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indoor outdoor cats do you agree?

scuba0095
October 27th, 2005, 09:43 AM
Hey everyone

Just curious how many of you here let your cats outside? well we have lots of trees around and my cat is 10 years old and is extremly healhty and has always been a indoor outdoor cat. HE loves to just sit on our front steps and watch nature LOL WE have never even had a single problem with him getting lost, He has been in a few fights but nothing worth getting scared about, I also give him his shots de worm and de flea him reg. But ok i know everyone is very agaisnt it but dont some of you believe that some cats are actually better off going out and in? I have had many cats do this and all my experiances have been really good. BUt I thought it more depends on the cat you have. LIke for example my cat is a big male cat very solid build and i have seen him interact with foxes and minks and usually predators dont get to close to him other then a fox that snuck up behind him once and stole a rat from him, the funny thing is he chased after the fox to try and get it back! LOL but my neibours have a very small delicate female cat that they would let out and this cat actually was killed by something either a fox or an owl not sure exactly but she was so small and had a fragile build i really dont think she could do much to protect herself (Unlike my big tank of a cat) So Overall it seems some cats are good outdoors while others are not do you guys agree? PS I THINK ITS SO cruel to let a de clawed cat outdoors!

jessi76
October 27th, 2005, 09:57 AM
I let both of my cats outside, and one is declawed in the front. BUT I do have rules about it, they are only let out during the DAY, when I'm home, and only for an hour or so at a time - during which, I keep tabs on them.

I leave the door open for them, so they can get back into the mudroom if they need to. My cats stay in my yard, and they ALWAYS come right back when called. They are NEVER allowed out after dusk, or if we are not home.

Beaglemom
October 27th, 2005, 10:05 AM
I'm one of those people who do not agree with cats being outside unsupervised. Cats can and do get injured in the great outdoors. They can get into cat fights or fights with other animals. There are many dangers facing domesticated animals in the "wild". In a city, many cats are poisoned or hit by cars.

Another reason is the risk that cats pose for our wildlife such as birds. Cats are natural predators and do prey on birds. In some areas, bird populations have been affected by cats.

Our cat is allowed to go into our backyard as long as one of us is out there with her and is supervising her.

CyberKitten
October 27th, 2005, 12:44 PM
My cat(s) are strictly indoor. I gew up with cats who went outside but even neutered, inevitably one of them was hurt in some way - chasing something, eating a piece of something that made them ill, scratched by a neighbourhood bully - cat or other creature. It's hard when others insist on allowing their kitties roam. Cats will be cats.

Here is a list of perils that may beset a cat outdoors.

http://www.runway.net/b/moonmaid/in-or-out.html

Mine are strictly indoors - they have short hair or no hair so are interested in outside only when it is warm anyway. YY goes out in her stroller or on a leash. I also have a back yard that is enclosed for her but I never allow her out unless I can be there.

Roxy's_MA
October 27th, 2005, 01:03 PM
I let my cats outside. My kitten doesn't go out. Latley I have realized cat really shouldn't go out, but when I tried to make the two older cats indoor only. KC would not have it. After about 4 days being couped up, you couldn't even go near her without being hissed at. She was PISSED! She ended up sneaking out by destroying a screen in my bedroom. Smokey goes out but actully perfers being inside (He lived outside when I got him). I realize there are many dangers out there that the kitties face, that is why Salem and anyother cat I ever get will be an indoor cat. Tipper, my mom cat was and indoor/outdoor cat until about age 13 when she became an inside only cat. She is now 18 and still kickin. These cats do not live in the city.

I agree that every cat is different. My cat KC is very smart outside. She sits in one spot and watches everything going on for an hour before exploring. She rarley leaves the yard, and will run and hide when being approached by a stranger.

My cats also have rules for going outside:
1. They only go out when I am home.
2. The have a curfew, not allowed out one hour before dark. This gives me an hour to round them up before dark. There are alot of predetors around my yard, but they don't come around during the daylight hours.
3. I check on them constantly while they are out or I go out with them.

I honestly beleive that KC would not enjoy her life if she was not allowed outside.

rivers
October 27th, 2005, 01:03 PM
I was all for letting our cat be an indoor/outdoor cat. That was until her boundaries became further and further away as she explored. And one day she didn't come back. She has been gone for 3 months now, and it is heartbreaking not knowing where or what happened to her.

If I had to get another cat, which I don't think will happen for many years to come, it will be an indoor cat. The stress of not knowing how far or where she is wandering around, is too much. If she comes back, which I have heard could still happen :fingerscr , I will only let her out on a leash.

JanM
October 27th, 2005, 01:18 PM
I, too, let my cats outside. Shadow, a Manx X and Calli - a Calico - both neutered - love it outdoors. We have a HUGE Red Cedar tree in the back yard that they both love to climb. They both use a piece of driftwood in the back yard as a scratching post and watching them chase grasshoppers is a hoot. I tried the indoor thing but both (from the local SPCA) must have been outdoor cats because when kept indoors the noise is unbearable! Shadow particularly will howl and will scratch the door and rugs to get out. Both will come when I call them in, thank goodness! I do believe that they are better outdoors where they can run in the grass and sleep under the plants and chase grasshoppers...

BeagleMum
October 27th, 2005, 01:42 PM
I am totally against letting cats outside if they are loose. I used to let mine out but they were harnessed and on a 25 foot leash. I can't stand it when people let their cats loose outside. How is it any different than a dog? I would never let my dogs out loose either. It is just WAY too dangerous. A friend of mine has had 3 cats, a dog and a rabbit all hit by cars. I am not willing to take that chance with my babies.

Also, I don't want any of my animals going and pooping on anyone elses property. Some people don't have animals because they don't like the mess so why would they want the mess from my cat?

Sorry, but it's just my opinion.

shannonRN
October 27th, 2005, 01:46 PM
I'm glad you asked this question. There are a lot of stances on the topic, but I think it really depends on the circumstances, the cat, and other factors.

I have one of each: an indoor cat, and a cat that is allowed outside.

When I first got Ruby from the shelter 5 years ago, she was strictly an indoor cat for---2 years. Why? Location. There was no way I would let her out when we lived near a road and there were tons of other animals around. It just wasn't safe. However, she had been a stray and was intensely focused on getting outside and would sit by the door and cry. Outdoors was 'where it was at' for her.

Once we moved to our present location, we started a trial period of letting her outside. We live miles from anything on a dead end, unpaved road now (and boy, do I love it.) In warm weather, she may stay out for a few hours; in cold, she usually goes potty and comes back in within 10-15 minutes.

We sometimes do keep her indoors for several weeks during early summer because some years, grouse nest behind the garage and she will raid their nest if she finds them. Most of the time, she can be seen sleeping on the picnic table, pouncing on leaves, or getting in the way of gardening/weeding/mulching. She's very good at that.

Our indoor cat only makes half-hearted attempts to go out and she's a little physically challenged, so we're more than happy to keep her in.

My feeling is that letting a cat outside exposes them to risks. Sometimes the risks are too great in my opinion, and they should be kept inside no matter what. However, I feel that in our present circumstances that it is an allowable, and not irresponsible, risk to keep our indoor/outdoor cat happy by letting her come and go during the day. JMO.

That being said, I grew up in the suburbs. We always had cats, we always let them outside, and we always were getting new cats to replace the ones that had gotten run over in the road. It was just disgusting and tragic. We never had more than 2 or 3 cats at a time, and I was able to count 17 cats--that I remembered owning--in as many years. :sad: RIP kitties.

Roxy's_MA
October 27th, 2005, 01:54 PM
How is it any different than a dog? I would never let my dogs out loose either.

Not that it makes it any safer, but in the small town I grew up in (pop. 2000) there was no bylaw about cats being loose only dogs.

I guess for our family that was the difference. Our cats never really left the yard, and no other cat would come in the yard becuse of the dogs.

kayla
October 27th, 2005, 03:35 PM
Growing up we always had indoor/outdoor or barn cats. I never saw a single one of them die of old age. In fact, I don't think any made it past 3 years old :sad: . The area we lived in had a high coyote population, which, although no bodies were found, I'm pretty sure accounted for most of the deaths. So I'd say indoors is better, unless you live in an area with no nearby roads or predators.

