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Cats - Adaptable?

March 24th, 2004, 02:23 PM
The question is are mature cats adaptable to new environments. I have a 10 y/o neutered tom and I was wondering if he can become a totally indoor cat. He has never used a litter box and has had a cat door to come and go for all of his life. I am moving and would like to take him with me but am worried about him not adjusting to the total change of lifestyle. The big city is no place for an outdoor cat because of traffic and racoons. I would rather give him away than watch him pine inside to be let outdoors and couldn't handle it if he were to get out and never be found again.

Lucky Rescue
March 24th, 2004, 03:04 PM
Yes! Cats are very adaptable. In fact I find older cats MORE adaptable than young ones.

Older cats mainly want to be with their person, while young ones want to "get out there!"

Take your cat with you. Get him a nice cat tree or perch near a window so he can look out. Get him some toys and play with him. Keep his litter box clean.

Senior cats should NOT be outside anyway - they are too vulnerable to many things, including attacks by other cats when they cannot win a fight. They are slower and can easily be caught , injured or killed by dogs.

We just rehomed a WILD cat who had been outside his entire life. Not only is he using his litterbox faithfully, he has shown no desire to go back outside.

Rehoming a 10 yr old cat is doable, but he'll be much happier with you, and MUCH safer inside.:)

March 26th, 2004, 11:55 AM
Thank you Lucky. I was hoping that was the answer. Would it be a good idea to start keeping him inside now, a month before I will be moving to see if he can adjust? Will that be to hard on him in this environment, his old stomping grounds. I am as attached to him as he is to me and those were my thoughts too, that he would rather be with me than someone else, especially since I am the only person he allows to pet him, the old fusspot.

Lucky Rescue
March 26th, 2004, 12:29 PM
Yes, start keeping him in now. He may cry at the doors and windows and bug you, but just walk away and ignore him, or get him some catnip and toys and distract him.

His going out all the time is just a habit, and he can get over it.

Right now I have in my house 3 ex-feral cats who were never in a house or touched by anyone in their lives. None go out now.

One of them did bug me for awhile, but he got over it.

You can always get a harness and leash and take your old guy to the park once in awhile if he really craves the feel of grass under his feet.

That reminds me, you can grow some grass in a pot for him to enjoy in his new home.:)

March 26th, 2004, 01:06 PM
One of the cats I had freaked out if we ever took him outside. He was only 6!

Catnip, catming and catgrass are great for cats. You can buy the seeds at gardening stores, and some even sell the live plants! Once you get one catnip plant, you can cut off of it and grow new plants from the stems once they've gotten roots on them!:p

March 28th, 2004, 05:26 AM
#1 I don't believe in having cats running wild in any city.
As for the age of the cat no problem. I would suggest setting up a cat box and if you have the room to do it set up a cat room for at least a week or two.
I have a large ranch style house and converted one bedroom into a CAT ROOM. It is fully carpeted and has cat trees, kitty litter pan, cat beds -scratching posts and toys. I also took the solid door down and hung a screen door so the occupants can have a view out into the rest of the house as well as the beneift of fresh air blowing through in the summer from an open screen window. (They love to sit in the summer breeze and sniff the bird and grass smells.)
Usually I keep the screen door open so they can come and go as they please however if I have to retrain one to proper kitty box etuquette or if I have a sick one I can confine and isolate, if necessary, them for easier medical treatment.
I also have two other kitty boxes in the house (one in the laundry room and one in the basement so if for any reason the CAT SUITE is off limits for training or sickness the other guys and gals can find "potty relief" in another littler pan. I have used this arrangement in other houses I have lived in and it works well in about any size house or apartment. My current house is about 4,000 sq.Ft. and completely dog and cat appointed.
Bring the old boy in and I am sure, like most of us old guys, he will appreciate you offfering of a warm place to sleep and reside as well as the usual ready access to food.
Cats will, by nature, tend to use a litter box so don't worry about that too much. If they can find it they will use it.(Wasn't there a movie titled "If you Build it - they will come" Same principle

March 28th, 2004, 09:34 AM
I think we have another ADDICT on our hands folks!!! Woodbyter...welcome to Anonymous!!! LMAO

You fit in very well here!!! :D And your very knowledgeable!!! How's the ankle btw??

March 28th, 2004, 04:23 PM
Thanks for asking, I'm still recovering and getting better each day. Still can't put any pressure on the ankle until the surgeon looks at it on 4-08. Then there are still three torn tendons to finish healing and that can takes month so I may graduate from wheel chair and crutches to a walker.
If it has healed properly and all indications are that it has I will be able to get back on my tractor and ride the range again--SOON.LOL
The biggest problem is going up and down stairs which if I stay out of the basement isn't a big thing but you know guys and basements-we love em like barns and pastures.LOL
I did get into my woodworking shop the other day and wheeled around with a vacumn cleaner and put a few tools up with my handy reachy grabby thingy.
I'm working 3 days week from home so I'm not eating up a lot of my sick leave. I had 600 hours saved up and only burning 16 a week. I can go back when I want to and they don't want me back as long as I can keep the analytical work up from home. Govt. does have it's good points...
The animals are getting used to my wheel chair and learning to dodge those big wheels. With a bunch of cats and long tailed dogs tails are a natural target that must look like road kill material as my wheel chair zero's in on them.