So, Sportcat is now spayed and microchipped and prepared for going outdoors...except she is scared stiff. She goes just outside the door and kind of flattens herself as close to the ground as possible and looks with big wide eyes. So how long will it take for her to get confident and what can I do to make it better? Dreamies, treats etc.
She is interested, just scared (of most things). What can I do to help her?
Personally, I wouldn't push it. Some cats prefer being in a fairly tight and controlled environment and she may be one of them. (In fact, you may find that if you're trying to force her out, it could make her more apprehensive and not less.)
I'd just get on with your life and let her make up her own mind about things. Around you being a strong and safe place should give her confidence in the long run.
Just let her take it at her own pace. Stay outside with her at first for reassurance, or leave the door open so she can run in. On nice days you could do a bit of gardening or sit outside with a book. Ours was very wary at first, but within a couple of weeks was scaling fences and climbing trees! A friend's cat on the other hand is now quite elderly and has only ever ventured a few steps away from the house.
MCat is a bit of a roamer, but really only in the gardens backing onto our terrace. I think he has a few girlfriends, in spite of being neutered.
Little Monsieur, on the other hand, never leaves the courtyard, in spite of having monkey-like agility, and being extremely confident, whereas MCat is wary of strangers. I'm quite glad Little M chooses not to take the leap over the wall, because he'd just go off with anyone, he's (almost too) trusting. He does like visiting our neighbours, who share the courtyard. And he LOVES hindering "helping" with the gardening.
Are there any other cats in the locale? Their scent could be making her wary.
Some cats are just homebodies though. I make sure he gets lots of playtime, so he doesn't get bored. Favourite is his Flying Frenzy and he likes bringing in sticks from the garden.
We tried today as we went in garden, she did get just outside the back door but was still quite nervous. This could be because some of DS friends were outside back fence so she could see strangers which she is very wary of.
Yes there are lots of cats around including both her parents (mum is a feral) so she would be able to smell them. Hopefully she will get more confidence as we have the back door open a lot in summer. Not bothered if she goes far but want her to enjoy a bit of fresh air and exercise as she is a very lively cat.