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How to keep him from running outside?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
I'm getting the feeling that Milo's first owner allowed him outside. I've only had him 3 days and he's already ran out twice! What are some ways I can deter him from running out the door? Each time I have been lucky enough to catch him within minutes, but it scares me! He is so little it would be easy for him to get run over, hurt, etc. Please give me any advice you have!

(I just got his collar in the mail today, so atleast he now has a collar and tag on)

Edited to: fix spelling error
post #2 of 9
Be patient with him and yourself - this is a habit that will be hard to rid yourselves of.

First of all, make sure he gets lots of playtime - play with him til he gives up in exhaustion. This should help a lot, because he probably wants to go outside for serious cat play (ie hunting).

Second, can you institute a two door policy? Is there any part of the house that you could shut him up in two doors away from the outside?

Third, have a 'ready room' if possible - a room that you can grab him and put him in - like a bathroom - where he has access to water and a litter tray in case you need to use the door a lot over certain period (moving things in or out, for example) or need to leave the door open for any reason.

Remember, as well, the more times he gets outside, the harder it will be to break him of the habit, because it will always be worth it to him to try.

Tip: When coming into the house (unless you can shut him up in a different part while you are away) - always use a bag or something to block his exit as you are getting in.
post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thank you! Actually the safe room is what I will be doing today. My new roommate is moving in, so Milo will be in my bedroom with all his toys, his food, and his litter box until the moving is completed. The bag thing is a great idea, I will do that. Hopefully I can break him of this soon! Thanks again for the advice!
post #4 of 9
You're welcome and good luck!
post #5 of 9
Keep two squirt bottles near the door, one inside and one outside. I know it sounds harsh but after the first couple of times, he will probably get the message. And it's important he not run outside so harsh could be considered, you decide.

This is how I got Pixel to stop waiting to run out the door every time I came in with groceries, etc. She learned to back up and give me some room to get in.
post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 
Okay, well Milo has gotten out twice on my roommate while I've been at work the past few days. So today I bought a baby gate at Walmart and put it outside my front door, like right inside the door jam. Its worked so far, because his was of escaping was to run between your legs when you cracked the door. Now he would have to run between your legs and find room and time to jump before we grab him. Plus I keep a squirt bottle outside the door and if he looks like hes gonna run I give him a quick squirt on the bottom. Hopefully it keeps working!
post #7 of 9
We had the same problem with little Ling Ling. She was brought in at 5 weeks old (mom was barn kitty) for weaning with the rest of the litter. NONE of the kittens were allowed outside after that.

Ling kept trying to sneak outside and she did get out a few times. We started being really "mean' with our No's when she got near the door or get the water bottle out everytime she went near the door. After a few months she got the idea that outside was not a good thing.

We still have to watch her, but it seems that since we've moved, she hasn't tried to run out the door - thank God!
post #8 of 9
We have that with Whitey.

Luna was easy to distract...I would just toss a toy away from the door before I opened it and she would run off after the toy.
With Whitey he's determined to go outside. Even this morning he walked with me right up to the door, looked up at me while I stood there looking at him and meowed at me.

I pick him up each time he does this, move him and say no.
post #9 of 9
I had (have) the same problem with my cat, Inky. I live in a studio apartment with only one door and no screen door. I'm usually carrying groceries plus a briefcase on the way in in the evening and a briefcase on the way out in the morning.

He got out twice when I first brought him home -- fortunately both times I grabbed him before he got too far. Since then, I've worked out a routine that works for us. On the way in, I put my goods down by the door and unlock the door. As I open the door, just wide enough so that I can see into the room, I crouch down and wait for him to come to the door, which he always does. As he arrives, I pick him up and hold him -- by this time he's purring because he's glad to see me and wants to put his head against mine. While he does this and while still holding him, I pull the briefcase/groceries inside and then close the door behind me. On the way out in the morning, I pick him up and while I tell him what I'm doing, I reverse the evening procedure, putting things outside. Once that's done, I close the door with both of us still inside and usually give him some treats out of sight of the door. While he's eating those, I open the door quickly and exit. If I see that he's right behind me, then I pick him up again and as I open the door, I put him on a ledge that is right beside the door, let go and get out -- by the time he can turn around and jump down, the door is closed.

He always wants to "greet" me in the evening, but about 50% of the time he doesn't bother to try to follow me out in the morning. Of course, if I have a lot of stuff to go in or out, I have to put him in the bathroom, which is the only room with a door, while I get the stuff in or out.

This has worked for more than 4 months -- perhaps not the ideal solution, but it has become part of our routine. Anyway, best of luck with your cat. I will say that going outside seems to be becoming less interesting as time passes, if that helps.

-- Jeff
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