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Is it bad to let Moses outside to play?

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
I'm pretty new around here, and I was just reading in another thread and it seems like the majority thinks it's bad to let cats out to play. Is that true and if so, why?

The reason I ask is because Moses is the first kitty I've ever had that is DETERMINED to go outside. Tiger has never done that. I can leave the door open all day long and he's not going out there unless you come with him and then only for a minute and he's done.

Moses will plot his escape - hours in advance if necissary. As soon as there is a crack in the door, he's out there hopping in the grass in the backyard, chasing bugs and climbing a little tree that's out there and sunning on the patio. Catching him to bring him back in is nearly impossible. He's super quick! As far as I can tell, he's never left the backyard. His big brother Jake (a black labrador retriever) is on duty when Moses is out there - he's chased off an alley cat that jumped on the fence, announces kids passing by, etc. Moses was neutered last month, and since then I stopped fighting with him about going outside. I know he isn't going anywhere, and Jake's out there to make sure nobody messes with him. Is that bad? I don't want to be a bad kitty mom. Am I missing some info?

If this is okay, then I need to pick a tick/flea preventative. I use frontline for my dog. Is frontline for cats good?

Thanks in advance for advise.
post #2 of 21
It depends how safe your area is. I live in the UK, and my cats are allowed outside as it is safe, but if cats started getting hit by cars etc, they would be indoors only. Could you build an enclosure for him?
post #3 of 21
I would say if you live anywhere near a road or if there are predators like coyotes around then keep him in or cat-proof your yard. One day he will want to go further than the fence - that is the nature of cats. I let mine out but they go into the fields and there is no through traffic. And Frontline for cats is good - but get the feline variety.
post #4 of 21
I do not let my cats out because I live by a very busy road, have found fox's in my front yard (it had the neighbors cat pinned against the tree, the neighbors cat spent the night in my house that night), and I also know for a fact that some of the un-neutered males in my neighborhood are carrying FIV ( I have trapped 2 positives and had then euthanized). So I am working on buildind a "cat Run" that my cats can have access to ouside but still be enclosed for their safety (though I would reccomend a Felv vaccine once a cat starts going ouside in any shape or form).
post #5 of 21
Mine don't go out because I live by a busy road, but as long as you feel they are safe then there's no problem
post #6 of 21
In my last apartment, I lived with a pomeranian that would try and make a break for it anytime anyone went near the door. So we started walking to the door, then throwing a dog treat as far as we could inside the apartment, and then slipping outside while the dog went after the treat. Now, one of my cats is the same way. It's not a problem when I get home because I try to make a quick entrance before he can get to the door. But when I'm leaving, he'll try to make a break for it so right before I leave, I put out tasty cat treats so the cats are occupied and I can get outside.
post #7 of 21
It depends on a lot of factors.

If Moses is neutered and vaccinated, if there are no predators like foxes or coyotes or cat-aggressive neighbor's dogs, if there is not too much traffic on the street, and if neighborhood strays and ferals are spayed/neutered and vaccinated - then I think it is just fine.

Yes, there are risks associated with going outside. But I think whether or not to accept these risks is a personal decision. It comes down to choosing whether to keep a cat 100% safe but also quite frustrated and unhappy, or to let him be a little less safe but also happier.

Personally, from a purely philosophical standpoint, I think it is better to take some risks if doing so will make them happier. However, from a practical standpoint this doesn't stop me from being a nervous mom and preferring to keep my babies inside!
post #8 of 21
If you let them out, just know the risks and accept that sometimes outside cats simply vanish or come to harm. Look into Purr...fect Fence or another type of cat-proof fencing. Stay away from invisible fencing, because even though it prevents your pet from crossing it, other cats, dogs and predators will have no problem,
post #9 of 21
Fronline makes a feline formula.
post #10 of 21
If your cat is happy outdoors then let him go out. I would advise keeping them indoors at night, i know several rescue centers advise this too.

Since your cat has been neutered he is less likely to wander of for long walks, but bear in mind that it takes several months for his hormones to settle down.

I have used both the feline frontal and advantage. Both seem to work fine.
post #11 of 21
I know some people let thier cats out...and of course, if you have weighed all the risks and are willing to accept the consequences, then it is up to each owner....but as for me...mine are strickly indoor cats.
post #12 of 21
Personally I think you should let him out. It's cruel to keep him inside when he obviously wants out so bad. I like near a road (not so busy) and there are so many times when they go missing, but they are utterly misreable without anywhere to go. Plus it gets rid of that smelly catbox! XD
post #13 of 21
I don't honestly believe that my cats are unhappy because they can't go outside. They live healthy, active lives inside.

