my indoor cat is constantly trying to get outside, and today they briefly succeeded when I was coming in. which means I got the satisfaction of seeing a manic little kitty cat running full throttle out the front doorway only to IMMEDIATELY hit the brakes looney tunes style and do a 180° warp speed back inside upon discovering themself in the midst of a pouring thunderstorm
I don't understand this way overblown issue with outdoor cats to the extent of having so much discourse about it. Yeah it's objectively better to have an indoors cat for a variety of reason but a lot of people live in conditions where they can't afford the security measures to keep a cat indoors and those cats still live happy lives and thrive. Where I live most cats live outdoors because it's a poor neighborhood with a lot of communal houses and those cats are extremely happy. Yes they would be happier if everyone had money to give them a better life but hey so would the people living here. I just don't understand the way people talk about those who have outdoor cats as the epitome of evil when there are so many more important things to worry about and dedicate all this energy to.
People can care about more than one problem at a time!
I understand this may come as a shock to some of you, but recent studies* have revealed people are capable of caring about and working to mediate or resolve multiple issues such as the animal welfare and ecological implications of outdoor cats as well as capitalism, classism, and poverty.
At this time there no current known limit on the amount of “issues people can care about.”
*research pending release from the Don’t Be A Dumbass Institute
My cat has been a indoor/outdoor cat for his entire life so far. I have been trying to convince my mom we should keep him indoors both for safety and environmental reasons. She says it would be cruel to suddenly not let him outside anymore. Is this true? What would you recommend. He kills several birds a week and that is what got me to start pushing for indoor.
It is not cruel.
I took a cat that had lived outdoors only from the time he was born until he was 2 years old as an intact tom, neutered him, and brought him inside. He was a bit anxious for the first 6 months, partly because he’s also just an anxious cat, and partly because I didn’t provide as much enrichment as I should have (this was 15 years ago), but he got over it. If you make the inside rewarding, they’ll get over it. You could also build a ‘catio’ or leash train him to let him explore the backyard under supervision. You will want: multiple cat trees of various height, in several different rooms. Boxes with blankets in them for low to the ground hiding spots. 3 or 4 water bowls, again in various rooms. If he’s free fed, then have bowls of food in various rooms as well. If meal fed, you can spread his food out amongst various locations to provide further enrichment. You want your house to be a place of ‘plenty’. Provide plenty of toys, both those for self play and ones like wand toys that involve you as well. Play with him every day. Or if he’s not into playing but is into cuddles, cuddle him a lot.
We have some feral cats in the employee parking lot of my work. Because we have provided so much food, and water, and shelter points for them they only very rarely leave the parking lot. You can find all 5 of them lounging at nearly any hour of the day. Spidercat and Pho in particular absolutely never left. You could have watched them on the cameras all night long if you wanted. They were also the tamest of the lot, but they effectively self limited to an area about 30 feet by 30 feet because that’s where all the good things were.
Severely dehydrated and malnourished kitten with very matted hair came asking for help to our house, he or she? Is not microchipped but has to be an indoor cat, he is too friendly and trusting. Idk where else to post this we’re located in Houston if this baby looks familiar please direct message me, the shelters won’t take him in.
In class we were talking about how cats teach themselves to hunt around their collar bells, and this dude followed that up with “well you know how Santa has those reindeer covered in those bells, right?”
and what he going for was “the bells on cat collars are the same that reindeer are pictured wearing”
But what *I* heard was “Santa’s Reindeer are predator animals that are covered in bells for our protection” and let me tell you I did not appreciate that.
i’m just so sick of ‘cat people’ who don’t actually give a shit about cats. cats have this undeserved reputation as easy and disposable pets because people get them and let them outside instead of entertaining their cat and when it doesn’t come back home they go out and get a new one. a properly cared for cat is just as much work (more imo) than a dog. just because you don’t HAVE to walk it doesn’t mean it doesn’t need both physical and mental simulation.
so many people defend letting their cat outside unsupervised by saying ‘if i don’t let my cat outside it sits and cries at the door for hours!’ which only shows that they aren’t providing their cat with enough enrichment. the cat is bored and the only place it got it’s physical and mental needs met is outside, of course it’s going to cry for it! play with your cat, have more than one or two types of toys for it, give it puzzle feeders, hide treats thru the house for it to 'hunt’, clicker train it! those are just off the top of my head - googling ‘cat enrichment’ will give you hundreds of different ideas to entertain your cat.
if you don’t have the time or energy to do these things then you don’t have the time/energy to own a cat.
