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When I was younger we always let our cats go outside. After losing I don't know how many to cars and other dangers I don't let them go outside anymore. Been reading in some books about cats (yeah I'm a nerd) that more and more people aren't letting there cats outside anymore either. What do you do and why?

kmdskit3 8 Feb 27
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If you have a safe yard, IE fenced and dog proofed, the cats spend their first few months at least indoors, they are only allowed out when you are home, and NEVER left out overnight, it's OK. Oh, also must be a yard where they will never cross a road. Never had a problem using these guidelines.

Druvius Level 7 Feb 27, 2018

My cats are indoor cats. They don't seem to care if they go outside or not. I am glad they don't really want to go out side. Down here in Arizona we have coyotes, wild dogs, coati mundi, snakes, lizard and javelinas. Not counting all the nuts on the street.

Eirteacher Level 7 Feb 27, 2018

I have 8 cats currently. One of them has been an outside cat all his life and he just loves to explore the neighborhood. He lives in our garage and goes outside every day. The other cats, however, never go outside because they don't know their way around the neighborhood and are just kittens. Our outdoor cat is our oldest, he was an outdoor cat and he pretty much came with the house we had so he came with us!

Buy a house get a cat. How can I sign up for that program?


We tried to raise indoor cats, but the cats had other ideas.

In one way their goign outside is nice because they prefer to use the "outdoor litter box" more than the indoor one.

snytiger6 Level 9 Feb 27, 2018

I keep mine indoors - reasons 1. they won't get lost 2. they won't get hit by a car (or killed in some other manner) 3. they won't get fleas 4. they won't catch a disease I did have an indoor/outdoor cat a long time ago that was killed by a car 😟

LizBeth Level 7 Feb 27, 2018

They can still get fleas. Happened to me. Fleas can come in on your shoes. Miserable buggers.

@RavenCT OH NO!

It's horrible to see one of your cats killed by a vehicle.

@LizBeth I was so shocked. Now I know how to check for fleas! (A damp paper towel rubbed backwards against their fur will show blood from the fleas casings).

@kmdskit3 It's horrible to see anyone's cat killed that way. I've seen it happen to both cats and dogs. And just not going there with mine. Even though I live on a dirt road in the middle of nowhere.

@RavenCT That is the way I feel....never again. I was living in a very rural area when I lost my kitty....I thought she would be 'safer' since we were not in the city.... but sadly, that was not the case.


My cat was indoor/outdoor until I moved to the desert. Even then, she was let out occasionally. Now, she's indoor only because she's over 16 with absolutely no survival skills because I destroyed her ability to "cat". If I had it to over, I'd let her out more.

PhoebeCat Level 7 Feb 27, 2018

I have not let my cats out, ever. 1) I am allergic to flea bites and 2) if anything happened to them (cars, and other dangers, as you mentioned) I would be beyond distraught. My Sophie loves to look outside at the lizards and birds - Cat TV - and since she can't tell me herself, she's always been, and always will be an indoor kitty. She's well-kept, and well-loved, and safe.

poetdi56 Level 7 Feb 27, 2018

'Cat TV' I use the exact same phrase! 🙂 Yeah, it's hard enough when your cat dies from old age. It's even worse when something else kills them.


When I was living in the city, I let my cats out. A couple got killed by cars, they roamed the neighborhood. After Hurricane Katrina, I moved north to the boondocks where there are raccoons, fox, coyotes. The cats I had when I moved in stayed inside. I didn't want them to be prey for the wildlife. I adopted a stray about 9yr ago. He got to be an indoor-outdoor guy after I won his trust. He almost didn't make it back one day a few years ago. The vet said it was something the size of a German Shepherd or a coyote. His claws were bloody and one of the canine teeth of the animal who attacked him, had punctured his rear leg all the way through. He is now a strictly indoor cat. I've seen other cats in my yard once or twice and they have disappeared. Please, spread the word, "Cats cannot survive in the woods, they become prey for other animals." If anyone has a cat they can't keep anymore, tell them it's more humane to bring the animal to any shelter. I'll get off my soapbox now.

I'm glad to hear your former stray made it back!

It's only more humane to take a cat to a "shelter" if it's a no-kill shelter, organization that fosters, etc... Many "shelters" are more like death row for cats.


Indoors. Rabies is endemic here and coyotes, bobcats are common, to say nothing of roaming dogs (usually pit bulls) and folks with guns who have zero qualms about shooting domestic animals. Also, as a vet, I've seen way roo much leukemia, FIV, FIP, etc... Each brings a horrible death.

I've raised three feline generations inside so far. The house is roomy and full of enrichment for them. My last cat lived twenty years that way.

Zster Level 8 Feb 27, 2018

For the first six years of her life we lived off grid on an old disused 5 acre quarry backing onto a forrest of eucalypt mainly inhabited by birds and snakes and fronted by a small industrial complex accessed by a cul de sac. For a very short period a shopkeeper at the furthest end kept a wild dingo that I sometimes caught malevolently looking at us with intense yellow eyes. It was last seen chasing a car exhaust that obviously smellt like its mother down the main road. Prior to its arrival she roamed the whole area which was bounded by a 20000 car per day highway. She obviously had more sense than to go on it. She travelled with me when we went to festivals in Nellie Thebus. Lived in a shared house with two other blokes after I was the one run over and then travelled 1200 kilometres to where we now reside. Firstly in a house with walled and gated garden. The latter I would leave her locked in but return to find her perched atop a pole having a 4" square platform waiting watching for me to come through the side passage. She then shared a 6 units complex with five other retirees. There she was not allowed out without supervision as I feared the main interstate highway with 2000 hgv passing every day. Our current location has enclosed yards and she has never shown inclination to jump the fences and go exploring - just sleeps most of the time, outside included.

The sunshime I'm told is good for them, their fur creates vitamins or something such from it - probably an urban myth - I simply cannot be bothered checking. It has never harmed her but I note that she cannot stand the heat like she used to.

FrayedBear Level 9 Feb 27, 2018

Vitamin D from sunshine is an urban legend. [pets.thenest.com]

@ailurophile Thank you for checking and mythbusting on cats synthesising vitamen D.

@FrayedBear: You're welcome. I remember being told that, too. Thankfully, I've found some reliable sources of cat information online, like the Cornell Feline Health Center: [www2.vet.cornell.edu]


Indoors only.

Because we have coyotes, bears, raccoons, dogs, and people who drive too fast.
Also Lyme ticks.

Outdoor cats in other countries I'm OK with - some places are safe enough. Not here in the US. Too many predators - and those include humans.

Given some good perches - windows - toys galore - they are just fine with being inside. And you can always create vertical space.

RavenCT Level 9 Feb 27, 2018
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