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Does anyone have a house cat?

(32 Posts)
bandito Sat 28-Oct-17 20:18:06

DD (15) would dearly love a cat and for the last year we have been animal free, having had all sorts of pets and livestock in the past. However, we work long hours and are all out of the house in term-time between 7 and 4 (when DCs get in from school). Also over the last year I have transformed the garden into quite a nice nature area with a pond and meadowy bit and we have frogs. I really don't want a cat wreaking havoc with the wildlife in the garden. DD has said we could rescue an old cat that stayed in the house and she would look after it. Is this a thing? An old cat makes me think of some incontinent smelly animal, but keeping a cat indoors just because of the garden feels cruel. Does anyone keep a cat indoors and is it do-able if you are out most of the day? I don't think its a goer. There are a lot of cats already in the street. Am willing to be convinced though.

MrsBirdseye Sat 28-Oct-17 20:25:37

Cats do well being indoors.

SkimbleShanksTheRailwayCat Sat 28-Oct-17 20:26:13

Get a pair if indoor cats from a rescue. By older I'd think 10ish, where they've been indoors all their lives they would be happy to continue. I have 2 indoor and one outdoor cat. One indoor is a kitten, the other one got a bit lonely by itself when we lost our old one. Equally long days.

littlewoollypervert Sat 28-Oct-17 20:30:04

My 2 rescues (about 6 months old now) are currently house cats and are quite happy. I do intend to put in a cat flap when the building site behind me is done. However they currently have the run of the sitting room, kitchen, hall stairs and landing, and my bedroom. They are very contented.

VivienneWestwoodsKnickers Sat 28-Oct-17 20:33:29

I have a house cat. She's now 10, I've had her since she was 1.

She came from the dog warden, who had taken her pregnant mum in and managed to rehome all the kittens bar her as she was the runt of the litter. She's always been an indoor cat, so has never had to get used to being shut in, however she had the run if a large secure roof terrace in my old flat and the garden in this house.

I couldn't get a cat from a shelter as I lived on a main road. I met an RSPCA Inspector (I used to be a police officer) and asked about the ethics of an indoor cat and shift work. She told me she had 4 indoor cats and they were safer, healthier and better looked after than many outdoor cats. The main thing she advised is that you absolutely must play with them and exercise them to keep them fit and their brains ticking over.

So she came to live with me and she is just beautiful. She has converted every cat hater she's met and if she sits on your lap, then you are privileged. She sat on my FILs lap within moments of meeting him - he's a massive animal person and would catnap her if he could!

VivienneWestwoodsKnickers Sat 28-Oct-17 20:34:35

PS cats like peace and quiet when you all go out to work, so don't worry about that - they'll sleep 20+hrs a day given the chance!

cate16 Sat 28-Oct-17 20:36:38

Our cat is a house cat by choice, occasionally she'll go out for about 10mins or so, but she seems to love being indoors.

bandito Sat 28-Oct-17 20:51:57

Thank you - I am a bit surprised as I assumed cat-lovers would be lining up to say how cruel it would be to keep a cat indoors. Perhaps it might be possible to keep a cat and the wildlife intact.

Does the house smell if a cat is in it all day? We could get a covered litter tray which I think would help.

Also, would any rescues rehouse a cat to a home where it would be indoors only, do you think? I don't want to get her hopes up. Kittens are lovely, but if we went ahead, I'd rather something older.

SierraFerrara Sat 28-Oct-17 20:57:26

Not read the other posts.
We've a house cat. As posted the other day, she does sonetimes want to go out and she needs lots of playing with but she's quite happy.
Lots of research suggests cats are generally more settled kept indoors. Lors of people say keepimg a cat indoors is cruel but it could actually be tge opposite.

PinglePongle Sat 28-Oct-17 20:58:31

I have a few pedigree indoor cats, honestly they don't know the difference as they've never been outside to miss it.

As long as your house is big enough and you give them enough attention it's not an issue. Ours wouldn't cope going out as they aren't street wise at all.

Re: the smell - we have a covered tray in the utility room and I empty once / twice a day and I fully clean out and mop once a week and it's fine most of the time smell wise

Rudgie47 Sat 28-Oct-17 21:02:14

Hi I've got a housecat, whos got the taste of he outdoors as well.
Regarding the litter tray, get that wood pellet litter and take all the soiled bits out as the cat does them and disinfect twice or so per week. If the cat does a poo you need to take it out asap.
My cat tries continually to get out of the windows and will shin up the curtains and nets to get out, and will rip them. Hes just returned from being missing for ages as well. So basically if your going to get an inddor one I'd get an older one thats always been indoor.If you take an indoor cat out say on a harness, it will want more and more I've found. Its like forbidden fruit, you always want what you cant have.

ZippyCameBack Sat 28-Oct-17 21:07:58

We have two house cats. We asked our vet and he said that indoor cats live longer and have fewer injuries and illnesses, so that's good enough for me.
We empty and wash our trays every day and use paper-based litter. The smell has never been a problem at all.

HelloSquirrels Sat 28-Oct-17 21:08:00

Weve got two indoor cats. Theyre no trouble. Just keep them fed and watered and litter tray clean and they are happy. Make sure theyve got stuff to keep them occupied and give them attention when they want it and theyre fine.

Rescuing a cat is a lovely thing to do if you can.

HelloSquirrels Sat 28-Oct-17 21:10:51

Oh and the house doesnt smell. The way i see it its not cruel, they are safe inside. Not going to get attacked by a dog or hit by a car, not at risk of people who might mistreat them.

SierraFerrara Sat 28-Oct-17 21:12:19

Covered litter box not teally a good idea. Would you like to use a dirty toilet in a room with no air conditioning?
We change the whole litter tray each morning and it rarely smells. When she has a poo it stinks the house out so we scoop that out straight away.
She's very good with her tray. The only issues we have are when we first got her and she was really stressed and when she gets UTIs. She's prone to UTIs but we know the signs to look for now so can deal with them quickly.
Actually, that's another plus - you can tell when they aren't "right" a lot easier when they are indoors.
You will need to give her a "safe" place where she can go and be left alone. Ours took a liking to her carrier so we use that but you can get cat nests etc. The carrier is easy to clean but I'd imagine cat beds and the like can smell if they are not washed.
Older cats and tom cats can get a bit stinky.
We only have one cat.
The only houses I've known to smell of cats had czts that were allowed outdoors strangely.
Oh, cat food can stink too.

OhWhatToChoose Sat 28-Oct-17 21:14:53

We have two semi feral house cats that are brother and sister, now 7 years old. Had them since they were 1 and they have never been outside. They are perfectly happy. We couldn’t let them out because they cannot be handled so can’t have injections or go to the vet unless an absolute emergency - only had to make one visit for one cat in 6 years and the experience changed him and made him very clingy.

We work long days so two was a must. They have two trays with silicone litter, no smell at all. They have their room, spare bedroom and hall stairs and landing when home alone and then the lounge and dining room when we are home.

SierraFerrara Sat 28-Oct-17 21:14:57

Lots of rescue places have cats that they will only rehome as house cats.

ZippyCameBack Sat 28-Oct-17 21:17:54

I recommend choosing a food which is especially for indoor cats. Not only to make sure the cat gets the right balance of nutrients, but because it helps to reduce the smell of the trays! (BTW the recommended number of trays is one per cat plus one).

FannyFifer Sat 28-Oct-17 21:24:24

We have a 3 year old house cat, he very occasionally comes out for a wander in the garden if we are out as well.
We have a covered litter tray in our bathroom, he can open bathroom door & will come & shout at us if there’s a poo needing emptied as he won’t use tray if not clean.
He’s very set in his ways & the routine of the house.
Just does his own thing mostly.

bandito Sat 28-Oct-17 21:25:06

Thanks all, this is really interesting. I've had a look at the local RSPCA rescue and there are a few cats being advertised as indoors only but they say they would prefer adult homes. Youngest 14 so I wonder if they would consider us. I might ring to ask tomorrow. Much to think on.

Farontothemaddingcrowd Sat 28-Oct-17 21:29:30

My boy loves being indoors and wouldn't go outside even if you left the door open.

DumbledoresApprentice Sat 28-Oct-17 21:31:06

I have an indoor cat. She’s fed high-quality, grain-free foods. It makes a huge difference to the smell, when we first got her she was being fed on Whiskas and the litter tray stank to high heaven. Although cat poo is never going to smell like roses it doesn’t stink now she’s on the right diet.
Mine won’t use any wood-based or corn-based litters so we use whatever very fine textured clumping ones we can find that meet her exacting criteria. At the moment we’re using a Sanicat one.
My cat isn’t really interested in outdoors, we can have windows open and don’t have to watch doors constantly. She goes out on a harness occasionally but really isn’t that bothered either way.

CountryMouseCityMouse Sat 28-Oct-17 21:34:30

Hi looks as though you’ve already got some good input but just to add I also have an indoor cat. We have a garden & would have been happy with any sort of cat but when we fell in love with our cat at a sanctuary they told us she’d never been outdoors & wouldn’t be safe to be let out alone as she was 8 at the time. She therefore is an indoor cat with us too & joins us in the enclosed garden if we are outdoors but never goes further. She’s perfectly happy indoors & spends most of her time watching TV on the sofa or following us around trying to get attention. I think it depends on the cat- ours craves human attention so wouldn’t be happy to be left all day but previous cats I’ve had have just wanted to do their own thing all day so wouldn’t have been an issue to leave them. Generally a sanctuary will help ensure the cat you are looking at is suitable for your lifestyle.

The sanctuary we got her from had perhaps half the cats up for rehoming who had to be kept indoors in their new homes for many reasons (disability such as blindness, not used to outdoors, infections such as FIV).

House doesn’t smell. She has a litter tray on each floor in the bathrooms (3 floors). Husband does a good job of cleaning the used trays each day though. Cat refuses to use any sort of cat bed & either sleeps on the sofa on a blanket or if she’s sneaked in when I get up to feed the baby overnight, in our bed.

Good luck! It is really lovely having a cat if you get one with the right temperament to match your lifestyle and requirements.

TheOnlyLivingBoyInNewCross Sat 28-Oct-17 21:41:08

I know someone with a Ragdoll cat which is an indoor cat and I think that this is quite typical for that breed. You could look specifically at a Ragdoll rescue site. Maine Coons also make good indoor cats.

Briette Sat 28-Oct-17 21:44:08

I have outdoor cats (since I have outdoor access available, I figured I may as well take rescues which liked to go out!) but most rescues which don't put them down have lots of FIV+ cats which need to stay in, and they're delighted when people offer to take them as indoor pets. As with outdoor cats they come in all shapes and sizes and with different personalities, so if you ask around I'm sure you'll find a suitable friend who will benefit from an indoor home smile

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