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British short hair blue desperate to go outside - what would you do?

(104 Posts)
30ish Thu 23-Apr-15 20:48:32

We bought two beautiful BSH blue kittens last August. We wanted to keep them as house pets as we fear they will be stolen or hurt. Because of the warm weather, children playing and leaving doors open, the cats have been pottering about outside - we bring them in when we come in. They are now desperate to be outside, all the time.

Are we wrong to keep them as house pets? What is your experience? They are so beautiful but slightly dim and I really fear for them outside although we do live in a very quiet/almost rural area. Our neighbours have show worthy gardens and I wouldn't want to upset them by releasing two cats into the neigherbourhood. I will try to post photos.

Fluffycloudland77 Thu 23-Apr-15 20:56:56

That's a gorgeous cat. I let my Bengal out and the chinchillas went out.

It made them happy.

What are the local roads like?.

fenneltea Thu 23-Apr-15 20:57:30

I live in a very small village, there are two houses that keep BSH's, one of them was the thug of the village that tormented all the other resident cats, there was one who was run over, but ordinary moggies have been in the past too, so they seemed to manage as well as any other cat.

Maybe a cat enclosure or cat proofing the garden so they can go out at will will keep them happier?

ragged Thu 23-Apr-15 21:04:23

Do people really steal cats like that?
All cats are dim; just how dim are they by cat dimness standards?
I'm not a fan of indoor-only cats; cats can get huge quality of life from going out. So I would probably let them out if traffic not scary.

ragged Thu 23-Apr-15 21:06:01

This says they are relatively smarter than other breeds.

Moln Thu 23-Apr-15 21:10:56

I'd cat proof my back garden boundary.

Let them in and out the back then to their hearts content.

Do it before the wander farther and get a taste for that too.

umiaisha Thu 23-Apr-15 21:12:18

We live in London and our BSH girl goes out, but doesn't seem to wander too far, probably helped by the fact that she is a bit porky and can't jump fences etc!

DreamPhone Thu 23-Apr-15 21:15:39

We got a British Blue as we had read that they were mostly happy to be house cats and we lived in a first floor flat at the time. About three years ago we moved to a ground floor flat with a huge communal garden and our cat was obviously interested in the outside world - looking out of the windows etc. After keeping him inside successfully for about a year and a half our landlord gave us permission to install a cat flap and we then started letting him go outside. We did it really, really gradually (probably more for our sake than his - I had never had a cat before and my Mum always had naughty terriers growing up so I just couldn't believe that he would come back!). At first we just opened the cat flap during the day so he could come and go but we could keep an eye on him from the windows and gradually built up to leaving it open all the time. I don't know if it's down to the breed he is or if we broke him by keeping him indoors so long but he doesn't stray very far at all when he's out and about - I'm pretty sure he's never left the garden area. I don't think it would ever occur to him to jump over a fence or climb a tree - he generally sticks to the paths. Do your kittens come when you whistle for them? That was quite handy in the early days when we wanted to bring him in at night - we found that if we advanced towards him to try to capture him he thought it was a game and did a runner. Looking back it seems silly that we were so over cautious - he's totally fine being outside now but tends to just pop out briefly, he prefers to spend the day sleeping on the bed. He gets bullied a bit by two bengals that are in cahoots with each other but he's happy enough - I love it when I'm looking out of the window having breakfast and I see him come bursting out of the bushes grin I hope that helps?

DreamPhone Thu 23-Apr-15 21:16:46

Oooo that was a bit long sorry...

Jumty Thu 23-Apr-15 21:20:24

Cats do, occasionally, get run over, but it is not a common occurence and you have to ask yourself: is it fair on your pet cats to keep them cooped up for years on end for yours rather than their benefit.

It's all about quality of life and cats enjoy going outside to do what cats do. You're their guardian not their guard.

And your cat is very handsome/beautiful.

girliefriend Thu 23-Apr-15 21:22:02

I personally feel if a cat wants to go out it is a (little bit) mean to keep them in, I couldn't do it.

