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Indoor or Outdoor?

Discussion in 'Cat Chat' started by Abster21, Mar 28, 2011.


  1. Abster21

    Abster21 PetForums Junior

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    Our two little monsters are 7 months old (Seven and Spider), and until now we've kept them indoors as we have a large flat and live next to a busy crossroads. However soon I'm moving out of the area and into a smaller flat, on a less busy road. I want to let them out as I can't help feeling I'm being selfish by keeping them in, when it's so clear to me that they want to hunt, run around and explore!

    I want to keep them safe of course, but am I stopping them living their lives?

    Both are neutered (one male one female) and have had all their jabs. Just wondered what thoughts people have on this?
     
  2. buffie

    buffie Mentored by Meeko

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    You will find quite a split in opinions on this subject.I have and always have had indoor cats.My reason for this is simple.Yobs with nothing better to do than take potshots with air guns,drunks,loose dogs,traffic,poisoning whether accidental or deliberate,Getting stuck in/shut in garages/sheds.Killing wildlife and using other peoples gardens as their own personal toilet.Having said all that, what I think is only my opinion,it is your desicion and you must base this on how safe you feel your cats will be in the enviroment you live in,and how strong your nerves are :D.
    Cats that have never been outdoors know nothing about it and are not missing out on anything ,all you need to do is provide them with plenty of toys and playtime and they will be fine.
     
  3. GreyHare

    GreyHare Guest

    I think you have to think very carefully about it, if I lived in the house I grew up in my cats would go out doors but we lived in the middle of nowhere up a single lane dead end road that backed on a country estate, I now live in the middle of nowhere with a huge garden but a main road out the front so they are indoor kitties because although they have acres of land out the back (we back on to MOD land) I know that they will make a bee line for the road.

    It's not just roads as Buffie has said kids/adults with air rifle or BB guns often take pot shots at cats plus people do like to try poison cats with anti-freeze, my friends cat is an out door cat he went missing for two day and came home with a huge slash wound on his tummy which required 120 stitches but no clue as it how it happened.

    As long as you enrich your cats enviroment and give them time and play they can and are very content to stay indoors.
     
  4. dougal22

    dougal22 Banned

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    ^^^^^^^ I second this; buffie, you've covered it all :)

    My cats *do* go outdoors every day - in a secure cat run.
     
  5. Amin

    Amin PetForums VIP

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    Good Points here about The Dangers Cats Face When outdoors. I worry Constantly about My wee Boy when he,s out and am forever calling him after a short time, He normally comes back or we hear his bell nearby, But sometimes he can be away for well over an Hour at a time. Our Back gardens sort of back each other in a kind of oval shape an more often than not, that's where he is, as there is a lot of different Bushes and trees.

    We have also experienced The loss of a kitten to Traffic - and not a nice experience either. It is a difficult decision to make. I know he loves getting out and exploring, But if he did venture, say over a main road, Would we then say, That's it He,s staying in Now, It would be very difficult.

    I Hope you make the right choice. Good luck
     
  6. messyhearts

    messyhearts PetForums VIP

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    TBH, I can't think of ONE reason to let a cat roam free that outweighs just one negative reason and that is without looking at the plethora of reasons that it is a bad idea.
     
  7. Amin

    Amin PetForums VIP

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    Of Course Its a Very Bad idea to let a cat roam Free, And To see cats running around busy streets etc. We Thought very careful about Indie going out, I decided to introduce him to our garden and thankfully that is where he roams/plays/rummages etc. If I ever caught him wandering elsewhere then I would make a cat run for him. I know too that he could stray and nothing is 100% guaranteed, But that's the chance you take.

    I feel that he knows where he,s allowed to go, And pleased when he comes when called. He also likes his home comforts and is very affectionate. I feel he,s safe with us.
     
