There are several benefits of allowing cats to roam outdoors. Outdoor cats have increased socialization, as well as more opportunities for physical activity and exploration. There are also many dangers for an outdoor cat, so it is important to study the pros and cons of allowing your cats to play outdoors.
Outdoor cats can easily contract diseases through interaction with other cats. They can also pick up parasites like fleas, ticks, or worms from being outside. Cars are one of the greatest dangers for cats, especially at night.
Other dangers of being outside include:
- Exposure to toxins
- Wild animal attacks
- Falling into open water sources
- Getting trapped in sheds
- Becoming lost or disoriented
If you want your cat to experience the joys of nature, you should consider creating a fenced, confined area where your cat can play under supervision. If this isn’t a viable option, there are several steps you must take to improve the safety of your cat. Ensure that your cat is vaccinated and fixed. This will help prevent potential diseases and a spayed or neutered cat will not travel as far from home.
You should encourage your cat to come in at night or during heavy traffic times. Try bribing your cat with treats to get them to come indoors at the appropriate times. Have your cat microchipped in case they get lost. If you choose to use a collar, ensure that it is a collar that will come loose if the cat gets snagged on something.
Spruce Up the Indoors
Exposing your cat to the outdoors isn’t necessary to keep them happy. There are several options for improving the indoor environment for your cat. Use cat toys and rotate them frequently, to ensure that they don’t get boring for your cat. Provide places to hide, as well as multi-levels for your cat to play on. Providing your cat with a scratching post will allow him or her to engage in their instinctual scratching without destroying your furniture. It may be helpful to obtain another cat, or even a dog, to allow adequate socialization for your cat.
Indoor cats live longer on average than outdoor cats. Though it is possible to mitigate the risks of the outdoors, it is also possible to improve the indoors and keep your cat’s environment stimulating and exciting. The best option for you will ultimately depend on your situation.