If you live in a nice area, away from major roads I would let them out.

Your cat is beautiful smile

shaska Thu 23-Apr-15 23:30:01

As the owner of two indoor cats (apartment life) I'd let them out. Cats can be absolutely fine indoors but if there's the option to let them outside relatively safely Id always take it.

Yes, bad things can happen. But my last indoor cat died of cancer at five years old. So bad things can happen inside too!

CocktailQueen Thu 23-Apr-15 23:33:26

Gree with the others - I'd let your cats out if they want to go out. Think of all the smells and sounds and interesting stuff to do outside - much more fun and more enriching than being stuck indoors all the time.

Sure, there is some element of risk but you wouldn't stay indoors all your life in case you were run over, would you?

CocktailQueen Thu 23-Apr-15 23:34:06

Ps we had a Devon Rex and an Oriental Shorthair and they both went out every day for years.

Pipbin Thu 23-Apr-15 23:34:53

He is very beautiful.
I worry about my cat (standard rescue moggy) so we have a cat flap with a curfew timer. She is happy going out during the day and brings herself back in before the timer now. The flap locks but only to stop her going out, she can always get in.

MedusaIsHavingaBadHairday Thu 23-Apr-15 23:40:59

I have Maine Coons. I let them out. We did it gradually..being out in the garden with them, and then the day came that they could climb the fences...

I worry of course, and we live on an estate with a busy through road (and Obie likes to sit in it!) but I just couldn't keep them in when they were staring mournfully at the outside world. Ophie stays in the garden, but Obie goes further afield (mostly into the neighbour's house as he likes their cat and they let him eat extra food!)

I keep them in at night, although Obie is asking to go out now!

code Fri 24-Apr-15 07:51:09

I'm about to let my burmese out. We live on a relatively slow road with a front garden and large back garden which backs onto gardens. No cat knappings around here, it's a nice area for cats, lots of trees and interesting things to explore. I thought about keeping them in but although indoors is a safer life it also feels like a half life. Cat proofing was quoted at £10,000 and the chap wasn't convinced it would contain them. I've bought them loc8tor quick release collars which they may or may not keep on but its worth a shot, and getting a microchip cat flap installed.

RubbishMantra Fri 24-Apr-15 09:07:48

I let my moggy and Devon Rex out. Moggy mooches in the neighbour's gardens, but at a year old, the Devon hasn't felt need to leave the garden yet.

I've also put Loca8tors on their quick release collars.

They're kept in at night. That's when they're most likely to come to harm.

RubbishMantra Fri 24-Apr-15 09:10:27

Gorgeous cat btw.

I always think BSHs look like they're plotting to take over the world.

30ish Fri 24-Apr-15 09:24:45

Thank you for all your replies. I think we are going to let them out but very gradually. I'd hate to think I was depriving them of something they desperately want to do.

I think they are beautiful too.

BabyGiraffeOnIce Fri 24-Apr-15 09:30:41

Cat proof smile

cant recommend it enough, brackets and some garden netting around the top of the fencing all around the garden, our cats are more than happy just in the back garden but as we are quite near a busy road we have done this so there's no risk of escape

BabyGiraffeOnIce Fri 24-Apr-15 09:32:11

code 10k for cat proofing????

we spent under £100, netting from b and m and brackets from screwfix! did it all ourselves, and other than a couple of bits we missed with a staple gun (quick fix) they've never escaped!

RubbishMantra Fri 24-Apr-15 11:44:53

BabyGirraffe, do you have a link for the information you got for cat-proofing DIY stylee? Please. smile

code Fri 24-Apr-15 12:00:42

baygiraffe this was for the katsecure rollers system. We don't have fences, all hedges, some walls, lots of problem areas. Also a conservation area so prison fencing style not possible.

Ratfinkandbobo Fri 24-Apr-15 19:12:20

Wow, what a gorgeous catgrin

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