It's unfortunate though because I really do think outdoor cats are happier, so if a safe outdoor area can be made that is ideal, or using a long leash although I don't see how that would protect from predators, if anything it would make them an easier target.

doggy lover
October 27th, 2005, 03:42 PM
Both my cats are indoors cats, I use to let them in our yard supervised where we lived before but now we are about 50 feet from a small highway, so I don't take the chance. But since we moved they have no ambition to go out, I guess because we moved into a house from an apartment, so there is more room to roam. I grow them cat grass and bring them in fresh cat nip I grow in the summer so they are happy. :cool:

xFire Angelx
October 27th, 2005, 03:50 PM
sorry i didnt fully read everyones posts before posting in here
ok about 2 months ago if anybody tried to ever suggest to me to keep my cats inside id tell them cats have survived for many many many years without us keeping them inside they're happy out there and they have instincts that cant really be fully fulfilled with them being stuck inside at all times
well
september 15th i found my cat in a hole on my porch after being gone for 2 days we couldnt get him out of that hole but somehow he got all of his strength and got himself out after us trying to get him out for 45 minutes.... once i picked him up to bring him inside my brother and mom saw his side... it was really bad... few hours later we finaly found a way to get him to the vet they removed his tail he had a wound from his back to below his knee bone and nerve was exposed he was imapled by something but we arent sure what... we're leaning towards hit by a car... baby now walks flat footed he has pretty bad nerve damage in his leg now they didnt ever think hed even be able to urinate on his own but luckily they were wrong.. he has 2 breaks on one of his other paw and is basically learning how to walk again
they had to cut off some dead skin and hope it would fully close(luckily it did) hes almost fulyl healed but he will always walk flat footed
my vet told me that we might have to put him down but he pulled through and everytime i take him in for a check up they tell me that he truly is a miracle cat
now i relize that cats need us to show them whats good for them and what isnt... well i wouldnt let a 3 y/o outside without supervision so why should i with a cat?
my cats are now inside only
its just not worth the risk... they can be happy being inside only it just takes time for them to adjust

amber416
October 27th, 2005, 03:58 PM
All of my cats are indoors all the time. They hate it outside anyway, even the formerly feral kitty, as i try to get them to sit outside with me on nice days and run around (on a harness and lead, of course). They will usually have nothing to do with it. I have heard people say that they have a cat (often semi-feral or formerly feral cats) who would be absolutely miserable indoors, which is a bit of a different situation, I suppose.

The rescue group i work with does a lot of TNR and we also take feral cats that the local shelters pick up and take them in so they are not automatically euthanized. Plenty of the cats that we are called to "trap" turn out to be people's pets-- it is really sad. We also have gotten a number of calls to trap in areas where outdoor cats are being poisoned. There are just too many things I would worry about. Maybe if i lived in a nice, out-in-the-middle-of-nowhere kind of place I would feel differently, though.

The absolute worst is when they are declawed. No cat that is declawed should EVER be outside unless their owner is out there with them giving them constant supervision. That is just cruel and ignorant, in my opinion. I used to work at a vet clinic and thinking of some of the things i saw happen to declawed cats that were outdoors still makes me shudder. Of course, terrible things can and do happen to any outdoor cats, but when it happens to a cat that a human rendered hepless and defenseless, that just makes me sick.

Katze
October 27th, 2005, 04:36 PM
I have both indoor/outdoor and outdoor cats. The indoor ones were all rescued as kittens from alleys, and so never developed a taste for the independant life. They are definitely very curious as to the comings and goings of the others, and make frequent escape attempts. My out/ in cats were rescued in full adulthood, some after having lived on their own for YEARS. They would just never tolerate being imprisoned. Every morning they are all climbing the walls to get out of here and check out their turf.
Personally I think it is cruel to expect an animal to be truely content in a house all the time. ( I would go insane being stuck inside myself, and I am a human).
But we expect all kinds of things from pets which go completely against their natures- That is what they were invented for: to be controlled and have their natures taken away for our entertainment. Very sad really. Really it seems to me that all pets should be spayed and neutered so that the entity ceases to exist.

melanie
October 27th, 2005, 04:42 PM
in australia there are certain laws being pased and have passed that require cats in certain states and areas to be confined to houses or catteries, for kindness purposes ppl are being encouraged to build a cattery on the side of the house with access from the house for the cat. these laws will hopefully be national soon.

firstly for the cats safety i think its dangerous, i dont know about wehre you are but here ppl trap cats in nasty fishing wire traps and then kill them, these are household pets that certain morons think should not exist here, i know a stupid local woman who will kill any cat she can catch, even if its the little girls next door. so no its jsut dangerous for cats. not to mention the spate of kitten tortures going on at the moment, in one case three teen boys beat and tourtured a kitten to death and this has happened several times of late, this would never have happened if ppl were responsible.

secoundly have you ever seen how a feral cat is killed, its nasty and sad and not nice at all, these cats would not be feral if it wernt for irrisponsible humans, animals suffering because of human reasons, that just sucks and feral cats are a huge problem for us. yes they must die, they do to much damage but it kills me to know their old owner is sitting pretty while the cat suffers for no fault of its own. its sick

thirdly- have you ever seen what a house cat can do to a native bird or reptile?? i once saw a poor lizard that had been attacked by a cat on a porch of the house, the poor thing was so terrified it stayed still till the blood dried, the offending cat came back and attacked it for several days as it was stuck there by its blood, until it was dead. jsut imagine the suffereing of that animal :mad:

its sick and humans have a responsibility to protect all animals not jsut our pets. its important to remember that. i dont let my dog roam for her own safety and that of others, i think its time certain cat owners take on that responsibility. dogs have yards, cats should have catteries. and everyone should be respected and treated as they deserve, pet or not.

melanie
October 27th, 2005, 05:02 PM
quote 'That is what they were invented for: to be controlled and have their natures taken away for our entertainment. Very sad really. Really it seems to me that all pets should be spayed and neutered so that the entity ceases to exist.'

the idea of pets was not to destroy their nature or make them our slaves, for thousnads and thousands of years ppl have lived in harmony with animals with both parties ofthen forming a symbiotic relationship, that is one helps the other.

through out history dogs and cats have been used for companions and hunting aids, this is not destroying thier nature, its natural because we are human animals and enjoy/need the company of animals. we could help each other.

for example - the aboriginal ppl of australia have lived with the dingo for up to 50000 yrs. the dingo has always been a camp companion, and at times a hunting companion. there are many aboriginal stories of the important role the dingo played in the family and in the camp. yet after 50000 yrs dingo nature and personality is still the same regardless of this relationship with humans, they are the same dog now as they were then. if humans had had such a great impact on the dingo it would certainly be more domesticated than it is today, its nature was enver destroyed. dingos chosse to live this way, aboriginal ppl never trapped them or forced them, the dogs just naturally came to gravitate and live with the humans. maybe ppl dont give dogs enough credit as many ppl believe the dingo could see benifit of living in the human pack, that is safetry and better feed in numbers.

sadly due to habitat destruction and the mighty march of the huaman, the naturael habitat for these animals is disapearing fast, not to mention the miriad of other threats to animals in the environment. for my GSD to go live in the bush, well even if she was a pup she would not have lasted long, she does not have the skill as her mother never taught her the skill. that does not mean she is controled or has a altered personality, it just means that she does not have certian skills, she is stil l the dog she ever was.

now consider this, imagine what used to be the aboriginal camps, and place them into the context of todays life, that is my camp is my house and the big backyard. even in camp a dog does not stray far, so my yard compensates for that. i really have not moved far from my forefatehrs, i am jsut the same but my camp looks different. its as simple as that. and given the choice my dog would never leave her pack, she is content and that is what a pack is about.

she is not for entertainment, she is for company and pack. humans need packs too jsut as muc h as dogs. yes i have taught her certain things ,like manners, but that is no different to what her pack leader would teach ehr in the wild, that is life skills for survival in the pack.

yes some ppl want their dogs for entertainment, but they wont sucede in their packs, but many of us truly respect animals and love them, we respect the pack and work darn hard to maintain a healthy environment for our pets, we are evolving in this relationship as re dogs. should we turn them out into the bush, what would happen then, this planet donesnt have the resources or habitat to support such a thing so by having pets we may jsut be helping the species as a whole.

as far as desexing, well given that in the state of NSW alone, last year over 40000 dogs were abandoned and killed in pounds i dont think that is an issue, as we all know there are plenty of dogs out there and more on the way. desexing is about responsible ownership, its about not adding a nother number to those already being killed every year. its about sustaining a reasonable population number, and being kind and caring for those we love. there are some great numbers on this site somewhere (posted by lucky) that give the numbers kittens a breeding pair has in a life tiem, no i dont find desexing these cats cruel, whats cruel is to allow over population and destruction of resources, that s unfiar and cruel.

so many animals die daily because their parents were not desexed, the entity will continue to exist, there are always animals breeding, but i for one dont want to be responsible for the deaths of little puppies jsut because i assumed in this environment i live that it would be wise to leave my dog intact.

so in a nut shell im saying its natural to live with aniamls, and desexing saves lives.....

CyberKitten
October 27th, 2005, 09:05 PM
Re: "Really it seems to me that all pets should be spayed and neutered so that the entity ceases to exist."