  8. ChatterPuss

    ChatterPuss PetForums VIP

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    We adopted a stray in the autumn and when we went abroad in October we kept her in after we returned as we were worried that she might not come back, also due to the changes I.e being in a fattest and the fact that we had a new put just before Christmas.
    Two weeks ago she sat in our conservatory looking longingly out of the window so we decided to let her out and see what she did........after 10 minutes wandering around the garden she went over the fence only to return and run back in the kitchen 10 minutes later !!
    We now keep her in while we are out at work and let her out in the evening and weekend when we can keep the door open for her to come back......which she does when she's ready for tea!
    I think you have to decide what you would be happy with. I was intent on keeping her indoors, but now I think we have the best of both worlds I know where she is most of the time but we. Are both happy with a bit of freedom where we are around when she needs us!
    :thumbup1::thumbup:
     
  9. kunzy

    kunzy Guest

    Indoor.

    See my sig.
     
  10. kunzy

    kunzy Guest

    Well said. :thumbup:
     
  11. Oliver Twist

    Oliver Twist PetForums Junior

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    In rural areas: outdoor
    In cities: indoor or not at all
     
  12. lucylocket35

    lucylocket35 PetForums Member

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    There is one good reason to have an outdoor cat. All the exercise means there is less chance of obesity. Obviously a properly controlled diet and lots of energetic play is what is needed for an indoor cat to stop them being a fatty!

    This one reason does not outweigh the bad points however.
     
  13. gobubbles

    gobubbles PetForums Junior

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    It really is your decision only. You will find that the anti-outdoors camp tends to be more vocal, but I guess the majority of people in this country let their cats out. I would say, only keep your cats indoors if you can truly spend lots of quality time with them several times daily, or they'll be unhappy, under-stimulated cats. Cats only need short - but frequent! - interactions. If you're really scared of letting them out but still want to, consider a cat run or cat fences. Whatever you choose, make sure you always give them lots of love and attention.
     
  14. Ally-Kats

    Ally-Kats PetForums VIP

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    Sticking my neck out here:D My Scamp is an outdoor cat and so were my others, they lived their life how they wanted to, we didn't live near main roads and yes there are risks, but even for us we face risks on a daily basis, life would be boring if we all had the same opinions and all did the same things. I do not apologise for my (or sorry Scamps) decision to go outside, he is a sensible cat and very wary of cars and other people. Just felt someone should stick up for those who have outdoor cats. No offence intended to anyones choice or view but please respect ours :)
     
  15. Abster21

    Abster21 PetForums Junior

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    Interesting point Gobubbles! I had thought there would be more of a mixed opinion on this but as you say most people seem to be on the indoor camp. I'd appreciate any more thoughts on it.

    Having grown up with two in/outdoor cats (we had to put Jupiter down recently at 21 years, and Leo is still going strong after being run over as a younger cat and he recently ate a poisoned rat but pulled through that ok too) I think they have been much happier having freedom to do their own thing, as they both love to hunt and that is a natural instinct.

    I tend to think about it like this - I would go mad being cooped up in the flat permanently (or a run) and although there are plenty of nooks and crannies, they can never just run!
     
  16. MoggyBaby

    MoggyBaby PetForums VIP

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    Merson loves to go out to play and is a solid, muscley little boy. Oscar can't be ar*ed to go out and is a flabby bellied jelly bag. :D

    When I moved house, the first criteria given to the estate agents was MUST be a quiet street.

    I also trained Merson not to 'go out the front' onto the street. Each time I caught him out there, he was 'grounded' - the first time for a week, the second for 2 weeks. He's been told that the next time he'll be grounded for life! I think he got the message!

    I'll be honest and tell you that I worry like crazy when he is out & I don't relax until he is home. He is very good though and always pops in after about an hour as if to assure me that he is ok and then he goes off again. If I haven't seen him for a wee while, I will call on him & he'll usually show his face so that I know he is fine.

