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Training cat to stay near home - is it possible

(8 Posts)
hanette Thu 08-Jan-15 13:54:24

How two lovely kittens, 6 months old littermates. I tried them outside with a catflap just before Christmas and they loved it. Both boys and neutered at 4.5 months.

One is naturally quite cautious and just goes a few yards from home mainly in a safe enclosed area in front of our house with no traffic. He is the most keen on going outside and meows at the front door a fair bit if I keep him in. I have no worries about him.

His brother is a different story. Neighbours kept commenting 'he's very bold/fearless/super friendly isn't he'. Then I got a call from a member of the public saying he was on the pavement of the main road acting odd. I came out to find him weaving in and out pf people's legs, rolling around on the floor in a playful way and meowing at people. He was obstructing their path but more importantly it's the main road which I can't risk.

So - since then for the past couple of weeks I have let Sensible Cat out during the day with the catflap set to In only. He's doing fine. We have been taking Daft Cat out every day around the safe area near our house on a harness and he is getting used to it. If he tries to go further we take him inside. He loves going outside.

We can keep this up forever if needs be but it's a pain as he doesn't like the harness and keeping one in and one allowed out is difficult. Does anyone have any advice to improve things? Is it even possible to train Daft Cat to stay near? I'd never let them out at night but would like to have a carefree in/out as they please during the day for both of them at some stage, if this is possible.

Advice appreciated.

cozietoesie Thu 08-Jan-15 14:03:48

If you let them out properly then that's it, in my experience I'm afraid. The Lodger used to cross two main roads (sailing across like a ship in full sail without looking left or right) to go visit his friends - and I recall meeting him once on the way back from the shops when he'd sat down to have a full wash in the middle of the road. (With oncoming traffic weaving around to avoid him.)

There was nothing I could do. We had the rules inside the house (night time curfew etc) which he decided to accept when he moved in with us but outside - well, he was his own creature.

He's still alive and thriving by the way although I think that he must have 9,999 lives rather than the normal 9.

crje Fri 09-Jan-15 08:35:48

I fear my boy will be similar.
He is such a great pet I Worry about what might happen.
i go out with him at the moment but not possible in the long term .
I feel your pain op
Hope our boys stay safe

BertieBotts Fri 09-Jan-15 08:49:07

I think it's just their personalities - they roam or they don't. Sorry.

Toughasoldboots Fri 09-Jan-15 09:01:50

Have you tried the collars that vibrate when you press a remote control?

Some owners say that they can train their cats with treats to come back with these.

I am afraid that I agree with the other posters that it is the personality though- male cats do go further.

We had one that would sit washing in the middle of the road and we knew that his life might be short if happy.

We have a rescue female who was a stray and she rarely leaves the back garden.

Hakluyt Fri 09-Jan-15 09:06:09

That's cats, I'm afraid. It's what you sign up for. You have no idea what they are up to or where they are when they are leading their "cat life". You just have to live with it.

hanette Fri 09-Jan-15 10:56:45

Thanks all - it's difficult isn't it. It just feels that the penalty of anything going wrong is so great. And of the cats i've had over the past 20 years I've never had one like this!

Toughas - thanks for the info about vibrating collars - I will check out and definitely give one a go - can't do any harm and it would be brilliant if it works

Cats cause me more worry than kids!

cozietoesie Fri 09-Jan-15 11:03:55

I doubt there's anyone here with an outside-going cat who hasn't paced up and down the street at some time or other so you're not alone. (The sight of a tail disappearing over the garden wall can be nerve-shredding.) I wish I could tell you that it becomes easier but I'm afraid that it doesn't in my experience - even the most experienced and streetwise cat who varies significantly from their normal routine can cause palpitations.

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