How do I let them go?

(14 Posts)
Damson9 Mon 23-May-16 09:44:55

Morning all,

We have a pair of kittens that are around 9.5 months old now. We introduced them to the outside world a couple of weeks ago and they've been exploring the garden (and next door's garden), but only with supervision (.

The cat flap is on order, but I just can't bring myself to just let them off the leash as it were. I know they're cats and that's what cats do, but I'm so scared about them going too far and getting lost, or them getting stuck in someone's garden. I don't think they'd just wander off, they know which side their bread's buttered on, but I'm terrified of not knowing where they are; they've been our constant companions since we brought them home.

How do I let them go? And how long do you think it's going to be until I'm not panicking about them the whole time?

cozietoesie Mon 23-May-16 10:34:58

It's real difficult. That first time you see a tail vanishing over the garden wall.......?

And I'm afraid that you can be as experienced as all get out and yet, if a cat varies significantly from its established routine? You might still be pacing around even if they're mature and streetwise. It goes with the territory.

There are things you can do, though, in my experience. Shall you be giving them a curfew for example? Keeping them in between - say - dusk and dawn seems to help, particularly with cars and predators and they seem to accept it quite happily as long as they know they're to get out eg after breakfast.

Have they both been neutered/had all their shots etc?

Damson9 Mon 23-May-16 11:21:37

Hi Cozietoesie smile

They will be having a curfew; we've ordered one of those microchip doors where we can keep them in overnight - there are a lot of foxes around us, so we want to have them home once it's dark.

They're up to date with jabs and are both neutered. They're also both insured against accidents etc, so all bases are covered in that respect.

I just don't know how to bring myself to stop watching them. Mostly, we've brought them back in for a meal and then closed the doors again, so they've never really just roamed on their own. I don't know how long they would go away for left to their own devices or how far they'd get.

I'm sure I will get used to it - just not handling the paranoia of it all well!

cozietoesie Mon 23-May-16 11:34:48

Just keep thinking of the first time you're worried and they turn up - or you actually discover a sleeping bundle in the airing cupboard/armchair of choice/somewhere similar. smile

ElegantDream Mon 23-May-16 17:18:48

Cat fencing!

TroysMammy Mon 23-May-16 18:51:45

I've had cats who have been kept in until they are 6/7 months old, after the snip and I've found they don't go far and always come in when my car pulls up or keys are rattled. They had a 9pm curfew and most often than not sitting on the doorstep waiting to come in. They will be fine but I understand your apprehension. Are they microchipped too?

Fluffycloudland77 Mon 23-May-16 19:34:37

I'd let them out Saturday morning, they need to learn street smarts.

We've all been there.

Damson9 Tue 24-May-16 14:17:57

They are chipped, yes, TroysMammy, and we have a chipped door, so we shouldn't get any unexpected visitors.

I think full Saturday release might be in order to see where they get to. I let them out for quite a while last night and they tried out both next door neighbours' gardens, the front garden and the roof of the conservatory... so brave... smile

Damson9 Wed 01-Jun-16 10:57:52

An update.

We installed the cat flap on Sunday and they took to it straight away. They're in and out all day now and they love it (except yesterday morning when it was chucking it down and I wouldn't make it stop - they were pretty furious about it all then).

Once they'd been out and returned of their own accord for the first time, I felt so much better about it all and I'm feeling relatively relaxed about them being out now. I imagine all that will change the first time they have a fight, or go AWOL but, for now, things are going well.

cozietoesie Wed 01-Jun-16 11:10:39

smile

cozietoesie Wed 01-Jun-16 11:12:19

PS - Seniorboy didn't like the angle and timing of the sunshine I provided yesterday. I received some complaints about that also. grin

JanetWeb2812 Wed 01-Jun-16 12:59:24

Cats have had tens of millions of years of evolution to work this out. Let your cats off the leash.

Fluffycloudland77 Wed 01-Jun-16 16:30:53

But their mommies little angels grin

Dh has been known to get the car out at 1am to look for ours. He told the neighbour I made him to cover up his soft side.

RubbishMantra Wed 01-Jun-16 16:45:26

I put Loca8tor devices on my cats' (quick release, snap off) collars.

However, when they need replacing I'll be putting these real time GPS trackers on them.

Just gives me extra peace of mind. I get the heebeejeebies when I see my little one sitting on the garden wall. So far, he hasn't decided to venture over it though. Bigger cat is more than capable of looking after himself, but he wears one too.

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