Pros and Cons of Indoor Cats and Outdoor Cats

 

There are pros and cons of indoor and outdoor cats and, with a small amount of planning, one can make the right decision regarding the resident pet cat in the home.

Years ago we never even considered this tough decision. Cats were allowed to roam at will and often failed to turn up one dark night and we never really knew what happened to them. We’d spend days or weeks combing the area, asking neighbors to check their sheds and garages. It’s a horrible experience to lose a cat this way.

Today I am pleased to say, we know indoor cats live a longer life than ones that are prone to traffic deaths. So here’s some suggestions for your cat to have the best of both worlds and to stay safe, happy and healthy.

Indoor Cats Only

Cats can reside inside full time and be perfectly happy doing so. Of course, it will probably be easiest if the cat has always been an indoor pet, or you have a kitten, rather than trying to convince a roaming outdoor type to give up his freedom.

It’s easier to allow a new kitten to get used to always staying indoors as it won’t know any different. An indoor cat needs stimulation to keep from getting bored. A bored cat can become destructive and may manifest other behavioral problems.

One way to keep an indoor cat from getting bored is to provide him with a friend and so have two cats or ensure that there are plenty of toys and activities.

Indoor cats playingTwo cats will play together, keep each other entertained, and generally keep each other company.

Of course, some cats are anything but sociable, and this may not work for every cat. Also, some people may not have the option of having two cats. For the indoor only cat that will be alone, it is very important to keep him from getting bored and lonely. This can be done quite simply.

An indoor only cat must receive an ample amount of attention when you and the family are at home.

Cats spend a lot of time sleeping, so this should not be a difficult thing to do. Just setting aside moments each day to spend playing should keep them happy.

Other ways to keep him entertained are an aquarium, a nearby bird feeder that he can watch from a window, and toys. Most cats will spend lots of time playing by themselves, if provided with fun and interesting toys. A simple cardboard box is a favorite cat toy. He will sit in it, play in it and sleep in it.

One of the pros of keeping a cat indoors is that he will be much safer. Indoor only cats will have fewer problems with parasites, such as fleas and ticks.
An indoor only cat will also not become the victim of cars on the road or aggressive dogs. He will not be hunting neighborhood songbirds and bringing them home and he won’t be drinking poisons or being mistreated by others.  Cats can easily find trouble, and by being kept indoors, a pet cat can be kept safe from such dangers.

There are dangers to be found inside the home as well. Cats are curious creatures, and can easily find dangerous situations inside. People with cats must be certain that there is nothing that the cat can endanger himself with inside the home, especially when no one is to be home.

Cords to blinds, open flames and things that can fall such as ironing boards, are some things that can be dangerous to cats.

Special care should be taken with kittens, as they climb into any place that looks interesting to them, such as the fridge. People must always be certain that a kitten is safe before leaving the home.

Outdoor Cats

Cats which are kept inside, but allowed to venture outside do not suffer from boredom, yet have more risks to their safety. Despite this, cats in these instances learn quickly about how to keep safe. They become very street wise and well aware of their surroundings.

Very urban areas can be unsafe for cats, because of heavy vehicle traffic and numerous people. Very rural areas are not safe for pet cats because of predators such as foxes. You will know what is best for your cat in your area.

Whether a pet cat is kept inside only or allowed to go outside is a decision that his people must make. Either way of life can work very well with a small amount of planning and understanding of the cat’s needs.

Catio The Best of Both Worlds

The best way we know to have a purrfectly healthy cat is to create a safe outdoor space for them to play. You can create an enclosed environment on your patio or deck so your cat can enjoy lying outside in the sun yet be perfectly secure from harm.

I just LOVE what this man built for his cat…

I have seen people create cat walkways where the cats can venture out when they feel the urge. Others create a safe fully enclosed area in the garden with cat tunnels leading to it. Indoor cats do get bored easily and require some form of stimulation as hunting is a natural instinct.

Think outside the box and create a unique area for your cat to explore and enjoy. The rewards are well worth it 🙂