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How and when do you let kitten outside?

(27 Posts)
Foxton20 Wed 01-Jan-20 08:17:02

I feel physically sick at the thought.

Demelza is being spayed next week. She’s 5 and a half months. She is desperate to get out but when she’s snuck out when Iv put the bin out she just stands on the patio area.
We have 6 ft fences/brick wall and I’m worried that if she gets over them, she won’t be able to get back blush

What if she doesn’t come back? What if she can’t find her way? We have a semi busy road at the front. There’s a few cats round here.


OP’s posts: |
BarchesterTowers Wed 01-Jan-20 08:21:19

Unless she’s going to be a house cat....then after she’s spayed. Just for short amounts of time, when she’s hungry. She’s unlikely to go over the wall at first. Make sure there’s stuff to keep her entertained in the garden/yard. Is she microchipped?

We put up a cat ladder for ours to help them back in.

TheBoxOfDelights Wed 01-Jan-20 08:23:18

I let my kitten out last week for the first time, he is barely five months. I also have a walled garden with a fence on one side.

He hasn’t left the garden yet, is out there now. I leave the door open for him if it isn’t too cold (is closed this morning!).

It’s really lovely seeing him explore the garden, leaves, grasses and my large gravel are all very entertaining for him.

You just need to let them get on with it really! If they can get out of the fenced side they will be able to get back in.

fleariddenmoggie Wed 01-Jan-20 08:23:28

I have a slightly younger kitten. I will not be letting her out until she has been spade (so 6 months +). When I have had cats in the past, I supervised them in the garden at first but they gradually went further away. My worry is cars sad

Foxton20 Wed 01-Jan-20 08:31:00

Thank you all! Out garden is so Boring. Hoping to do it up this summer.

She’s started sitting any windowsill and trying to catch the birds that fly by 🙈

She has so much energy that no amount of playing helps 😂

OP’s posts: |
Fluffycloudland77 Wed 01-Jan-20 08:32:38

Can you cat proof your garden?. I never did & lost my baby on the road 6 weeks ago.

You can buy dog runs too.

TheBoxOfDelights Wed 01-Jan-20 08:40:07

Honestly OP, mine has calmed down so much in the last week since going outside, you forget how mad they are.

I have had three cats before, this one is the fourth, I am sure he is madder than the others. 😂.

SimonJT Wed 01-Jan-20 08:40:21

Cats that are going to be free roaming ideally shouldn’t be let out until they’re one, they’re more able to defend themselves and not as scatty so less likely to get lost, run over etc.

The biggest killer of cats is traumatic injury caused by free roaming. With the largest proportion being in the 6-24 months category. Letting a kitten out is like letting a toddler out, bonkers!

Our last flat had a garden so I cat proofed it, simple, cheap and kept her safe.

Foxton20 Wed 01-Jan-20 08:42:46

Plus she only really eats at night so no idea how to make her hungry lol

OP’s posts: |
Foxton20 Wed 01-Jan-20 08:43:38

How do you cat proof a garden?

OP’s posts: |
Dreamingofsunnydays Wed 01-Jan-20 08:53:42

I made a specific noise each time I fed my kitten a treat so that when he went outside he had a call to ‘return to’. Initially it was a bit hit and miss as he was totally overwhelmed by all the new smells but has calmed down and now comes back to the house ( in his own good time) when he hears the call or food bowls being clinked. Good luck

TheBoxOfDelights Wed 01-Jan-20 09:08:57

Mine shows no interest in leaving the garden at the minute OP. He goes out for 15-20 mins at a time.

Simon, where do you get your facts from - keeping them in until they are one recommendation in particular?

Look at the info somewhere like the Cats Protection League/Blue Cross pages if you want informed advice OP.

