Welcome to PetForums

Join thousands of other pet owners and pet lovers on the UK's most popular and friendly pet community and discussion forum.

Sign Up

keeping her in versus letting her out

Discussion in 'Cat Training and Behaviour' started by Bellini, Aug 4, 2009.


  1. Bellini

    Bellini PetForums Member

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2009
    Messages:
    127
    Likes Received:
    1
    When Millie is 6 months old I'll be chipping her and getting her bits done.

    We live in a fairly quiet street and our house has a huge garden full of plants and trees.

    We have a conservatory but it gets EXTREMELY hot in there (upwards of 100 degrees) so I can't put food/bedding/scratching posts in there. The conservatory is however the only way to get to the garden. The door to the conservatory from the kitchen is glass so I can't get a flap from the garden to the kitchen (where her food/litter/bedding is now).

    I work reasonably long hours so I have the option of letting her out at 7am when I go to work and letting her back in around 7pm (or 8.30 and 5.00 depending on shifts). What do I do about food? We have foxes and other animals around so I presume if I left food out for her in the garden then they'd have it too (she is on 4 meals a day).

    So, what do I do about letting her out or do I keep her in? What's "best"? At the moment she's been in all the time and seems happy enough. She sits on the window sill and looks out and has "escaped" a couple of times when we've been in the garden but when we're indoors she just wants to sit with us. She's quite a clingy kitten still and follows us around and sleeps next to me at night (I find her snuggled into my armpit every morning - it's quite sweet really until she starts chewing my hair/biting me!!).

    We did let her out purposely once to see how she got on. She went out the back door but only went as far as the patio and didn't venture onto the grass. She seemed to like it but when we went indoors she followed us in.

    What do you think? I am totally undecided. It will be October by the time she's going to go out so should I wait in any case until the Spring?
     
  2. Biawhiska

    Biawhiska PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2008
    Messages:
    6,671
    Likes Received:
    191
    Can you not put a glass cat flap in the conservatory and leave the door to the conservstory open to the rest of the house?

    I wouldn't want my cat out from 7am - 7pm. I'd keep her in and if she wants to go out allow her out when I got home and get her in before I went to bed.

    Or, make a little cat run that could be attached to your conservatory so the door can be left open to stop it getting so hot and letting the air flow. She can go in and out then but be safe.
     
  3. Janee

    Janee PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    May 4, 2008
    Messages:
    1,309
    Likes Received:
    27
    Sounds a similiar outside environment to mine. I made a decision to let mine out during daylight hours. Middle class area (older people), large back-to-back gardens and little risk.

    I only let out during daylight hours and get back in for the night (well before dusk falls). I have a micro chip opereated catflap. This can go through a window, door or wall. Can be either battery or electrical plug.

    My advice: risk assess. Look at your environment and the neighbours you have and list the risks and how likely they are to happen. Get a catflap if you can - worth its weight in its cost.

    Train your cats to come to your call and to a sound (banging food bowl; rattlig treat tin).

    If this is impossible and you still want to let her out, what about putting a shed in your garden with a catflap so your cat has a shelter?
     
  4. Biawhiska

    Biawhiska PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2008
    Messages:
    6,671
    Likes Received:
    191
    Shed is a great idea, my old outdoor cat at mum's had a cat flap in our shed, he loved it!
     
  5. Cat_Crazy

    Cat_Crazy PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2009
    Messages:
    2,236
    Likes Received:
    77
    Ideas above are all great but did you say that this cat has not yet been neutered??

    In which case you should not let her out at all.

    Cats can fall pregnant a lot younger then you would expect and that's not something you want to have to deal with.
     
  6. Biawhiska

    Biawhiska PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2008
    Messages:
    6,671
    Likes Received:
    191
    This is what the OP is saying. She is thinking of ideas about letting her cat out. She says she is not letting her out UNTIL her cat is chipped and spayed. ;)
     
  7. munchbunch

    munchbunch PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2008
    Messages:
    1,793
    Likes Received:
    47
    Your layout sounds the same as mine - I go through my kitchen into the conservatory & from there to the garden. I leave the conservatory door into the kitchen open all the time so that the heat doesn't build up - my cats love going in there so they can watch the world go by & have a laze in the warm, but they can always come back into the main part of the house if they want to go somewhere cooler. They like to go in there from early morning onwards. The only time I close the door is at night in the winter when the cold strikes through the glass so much it makes the house chilly! I live in a quiet cul de sac, but all my cats are indoor. I have loads of scratchers/climbing frames about, plus toys etc to make sure they are well stimulated. For a young cat, my personal view is that it is far too long to leave it unsupervised outside when you are working such long hours. I'd get another kitten to keep the first one company & have them both as indoor cats, safe and sound with a playmate to keep them amused :D
     
  8. Cat_Crazy

    Cat_Crazy PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2009
    Messages:
    2,236
    Likes Received:
    77
     
  9. KittyKat1

    KittyKat1 PetForums Member

    Joined:
    May 28, 2009
    Messages:
    107
    Likes Received:
    3
    If she is happy indoors would you consider keeping her as an indoor cat? If there are foxes in the area I would be worried about letting her out long hours. I have 3 cats, and they are indoor cats. They are very happy cats! I however don't have the option of letting them out even if I want as I live on a 6th floor apartment!
     
