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Indoor Cat?(25 Posts)
We live on a very busy main road, but we would love to have a cat. Is it cruel to have indoor cats?
I've looked at articles that say you need to be much more involved with making sure an indoor car gets enough exercise and not too much food, but I was wondering if there is anything else I need to consider?
I have one indoor and one outdoor cat- indoor one is just fine. She doesn't even go for the door when it's open. I think it makes all the difference having two though, they tear about together which keeps her active and also for company.
If it’s the cats choice it’s ok, if it’s not they apparently suffer higher stress levels & they will try to break out.
You can cat proof a garden. Mine got killed on our quiet cul de sac road 4 weeks ago tonight.
I would strongly advise cat proofing.
We have a really large garden to cat proof, but I will look into it - maybe we could do part of it...
I have always had indoor cats and never had a problem with their weight. They only have had 200g wet food a day, 2 pouches. Unlike the box suggesting 3-4 a day. No free access to dry food, but a small pile at bed time.
I only have one now, as my 19 year old died a year or so ago, and this one is now 16, so she doesn't chase her laser pointer any more, but she used to go crazy up and down the stairs with it.
It's nice for them to have a private space you don't tend to intrude on so they can get away from it all so to speak if they need too.
You will need to be on top of tray cleaning to keep them happy as well as obviously it will get used more often.
Oh and when we moved into our own house, we built a "cat run" with a flap to a cage outside, with gravel area, old cat carrying case with blanket and windproofed, shelves in the sun, with see through plastic sheeting to keep most of it dry.
I have an indoor cat - also on a busy road. Look at suggestions by Jackson Galaxy - US cat behaviourist. My cat has plenty of opportunities to do her cat thing and lots of attention from us as and when.
The other problem is that two days a week we both work long hours. So cat would be on their own for 10 hours. All the other days one or both of us works shorter hours so 5-6 hours max. I'm honestly thinking this isn't a great idea.
Re working long hours, I can leave for the day and the cats will be slumbering pretty much as I left them when I get back. I wouldn't feel so happy about leaving just one though.
We lost a cat previously who was run over and we don't let our indoor cat out as she's very nervy and I think she would just run blindly if startled.
You could consider having an outdoor by day indoor by night cat? After dark is supposed to be highest risk for being hit by a car.
I dont agree with Fluffycloudland77. My old cat was indoors and never showed any sign of stress. She lived to 18. My new kittens are indoor and will remain indoor. I live next to a main road and the boy cat in particular is daft. No sense of danger. He's also unbelievably friendly and I'd be concerned he found himself a new home. Plus theres signs up in my area all the time for missing cats. Not worth it. Ive made sure they have plenty to keep them entertained. My place has huge high ceilings and we're planning on building lots of shelves and units for them to climb and play on.
We have an indoor cat and work regular hours. She sleeps the whole day (we have a camera) and as soon I get home I make she gets lots of cuddles and play time. She loves fetch & hide and seek so gets plenty of exercise. She seems to hate the outdoors, doesn’t even like the windows open! All cats are different though but mine is happy and healthy with being indoors
Mine are indoor cats, there's absolutely NO WAY I would let them outside. They know no different as have always been indoors and are fairly content with watching the world outside from the windows. A particular favourite for my tomcat is watching the bin men (no idea why!).
Firstly in my area cats are always being targeted by absolute mongrels who either abuse animals for fun or as has been happening a lot recently, they have been stolen presumably to be used for bait (which doesn't bare thinking about tbh).
Secondly my anxiety would not be able to take it! I'd be constantly on edge all day everyday, and I'd be inconsolable if any of them didn't come home!
Maybe just get your cat a lot of toys for playtime when you aren't at home for extended periods of time. Mine tend to sleep most of the day while I'm at work & they have set meal times so they are in a little routine 🙂 if you're concerned maybe get one of those little WiFi cameras so you can check on kitty throughout the day, put your mind at ease.
A cat sleeps for about 14 hours a day. I kept my cat indoors for the first 3 months in case he ran away. He was desperate to go outside but he was used to going outside. He doesn't want much attention, just food and stroking when he demands it.
I'd get a cat that is already an indoor cat. Being on a busy road and the long working days will put off cat rescues.