    Only you can decide what is best for you and your babies. Just be prepared for lots of worrying if you do let them go out. I have already advised my OH that any future cats we have will be indoor cats as I can't handle the stress anymore. :blink:
     
  17. Gratch

    Gratch PetForums VIP

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    I personally keep my cats indoors. I never intended to have outdoor cats but my mom is a git, that's why I couldn't take my cats with me when I moved from my parents. She let them out everytime the dogs went out to the loo so couldn't do anything about that but now I can control atleast that part of my new cats lives. All the cats apart from one were slim at my moms house which I assumed was to do with them going out but it seems it was more the amount I played with them that kept them slim as they're all porkers now. I would personally worry about my cats dying or going missing if I let them out. I wouldn't rest if they were outside and I would feel guilty for any poor bird/mouse they decide to use as a chew toy. I've held a baby starling in my hands as it died cause of one of my parents cats and buried or set free many more. Trust me you could attatch a church bell to your cats collar and it'll learn how to move to keep quiet! Also, over the years we've had a saeveral cats that have vanished in the tall grasses that were behind my parents house, two dead from poisoning (one accidental intended to cull rabbits and the other deliberate by some evil neighbour of my aunty), and one run over. Obivously there are benefits to going outside but it's truly dependant on the owner, not the cat. Any cat can lead a happy life indoors giving the right attention. Not every owner can live happy keeping their cats in or letting them out!
     
  18. sharon_gurney

    sharon_gurney PetForums VIP

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    Hi

    I have 3 cats, the first cat comes and goes as she pleases as thats how I was brought up...(make sure you put the cat out before you go to bed!!)

    Although shes not put out at night unless she asks to go out:D

    My lastest 2 cats are both Siamese and the thought of just letting them out fills me with horror, mainly due to what I think someone would do to them or even steal them.

    They live indoors, with access to an outside run when the weather is nice. Ive had no complications, the cats are happy, healthy and dont think they in any way bothered by their lack of freedom to roam.

    hope this helps
     
  19. morgmonster

    morgmonster PetForums Member

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    Our two came from Battersea nearly a year ago, and after a month inside we let them out, firstly only when we were outside too. After another few weeks we got a cat flap so they could come and go, it was always locked at night. Now we have a Petporte which locks when the light is below a certain level so again they are in all night. We live on a road which is reasonably busy (single lane) but the traffic speeds are low as we are near a bottleneck rail bridge. We really discourage the cats from going "out the front"; in the back they have a biggish garden and woods to play in. When they are at the front they are still very wary of cars & traffic noise, we encourage this by hissing at the cars! Another issue is that there are few other cats in our neighbourhood and so far certainly no aggressive ones; same goes for dogs.

    We are both out at work from 8:30-6 every day, I just think the cats very bored if they were kept inside all day. If one of us worked at home I think it would be different; maybe we'd keep them in; but then again we'd be there to keep an eye on them outside! For me it is a joy to see our cats chasing each other up and down the garden; they are young and so energetic and it just isn't the same running up and down the stairs. Mia in my avatar probably would be OK as an indoor cat even now; but Lila can batter the catflap all evening if she feels like it, she would love to be allowed out at night. In our next house, space for the cats and a quieter road will definitely be top of our list of priorities.

    I think the pro-indoor camp are more vocal, yes; I think people who let their cats out aren't that vocal because on the whole we can totally see the arguments for keeping your cats indoors; of course we all would be heartbroken if something happened to our cats. Also it's hard to formulate strong arguments for letting them out without starting to sound selfish - it stops the house being trashed; it's more "natural"; I like to see them outside in the fresh air; it's difficult in the summer to keep all the windows and doors closed (that is a big one TBH, it is really hard to do, especially if you have open plan downstairs like we do!).

    For us the balance of risks comes down such that we do let them outside. If something in that balance changed, we would be open to changing them to indoor cats.
     
    #19 morgmonster, Mar 29, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2011
  20. Nicky10

    Nicky10 PetForums VIP

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    I can't understand why you post in dog threads about free-roaming dogs there's horror they'll get run over, poisoned etc. Cats they will kill themselves they must go out they're wild animals you see :rolleyes:. I wouldn't let a cat out I couldn't live with myself if I! killed my pet by deliberately pushing it outside and putting it in danger.

    My friend lives in the middle of nowhere she's had 7 cats all indoor/outdoor she only has one left.
     
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