Are housecats cruel?

(66 Posts)
daisywaisydoo Tue 15-Oct-13 19:16:37

I've recently said goodbye to my two beautiful cats due to stupid roads sad

Is it ever fair to keep a cat indoors always?

I think it's quite fair if it's a choice between that or being killed on the road. But if you're going to get a cat then get an older rescue one that won't mind being kept inside so much.

See the other thread on this page about cats in flats.

expatinscotland Tue 15-Oct-13 19:22:54

Of course it is! People keep them indoors only all over the world, as the vast majority of people don't live, cannot afford to live in a bloody house with a garden.

I've had nothing but housecats for years.

I sometimes think if they have never been out they don't know any different, and some cats don't like going out.

Then there are some with FIV that aren't allowed out, and need a home.

I am sorry to hear you have lost two. When you are ready you could contact your local cat rescue and see what they have in the way of indoor cats.

daisywaisydoo Tue 15-Oct-13 19:29:12

Ah great my fiancé says cruel but I agree with what they've never had they can't miss grin

I'd love an old friendly rescue cat but at the same time there's something about having them from kittens, you're their only mummy and just awww.

Thanks Sparklingbrook it broke my heart!

RandomMess Tue 15-Oct-13 19:31:15

Have to say all the persians I know don't seem that bothered about venturing far! Some breeds are far less adventurous than others.

ercoldesk Tue 15-Oct-13 19:33:16

Our local cat rescue always says if it thinks cats are happier indoors or not. Of our three, one prefers indoors, one will go out for 10 minutes or so at a time, and one will go out for hours. I really think it is a temperament thing.

I have four of them, and they seem very happy.
Only one has tried to get out, she did manage it which resulted in three and four cat, but she's not bothered since.
They are all people cats, they want to be with us, generally sitting on my head.

Wolfiefan Tue 15-Oct-13 19:34:50

I read this as "are the cats cruel?" Doh!
YY to FIV cats staying in. Deaf cats too. Do you have space for an outside run? Yes cats need entertainment but that doesn't have to be outside. Depends on the cat and where you live.

Really older cats bond with you just as much as kittens would. If you take an older cat from a rescue (which can be hard to home) then you'll be doing (to quote Zebraowl) A Good Thing. (And if you buy kittens you'll be doing a very bad thing ... but's that's a whole other issue).

We got Sparkling Cat from the Cats' Protection as a 4 year old. She is so affectionate and wants to be with me whatever I am doing, we have a real bond, and she loves DH too. smile

wickedwitchNE Tue 15-Oct-13 19:43:42

If you have a decent amount of space for them downstairs at night then no not at all. I have two indoor cats, one likes going in the garden every so often for half an hour and the other likes sitting at the open window watching the birds. I leave the window open for them whenever we are in but they have proved themselves that they have little interest in going out properly. This is after we also lost a cat, and I decided to play it safe. We do have lots of room, scratching items and toys however, and there are two of them to play with each other - if you want kittens I would consider getting two to keep them from getting bored.

wickedwitchNE Tue 15-Oct-13 19:45:31

Oh and I second older cats from a rescue every time!

daisywaisydoo Tue 15-Oct-13 19:46:58

Yep would definitely get two, that's what we did last time and they seemed happy together until they got too brave!

We live in a bungalow so all our space is downstairs grin

daisywaisydoo Tue 15-Oct-13 19:49:42

Part of me does want an older rescue cat but I have a baby and worry they may not be child friendly, whereas a kitten would grow up used to her.

ClaraOswald Tue 15-Oct-13 19:50:38

My two are 99% housecats, only going outside in summer when both DH and I are in the back garden. We only started that when they were 5 and they are 10 now. They'll sniff around, swear at the neighbours dogs and then go inside and sunbathe in the kitchen.

Mine are brother and sister twins who have always got on very well after being neutered early. They are happy to share almost everything and most evenings one or other or both end up draped across me.

I am always secure in the knowledge that they are safe and they have toys out all the time, they have the run of the house during the daytime and usually find their own little corners to curl up in which are ever changing.

daisywaisydoo Tue 15-Oct-13 19:52:09

ClaraOswald that's what I'd love. I wish I'd never caved in and let mine out sad

BonaDea Tue 15-Oct-13 19:52:36

I think it's cruel unless you are home most of the time AND willing to play.

If you live near a very busy road, don't get a cat. Simple.

Out neighbours have two house cats and I think it's awful. Like caged birds. hmm

Daisy you're wrong about older cats and children. The beauty of getting an older rescue cat is that you know exactly what sort of temperament you're getting. The rescue will know whether a particular cat will be good with children or not and will be able to match you with the right cat.

ZebraOwl Tue 15-Oct-13 19:52:49

Golly. Quoted. Get me wink

My two cats are indoor cats. Because they put their paws down quite firmly on that one. (Blond!cat ended up outside last week & scared himself daft...) The vet told me it would be cruel to keep trying to persuade them they would like to play outside & that with enough space & stimulation cats can live perfectly happy & fulfilled lives as indoor animals.

As the others have said there are cats who absolutely HAVE to have an indoor home (eg blind/deaf/FIV+) & lots of others for whom it would be preferable. Lots of these cats are generally harder to home, so giving them a new home would be the very antithesis of "cruel".

Surely it is crueller to risk cats' lives on the verybusyroad if it is possible to avoid it?

KepekCrumbs Tue 15-Oct-13 19:55:55

I have a foster family who aren't allowed out. Have you thought of fostering a litter before you decide about your next cat?

Bona There are many, many older cats in rescues that really couldn't care less about going out. I've got quite a few of them myself. Even though they have a cat flap a good few of them never bother to venture outside. These cats are hard to home and are taking up space in rescue centres. If people were to home them to an indoor home the cat would be very happy and the rescue would have more space to take in more needy cases. I don't see how that could possibly be a bad thing.

Fluffycloudland77 Tue 15-Oct-13 20:06:21

I think if its the cats choice then no. We had a chinchilla who if taken out would run up the garden straight away. She just wasn't interested.

The ones we had from kittens did go out, we tried keeping them as indoor cats on the breeders advice but it made them miserable and the relationship between the two broke down completely.

Like TCN says there's so many older cats out there looking for a home who'd be happy to be a house cat. You could get two. Or three.

Greydog Tue 15-Oct-13 20:09:49

our much loved cat was a house cat. She hated - and refused to go out! She would occasionally stroll out into our little back yard, where she was surrounded by high walls and felt safe, but the only time she got out she ran back in and never tried again. So some cats are really happy, and it depends on the cat. Nothing like caged birds.

daisywaisydoo Tue 15-Oct-13 20:10:21

I'll look into rescue cats smile I think there's a rescue place not far from me.

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