Are you considering a rescue cat, or a new kitten?
My last two cats have been from a rescue centre and were specified as indoor only cats. Some cats are more suited to indoor living - mine is a Ragdoll and apparently they have zero road sense so need to be kept inside.
My previous cat did eventually go into the garden but never went any further than that. She wasn't happy being out of sight of me and that was fine with me having lost my first cat before her in a road accident right outside my very quiet cul-de-sac house .
My cat is very active though and needs a lot of stimulation. I prefer an older cat so they aren't absolutely mental - but got talked into taking this one. Have a think about what suits your lifestyle - if you can't cope with a cat tearing around the house and potentially damaging furniture/wallpaper (mine thinks it's a right laugh to do this), then maybe consider an older cat or a quieter breed.
You could try to build a catio in your garden so the cat can have some safe outdoor play and sunshine without being at risk. This is something I'm considering for mine for next summer.
I do have to leave my cat for long hours sometimes and I have to work away occasionally so my dad calls in a couple of times a day to feed and play with her if I'm not there and she's fine. I wouldn't worry about a couple of days leaving your cat if your other days are much shorter. They don't really care to be honest as they'll likely sleep most of the time you're out .
You should probably try to take time off work for your long days for the first few weeks though if you can until your cat settles.
And actually on one of our long days, my eldest comes home from school earlier. And the cleaner comes on the other long day so there should be no day where they are alone for more than 6 hours.
We have lots of high ceilings and nooks and crannies for them to play in, so maybe not such a bad idea. A pair sounds better though than a singleton.
Siblings would be a nice idea OP they tend to be more loving with one another 🙂 sounds to me like you've made your mind up we just needed to give you a push!
New cat parent incoming!
I would love cats, I really would - I just want to get it right for them.
I have siblings and they always play with each other. I think this helps as well with them being indoors. Have a look at some of the things you can get for walls for them to climb on.
If you leave the cat alone for a long time, make sure it has access to water, but don't leave it next to food.
Siblings would be a nice idea OP they tend to be more loving with one another
Siblings can also develop territory issues- more so than unrelated cats who just avoid each other.
I do think it depends on the individual cat. I currently have a rescue who was kept in a very small breeding pen- she finds our house an overwhelming space and if she does get out, she doesn't go more than a few steps before running back in.
I also had a cat that got incredibly stresses being indoor. She didn't actually go far, but needed that ability to pop in and out. FWIW I also had her sibling and they developed stress marking and spraying, to the point I had to give one to my mil, after which they were both much happier. I'd personally never get more than one cat again, seeing how much more relaxed they were apart- and they did sleep together, play together etc...
Catproofing the garden or building a catio would be the best of both worlds - safe outdoor access.
That said, indoor cats are absolutely fine and in most countries keeping cats indoors is the norm. The only problem is if you live in a house, it's not necessarily easy to keep cats indoors as you have direct access to the outdoors - you'll have to be careful about doors and windows and to ensure others (such as cleaner) are, too. This is why catproofing the garden works so well too as then you can leave the back door open in the summer without worrying.
If it's a large garden, you can build a freestanding area. Lots of ideas online.
All the cats I've had have had access outdoors. My latest two kittens were desperate to get out and would bolt for the door anytime it opened (before we started to let them out at about 5 months). If your cat doesn't want to go out then that's fine - but I think it's cruel to keep a cat in against its wishes/drives.
While I've been lucky and none if my cats have ever been killed outside I firmly believe that a short fulfilled life is better for a pet than a long boring one.
Mine are indoor. They don't care if they go out or not. I've tried enrichment things to keep them occupied. But they aren't Interested. However they are Persians and are so laid back they are horizontal!
Mine are indoor, it was top of my wish list when I got them. Unusually mine are as a condition of the rescue because they used to be feral, and may go back to that if they went out.
They are a bonded pair (siblings) and were already bonded at the rescue. They sleep vast amounts, and play with each other chasing round the house etc. Vet says they are in superb condition despite the dry food being ad lib. They seem to be happy and contented.
All mine are indoor and always have been. They have cat trees, toys etc. And are perfectly happy. If you’re out for long periods I would recommend 2 as they entertain each other then.
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