TheBoxOfDelights Wed 01-Jan-20 09:17:37

Whoever knew there was a specific sheet 😳😂

sotiredofthisshit Wed 01-Jan-20 09:19:51

Ours is 8 months now and has been going out for almost 2 months. Other than a couple of times exploring the direct neighbours gardens and coming straight back, he hasn't left the back garden. So far he's enjoyed just sitting watching the birds. We do have a rogue cat that now and then comes in and chases him but he comes straight back inside and seems to be getting used to this and getting braver.
When he was first let out we did it first thing when he was hungry and even now I let him out before his breakfast. He's allowed out during the day but we get him in once it starts going dark.

sotiredofthisshit Wed 01-Jan-20 09:22:27

Forgot to say, before he went out we got him used to the sound of us tapping his food dish with a spoon so he associated it with being fed (I saw it on here somewhere). Now if I want him in I stand at the door and tap his dish and he comes in.

Fluffycloudland77 Wed 01-Jan-20 09:45:12

Diy cat proofing.

Foxton20 Wed 01-Jan-20 10:29:26

She’s just so tiny 😂

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IceniSky Thu 02-Jan-20 08:03:21

Our is 11 months this month and he it too scatty to go out. No way would he stay in the garden, he would chase a bird and be off. I'm still waiting a few more months.

He has escaped a few times, and it is a pain keeping windows on latches but I just cant see how he could be grown up enough. He is a stone, but still feels fragile. I've had cats all my life, this is the most nervous I've been.

IceniSky Thu 02-Jan-20 08:05:37

That fact sheet - mine bolts and is off when he escapes. I cant see him being cautious at all.

TheBoxOfDelights Thu 02-Jan-20 10:15:52

I guess we all come at it from different places. I have never had (wouldn’t want) an indoor cat.

My five month old kitten is absolutely loving exploring the garden, he is out there now, he is going out for 30-45 mins at a time.

This piece of long grass has kept him occupied for the last 30 mins.

It’s the most natural thing in my view but that’s just my view for my cats!

Foxton20 Thu 02-Jan-20 10:53:17

Do you let him out when he’s hungry?

OP’s posts: |
TheBoxOfDelights Thu 02-Jan-20 12:11:48

No, I let him out after breakfast for a bit and then now and then whenever I am in the kitchen and can see him. I have got a sofa and dining table in there and often sit in there, he hasn’t shown any desire to leave the garden yet.

Papergirl1968 Thu 02-Jan-20 13:18:34

Socks is about seven months old but she’s small and nervy. She’s been out on to decking outside the back door a couple of times, but doesn’t seem very interested. I think in the spring when the weather is better and I’m outside more, she’ll be more keen but for now it suits both of us for her to stay in.
I do remember how scary it was when Matt started to go out, and one of the first times he went up a neighbour’s tree. We charged round there trying to encourage him down with no luck but shortly after we went home he strolled in.
Them getting lost or hit by a car is a huge worry but on balance I want them to have the freedom of going out, chasing insects, lying in the sun, feeling the wind ruffle their fur.

penberrh Thu 02-Jan-20 13:44:22

I think it depends on you cat but after spaying/microchipping I spent a couple of weeks training them to associate the sound of a treat box and their name being called with a dreamie type treat. Didn't feed him before he first went out and called him back after 10 mins, and increased the time each day until now (a couple of months later) he can come and go as he pleases until he starts to get dark and then he has to stay in. My cat likes company though, follow me from room to room and if I go outside he comes to say hello. I don't think he goes far at the moment.

viccat Thu 02-Jan-20 15:20:47

I used to volunteer for a cat charity that recommended not letting them out unsupervised until they're at least 10 months old. And you'll need to have a way back in sorted - so ideally a cat flap unless you can be around all day or have a window open.

Personally I would never have free roaming cats. Every home with outdoor access is safe until it isn't... how many posts are there on here every week about cats that got run over or have gone missing? I feel like no one wants to talk about it or acknowledge it, but it's the reality.

Our garden is catproofed with fence top netting and we additionally have a catio that's completely enclosed and with high shelves for climbing and bird watching. My cats love it and I definitely don't feel they're missing out because they're not roaming the streets where cars are speeding or getting into fights with other cats...

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