While some cats are perfectly fine with living indoors, others are little escape artists. If you live in an area where it's hazardous for your cat to run around outside, or you don't want your cat going outside in general, you can keep your cat safe by making some changes. There are also helpful steps you can take just in case your cat's escape attempts are successful. By making the right moves, you can protect your cat no matter what.
Why do cats want to run away?
Are your cats escaping on a regular basis? There are a few reasons why this might be happening. First, if you have a male cat, he's going to have an urge to get out of the house and mate with a female cat in heat. This is especially if he's not neutered. Unaltered male cats usually spend more time outside and are more likely to run away.
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On the other hand, if you have a female cat, they might escape when they're in heat to find a male cat. And if your female cat is pregnant, they may sneak outside to find a quiet place to give birth.
Another reason your cat is an escape artist is that they have natural hunting instincts. They want to get outside and explore. They might be bringing in dead birds or mice, which is normal, but also not safe. These animals could be carrying diseases that harm your cat.
If you have a new cat or your cat suffers from anxiety, they could be going outdoors to get away from whatever is causing their suffering. Plus, your cat could be finding an escape route because they're curious; they want to go outside, look around, and get some fresh air.
Thankfully, there are a number of ways you can address these issues and make sure your cat is secured. Here are some tips.
How to stop an indoor cat from escaping
If you spay and neuter, your female or male cat will be less likely to try and escape. When you adopt a cat, typically, they will be spayed or neutered already. Spaying and neutering can help curb the cat population and ensure there are fewer cats roaming the streets.
Your cat may want to get outside, so you can purchase a leash and harness and take them for a walk. Another idea is to get them a window perch or a cat hammock so they can hang out by the window and soak up the sun's rays.
Make sure you keep the front door closed at all times and have an additional barrier. A high gate or fence can prevent your cat from leaving. If you have visitors, tell them about closing the door and leave a note for them as a reminder.
Your cat may be escaping because they're bored. If you give them stimulation, they won't feel the urge to get out. You can purchase a litter box and scratching posts, a cat tree, and cat toys to keep them occupied.
What if you can’t stop cats from running out?
Cat owners may be baffled as to why their cats are escaping. They might not be able to stop this cat behavior. If this is the case, then at the very least, it's important to make sure a cat has a microchip. They should also have a collar and tags. If they get lost and someone finds them, they'll be able to identify them and bring them back to you.
It's crucial that your cat is up to date on their vaccinations as well, just in case they interact with an animal with rabies or other cats that are sick. These vaccines can protect them from getting sick and possibly passing away.
You could install a cat door or cat flap if you want to let your cat out at certain times of the day. Make sure you lock the door or flap when you don't want your cat going outside.
While some cats are perfectly fine with living indoors, others are escape artists. Cats love to find different escape routes and go outside. You can spay or neuter your cat, stimulate them with toys and scratching posts, and more. That way, you'll be sure to keep your cat safe while enriching their life at the same time.