Wildlife and outdoor cats don't mix

I believe all cats should permanently be kept inside. I am a licensed wildlife rehabilitator yet I have four cats that I share my life with at this time.

Cats are not part of the natural ecosystem and will help destroy the environment if not kept from doing so. Cats hunt just to hunt, not because they are hungry. They kill anything that they can get to and often play with it while doing so, thus torturing the animal in the process.

There are so many dangers to a cat that is allowed out. Traffic, other cats, dogs, coyotes, other larger wildlife, and humans that do not want your cat roaming in their yards often harm or kill these pets. My indoor cats are perfectly happy spending their time watching out the windows, sleeping or playing.

I personally get to see the devastation that cats can cause on wildlife. So often I get in squirrels (birds and other wildlife also is effected) that have been maimed by cats. These are the ones that survive the initial attack by the cat. The must have antibiotics ASAP or they develop devastating infections that cause their deaths quickly. Cats do not discriminate between what you want them to kill and what you do not.

The lifespan of an outdoor cat is far less than that of an indoor cat because of all these dangers. Why would anyone not want a beloved pet with them and to keep them alive as long as they can? It is the human that must make sure that their pet is safe and that their pet is not killing everything, including endangered animals. Also most areas now have cat leash laws which means that if you allow your cat to roam unsupervised you are breaking the law. Neighbors who do not want your cat in their yard may trap it and take it to a shelter where it will cost you a LOT of money to get it back.

Why not keep a cat inside with lots of attention and things to do so that everyone can be happy?

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Keeping cat inside
by: Katy

I agree with you up to a point. Some cats are incapable of living outdoors as you say because they are either ill-equipped through breeding such as my Rag-Doll cat, or because they are a menace to the wildlife.

If a cat is going to live inside then they need to have a run built outside so that they can enjoy fresh air. I tried taking a cat out on a lead but other people with dogs think that the world belongs to them and so I stopped.

Some cats though like my intelligent cat Poppy who lived to more than 20 years old can be taught not to kill birds. She used to sit in the garden happily with birds hopping round her and it was a nice thing to see. The birds just got used to her being there.

She wandered off though when she was very old and I looked in vain for her. After a few months I found unmistakable parts of her in the wood where she had been torn apart by dogs.

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The urge to hunt.
by: Larry (Editor)

Hello,

Thank you very much indeed for sharing your thoughts with us.

Yes, the destruction of wildlife is one more reason someone may want to keep their cat indoors.

You are right, the urge to hunt is very much a part of a cat even though most do not need to do so in order to eat.

One successful hunter could indeed destroy a lot of wildlife. Other cats may not be so successful.

I agree that there are lots of good reasons for keeping cats indoors, although many people, who equally love their cats, see many reasons why their cats should be allowed outside.

I agree with you when you say an indoor cat needs lots of attention. They deserve it too :0)

Larry (Editor)

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5 indoor/outdoor cats.

by Jess
(Illinois)

I think it mainly depends on where you live. It's probably not a smart idea to let your cats outside if you're in the middle of a big city. I don't think I need to elaborate on all the things that could go wrong there.

I am fortunate enough to live on some acreage in the middle of nowhere, so I don't worry too much about our cats being outside (you have to have cats out here anyway, or you'll have mice).

They're pretty good about staying close to the house and barn, and we have kitty doors all over so they have free access to the barn, shed, and both garages.

They do come in the house a lot, depending on the season. In the winter, they're hardly ever outside, and in the warmer months, they're outside almost all the time.

The only one that stays in most of the time is my 18 year old, but even she like to go out once in a while during the summer.

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A handful of fun.
by: Larry (Editor)

Hi Jess,

Five cats, I bet that is both a handful and a bundle of fun. Are Annabel Lee and Pluto included in the five?

Sounds like things work for you, your indoor/outdoor cats are able to enjoy the outside without the threat from auto traffic.

In when it's cold and out when it's warm, your cats are not silly are they :)

Thanks very much for your submission Jess.

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