  10. munchbunch

    munchbunch PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2008
    Messages:
    1,793
    Likes Received:
    47
     
  11. Cat_Crazy

    Cat_Crazy PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2009
    Messages:
    2,236
    Likes Received:
    77
    munchbunch -

    I also believe in keeping cats as indoor cats, none of mine ever go outside and they are quite happy with that.
    PLus I just think there is far too mnay dangers lurking to let them out I would be a nervous wreck until they came home!

    I was just stating to the OP that if she does decide to let her out she needs to neuter her first as cats can get pregnant before the age of 6 months.
     
  12. hayleyb

    hayleyb PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2009
    Messages:
    1,298
    Likes Received:
    13
    i got Sheldon as an indoor cat but felt a little cruel in the summer while im enjoyin the sun he would have been stuck inside. so i let him out. he only goes out while im in the house as like you i cant have a cat flap.

    if im gonna be out all day then i jst make sure i have a few windows open to let some air in and then i let him out when i come in. the advice about the shed is really good, you cud get a chip activated cat flap for the shed then its her own space and you dnt have to worry bout anythin else gettin in.

    with regards to food, by 6 months she'll prob be only havin 2 to 3 meals a day so you cud either feed her on a morning b4 you leave and then again on the nite and jst put some water outside. or if your feedin her dry food you cud put some in the shed with water and then she can nibble on that if she's peckish.
     
  13. Bellini

    Bellini PetForums Member

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2009
    Messages:
    127
    Likes Received:
    1
    Thanks everyone.

    I spoke to Mr Bellini last night (before reading your messages) and he also suggested the shed idea. It does seem cruel to have this fantastic garden full of birds and mice for her to hunt and keep her in all the time.

    I think what we might do is once she's spayed and chipped I'll start letting her in the garden when we're home in the early evenings before it gets dark or on the weekends so she gets used to her surroundings and I can see how confident (or otherwise) she is and also if the shed idea will work for her.

    Thanks. Your comments are appreciated. I've still got a bit of time to mull it all over. xxx
     
  14. hayleyb

    hayleyb PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2009
    Messages:
    1,298
    Likes Received:
    13
    that sounds like a very good idea. its funny coz she mite not even wanna go outside when the time comes lol. and if shes still following u you may find shell only go out wen your there and will sleep in the house when your out.

    anyway good luck and let us no how it goes. i hope her opp goes fine too :)
     
  15. kitties

    kitties PetForums Senior

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2009
    Messages:
    591
    Likes Received:
    7
    I wish my cat would be an indoor want, I lost one to be knocked over, and was devastated. My cat came to me as a full grown cat used to going out, and she cries and cries to go out, but I always worry about her. Shes a good hunter but just recently has got cat dermatitis (flea allergy) and only affects her when she is out. I would be worried the foxes may get her? My other cat I try to keep as an indoor cat but she keeps escaping, which is a bit of a nightmare.

    Inside is the safest place for them, with lots of toys, they should be happy. Though I understand if you live in quiet area with such a lovely garden why you would want her out. Once you try her outside a bit though, she will inevitably want to be out after that. (grass is greener and all that).
     
  16. seamaster

    seamaster PetForums Newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2008
    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    Do you have an outside wall?, The reason I ask is I have glass at the back of my house in the form of doors and windows all of which can not be breached with a cat flap.
    I knocked a cat flap size hole about 6 inches off floor level in the kitchen wall and a corresponding hole on the outside wall. I built a tunnel though the cavity from 19m ply and put a frame around both entrance and exit. The cat flap is attached to the outside wall, this has been in place for 6 years with no problem, even our biggest Bengal was able to use this despite the tunnel.
     
    #16 seamaster, Aug 6, 2009
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2009
  17. seamaster

    seamaster PetForums Newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2008
    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    Felix, our 17 week old Bengal likes to go for a walk on a harness and lead, perhaps walk is too stronger word for it but he is getting familiar with his surroundings and if the worst happened and he got out of his own accord than I hope he could find his way back in to the house.
    I spend about 45min each day with him walking up the drive, in the front garden and around the back garden with him dictating where he wants to go with me on the end of a 15 foot leash.
     
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice