Indoor cat: Will lead training make him long for the outdoors?

(10 Posts)
Foxyspook Tue 12-Apr-16 21:31:22

Just that really.

Have the most lovely kitten (and 2 tiny dogs to keep him company). After previous cat heartbreak, I am definitely keeping him inside.

He is the kind of cat who could be lead trained so he could go out in the garden with me. But, if I do that, I am then just encouraging him to want to be outdoors? Am I better just leaving him inside (large house, lots of toys and company) and keeping the outside unknown?

Wolfiefan Tue 12-Apr-16 21:32:18

Could you cat proof your garden (if you have one!) There are firms who will do it for you.

Foxyspook Tue 12-Apr-16 21:42:24

I've looked into that. Posted another thread - my main pre-occupation: keeping cat alive - I think it would be very difficult and expensive.

I think I just want to keep him in. Have bought a harness and he is great. But think that taking him out the back door into the garden (when I don't want him to do this on his own), is probably not a great idea?

Mincepies76 Tue 12-Apr-16 21:52:02

I have exactly the same thoughts and dilemma. My indoor boy loves watching our garden and I wonder if he'd like to go out with a harness...but then I worry he'll know what he's missing and will be unhappy.
No helpful advice but hope someone else has experience!

Foxyspook Tue 12-Apr-16 22:25:52

Thanks, Mincepies. I think it will lead to longing. If I don't want him to cross the threshold, I shouldn't show him the fun that is to be had. He is very good in his harness though, but I do have 2 dogs!

happyandsingle Sun 17-Apr-16 20:06:51

Sorry but its cruel to keep a cat indoor only. Yes there are dangers to theworld outside but the same applies to us humans.....would you never venture outside because of this.
and if you live near a busy road you shouldnt be owning a cat at all.

SabineUndine Sun 17-Apr-16 20:47:06

Yes, agree with this. I bought my flat specifically because I wanted cats. Would not have had a cat without a suitably safe garden for them.

FreshHorizons Sun 17-Apr-16 20:49:45

I wouldn't even contemplate getting one if it can't go outside- it is cruel.
It may be safe but it is no life.

SoftCoonieWarmCoonie Sun 17-Apr-16 22:45:45

If you have already started using the harness then that's great, get him use to wearing it around the house before you take him outside. Make sure he's been vaccinated mind even if you are just taking him out in the garden.

I will warn you though it's quite boring and nothing like walking a dog. It involves spending most of your time watching your cat eat grass and then wander around in circles sniffing hmm except when birds are around and he wants to "play" with them, that usually involves some chasing. If you get him into a routine of going outside he should adjust well, mine likes being indoors much more and will wander back when he's had enough.

Ignore the previous posters saying it's cruel to keep a cat indoors, most people have never researched the topic. There are good arguments for/against it and my opinion is it depends on the cat and the owner. Keeping an indoor cat is very much hard work, my guy likes intense playtime about four times a day and to be taken out when it's sunny or snowing (he hates the rain and wind smile). If you are willing to give him the time and effort there's no reason your cat won't have a balanced and happy life indoors.

Foxyspook Sun 17-Apr-16 23:28:57

Thanks, Softcoonie. Though long and hard about the indoor cat thing and it is right for us and our cat. I also have dogs. they all play a lot together and there are lots of lovely windowsills to sit on warmly in the sunshine.

I think I will leave the harness. I am trying to begin a long-winded process of getting garden cat-safe. But in the meantime, I am not letting another cat get squashed on the road. And my cat doesn't look in the least bit miserable while he taunts the dogs from the top of the curtain pole!

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