Feel free to unfollow me right now if you believe it’s okay to endanger your house cat or the local native fauna it absolutely will kill by allowing it outside unsupervised/off lead.
Outdoor cats have a lifespan of 2-5 years. Indoor cats regularly live 15+, even getting up to 20+ sometimes. Unsupervised indoor-outdoor cats often don’t make it past 5 and the ones that do are a very lucky exception. Why?
They get hit by cars. They get attacked by other animals (predators or other pets like dogs) including other cats. They eat things that are toxic to them. They get killed by other humans. They contract diseases like FIV and FelV.
Even if your cat DOES live longer than 5 years, cats that go outside are responsible for the deaths of billions of birds and other small fauna per year. There have been studies done on this. It’s not people pulling stuff out of their asses, it’s something scientists literally studied and reported results on. Don’t believe me? Google “do cats kill wildlife” and have a read. They’re on the IUCN’s list of worst invasive species and have contributed to the extinction of 60+ species, and they continue to cause a problem for other threatened species of small animals.
If you think it’s okay to expose your cat to these hazards and potentially cut its lifespan by more than half, if you think it’s okay to allow your cat to kill native fauna to indulge it’s “natural instincts” instead of, I don’t fucking know, playing with it with toys literally designed to allow it to safely indulge those instincts, then you have no business following me.
I’m not here to indulge your whimsy about how cats “need” to be outside unsupervised to be stimulated and lead a happy life- I can assure you, they don’t. There are p l e n t y of enrichment devices and structures people can buy or make to ensure that their cats lead happy, full lives indoors to the ripe old age they are supposed to live to.
You also have the option of lead training your cat if you really believe they need to go out. This is something that proponents of “let cats go outside” ignore almost completely. They somehow believe that it’s all or nothing- either the cat lives 100% indoors without ever seeing sunlight OR it’s let outside without supervision where it can be injured, killed, or cause harm to the environment. Those aren’t the only choices. Cats adapt to leads very easily. They don’t like it the first couple of times, usually, but also usually when they figure out lead=outside, they get over it and the best of both worlds gets to happen- your cat remains safely under your supervision where it cannot come to or deliver harm, and it gets to go outside.
TL;DR Letting your house cat outside unsupervised is extremely dangerous both for your cat and the local wildlife and people arguing otherwise can see themselves out the door because I’m not about people endangering animals out of willful ignorance. You, along with every other pet owner out there, have a responsibility to protect your pets to the best of your abilities, and choosing not to do so in some misguided attempt to indulge their whims is poor animal husbandry. Any argument to the contrary is just an excuse to continue doing things which put animals in danger.
The cat doesn’t understand why its human is sad, just that they are, and their legs don’t work.
The cat doesn’t understand that its pelvis has been crushed like a coke can and that recovery would require multiple thousands of dollars for surgical repair and would more than likely result in chronic, lifelong pain from an intra-articular fracture (through the joint surface).
The cat doesn’t understand the repeated insistence that “I’m sorry, I’m so sorry,” over and over again, nor does it understand that its only had one year of life, when it could have had fifteen.
But the human, the human understands that the cat’s life is about to be tragically cut short, thanks to the massive trauma sustained from the car when the cat just didn’t come home one night.
“Who did this to you?” the human asks, over and over between their apologies and tears.
And the vet knows they’re lucky their cat came home at all to say goodbye. And the vet knows in her heart which human it is that’s responsible for this outcome, and it wasn’t the one driving the car.
The next consult is so understanding about the wait. They know what it’s like to lose a cat. Theirs didn’t come home one day, at only four years old. And other cats that used to visit their backyard disappeared around the same time.
They always suspected someone had poisoned them, put paracetamol into saucers of milk and left it out to get rid of the cats.
The new cat, this one will be indoor only. Maybe on a harness if it shows interest in the outside world.
The world that should only be visited under supervision. Because the world is not kind to cats.
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