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Outdoor Cats? Why?

This forum is for cat lovers seeking everyday advice and suggestions on health-related issues. Remember, however, that advice on a public forum simply can't be a substitute for proper medical attention. Only your vet can say assuredly what is best for your cat.

  
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Tenny

Food is My- Friend
 
 
Purred: Sat Apr 21, '12 7:15pm PST 
This has been bothering me for awhile. Over the last year or so, I have had three friends lose their indoor/outdoor cats. Two of them found a dead body, the third just poofed into thin air.

They argue that it would be cruel to cat's inner nature to hunt and prowl if they kept them indoors. I'm of the mindset that we've domesticated cats so much that while that desire is there, they may not be able fulfill it successfully on their own or they may encounter some danger - like a car - that was never a natural part of the food chain.

In short -- I'm pretty horrified that they keep putting their cats out even though they lost a furbaby in a horrible way. For obvious reasons, I keep Tenny indoors, and Memphis, her two-eyed sibling, in also.

Can someone explain it to me why people have indoor/outdoor cats? I can't imagine doing this. I'm sorry if this post sounds narrow-minded, but I really get heartsick at continuing this practice despite a clear fatality rate.
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Macy

Super- freakey----MEOW!
 
 
Purred: Sat Apr 21, '12 7:55pm PST 
I think there is responsibility when it comes to having an indoor outdoor cat. Macy is indoor and outdoor but I don't allow him to free roam, he is on a harness and a 50 ft rope so he can roam the entire back yard. I check on him every 15 minutes and he is never left out there when we aren't home or if we are involved with things where I can't keep an eye on him. This way he still gets the great outdoors and you wouldn't believe the things he has caught while on a chain I am currently training Sonny to do the same.

You wouldn't believe how many people cannot believe that a cat can be on a chain, but with early and proper training a cat can not only be comfortable with a harness, but can still experience being outdoors and safe in their own back yards without risk of being killed on the roads.
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Pandemonium

I'm in your- puter stealing- your RAM
 
 
Purred: Sun Apr 22, '12 10:06pm PST 
I had an indoor/outdoor kitty. She would come get me to let her out to do her 'business' and come right back in. Or if we were hanging out outside, she'd always want to go with us. She never left the yard or chased the birdies or anything. All our other cats have been indoor only kitties. Scrappy was a rescue kitty, and came that way.

I don't know. I think it just depends on the cat. I'm not big on letting the cats outside... but I'd be a hypocrite for saying anything negative about it.
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Eli

Goldsworthy
 
 
Purred: Mon Apr 30, '12 11:39am PST 
Hi! My names Eli and I'm an outdoor only kitty. A lot of people think my owners mean for keeping me outdoors but it's really my decision. I refuse to be a house kitty. I panic and try to go through glass doors and windows to get back to the nature that I love. I love frog hunting and climbing trees. I know it worries my mama and she'd like for me to live inside like her other indoor only kitty Jelly Bean, but I refuse. We live in the country with swamps to run through and woods to explore. There is a lot of danger but it's a risk I take, much to my mommy's dismay. She comes outside and spends time with me everyday! She had me neutered last summer and I love to be combed and even take baths! She takes good care of me and I always get flea treatment and any other care I need. I'm just a wild boy at heart and I always will be. As long as kittys get the proper care and are fixed then I think they should be allowed outside as long as their owners are comfortable with it. Cat harnesses and cateries are a good alternative to free roaming. My mom gets sad to see kitties outdoors though. We don't always see eye to eye! wave
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Quagmire

Giggity giggity- goo!
 
 
Purred: Mon Apr 30, '12 9:20pm PST 
I live on the third floor of an apartment building in the city. With all the lost cat signs around, it's just making me want to keep my cats indoors. If I lived in the country and had a house, maybe they'd be indoor/outdoor, but in such a big city, nope, I don't feel safe with that.
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Quagmire

Giggity giggity- goo!
 
 
Purred: Mon Apr 30, '12 9:22pm PST 
I am considering a harness though. But that's the most I'll ever do. Don't want my babies to run off. So many lost cats here.
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Pickles

I hate everyone- but Mom
 
 
Purred: Thu May 10, '12 7:39pm PST 
Tenny I'm with you. I have very strong feelings in regards to outdoor kitties. If a cat is never let out from the beginning, they'll never know what they're missing. My 2 cats are going to be 13 this year and we've had them both since kittenhood. They have no desire to go out, and actually stay away from the doors. Growing up my parents got me a kitten for a gift and I thought it would be cool to take him out on a harness for walks, of course thinking he'd be indoors the rest of the time. Boy was I wrong! As soon as he stepped foot outdoors, he never wanted to be in. He'd bolt through people's legs, and break out of screens. When we would make him stay in, he started peeing all over the house. The vet determined that he was doing it out of spite, aka- he had a very territorial attitude. He wouldn't stop, and as a result, we had to give him to a farm to live out his days. I think that letting cats out can bring a host of problems to a household. My friend's cat did the same thing because he wanted out all the time, and when they would be at work, they'd pee. When they gave in, and let them stay out all the time, they in turn lost their cats- 2 to be exact. Now they have 2 more that are outdoor cats...Ugh. Sorry about the rantmeditate
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Zelda

You're boring me
 
 
Purred: Fri May 18, '12 11:05am PST 
Sometimes I feel bad not letting my kitty's out, Zelda the most because she was feral, but if I did I would be worried to death. With all the dangers, cars, people who hate cats, other animals, disease and etc. I have decided to never let my cat's out. I hope one day I can move and have a big enough yard to have a outdoor en closer built for them. Outside cats have an average life span of 3-5yrs, while indoor cats can live 15 yrs..what a difference

Edited by author Fri May 18, '12 11:08am PST

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Ramsey

Ramsey - The Bedroom Cat- Burglar
 
 
Purred: Fri May 18, '12 6:44pm PST 
None of us cats are allowed outside. Ever! I don't know why, it sure looks inviting out there but Daddy says absolutely not. He says too many things can happen to us so he won't allow it. I don't mind it. Daddy keeps us real busy in the house and we have lots of toys and catnip. We also have the dogs to tease so life as an indoor kitty is good kitty
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Merlin

"BEGOW!"
 
 
Purred: Sun Jun 10, '12 11:43pm PST 
My Merlin spent most of his life playing outside. He was boundary trained and so the furthest he ventured was the front step. Back in the days where there was no cat curfew laws he even slept outside in the yard.

Now he prefers to spend most time indoors because of his age (he is 21.) But he still enjoys his outdoor time.

Of course he lived his whole life in a very quiet court. On a main road I would make sure a cat is completely fenced in a yard.

I don't think I could have an indoor cat. My mother in law has an indoor bengal, she won't even let her out on harness (she used to but not anymore), and the cat is so depressed and aggressive. It's a prisoner, just wanders around making a horrible mournful cry. I wish she would build a cat enclosure for the poor thing. It's clearly not happy.
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