Oh come on, get serious! Either you are an extremely sarcastic person and think we are all fools or you want a debate. I do not have time to argue the issue - I know most ppl here are very strong propnents of spay and neuter but NOONE would propose wanting such a beautiful and glorious creature as a cat to disappear. And I really see no need for anyone - even you - to be snarky in this discussion. Or are you one of those ppl who think it is so terrible for cats to be domesticated that you'd prefer to kill them all since they'd be better off without us messing up their lives.

Frankly, not one of us can be holier than thou about anything. I understand why some allow their cats outside. I live in a safe area but the possibility always exists that my baby (and for me my cats are my babies - and I do nothing against their nature. If they hated it, there would be very loud Siamese yowls to contend with - I'd never hear the end of it, lol) might be stolen, hit by a vehicle or worse!! It is well known that indoor cats live long healthy lives, an average of 15-20 yrs while most (and I emphasize most since I do think a responsibe cat "owner" (I do not believe any cat can be owned tho our laws are written that way and I have not yet convinced the govt to add YY to the voter's list - ;) ) like the regulars on this site - do have outdoor kitties who live good long lives. But the avg lifespan f outdoor kitties is 3-5 yrs.

There was a time our society thought human slavery was just fine too. Or that racism was acceptable - it was against human nature - and the law in many jurisdictions for people of different races or religions to marry. But we learn as we grow and progress. (We do make mistakes along the way of course) As a child, like Kayla, we had kitties who spent a lot of time outside. They slept with us and enjpyed meals and play time but they were hunters and mousers. We had many a feral cat gradually move in the house but still go outside daily. Some of them enjoyed long lives but not all of them. There were accidents and injuries - and with no vet in the immediate area, we all (even the kids) had to become good at caring for them.

I am much better educated and aware of what can go wrong now. If you honestly believe it cruel to keep a cat in a house, do you believe it better for the kitty to be picked up by a boucher and sold to a lab? I know of one family in Nova Scotia whose cat met this fate! And this program on CBC outlines the program very well:

http://www.cbc.ca/disclosure/archives/030304_animals/royal.html

Even if your cat is picked up by Animal Control for wandering (and it is illegal in the community I live in now to allow your cat to roam, a good law I think), that pet can - after 3 days - be sold to a research lab for the grand total of $6!!

There are also cruel people. A child in Nova Scotia - the same one responsible for a serious passenger train derailment I happened to be involved in (I was travelling from Mocton to Halifax on the train) was prevented from killing a cat he was torturing by two small boys who came upon him in this horrific cat.

I do think - in addition to our all being better informed - that the times we live in are more complex than they were during my childhood. Cats could roam then and while cars and injuries were always a problem, there were fewer ppl to do carry out terrible things we hear of now.

My cats have never known life outdoors and they are not too keen to discover it. Especially when it is -20 in the winter. Do you think it is fine then for cats to wander? But they are short haired kitties (or in the case of the Sphynx, almost no hair) and need sweaters to go outside. I would protect my cats to the death - and leaving them roam anywhere and everywhere is never going to be an option. They live in a large home, one comes to work with me and is a certified therapy cat with a rich vibrant life - she is very social and loves to meet new ppl. I do draw the line at toilet training them because I fear it may cause arthritis and I won't use covered litter boxes because they may lead to more illness - given the closed tiny space where germs and bacteria more easily replicate and grow.

If we lived according to our nature, we'd still be living in the neaderthal age. We haved moved on - and while not all of our discoveries are wonderful (like splitting the atom so that we can blow each other up) - I for one do not want to go back in time. I very much doubt most cats, given the choice, would opt to live outside. We have domesticated the cat and for better or worse - we cannot turn back. As a cat fancier of course, I think cats have benefited from us tho we much more from them. We can ensure even the most feral cats longer lives thru spay and neuter programs and managed colonies.

To suggest any of us would want to end the species - which is a huge diversion from this topic - is at best ill considered and naieve and at worst the work of a troll and mean spirited in the extreme.

Now that I have written this, I will prob discover that post is a troll. Oh well - you all well know my thoughts. :)

mona_b
October 27th, 2005, 09:29 PM
All my cats have been indoor cats.The only time they are allowed out is on a harness and leash.And that's only in the nice weather.I also have a cat that has been deaf since birth.Do you think I would actually let him out to wander?Heck no.He wouldn't last out there.Even though they get time outside(not in cold weather)They enjoy the indoors much better.And they have never tried to sneak out.

A friend of mine moved to a town that has a VERY stricked cat law.All cats MUST be licenced.Raoming cats WILL be picked up.They made a kitty run for Tootie.She has the grass to play in and all her toys.

Gazoo
October 27th, 2005, 09:50 PM
my kat HAS to go out or the little bastid sprays in the house!! :mad:

I also really and truly believe that quality of life is more important than quantity when it comes to people AND pets. Carpe Diem!!

I think I'd probably rather slash up than be kept caged in a house...day in and day out!!! :D

huskypup
October 28th, 2005, 10:54 AM
This is an interesting thread, and can show how different people from different countries have different veiws about animals.

In the UK, 99% of cats come and go as they please, we have 4 so to be 5 cats and all of them are indoor/outdoor cats, one of them will only go out when put out and one only goes out in the dark, but I would never dream of keeping them in.

If you walked a cat on a lead and harness in the UK you would be laughed at, I have one cat who is nearly 20 and yes he does kill the odd bird, but as someone says cats are natural predators and it is in their nature to kill - not nice I know and if I do see mine do it I shout at them.

But like the responsible pet owner that I am, I also go round the front gardens of my neighbours on a daily basis and clean up after my cats as I do my huskies if they go to the toilet while out walking.

I work as a RSPCA volunteer and I know that they do not recommend keeping any animal solely in the house.

I live in the country with badgers and foxes etc and we have never lost a cat on one of them.

Just my opinion - interesting thread.

Jazz&Cricket
October 28th, 2005, 11:17 AM
Last year we moved from a small city to 160 acres of rural bliss. :) We have 2 cats and 4 dogs. The FIRST thing I did, was build an 80 x 60 fenced area for the dogs, no roaming around without supervision. Rex ( a former feral kitten..now cat) and Lucky (the dumpster find) are both indoor cats. Rex loves to sit in the window watching the comings and goings of birds, etc.

I like to have lots of birds around (keeping the bug population to a dull roar) so I don't want the cats 'hunting'. That being said, they both do a reasonable job hunting the unfortunate mouse who manages to get in.
We also have a great number of raptors (hawks, owls, eagles) and foxes, wolves, raccoons, etc. so I don't want my cats being 'lunch' either.
We are considering building a 'covered run' from a basement window to access the yard (away from the dogs) during the day. That will give the cats the opportunity to be outside...without the dangers of being outside.
My 2 cents...keep them inside, they are just fine.

Schwinn
October 28th, 2005, 12:05 PM
My opinion is if you live in the country, and you want to let your cat roam, that's fine, but if you live in a suburban neighbourhood, that's just ignorant. I'm tired of the cat crap in on my lawn, my wife's cats going nuts when the neighbour's "outdoor" cat comes to the windows (especially at 1 am!), and the damage to my screens as it tries to get my wife's cats, and the muddy prints on my freshly waxed cars, or the scratches where the little idiot either mis-judged it's jump, or was scared by something and tried to get traction. Now, when I see it around the house, I let out Daisy in the hopes it'll stop coming around. I've tried talking to people in the nieghbourhood, and in thier selfish and self-centred way, "Oh, it's just a cat!". Well, you know what? You aren't going to pay for my car, or my screen, or go to my job for the day when I'm tired from being woken by the cat, who scared my baby and I had to try to get back to sleep. I've now got a two-stage approach. If I have a cat that continuously comes in my yard, I attach a note to the collar, "Next time I catch you cat, you can pick him up at the SPCA". And then if it is still a problem, I borrow my buddies humane traps they use to relocate problem racoons, and I take them to the SPCA. Sorry, but unless you'll be okay with my pitbull running around your yard, keep your damn cat in your own yard! (yes, this has been an issue for us lately. Can you tell?)

As for letting them outside, Cheryl takes her cats outside, but they stay in the yard. Not only do I think that's okay, I think it's a good idea.

StinkyT
October 28th, 2005, 12:45 PM
I have very strong opinions about outdoor cats. If you live in the country or have lots of acreage then I am not at all opposed to someone letting their cats out. However, my aunt lives in the country with very smart farm cats and they too, were taken by the coyotes.

If you live in the city and have neighbours around you, I am very, very, very opposed to you letting your cats out. My parents' next door neighbours' cats were outdoors and it stank! Our gardens were dug up, both our front and backyards had yellow patches of grass and piles of crap on them. ALL THE TIME!! We'd see the cats all over our yard. They'd fight in our yard, mate in our yard and have litter after litter of kittens in our yard.

We also had a wooden fence separating the properties, they had taken to crapping on the support beams that lie in the middle of the slats. I took out the ladder once and saw as far as the eye, nothing but crap on the fence. We tried talking to our neighbours about it and they were just trashy people. But whether you love your cats or not, you can't control them.

I have my own place now and the neighbours across the street have an indoor/outdoor cat. My cats like to sit on the front windowsill and look outside. Occasionally I'll hear hissing and banging noises, it's the other cat coming to actually attack my cats on my cats' territory! My very laid back, very indoors cat will then try to get out to go fight (even though she's done nothing but live like a queen her whole life and probably wouldn't be very good at fighting).

I know people think cats are "wild at heart" and need to go out, but you need to be considerate to your neighbours too. THEY didn't ask for a cat to roam on THEIR properties when they bought the house. THEY don't want to have to clean up after YOUR cats. Besides, how many times have you driven out in the country and seen a little dead cat on the side of the road? It could've been your cat.

scuba0095
October 28th, 2005, 01:21 PM
I dont think you can compare letting a dog loose to a cat loose. I have a dog he is 80 pound german shepherd he has the ability to take out a human man women or child (NOT THAT he ever wood just to know that he has the power to do that) NO cat can do it and when have you ever heard of someones child being put in the hospital because the neibours cat attacked him and savaged his face? Also dogs will FORM PACKS if allowed free range they will make friends form packs and begin attacking ANYTHING including horses donkeyies sheep goats and sometimes even people (usually children). (I LOVE Dogs i have one and am getting more) but im sorry having something that powerful on the loose and comparing it to a 10 pound house cat is just silly. When you are walking threw the woods happen to have a cat cross your path im sure most of you will smile maybe even call the cat over but if you happened to have a 100 pound rottie or shepherd cross your path with no owner im sure not many of you will react in the same happy manner. Another thing is dogs will also attack and kill other dogs. YEs cat fights do happen but they are not usually fatal unlike dog fights. Cats are also MUCh smarter then dogs when it comes to being outdoors. NOT always but many times they are. Cats wont chase cars and a cat is not stupid enough to go and attack a porcupine or a raccoon. Im not saying cats are smarter but when it comes to being outdoors they are. They know their limits and wont do something silly like attack a buck deer and then get its head smashed into the ground or have its face lacerated by a badger.

CyberKitten
October 28th, 2005, 01:22 PM
Just had to add this cautionary tale from the news (http://www.pets.ca/forum/showthread.php?p=189347#post189347) to this thread since it is quite relevant and delineates why cats need to be kept indoors!!!

Huskypup, I did notice that in England (and many parts of rural Ireland - less so in Dublin), it is accepted that cats can go outside. It is one of those cultural differences - quite interesting.

Prin
October 28th, 2005, 01:34 PM
Rural Ireland is not the ideal place to use as a role model at all... No offense CK, but ALL, and I mean ALL of the dogs I saw while I was there for 6 months (I was in the south) were ALL beaten, underfed, abused, or just basically in very, very poor health. Every dog. In the towns or on the farms. I didn't meet one well cared for doggy. It was so sad. I think I wrote already about the dog near my office who you could only pet on the head because his body was so swollen and sore from the beats. He was consistently tied up to a wall with a 1 foot chain. I wish I had met just one shiny, healthy, happy doggy there. Just one.

Schwinn
October 28th, 2005, 03:26 PM
I dont think you can compare letting a dog loose to a cat loose.

Absolutely I can. I don't want your German Shepard sitting on my car either.

Gazoo
October 28th, 2005, 04:31 PM
My opinion is if you live in the country, and you want to let your cat roam, that's fine, but if you live in a suburban neighbourhood, that's just ignorant. I'm tired of the cat crap in on my lawn, my wife's cats going nuts when the neighbour's "outdoor" cat comes to the windows (especially at 1 am!), and the damage to my screens as it tries to get my wife's cats, and the muddy prints on my freshly waxed cars, or the scratches where the little idiot either mis-judged it's jump, or was scared by something and tried to get traction. Now, when I see it around the house, I let out Daisy in the hopes it'll stop coming around. I've tried talking to people in the nieghbourhood, and in thier selfish and self-centred way, "Oh, it's just a cat!". Well, you know what? You aren't going to pay for my car, or my screen, or go to my job for the day when I'm tired from being woken by the cat, who scared my baby and I had to try to get back to sleep. I've now got a two-stage approach. If I have a cat that continuously comes in my yard, I attach a note to the collar, "Next time I catch you cat, you can pick him up at the SPCA". And then if it is still a problem, I borrow my buddies humane traps they use to relocate problem racoons, and I take them to the SPCA. Sorry, but unless you'll be okay with my pitbull running around your yard, keep your damn cat in your own yard! (yes, this has been an issue for us lately. Can you tell?)

As for letting them outside, Cheryl takes her cats outside, but they stay in the yard. Not only do I think that's okay, I think it's a good idea.

Wow....

take a valium man...lifes too short too worry so much about little things like this ;)

Shamrock
October 28th, 2005, 04:36 PM
The indoor/outdoor debate is always interesting and widely varied in viewpoints. It's of course an individual choice to be made, for all the reasons stated.

My own experiences:
-My lovely indoor cat was accidentally let out. His mutiliated partial remains were found the following morning. Didnt make it through one night.

-This Feb, my sister's outdoor cat was killed by a coyote. They chased it down when they heard the awful screams. and it dropped it, but his neck was broken.

-My daughter and I have long had the indoor/outdoor disagreement regarding her two cats. She felt that they should be free to roam..it what cats "do". They've been doing this for six years, she said... they are "street-smart".
The last time she saw one of them was on the first day of school last month.

Three cats that found the great outdoors to be fatal. :sad:


Aside from issue of those who resent other's felines, in most areas and cities, letting a cat roam free is playing "Russian Roulette" with it's life, imo.

StinkyT
October 28th, 2005, 04:45 PM
All this time we've been discussing wildlife and cars being a danger to the cats. What about the pissed off people who leave out poison to keep cats off of thier properties?

LM1313
October 28th, 2005, 06:11 PM
Well, I can see both sides of it. On the one hand, an indoor only cat is protected from so many perils--dogs, wild animals, other cats, cruel people, disease. On the other hand, wouldn't humans also be much safer if we never went outside? But even someone who doesn't have to go out is unlikely to be convinced that they should stay indoors all day every day to cut down on the risk of being mugged, getting in a car wreck, etc.

My family has always had indoor-outdoor cats and they do enjoy things that inside cats never do . . . hiding in the leaves, rolling on concrete, eating real live catnip plants in the sun. Some of them have had outdoor problems--Dr. Who, despite being neutered, got in a lot of fights and eventually went blind in one eyes when he was scratched. When he got old, he would become disoriented trying to cross the street and eventually he had to be put to sleep. But he could never have become an indoor cat . . . It wasn't in his nature. (Once we had to keep him indoors for a month for some medical reason--probably his eye. My God, it was horrible. You could feel the resentment emanating from him and all he did all day was lurk by the door, waiting to try to escape.)

Some indoor-outdoor cats are more at risk than others; it just depends on the cat. The late Muffy and the current Phantom are outdoor cats, but never leave the property. Ever. Muffy was dumped at six months and never wanted to leave her new home after we took her in. Phantom is just extremely paranoid of the world at large. And we have a dog who keeps any wild predators away from our yard.

I'm glad Muffy was and Phantom is an outdoor kitty because shutting them indoors wouldn't protect them much more than they already are. And Phantom is much less stressed outside than inside, where she gets frightened of things like rugs and doors.

My own kitties, Remy and Booster, are inside cats because I live in an apartment, so they don't have any yard to consider their "territory" and would certainly wander off the property. Plus there are lots of houses with "beware of dog" signs around, plus stray cats, and I don't want them getting into fights or being chased.

~LM~

kayla
October 28th, 2005, 06:19 PM
All this time we've been discussing wildlife and cars being a danger to the cats. What about the pissed off people who leave out poison to keep cats off of thier properties?

Is that legal?

xFire Angelx
October 28th, 2005, 06:43 PM
sure its cats instincts to hunt and roam but can they not have things to hunt inside their home?
my cat baby before his accident was a hunter he would kill any mouse, rat, bird, mole, snake, squirrell that he could get his paws on... his nickname was the great white hunter you couldnt keep him inside for more than a night and then he was what we're guessing hit by a car and now hes terrified of the outside
i think back before his accident and ask myself
now im sure if he FULLY knew all of the dangers outside if i could communicate with him some how and tell him full on that people in this world hunt down cats and torture them because they can or they poison them because they dont want that animal using the bathroom in their yard or they are too busy using the phone in their car and hit the poor animal then see the poor thing hobble off and assume that because its walking its ok then drives off
im pretty sure that he wouldnt want to go outside if he knew that... and what i just listed are just a fraction of the dangers out there
if you were at risk of things like that and you didnt really know about those dangers yet your mother let you go and do them... wouldnt you concider your mother irresponsible? letting her child go outside and play where its dangerous and where her child could easily be killed and tortured?
i regret ever letting my cats outside
i am their mother and even tho its a cat and not a human i am responsible for that animal and to let them go outside with those dangers is in my opinion ignorant
sure they may know to look both ways before crossing the street like baby did but how does he know to not walk up to people when they try to pet him because they might kill him?
how can a cat see a car coming around the corner really fast and get out of the way in time because the idiot is drunk?
how can a cat get away from a pack of wolves?

StinkyT
October 28th, 2005, 10:20 PM
Kayla, I'm not sure about the laws in Canada, inadequate as they are. I do know that you can be charged with such things as animal cruelty, but unless you leave your business card at the scene of the crime or someone spots you, how would they know who it was?

Haven't we all heard about the hot dog chunks stuffed with rat poison in one of the Toronto parks a few years ago that killed a few dogs and sickened others? Nobody was ever caught. I'm sure there are also a lot of cases people don't hear about... how easy would it be to leave a dish of food out with something toxic in it? We've all heard the warnings about how yummy antifreeze apparently is to dogs and cats, so please keep it away from them... if you were angry enough about roaming animals, there are so many easy ways to "permanently fix the problem".

I'm not advocating any of the above, I would be devastated if it happened to my pets, but you know there are deranged people out there who do these kinds of things.

kayla
October 28th, 2005, 11:25 PM
I guess I was wondering about the legality of it because I know it is legal to shoot a dog if it is after your livestock. And I think it is illegal to let your pets on other people's property, so I wondered if they also had legal rights to poison any cat on their property?

On a different note.. I was curious as to how people kept their cats inside during the summer months? I for one love to have windows and doors open during the summer, so how would you prevent your cats from getting outdoors? I guess you could put screens up on the windows, but what about doors? Most cats can jump baby gates right? Do people just not leave their doors open?

xFire Angelx
October 28th, 2005, 11:47 PM
in my house we have a screen door that you can close when you have the sliding door open and we have a screen door we would have closed if the front door is open but im sure there are neat tricks people do to keep their cats inside if they didnt have a screen door
im gonna google and see if i can find anything on that... if i find anything i'll let you guys know :)

xFire Angelx
October 29th, 2005, 12:29 AM
this is what i found for a sliding door http://www.petscreen.com/secure_order.htm
i also found this you can put in regular doorways
http://www.secretscreen.com/
im not sure if a cat could squeeze between the doorframe and the edge of the secret screen but im sure there are ways to stop a cat from being able to do that
hehehe found this site as well with a retractable screen door http://www.wizardindustries.com/homeshow2004.html heres pics of it

100%doglover
October 29th, 2005, 02:19 AM
I VERY strongly believe cats should not be allowed outdoors. It's just so irresponsible to allow your cat to affect the ecosystem by killing birds and small mammals. How many cats are allowed to roam? The numbers are overwhelming..... http://www.abcbirds.org/cats/predation.pdf

Also it REALLY irritates me that my darling neighbours 3 cats have started using our sun room roof as their litter box, soooo nice to be cleaning up their poop. We've caught them in the act so we know it's them. It's also very nice that they are using the sand boxes that kids are playing in as their litterboxes, nice!

And lastly, it's just not safe for the cats.

cutiecherise
October 30th, 2005, 09:43 AM
My black kitty cat Tragic was an indoor/outdoor cat.
(Not because I wanted it that way, but because I live with my grandmother and she is unreasonable! It's her house, her rules.)
She dissapeared in April, only days before a vet appointment to update shots, advantage for fleas and get rid of the tapeworms she had picked up from eating goodness knows what!!! See? Not good!

Cats shouldn't be outside unsupervised.
They kill things, pick up parasites, and worse get hurt and lost.
It happens ALL THE TIME~!

I also love birds, and hate to see them die at a kitty's claws when they don't even need to eat that bird!
So I'm pro indoor and outdoor only when supervised.
Start em young! They'll be happier kitties! And you CAN change their habits, but it takes work and patience! And cat proof screening!

Gazoo
October 30th, 2005, 09:54 AM
I also love birds, and hate to see them die at a kitty's claws when they don't even need to eat that bird!

From a Darwinian perspective; in an environment with no predators doesn't the outside cat serve some role in strengthening the bird population?!?

Our outside cat in Calgary, in a new community, also brings home a mouse every couple a weeks

I may be in the minority but I'd much rather have a cat outside than an evil filthy little rodent around or worse ...in my house ;)

Lucky Rescue
October 30th, 2005, 10:09 AM
From a Darwinian perspective; in an environment with no predators doesn't the outside cat serve some role in strengthening the bird population?!?

No. In nature there would never be such a huge concentration of predators in one small area. Also, truly wild cats do not prey on birds so heavily, since birds are difficult to catch, the reward is small and it wastes valuable energy stores the predators needs. This also applies to feral cats in our neighbourhoods - the look for easier prey like rodents, or raid garbage.

Well-fed pet cats are the biggest predators of birds, since they don't need them for food and can afford to waste energy stalking and killing them.

Our outside cat in Calgary, in a new community, also brings home a mouse every couple a weeks

I hope you deworm you cat often, since mice are usually infested with parasites your cat will catch.

Prin
October 30th, 2005, 11:57 AM
From a Darwinian perspective; in an environment with no predators doesn't the outside cat serve some role in strengthening the bird population?!? Cats who kill for fun and cats who kill for food would select completely different birds. And the cats would need a predator too if you want survival of the fittest. These house cats are getting energy on the side- that's not Darwin. That's like saying "Give the cheetah steriods and see if the gazelles can out run him then!" You know what I mean? A cat who has tiny birds and mice as their sole energy source will be much slower and catch way less prey than the ones who go home and get to eat 500kcal of food.

CyberKitten
October 30th, 2005, 01:27 PM
I may be in the minority but I'd much rather have a cat outside than an evil filthy little rodent around or worse ...in my house ;)

Seriously, you must live in a 100 yr old house or a very dirty one to have rodents. I know not one neighbour or friend who has seen a rodent in their homes. It is very unusual in an urban area unless someone is very unclean and their premises draws rodents and insects.

And I am with Lucky. I hope your cats are up do date on their deworming meds as well as other vaccinations because eating rodents is a great way to come into contact with all manner of disease.

That has to be the worst excuse yet I have heard for allowing a cat outdoors!! (Unless you live on a farm and want feral cats for your barn but a barn in Calgary? I think not).

xFire Angelx
October 30th, 2005, 03:25 PM
just a quick question....

if you have rodents in your home wouldnt you want to keep the cat INSIDE so the cat can catch the rodents that are in there?
why let the cat out and let the rodents get comfortable in your home?

LM1313
October 30th, 2005, 03:45 PM
Seriously, you must live in a 100 yr old house or a very dirty one to have rodents. I know not one neighbour or friend who has seen a rodent in their homes. It is very unusual in an urban area unless someone is very unclean and their premises draws rodents and insects.

And I am with Lucky. I hope your cats are up do date on their deworming meds as well as other vaccinations because eating rodents is a great way to come into contact with all manner of disease.

That has to be the worst excuse yet I have heard for allowing a cat outdoors!! (Unless you live on a farm and want feral cats for your barn but a barn in Calgary? I think not).


My parents have mice outside and their house was built in the 50s or 60s . . . and the yard and house are definitely clean! My mom's rather obsessive about cleaning, actually . . . ;) The mice live in the woodpile by the fence and in the neighbor's garden. Also, my mom puts sesame seeds out for the squirrels . . . well, you can guess who sneaks them!

Phantom does catch mice occassionally, which is great. It always bugged me on the Tom & Jerry cartoons how you were supposed to sympathize with Jerry. Yeah . . . poooor little mousie spreading the hantavirus everywhere.

Regarding birds, I was reading something interesting on a website about crows the other day. Crows eat eggs and nestlings, but if you drive the crows away from an area, the number of small birds eaten does not go down because the birds/eggs that would have been eaten by crows are just eaten by other animals, like raccoons and skunks, instead. In our area, having a dog or cat in the yard probably results in less birdie deaths in that particular location since it keeps the wild predators out.

Cats who kill for fun and cats who kill for food would select completely different birds. And the cats would need a predator too if you want survival of the fittest. These house cats are getting energy on the side- that's not Darwin. That's like saying "Give the cheetah steriods and see if the gazelles can out run him then!" You know what I mean? A cat who has tiny birds and mice as their sole energy source will be much slower and catch way less prey than the ones who go home and get to eat 500kcal of food.

That's true . . . the cats are at "full power" all the time. On the other hand, there are bird feeders everywhere around here, so the birds should be at full power too.

I'm amazed Phantom ever catches anything anyway. She learned her hunting methods from the dog as a kitten, so her technique is to sneak a little ways, then break into a run while fifteen feet away . . . :rolleyes:

~LM~

Prin
October 30th, 2005, 05:02 PM
Seriously, you must live in a 100 yr old house or a very dirty one to have rodents. I know not one neighbour or friend who has seen a rodent in their homes. It is very unusual in an urban area unless someone is very unclean and their premises draws rodents and insects.
I missed this before- I have to say I know a very upscale apartment building in Montreal with a full time maintenance crew and somebody on the 9th floor had mice in their apartment. Rodents are everywhere, whether you are clean or not.

CyberKitten
October 30th, 2005, 05:13 PM
If you are clean, you do not get rodents unless it is in some unusual circumstamce. A wood pile would be that tho I have to say I have a woodpile but not a rodent in site. It's prob too cold, lol One of the greatest accomplishments of public health in this century is that we have managed to live in areas without rodents. Loathe as I am to cite personal anectodes, I know of not one person or family with rodents. Well, maybe some who live in substandard housing but that's it. Even in Florida - where the heat would encourage little furry creatures more than the frigid white north, people have ways of ensuring their homes have nothing. (and I do not mean of the feline persuasion, lol) To be sure, farmers I know have field mice and some ppl I know have rats or mice as pets but that's it.

Anyway - this is soooo offtopic, lol I just do not see keeping cats as mousers in 2005 as a legitimate reason. (Unless one is a farmer and feral cats need a place to say and even then I worry about the cats - I'd hope the farmer would feed the cats and not just assume they can live on the rodents alone!)

Prin
October 30th, 2005, 05:14 PM
Does "rodents coming in for the winter" count as unusual circumstance?

Gazoo
October 31st, 2005, 12:37 PM
If you are clean, you do not get rodents unless it is in some unusual circumstamce.


Clean or not has nothing to do with it. Mice will migrate into homes when it gets cold outside.

Mice are a successful scavenger species and are everywhere in most every city, you just rarely see them if you're not looking. My cat brought home a few a month in the beltline in Calgary.

Now that we live in a new community near the outskirts of the city he brings home even more!!

jessi76
October 31st, 2005, 02:19 PM
Clean or not has nothing to do with it. Mice will migrate into homes when it gets cold outside.

exactly. My house is emaculate, and we still get a few mice in the winter. In fact, the mice that come into the house are the only ones my cats will go after. They have NEVER killed anything outside, but when my youngest cat was 7 months old, she caught her first mouse in the house. (ironically, she left it under the xmas tree for us!)

jesse's mommy
October 31st, 2005, 02:27 PM
Makes for an interesting Christmas morning.

Prin
October 31st, 2005, 02:33 PM
I'm jealous... My dogs never get me anything. :o

jessi76
October 31st, 2005, 02:52 PM
Makes for an interesting Christmas morning.

Judging from the trail of blood throughout the house, I thought Santa was seriously injured.

Schwinn
October 31st, 2005, 02:56 PM
If you are clean, you do not get rodents unless it is in some unusual circumstamce.

Actually, the latest statistics show that due to an improvement in the socio-economic statistics of rodents, they are now moving to upscale neighbourhoods, and sending thier young to better schools, as well. :rolleyes:

The only pre-requisite for a mouse in your home is a place for them to migrate from (fields), and a way in (pretty much any space that could be as small as 1 inch).

As for the neighbour's cat not being "that big of a deal", my wife originally felt the same way. Then after a few nights of having to try to put a crying baby back to sleep because of a screaming cat outside the window, and pricing new screens, she, too, changed her mind. And when it comes time for Gracie to play in a sandbox, I'm sure it'll really become more of a big deal. I always laugh at the cat-lovers who don't see what the big deal is, then when they have children, and have to start smacking kitty "tootsie-rolls" out of thier hands while they are playing in the sand box, suddenly thier tune changes. It's all about consideration for your neighbours.

As to letting cats outside in general, I think it is nice for kitty to get out and play. I just think it is completely ignorant to let your cat roam the neighbourhood at large.

Prin
October 31st, 2005, 03:12 PM
Ya, my great aunt's cat has a leash and is tied up outside. She's quite lumpy so the harness stays on quite well, and she's been doing it since she was little, so she knows the drill.

BoxerRescueMTL
October 31st, 2005, 03:38 PM
We have neighbors in the next building over who have about 5 cats and let them roam everywhere.

1) There are ALWAYS dead mice everywhere, my friend stepped on one. I almost stepped on one this morning. My dog tried to eat one, thankfully he was onleash and I was paying attention.

2) A few weeks ago, they posted signs around the neighborhood because one of the cats is missing. They still haven't found it.

3) My cats are indoor cats. In the summer, they sometimes sit on our balcony (we are 3 story condo building on the 2nd floor.) They cannot get off our balcony. One day, I look out on my balcony and one of the neighbor's cats is "visiting" my cat. Fast forward a few weeks: My cat has HERPES!!!!! This virus is extremely contagious (to cats only) and very common in cats. Most cats are just carriers of the virus, like our neighbors cats. Now my cat has to live with this disease. He has a huge growth on his eyeball which is NOT comfortable for him. He has to get about twelve different drops A DAY in his eyes = no fun for him. Hopefully the growth will get smaller soon. We have had 5 appointments with a very expensive opthamologist. Our vet bills are at $900, and our cat will need these meds for the rest of his life.

This is not an uncommon situation. Our vet says that MANY cats carry this virus. Our neighbors cats are still out roaming and spreading herpes. Fabulous.

Lucky Rescue
October 31st, 2005, 03:52 PM
Our neighbors cats are still out roaming and spreading herpes.

Not only that, but also deadly FeLV and FIV. Many battle scarred intact toms harbour these diseases, then spread them through fighting or mating.

Beaglemom
October 31st, 2005, 03:55 PM
There are many dangers out there for roaming cats. When I was little, we had some indoor/outdoor cats. I can't say any of them lived to old age. Ever since then we have had only indoor cats. One of our indoor cats got out one day and my neighbour found her on the side of the street with a broken pop bottle next to her. Someone had taken it upon themselves to brutally kill her. We were all devastated. Our present cat is strictly indoors and is not allowed out unsupervised.

SOS MIOW
November 5th, 2005, 02:14 AM
My opinion on the indoor/outdoor issue is simple. If you are in a relatively safe area (rural, semi-rural or quiet suburban), I see no problem provided the cat is spayed/neutered and up-to-date with vaccines (delousing on a monthly basis will also be necessary).

Re the 'sandbox' issue .... when I was growing up, both cats and dogs used to run around off-leash and I don't remember every getting some horrible disease from playing at the park or in the sandbox.

There was no 'stoop & scoop' bylaws back then, and we just watched where we walked. We were also careful not to eat the 'yellow' snow ...... :D

chico2
November 5th, 2005, 08:14 AM
Oakville is actually infested with mice this year and we've always had mice in our shed,where we keep birdseeds and stuff,even after putting the seeds in big plastic-buckets.
We also had mice in the walls of the house this summer
,my house is not dirty,but older(like me :D ) They are now luckily gone,Vinnie caught 3 but he does not kill them,so it's up to us to put them outside.They are kind of cute....
We still have them in our shed and it would not bother us,but they make nests and chew wires in the snowblower and lawnmower etc..they keep Vinnie busy when I take the cats out.
As for birds,seeing my cats only go outside with me or hubbie,we make sure they do not catch birds or jump the fence.I have 3 birdfeeders and I love birds.Rocky can lay in watch for loong periods,pretending he is hunting...be he only ever caught a frozen stiff Mourning-Dove :D
As for roaming cats,we don't have many here,but I wish people would take better care with cats and that we would have a by-law prohibiting roaming cats.It's difficult when you see a cat out there,you don't know if they are strays or not,if you should catch them or not.Of course if the cat looks scraggly,or wounded I would have to try to help him.
This morning I saw an orange tabby chasing a squirrel up a tree across the street,I hope he has a home,looks very young,so I'll keep an eye out for him.

Gazoo
November 5th, 2005, 10:17 AM
There was no 'stoop & scoop' bylaws back then, and we just watched where we walked. We were also careful not to eat the 'yellow' snow ...... :D

and it built character too.....not to mention good reflexes... :D

gonementally2da
December 9th, 2006, 08:05 AM
i guess i can understand whose who say they only let their cats out while they are out with them and only in their own yard. but as for others even those with "curfews"! what about the neighbors you have in the surrounding blocks who have to deal with YOUR cat getting into their stuff. cats roaming the neighborhood can only cause problems. it's inconsiderate to allow your cat (or dog) even the possibility of causing a problem to your neighbors. i can't stand having to deal with the neighbor cat who just always appears in my yard and on my doorstep! it just makes my "boys" go crazy and makes my trash end up with holes in it and strewn around. and these views aren't even touching on the risk the other replies have already said (and rightly so). i am a strong believer on not letting ANY pet roam, it's inconsiderate to the neighborhood and dangerous to the pet. why would any responsible pet owner allow this?:confused:

Dogastrophe
December 9th, 2006, 09:56 AM
My perspective as a home owner in the city is as follows: cats should not be allowed to roam outside. Not only do you risk your cat getting injured due to car strikes, fights with other animals, etc, an outdoor cat can easily be a nuscience to your neighbours (digging in their gardens, crapping in yards, stalking birds near bird feeders).

In recent years, there have been several roaming cats, with collars, in my neighbourhood. When they come into my yard, and my dogs see them from the other side of the window, my dogs go nutty, which disturbs my peace and quiet and also prevents me from letting my dogs out until the cat goes away.

People who used to live up the street from me would let their cat out on the porch on a leash so he could enjoy the fresh air and sun. A roaming cat came along and got into a fight with thier cat, who in a struggle to get away, lept over the bannister rail (with leash and collar still attached) and, if not for the collar slipping over his head, would have hung himself. Hurt and scared, their cat took off for days before they were able to find it. This all happened because someone just opened the door and let their cat out for the day.

Our pet by-laws state that no pets are allowed to roam at will but for some reasons cats always get a pass. Surely my dogs would get a pass if I opened the door and let them both out to wander the neighbourhood. :pawprint:

dtbmnec
December 9th, 2006, 10:07 AM
The closest my cats have been to outside is on a leash with a harness...

That and Leo last night decided to explore the area where the A/C used to be before we got the screens back in....One loud "CAT!" with a hand heading towards him sent him flying across the room looking at us like we were monsters....crazy cat...He's fine...just insane...

If I lived way out in the middle of nowhere I might let my cats out, but again only under certain conditions (ie I was out with them or whatever). I wouldn't just be like "Go! Find yourself a female to hump and pretend to make babies with! Enjoy! Don't stay out too late!" O.o that would just be wierd....they have curfew after all! lol

Prince used to be let outdoors...but Prince is now a sad cat...last I had seen him he was so overweight that he couldn't climb up the back of the couch...:( If I could have I would have taken him but Greg (the owner, ex roomate) wouldn't have any of it...that and his gf loves Prince too...Greg just overfeeds the damn cat! :frustrated:

Megan

Angies Man
December 9th, 2006, 11:18 AM
I used to live "in the country." There were deer, opposums, squirrels, raccoons, skunks, and dogs & cats that people would drop off in my neighborhood--I lived next to a large natural dairy farm (not a feedlot.) All of my land was in Douglas Fir woods and had a perimeter fence that would keep my dog in. I enjoyed my robin families, the occasional eagle, the hawks, the sparrow, the mountain finches, the swifts, and the jays. (I left an area of blackberries as a food source for them.)

I didn't appreciate the starving, feral cats who squalled at night and hunted the birds in my woods. My friend down the way, didn't tolerate stray or feral dogs harrassing his dairy herd.

I had dogs, that stayed in the house most of the time. I've never been a cat person--they don't appeal to me.

I tried live traps, got some nasty bites and scratches, and occasionally caught a skunk.

I considered these gone feral former pets as alien species, they don't do anything but cause harm to the environment. It's too bad that the coyote pack in the area (you'd hear them off in the distance at night) couldn't keep the population under control. I can tell you how they are dealt with out in the country--it involves a .22 caliber rifle--known as a 'varmit' gun. It's unfortunate, but legal in most rural areas, because irresponsible people think that their former pets can somehow fend for themselves in the wild.

I guess now that I live in a suburban neighborhood, I think of other people's pets the way I think of smokers. I don't want cats, other's dogs, or cigarette butts in my yard.

Angies Man
December 9th, 2006, 11:27 AM
Back in the 80's I had a Great Dane that absolutely hated cats!

One day he got one of the neighbor's cats (in my fenced yard)--I caught him on the second shake and made him drop the cat immediately. The next day there was a rather angry woman on my front porch cursing me and my dog because her cat had been badly injured and had been put to sleep.

I suggested that she sue me and told her to get off my porch before I called the police and filed a trespassing complaint. Of course, she didn't sue me.

I thought it was pretty awful, really. People who let their pets roam, however, shouldn't look to blaming others, or be surprised, when their dog or cat comes home (or doesn't make it home) injured.

LM1313
December 9th, 2006, 12:30 PM
It depends on the cat and the kind of place you live.

When I was six years old my family took in a stray cat who was about six months old. Muffy was an indoor-outdoor cat and never left the property. At all. We lived in a neighborhood with nice neighbors who would definitely have talked to us if they had problems with our cats, not shot them or poisoned them. There aren't any coyotes or owls in our area. Several neighbors were retired and would have seen anyone trying to break into our yard (in which case Muffy would have hidden in the bushes anyway, I'm sure.)

We had a second cat at the time, Dr. Who. Dr. Who did NOT stay in the yard. He roamed a lot, despite being neutered. He also would get into occasional fights. However, he was very streetwise in the sense that he was aware of cars and would carefully look both ways before crossing the street. Dr. Who ended up losing sight in one eye due to a cat fight (a blood vessel burst in it, turning it completely red). Later in life his sight began to fail into his other eye due to old age and we put him to sleep, as that was a kinder option than allowing him to get lost or hit by a car.

Obviously being outdoors was much more dangerous for Dr. Who than for Muffy. Dr. Who wouldn't have been happy indoors, though. He drove us all crazy when we had to keep him indoors for two months after he lost his eye. He would spend all day, literally all day, lying in wait by the door, trying to escape whenever someone went out. He liked us, that's why he moved in with us (after he died we learned he had belonged to neighbors several blocks over and just left them!), but he liked being outside more.

Now, my sister lives in a neighborhood where every single person on the block has a cat except her (I keep telling her she should get one!) They're all indoor-outdoor cats. None of the cats fight . . . I guess they're mellow or used to one another. No one in the neighborhood cares if there's cat poop in their flower beds because it could be from their own cat, for all they know. It's also a very quiet, safe neighborhood which has next to no traffic. It's in the middle of the city and has no predators. In that type of neighborhood an indoor-outdoor cat would be fairly safe, IMO. Not 100% safe, but nothing's 100% safe. I do strongly feel that indoor-outdoor cats should be neutered/spayed as soon as possible so that their hormones don't start kicking in, which would make them more likely to roam.

My own kitties are indoor-only, but I take them out for walks on their harnesses. I firmly believe that getting outdoors in some manner, whether it be on a harness or in a kitty stroller, is a privilege cat owners owe their cats. It DOES improve their quality of life to get out in some way, shape, or form. In addition, my cats are no longer freaked out by common things like the wind blowing or leaves rustling, so if they did accidentally get out, they would hopefully be able to take a sensible course of action, like hiding under a bush, instead of panicking and running at every little movement and sound.

chico2
December 9th, 2006, 12:37 PM
Angies Man,WOW,that was pretty harsh:sad:
Even if you hate cats,they are living beeings,they hurt,they get hungry and have as much right to live as any other creature.
I agree NO cat should be roaming any more than dogs should.
I love my cats,I would never expose them to cat-haters,busy roads etc..my cats are my responsability nobody elses.
Most feral cats are unfortunate,abandonned animals,abandonned by ignorant people and they will do anything to survive.
I too have a problem with a neighbor cat,my cats go crazy when they see her in their backyard and we have to disrupt what we are doing to shoo her away.
The very best,would be a spay/neuter,no roaming cats by-law,but it will never happen:frustrated:

gonementally2da
December 9th, 2006, 12:45 PM
[QUOTE=LM1313;332455]It depends on the cat and the kind of place you live.

wait until you have a new neighbor move in to the area who isn't as "understanding" as you all are (and it will happen eventually) then what? is the whole neighborhood going to show respect to them and keep their pets in. i seriously doubt it, then you are the problem neighbor for them. animals on leash is a law all over and the fact that it isn't enforced doesn't mean you don't have to follow it. all of us pet owners HAVE TO BE RESPONSIBLE for our animals and you aren't truely responsible when your pet roams. i don't mean to sound harsh but the law is in place for a reason.:sorry:

joeysmama
December 9th, 2006, 01:26 PM
My neighbors have cats who are allowed outdoors on loooong leashes in the nice weather, and they check on them frequently. One of my neighbors walks her cats on a leash occasionally. The cat next door got out and when they found him he was stuck in a thicet of weeds and dead brances. It took some doing to untangle him. If a fox, or a coyote or owl had found him before his humans did it would have been a tragedy.

I'm not prepard to say that no cat should ever feel fresh air on his face--but for safety's sake, I think it should be extremely supervised.

TeriM
December 9th, 2006, 01:46 PM
Just a note to people who leave their cats tied outside. Unless it is in a very safely fenced yard it can be very dangerous unless you are right there. The cat cannot escape if it is tied up and a dog or other predator comes after them. I had a siamese cat that I used to let outside on his leash but only if I was right there with him. My current cats are both indoor only cats (sometimes on the deck in summer).

chico2
December 9th, 2006, 03:54 PM
I can feel the joy in my cats every time we take them outside,they can chew grass,climb trees,try to catch birds(I won't let them)and just be cats.
All my cats I have ever had,have been trained not to jump the fence,we always started with a leash and harness,but eventually just a collar,still we always have to watch them,especially Vinnie.
Hubby,now retired takes them out twice a day,but with the cold they don't stay out long.
I have talked to the owner who's Calico beauty comes in to my backyard,this one is a new one,her other Calico got killed on the road and she still lets her new young one out on her own,I just don't understand:sad: "one gets killed there are plenty more where she came from"seems to be her motto.:evil:

LL1
December 9th, 2006, 04:36 PM
It is very dangerous.If you love your cats,please keep them inside or build a safe enclosure for them to play outside in.

Angies Man
December 10th, 2006, 12:56 AM
Angies Man,WOW,that was pretty harsh:sad:
Even if you hate cats,they are living beeings,they hurt,they get hungry and have as much right to live as any other creature.
I agree NO cat should be roaming any more than dogs should.
I love my cats,I would never expose them to cat-haters,busy roads etc..my cats are my responsability nobody elses.
Most feral cats are unfortunate,abandonned animals,abandonned by ignorant people and they will do anything to survive.
I too have a problem with a neighbor cat,my cats go crazy when they see her in their backyard and we have to disrupt what we are doing to shoo her away.
The very best,would be a spay/neuter,no roaming cats by-law,but it will never happen:frustrated:


I don't hate cats. Really. I cried when my best friend's cat (Patches was a very nice house cat that never went outside) had a stroke and was put to sleep. But, it's a fact of life in rural areas around towns and cities that feral pets are a problem--people think that since cats and dogs were predators 10,000 years ago, they can revert overnite. Instead, they starve, get in trouble, harass livestock, and kill songbirds and other wild animals.

Feral ex-pets aren't cute or cuddly, and are usually unadoptable. You all mostly think nothing of setting bait or a trap for a cockroach, mouse, or a rat (they're called 'pests'.) I'm only saying that in rural areas around towns and cities, feral pets are pests, just like rats and mice--and it's a fact of life that country folks have jobs, and kids, and pets of their own. And chores feeding cows, horses, sheep, & chickens when they get home (and little time or patience to deal with the dropped off refuse that irresponsible pet owners deposit in our neighborhoods.) I had a choice, I guess, I could let the feral cats alone and have them clean out my woods of valued companion wild birds, I could let them live under my house and tear up the crossover heating duct and the floor insulation, I could let them tip over my trash cans and spread garbage all over my yard, I could allow the unvaccinated offspring of former pets expose my dogs to disease; or I could get rid of the vermin that my city neighbors dispose of in my neighborhood.

Maybe it is harsh from your point of view. It's the way things are done in the country.

Prin
December 10th, 2006, 01:14 AM
I considered these gone feral former pets as alien species, they don't do anything but cause harm to the environment. It's too bad that the coyote pack in the area (you'd hear them off in the distance at night) couldn't keep the population under control. I can tell you how they are dealt with out in the country--it involves a .22 caliber rifle--known as a 'varmit' gun. It's unfortunate, but legal in most rural areas, because irresponsible people think that their former pets can somehow fend for themselves in the wild.

I guess now that I live in a suburban neighborhood, I think of other people's pets the way I think of smokers. I don't want cats, other's dogs, or cigarette butts in my yard.I'm sorry but to post that on a board, that you know by now, is full of hard core animal lovers- including a bunch who DO trap and alter ferals- that comment was a little uncalled for.

A gun and coyotes are not the best ways of controlling a population- neither is feeding the birds.

Sparrows for one ARE an alien species, taking over and diminishing the populations of other birds in the area. Blue Jays are bird killers. Seems to me, your ecology is based on what is pretty, rather than what is practical to the surrounding ecosystem.



On a side note, not sure if this was mentioned already, but some places (like PEI) have a feral neutering program. It's worth looking into if they are a real problem. And hey, if it is a problem and there isn't any organization, why not start one? Seems to me that would be a lot more proactive than sitting on your porch shooting them, mumbling, "Dang cigarette butts," when you hit one. :frustrated:

jiorji
December 10th, 2006, 01:55 AM
Feral ex-pets aren't cute or cuddly, and are usually unadoptable. You all mostly think nothing of setting bait or a trap for a cockroach, mouse, or a rat (they're called 'pests'.)

firstly, feral or stray ex pets ARE friendly and adoptable. I don't know where you get your facts from. My cat...an ex feral, is the friendliest cat i've EVER met. She couldn't me more of an "apartment" cat if you tried. Also, her father, a feral cat who used to be someone's pet(he got abandoned when someone in the neighbourhood moved) ALSO very friendly. I was able to pet him and rub his belly. Ferocious indeed!

secondly, roaches are gross. Wild rats and mice are animals that resemble our domestic mice and pet rats BUT they carry diseases! That being said, I can guarantee 95% of the people on this board will look for alternatives on trapping any stray rats or mice that entered their home.

Frenchy
December 10th, 2006, 02:01 AM
My cat was picked up from the streets of Montreal. He's the best cat ever. He loves people and dogs. If someone should get destroyed it's certainly not the ferals, it's the people who let these cats homeless and uneutered .

TeriM
December 10th, 2006, 02:10 AM
I guess now that I live in a suburban neighborhood, I think of other people's pets the way I think of smokers. I don't want cats, other's dogs, or cigarette butts in my yard.

So I guess you better hope that your dog doesn't ever accidently get lost and happens on someone who shares your opinions. It is one thing to not like cats (although cats are generally very good judges of character) but to actively condone your actions on this board is just inviting a thread closing argument.

erykah1310
December 10th, 2006, 03:00 AM
Seriously, you must live in a 100 yr old house or a very dirty one to have rodents. I know not one neighbour or friend who has seen a rodent in their homes. It is very unusual in an urban area unless someone is very unclean and their premises draws rodents and insects.

I am actually slightly offended by this, how can you seriously believe that rodents only go into "very dirty" houses? Try living in the country! Mice, rats,chipmunks and squirrels FIND WAYS IN regardless. Now, rats were here because of our chickens. mice ate the left over food from the coop, as it got colder outside these animals feel the chill and head to warmer temperatures. REGARDLESS OF THE CLENLINESS! The just want warmth.

As far as the cats outside or not, Its NO safer for a cat in the country to be wandering around... at all! Think, other cats, coyotes, cars, disease! There are 4 great examples for an outdoor country cat to experience death and suffering. Mine do go outside, on harness while im there, a few of them are great at sticking around the yard and come when called so they do not have to be harnessed, they follow us around as though we were the pied piper or something, chasing bugs, mice,butterflies and what ever else may move. I would never ALLOW them to roam.
But then again I treasure my cats and their lives so I guess I just watch out for them a bit more than others may.:shrug:

jiorji
December 10th, 2006, 03:17 AM
I am actually slightly offended by this, how can you seriously believe that rodents only go into "very dirty" houses?

i think that it's inevitable to eventually get a mouse if you live in a house. especially if you have a garden, a birdfeeder, other pets. It's easy for them to make their housing there in the garden and feed off the bird seeds and well they're curious....they will wonder off in the house when winter comes looking for better winter housing. It's not always that someone has a dirty house. In some cases that is true, but not always. :shrug:

My mom is a clean freak and we had a mouse sneak in the house we used to live at before, and my only explanation is that it snuck in through the vents. And we had a bird feeder outside in the yard.

chico2
December 10th, 2006, 07:34 AM
I am one of those silly people,who believe non-cuddly,not so sweet animals also have a purpose,a right to live..
As for mice,we've had them in the house(last winter)even though we have 3 cats:frustrated: and my house is not dirty,at least not most of the time.
We have 3 different birdfeeders,we love to watch our birds and I realize they also bring other creatures,but as long as they are outside,I don't really care.
Cockroaches gives me the willies and if I found even ONE,the house goes up for sale:D
We have some very heroic wonderful people here,who try to right other peoples wrongs,by rescuing and rehabilitating"feral"cats,understanding that these poor cats are not feral by choice,but by heartless,evil humans choice.
I would LOVE to live in the country,but part of that priviledge would include to do no harm to any animal I share habitat with,excluding roaches:D

Blathach
December 10th, 2006, 09:00 AM
This thread has run its course and will now be closed.