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Moving to New Home & our Outdoor Cat!!!

This is a place to gain some understanding of cat behavior and to assist people in training their cats and dealing with common behavior problems, regardless of the method(s) used. Keep in mind that you may be receiving advice from other cat owners and lovers...not professionals. If you have a major problem, always seek the advice of a trainer or behaviorist!

  


Member Since
06/26/2013
 
 
Purred: Thu Jun 27, '13 8:34am PST 
We have a stray cat that adopted our family approximately 1.5 years ago. The cat comes and goes but generally comes at dinner time spends the night eats, leaves, comes back periodically during the day. The cat is a roamer. The cat gets along with our (indoor cat and dog) she is a gem. We are moving. I have no doubt that we should take the stray cat with us but I know we are taking it to a neighborhood that is inundated with (outdoor) cats. How do we help acclimate our "stray"cat to this new situation??? We are only moving 2 miles from our original home. Help! We love this cat!!! Thanks.
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Mikko

Psycho kitty
 
 
Purred: Thu Jun 27, '13 1:13pm PST 
Maybe get a long rope with a clasp on it and tie it to something, so she can come in and out. Get a harness or a collar (probably should go with a harness, cats can pull out of collars) and make sure you check on her with the other outdoor cats because some of them could be rough. Also make sure you are feeding her the right thing, what are you feeding your indoor cat? And does she eat the same thing? smile
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Monster

It's all about- me.
 
 
Purred: Thu Jun 27, '13 1:21pm PST 
Since she gets along with your other pets, perhaps you should start making her into an indoor cat before you move. Bring her inside, keep her in one room for a few days with a litter box, etc., to see how she reacts. If she uses the box reliably, you can start to give her access to the rest of the house. Only let her outside when you are there to supervise, preferably on a leash and harness. When you move, hopefully she'll be acclimated to being indoors already. Please don't tie her outside. That is very dangerous, since she won't have an escape from other animals.
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Mikko

Psycho kitty
 
 
Purred: Thu Jun 27, '13 1:26pm PST 
My neighborhood is safe, thats why I tie Mikko outside, he loves outdoors but if I let him out with no leash he will run away. If there is dangerous animals, I am sure she would find a hiding place, or jump up somewhere high. If you do get a rope, make sure it is very very long, so if that does happen, she can jump somewhere. She doesn't have to be indoors, if she doesn't like it. She shouldn't be forced to do something she doesn't want to do.
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Beep

Butt-kicker of- all other cats
 
 
Purred: Fri Jun 28, '13 4:01am PST 
I think you should attempt to make the kitty an indoor kitty when you move. And I think it will be hard on the cat and hard on you. You could look into an outdoor enclosure to put the cat in and put her outside on the porch for fresh air. I think the idea of the leash is good as long as you never leave her alone on it, because I have heard horrible stories of cats hanging themselves on leashes like that. I bought a zip up, pop up mesh side crate, it was actually a dog crate, and a pretty good size one, got it at Walmart for around $25....it may have been closer to $40 but I don't remember, just that it was not that expensive. It completely zips up. I have put my kitties out there for some fresh air when we sit out on the porch.

My fear would be what I am sure yours is, that this cat will be out of it's territory, and run off, especially if there are lots of other cats nearby. Maybe once this cat is really used to it's new home, and has been ok with small amounts of outdoor time where it can't run off, then it will be ok to give it small amounts of outside time, but that would depend on the other cats in the neighborhood. I just think it could be a recipe for disaster if you just let this cat outside right away before it is used to where it is.

Not to scare you, but this actually happened to me. I was 14, we moved from South Florida to Central Florida, brought our cat Spooky with us. He was a big ole tom cat, came and went as he pleased, was never fixed....I guess my mom was just ignorant about such things, or maybe it wasn't as common to neuter male cats back then, I don't know. Anyway, we attempted to keep Spooky in, but we couldn't, and so we started letting him out. He immediately got into fights with other toms in the area....he was used to being the big butt kicker back in his home, not so here on someone elses turf. And then one day, not long after we'd been there, he just didn't come home. I always wondered if he was hit by a car, because we were by a very busy road, or if he attempted to go back to his old home.....if ever a cat could, it might have been this cat. But I was only 14 and I was heartbroken, and when I look back on it, I think of how many mistakes we made. But it was a different time and place.

Now, a good story. A friend of mine had a cat that was a stray, she attempted to make her an indoor cat, she got out CONSTATNLY, so she just threw her hands in the air and said fine, indoor outdoor. She moved about 3 years ago and wondered how she would keep her cat inside at the new place. She actually has done very, very well. She said she was kind of scared being in a new place and for months didn't even attempt to get out. She told me a few months ago that she heard this awful mewing at her front door, went to the door and it was her cat, Princess. She had gotten out, it seems, that a screen had fallen out...or she pushed it out maybe, but she must not have been out there too long. She had worried that if she ever got out she would bolt, and she only lived about 5 miles away from her old house, and she feared Princess would return there, but she didn't. She has even gotten out a few times since then and has not wandered off, so it can be ok. My sister also had a cat that lived to be 18 and moved homes 3 times in her life and always went in and out, but she did always live in a quiet, residential neighborhood.

Good luck.
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Mikko

Psycho kitty
 
 
Purred: Fri Jun 28, '13 11:10am PST 
I agree with beep, either make her an indoor cat, or get an outdoor enclosure. I don't know the prices for you, but maybe your indoor cats would like being in the enclosure to, so maybe attach it to your house, and keep the door open so the kitties can go in and out of it, and there will be no problems smile
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Mikko

Psycho kitty
 
 
Purred: Fri Jun 28, '13 7:06pm PST 
And Monster....You said put her on a leash and harness.....I didn't mean leave her out all night, I am not that kind of person, and if the owner were to supervise, it wouldn't make that much of a difference, if it were a fox, then it could injure the owner, so don't say that.
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Mikko

Psycho kitty
 
 
Purred: Sat Jun 29, '13 1:47pm PST 
BUT......Maybe she doesn't want to be an indoor cat, so maybe I shouldn't have said that. If she wants to be outdoors, let her be. laugh out loud
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KIKI

purrrfection
 
 
Purred: Sat Jun 29, '13 5:23pm PST 
I think what Mikko is trying to say is get a harness and use a lead, but of course supervise her while she is out on the lead, and not leave her out alone overnight. But it is a good idea because that way she is still getting her outside time while making her an indoor cat also.
My friends cat does just this, and he loves it. He asks to go out just like a little pup would and he goes out on his harness for a bit, then comes back in, and he lives a very happy life smile
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