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Is it really possible to keep a determined cat indoors?

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


  1. francescah

    francescah PetForums Member

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    Paddy is the Houdini of the cat world.

    He's about 20 weeks and is unneutered so he can't go out. He was a stray though so he is used to being outdoors. I wanted to keep him indoors but he's very keen to go out. Our house is quite open plan and as soon as he hears the key turning in the door he's there. He's like lightening so no matter how quick I try to be he always manages to get out. It makes popping to the bin a nightmare as I have to try and recapture him every time :eek:
    He also spends a lot of time crying at the back door or throwing himself at the bedroom window!

    There are lots of other cats on our street. Is it because he can smell them and thinks they're off having fun without him? :laugh: Will having him neutered help? Is he just really keen to get himself a girlfriend ;) (he will be anyway, of course)
     
  2. MoggyBaby

    MoggyBaby PetForums VIP

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    Neutering will help with the problem to some degree.

    You say that Paddy was a stray - have you had him to the vet for a quick once over to check he is in good health & to get him his jabs? Did the vet concur with you regarding his age?

    I'm only asking because if you've just taken him in but he's not been to the vet, he might actually be a bit older than you think and therefore perhaps starting to get a bit 'sexy'.... At 20 weeks he seems a little bit young to be getting such strong inclinations just yet - all 3 of my boys were coming up to 10 months before they started showing these urges - but maybe he has developed differently due to being a stray & having to defend himself from an early age.

    If it turns out he is a bit older than you think, then the vet will be happy to do the deed. You will see quite a change in his behaviour afterwards - he will calm down to some extent. HOWEVER - if he loves going outdoors he will continue to want to do so and you may need to consider getting a run for him to keep him safe or be prepared to get a lot of grey hair worrying over his whereabouts when you can't see him.

    My Merson adores going off adventuring, despite being done many years ago, and he worries the back teeth out of me until he comes home again. :eek:
     
  3. springfieldbean

    springfieldbean PetForums VIP

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    Hi francescah, I'm interested in replies to your question too!

    A week or so ago I would have answered you to say it does get better - our kitten (now nearly 9 months) always used to run for the door every time it opened (I know exactly what you mean about putting the rubbish out!) but after a month of us shoo-ing her away from the door, shouting at her, or desperately grabbing her and dragging her inside again, she did seem to learn that she couldn't get outside, and we stopped worrying.

    HOWEVER, now it's spring she seems to have forgotten that lesson :eek:!

    She's started to go for the door again as soon as we open it, so it's back to that sinking feeling when there's rubbish to go out, and keeping toys by the front door that we can throw for her just before we run outside... I always have that horrible worry that she'll rush up behind us and I'll shut her head in the door, and I have to leave early for work in case she does get out and I've got to catch her. It's impossible!

    Anyway, Kinvara has been spayed, and that hasn't changed her desire to get outside.

    Sorry - not a very helpful or positive reply! Hopefully someone else can help! :confused:
     
  4. buffie

    buffie Mentored by Meeko

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    How long have you had this little bundle of trouble and how did you come by him.As he has already been outdoors it will be more of a challenge to keep him in especially in an open plan house.Adult cats that have been used to going out can successfully become house cats so it shouldnt be to difficult.Firstly I would make an appointment at the vets to have him checked and neutered.Most vets will neuter at 5 months or 2kg's in weight.Is it possible to fit a baby gate or some type of inner door on the inside of the front door to act as a barrier to allow you to enter or leave a bit more safely.
     
  5. IndysMamma

    IndysMamma PetForums VIP

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    it took around 4 months for Mabel - my ex feral - to settle to being indoors, what really helped her I think was she went to a cattery for a few weeks (we were moving) so the house seemed like a *lot* of freedom after one pokey pen

    maybe you could distract him with food, throw treats/feed him every time you go out the door, he'll soon want the treat hopefully and it will distract him for that vital few seconds
     
  6. francescah

    francescah PetForums Member

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    We've had him for 7 weeks. He was with someone else before us. He's been jabbed and checked over by the vet, all fine. He estimated his age.

    We have a baby gate at the front door (I have babies and steps up to the front door!) but it doesn't stop him. The front isn't as bad as there is a vestibule thingy so I can close that door before opening the outside one, iyswim. The back door just opens directly onto the yard. There's not room for a run, the outside space is very small.

    Treats are a good idea, I'll try that. I have tried using them to get him back in the house but he's not bothered then :laugh:
     
  7. buffie

    buffie Mentored by Meeko

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    Wasnt aware that the problem only involved the back door.I would just pop him in another room while you go out the back door,I assume your kitchen doesnt have a door.
     
  8. pinkfluffyballs

    pinkfluffyballs PetForums Member

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    I always put Eric's favourite toy by the door and then throw it as far as I can into the house, by the time he has got to the toy I have escaped out the house!

    He falls for it everytime bless him!
     
  9. francescah

    francescah PetForums Member

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    We've got no doors downstairs apart from the vestibule (is that what it's even called, it doesn't sound right maybe I've just made it up).
    The front door is a problem too, a family of four in that tiny space while we make sure one door is closed before opening the other is a bit of a squeeze!
    He is keener on the backdoor though, presumably as he's got a better chance of getting out of there!

    I've tried a toy, but he brings it back to the door and then escapes when I try to come back in. Bad boy :nono:
     
  10. buffie

    buffie Mentored by Meeko

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    Dont want you to think I have just disappeared but ,sorry I admit defeat :rolleyes:
     
  11. francescah

    francescah PetForums Member

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    Hahaha, me too :D
    I've contemplated throwing stuff out of the window and just making one trip to the bin a day but I'm sure he'll just try and get through the window :laugh:
     
  12. Aurelia

    Aurelia PetForums VIP

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    You could always construct a second doorway outside, in the form of wired panels (x3 .. 2 sides a one door) it needn't be much bigger than phone box size. It will give you an important barrier though.

    Having a crate indoors is also a god send for short trips to the bin outside and what not. Just putty your kitty in there while you get on with it, then let him out once the door is firmly closed.
     
  13. Dally Banjo

    Dally Banjo PetForums VIP

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    Can you cover your back yard over so he can go out but not get out of the yard?

    We have our's coverd with a few 2x4 beams then wire mesh over so they can go out whenever they want but are safe, of course we still have problems with certain paws sitting out getting drenched when it rains :rolleyes: :lol:
     
  14. Paddypaws

    Paddypaws PetForums VIP

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    Exactly what i was going to suggest....the smaller the yard, the easier it is to completely cat proof it! You could then put some cat friendly features out there such as a climbing post/tree to keep him entertained.
     
  15. buffie

    buffie Mentored by Meeko

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    Who might that be I wonder :idea: Louie :D
     
  16. Dally Banjo

    Dally Banjo PetForums VIP

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    Yes just like the pile of stuff Ive got to make one :rolleyes: :eek: or the odd spot keeps them busy :lol:

    :eek: How did you guess :lol:

    You can see ours in the reflection :D

    [​IMG]
     
  17. stoneandglass

    stoneandglass PetForums Junior

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    I haven't read the whole thread but just wanted to suggest something that you may find helpful if you're not already doing it.

    Get into the habit of backing out of the door, this way you can see the second the cat makes a move. Also when you open the door, open it the tiniest bit and see if he's waiting, if he is, crouch down and open it wide enough to get a hand round, push him back gently by the chest (or get a hold of him and pick him up) and attempt to get through.

    I had months of having to do this kind of thing with my kitten who was very interested in everything. I managed to get it down to a fien art, my mother on the other hand would just open the back door and wonder through or leave it open behind her and the cat would rush out. It just takes a second to think and you can prevent it.

    I hope this is helpful it's something you're not already doing
     
  18. francescah

    francescah PetForums Member

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    My husband isn't keen on the cat proofing the yard, it's the children's area too. It's really very small so it would be kind of like a cage!

    We're like commandos trying to get out of the house before the cat. I think the neighbours think we're bonkers. That and the fact that they caught me waving to the cat when we went out the other day and it was sitting on the windowsill :lol:
     
  19. stoneandglass

    stoneandglass PetForums Junior

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    is there any way you could cat proof the entrance? I was lucky to have a porch so the cat only really got through one door. It's a tough one because whatever you decide you have to live with, like you could install a babygate and cat proof it but then you have to open a baby gate as well as your door every single time you go in or out....
     
  20. Miss.PuddyCat

    Miss.PuddyCat PetForums VIP

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    All my cats bar Kira
    Have been found outdoors and pretty much lived there until they came home with me. But the only one who has caused trouble by getting out is Horris

    Ive run across the parking lot half dressed (In my bar and undershirt so not to bad!)

    Ive shimmed myself under cars and tight spaces to get to him

    He has when I have picked up outside gone for me and in the end I had a gash under my eye :crying: flippin hurt.

    Hes fallen out of a two story window, took the screen and all down with him, found him early the next morning

    Hes gotten out and disappeared for two or more weeks before showing up looked like hed been dragged ass backwards through a bush.

    Last week I had the screen window open , he jumped and body slammed the screen and popped it out and had his ass half way out.

    He also sent my mom flying when she opened the door and he jumped at her .

    It does make me worried about ever leaving him in someones care. Everytime the door opens he slinks his way across the floor. Everytime I open the door and hes there or any of the cats are there I just make loud noises which sends them running.
     
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