Of course, I live in the middle of a major city. It is ABSOLUTELY out of the question to let your cats out if you also live in a major city. They can fall prey to way too many things.

Even if you're in a rural area, I'd look into a fence or enclousure. As previous posters have said, predators, diseases, cars, or the possibility that he'll vanish forever are all out there. If I can ever feasibly make an enclousure for my cats, I feel that that is the best compromise.
post #14 of 21
I would never let mine outside!!! I have trapped a lot of cats that have FIV and I don't believe cats belong outside. (IMO) I do however let Mandarin out on a lead when I am there every once in a blue moon!
post #15 of 21
Originally Posted by Aardvark
Personally I think you should let him out. It's cruel to keep him inside when he obviously wants out so bad. I like near a road (not so busy) and there are so many times when they go missing, but they are utterly misreable without anywhere to go. Plus it gets rid of that smelly catbox! XD
That is your opinon and you are within your rights to say so. But it is not cruel to keep a cat inside, even a cat prone to wanting to go outside. I have all feral cats and no one goes outside anymore. They used to, but it got to dangerous for them. Now they have an enclosure to play in, either that or the house. If you don't like smelly cat boxes scoop them out more often and your problem is solved. But don't make that the basis for keeping cats outside.
post #16 of 21
I don't let my cats go out unless they're on a harness. That said, Buffy is a Houdini in cat clothing. She's now mastered the art of slipping outside, in broad daylight, with someone standing at the door, unnoticed. So we're keeping closer tabs on her, and I'm keeping her in my room at night (since most of her attempts come in the morning, when everyone is getting ready for school and work and aren't quite "there" yet, mentally that is)

I can't tell yet if letting her go out on a harness is helping to curb her ethusiasm for the outdoors or if it's making it worse. It's entirely possible that she finds the most fun in going out when she knows she's not supposed to ("Buffy on a leash" is a different cat than "Buffy that snuck out" lol. Heck, "Buffy that snuck out" is different that "Unleashed Buffy that's being closely supervised" lol. She finds great pleasure in being naughty)
post #17 of 21
My cats are indoors with access to a small run. They are safe from other cats, roads, people etc and they're not out causing damage to my neighbours' property. I don't think they're unhappy, they have toys, trees and other cats to play with plus 2 humans to run around after them

post #18 of 21
Cats can be very happy living indoors only. Outdoor cats are at risk of many things, FIV, fleas, worms, fighting over territory and getting seriously hurt, run over by vehicles, attacked by other animals, rabies and the list goes on.

IMO, if you can keep your cat indoors you are prolonging their lives and giving them an excellent quality of life.

Our cats are allowed outdoor visits but are harnessed and leashed and supervised. They enjoy their time out but are content being inside cats. Also, since they are allowed outside at all, they are both treated with Revolution once per month as per the dosage from our vet to ensure they are flea and consequently worm-free.
post #19 of 21
i'm debating the purely indoor vs outdoors on a harness thing myself. but i can contribute one thing... i LOVE revolution flea control! it's applied like advantage or frontline, but it works so much better, in my opinion. we had fleas really bad once, and the day i put it on, i noticed dead fleas! after a few days, the only fleas that i got when combing chase were dead. woohoo! and unlike frontline and advantage, it seems to work all 30 days. plus it helps with worms and it has a birthcontrol element that keeps any flea eggs from hatching. can't ask for more than that!

the only drawback is that it's prescription only, so you have to get it from your vet or have them give you a paper Rx so you can get it online cheaper.
post #20 of 21
I could never be comfortable turning my cats loose to run the neighborhood. They are outside cats, however they are confined to my yard within a fenced area. They can't get out and other cats can't get inside the fence. I use frontline or advantage. I really think the advantage works better. I am thinking of trying the Revolution. Can someone tell me how it compares price wise to the other two.
post #21 of 21
We take Harley outside when its nice on a leash/harness and he is kept an eye on. That usually takes care if him wanting to go outside when we take him out there, he loves it!

But I wouldn't let him run free, he probably wouldn't come back
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