can get use to their yard. That way, if the cat does escape, he won't panic and hide, or even worse, run out to the road and get hit.

I was owned by a very loving orange tabby named Tigger last year. When he was four months old he started going outside. He would come home every night to eat and sleep. When he was 11 months old something terrible happened. Tigger crawled into my brothers window and layed beside him crying. My brother thought it was strange because Tigger never slept with people. He opened his eyes and realized that something was wrong. The skin on Tigger's chin was ripped off and he could'nt get up. My brother took Tigger and came upstairs. It was 6:00 in the morning and I woke up to hear that Tigger was hit by a car. His legs were mangled and his face was ripped up. I was in shock, how could this happen to my little baby? Me and my Mom nursed Tigger back to good health. Being dumb back then, we never took him to the vet. 2 months passed and Tigger was running, jumping, playing and eating better.

Then one day, my Dad let Tigger back outside. I was pissed! I yelled at him and told him that Tigger needs to stay inside, all the time. He refused to listen to me. In 2002 Tigger ran away and never came home. He was only 2 years old. I still wonder to this day what happened to my sweet little angel. He is in my heart.

Please don't let your kitty out unsupervised! Majesty is in my yard 24/7. She never leaves, and I am happy she does'nt wander around the neighborhood.
post #23 of 64
My cats are indoors. When I let my cats out on a leash last summer, Tigger would meow and meow at the door after we brought her back in. That lasted for about 2 weeks after we stopped letting them outside. When we buy a house I want to put one of those fenced cage thingys on the outside so they do their fun exporing thing and be safe at the same time.
post #24 of 64

Daisy and Venus are mainly indoor kitties. However, they get to go places in their carriers.

i can't let them out to the backyard as i am feeding about 7-9 feral kitties now.

i would strongly recommend a collar with a tag with the owner's name and tel., if the kitty has an outdoor exposure. Also, i strongly believe in microchipping all kitties. i guess you will never know.


:flash: :flash: :flash: :flash: :flash: :flash: :flash: :flash:
post #25 of 64
Sherral - it seems that you are a very responsible pet owner who cares deeply for your cats. Mine are 99% indoor cats, occasionally 2 of the 5 get out on the back porch WITH supervison - like you do. I think each pet owner has to choose what is best in their own circumstances!
post #26 of 64

I don't see anything wrong with what you are doing. You do not let them run loose throughout the neighborhood. I wish I had a place Max could be safely outside. I think he would love to be on a protected deck. On nice days I open the door, pull a chair next to the screen door and let him breath in the fresh air.
post #27 of 64
Our cat is from a humane society, and they specified that he should be kept as an indoor cat. We screened in one of the balconies for him and leave the door partially open so that he can go out there any time he wants. Otherwise he goes out in the backyard every day in his harness and leash. He has a cat tree and several window perches, and doesn't seem to miss his "freedom". I think the decision "indoor or outdoor" really has to be decided on a case by case basis - quite a bit depends on where you live, how much traffic or wildlife there is, and the neighbors' attitude (there's a cat murderer one town over from us - several cats have been shot over the past few years)
post #28 of 64
Our cats are mmostly indoors, but we do let Rocky out on occasions when we are outside too..never alone by himself...I am too paranoid..
post #29 of 64
INDOOR ONLY, if it's a house hold cat, INDOOR only, Or in an outdoor enclosure, or harness/leash.

Yes... your cats only hang out in the garden, UNTIL THE DAY THEY DON'T! And then it might just be, bye bye kitty.
I guess I'm just bitter, anyone who lets their cats out side and claims they REALLY are a cat lover, wait until you loose quiet a few cats to death via outdoors, to no one's fault but your own, and then see how you feel.
post #30 of 64
Angel, I disagree. I think you can be a responsible pet owner and let your cats outside. It depends on the circumstances of each case.

The radical indoors only approach is a relatively recent American trend. In the UK, most behaviorists agree that keeping a cat indoors only causes confinement stress and can hurt the cat.

Me, I think in urban areas and in some rural areas too, the advantages of letting your cat outside are outweighed by the risks - but not everywhere.

I do believe that if you decide to confine your cat you need to make sure you are giving her a good quality of life indoors - plenty of vertical space, cat trees, cat toys, interactive playtime, an enclosure and maybe walks on leash (it's not a solution for all cats by the way). Most of all, you need to make sure you don't crowd too many cats in a small apartment or house. There is no figure for how many is too many, and you certainly can have too many cats in an indoors/outdoors environment, but this is something to keep in mind. In my behavior therapy sessions, I see too many sad cats confined indoors only without the proper environment you need to provide for an indoors only cat. This is not to say that everyone who keeps their cats indoors only deprives their cats - I hope most of the people here know how to provide their indoors only cats with the proper stimuli to replace the natural stimuli of the outside. Just bringing in another aspect.
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