Skip to comments.Making an Indoor Cat an Outdoor Cat?
Posted on 07/09/2011 6:42:22 AM PDT by incredulous joe
I have two cats; one, Guinness, is a four year old female, the other, Finnegan, is a two year old male. They have always lived indoors.
We also have an outdoor cat, Thatcher, who lives in our barn and has a pretty good life. She walked onto our farm 3 years ago and seemed to have been dumped. She smelled of powders and domestication when she came onto the scene. We gave her some space in our barn and she seems to enjoy herself.
We have a small house. In my opinion, as the guy who cleans out the litter box, our indoor cats have become too big for our home. They are both pretty large; Guinness is overweight and Finnegan is simply a big "no-neck" pounder, who is also the biggest sissy the world has known. He thinks that he is a lap dog.
Guinness has made numerous attempts at escaping our house and even made good on her efforts on a few occasions ~ never traveling farther than a few feet. Finnegan does not seem to have an interest in living outside. We live in central Maryland and it gets pretty chilly in the winters, but we provide and care for our outdoor critters as may be needed when the weather is extreme.
I'd like to see how our cat will do outside, but once they go out and live out there, it is my opinion that they should stay.
Any FRiends with experience, positive or negative in turning an indoor cat into an outdoor.
Thanks for any feedback that you may have.
We had an indoor/outdoor cat. She loved to go out and hunt at night, cozied up inside during the day, after lining up her little mousies in the hall for our enjoyment. She could have lived outside, because she was a wary huntress, but we didn’t want that. It is dangerous. As it was, even tho she was pretty savvy, something hunted her one night. i found her pelt the next morning in her favorite meadowy hunting area. I think it was an owl, but could have been a coyote. Next cat I get — after the Border Collie dies, because he is a cat-predator in the worst sense of the word — will sleep inside.
Now I live in L.A. and my three are strictly indoor. Yes, I have to scoop every day. Yes, they shed. Yes, it's a half-hour of clean-up and care every single day. But it's still less time than the amount of happy-time (purring on my lap, staring up into my eyes, chasing the string, pouncing on the catnip rat, wrassling with each other for my entertainment.) And I know they are as safe as I can make them.
Sorry to hear about your huntress.
Our Guinness probably will never be a hunter.
We do have a small population of foxes.
My experience is that only the quick and the smart survive outside.
We don’t want to lose our fat cat. We just want her outside.
No. We are on a rural farm nearly 200 yards from a main road.
My 2 indoor cats seem to get along pretty well, but I don’t think would have too much trouble with a separation.
Jeez, sounds like you’re running the GOP of catteries—the guys are overweight, inside sissies, while the gal is outside, holding down the fort, both carrying her weight and rounding up the ‘Rats for you.
Kudos to your Tea Party kitty in the barn!
You do realize that cats don’t just sit in your lap and purr, they are getting close and acting nice so they can find your weak points, they constantly plot our deaths! heh.
Cats have super sensitive senses. If theyve lived indoors for their entire life the outdoors is a sensory overload to them. If you could allow them to go out in a screened outdoor porch whenever they want to, then they can slowly, safely acclimatize to the new world impacting their nose and ears. Dont force them out. When my cat was small I only let her out when I could go with her as I had eagles, hawks and owls, any of which will kill small cats. There was also a dangerous neighbors dog. But once she showed me she was alert to the dangers and could shoot up a tree, I ceased worrying.
On the other hand, if they have no claws dont ever let them out. Theyre defenseless, except theyll still try to use their non-existent claws for defense.
Just put them outside, the strong shall survive, the weak shall not!
*disclaimer*- make sure they have their claws.
The thing to know is, the average lifespan of an outdoor cat is very low. Something like a year or two. Obcviously there are exceptions, but the averages are bad.
Some cats are only happy outside and might prefer the tradeoff. But it would be cruel to force an indoor cat who doesn’t want to go out to change to outdoor life.
Don’t do it!
My outdoor cats cost me far more than my indoor cats. Between the fleas, ticks, and getting themselves killed, it’s horrid.
One of my outdoor cats is allergic to fleas. His skin and fur is falling out in patches. I can’t keep him in - he is a world class escape artist. Every time he gets out he brings a new flea load into the house, which he immediately spreads to all my indoor animals. He looks and feels horrid. He brings vermin in. Sometimes it’s dead, sometimes not. He brought in a dead rat once that my dog grabbed and ate, and she threw it up in my living room. Yuck.
My other outdoor cat got killed by a pit bull.
My indoor cat is sitting right now quietly on my lap. She has reached 17, and looks and feels nice.
Try and find a less stressful place to put the litterboxes. I love the tilty Omega Paws ones Amazon sells - I put them in the garage and find them much easier to use than the traditional ones. The motorized ones are a pain.
I like my sissy cat.
Technically, the outdoor cat’s name is “Lady Thatcher” ~ the “Lady” part is a definite misnomer. Lots of rabbit body parts around the old barn if you miss a feeding.
Maybe should have called her Governor Palin??
Domestic cats are food for wildlife.
Well, it sounds like you’ve pretty much made up your mind and you want others to reassure you that it will be okay and you’re doing the right thing. Some will, but my own experience is it won’t and you aren’t. Dread regret when you are tempted to do something like this merely to escape such a minor hassle as the daily scoop.
My favorite cat was a 20-pound indoor/outdoor cat. He was sleeping under a tree in our yard when roaming dogs sneaked up on him and attacked him. He died in my arms at the vet’s office. The dogs had collars but we never found out who they belonged to. I still cry thinking about it.
Don’t switch them to being outdoor cats if you want to keep them safe.
I think both Gov. Palin’s and Lady Thatcher’s political opponents would consider that they governed with the ‘iron paw and velvet fur’.
Because of that, predatory animals would be more abundant. (The noise and commotion of a city would scare them away.)
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