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From: Silvia ( -68.46.179.210)
Subject: Re: keeping cats indoors
Date: August 9, 2011 at 11:27 pm PST

In Reply to: keeping cats indoors posted by Leslie on August 9, 2011 at 5:38 pm:

Hi Leslie,

I love cats but unfortunately cannot have them inside because I am allergic. Everytime I come across one that comes around my house I am so happy and put food out and even one time bought an expensive cat "igloo" for her to stay in when it's cold. She was a neighbors cat and wasn't feral, but the neighbors didn't care about her - I seemed to take better care of her than they did! I know all animals have different personalities so maybe he is just a "wanderer" type. But from what I know about dogs and other animals, if you train them when they are very young, maybe keep the kitten inside until she is grown and then allow her to go outside, starting with restrictions like trying to keep her close, then maybe you can keep them from wandering away. {I think about that story about how they train elephants with a 10-foot (or whatever size) rope then after a while they remove the rope and the elephant still stays within that perimeter, or those videos with dogs where the owner removes the screen from the screen door so the dog can walk right in but the dog still stays outside until they open the door because he has been trained to only come inside when they open the door.} So I think your best bet would be to get a young kitten and train her to be inside first and then let her out after she knows her home is inside. My brother had a cat that was inside for a couple of years before they moved to larger house with a yard and the cat NEVER wanted to go outside! I guess that's because she was raised inside from the beginning - like it would be difficult for a cat that was raised to go outside whenever he wanted for two years to now be inside.

When I had rabbit companions, there were times that I felt SO guilty that they lived indoors I didn't have somewhere for them to run around outside and play in the grass (this is when I was living in an apartment and didn't have a yard), I even cried about this thinking I was denying them something that they needed, but the more I thought about it the more I think they had the best life they could being inside because they were litter box trained and were free to roam around the house and there were no predators to kill them and they were not exposed to any parasites that could have made them sick and they didn't have any opportunities to eat anything poisonous, etc. What I fear most with cats though is that with all these crazy people and kids in the world who have no respect for cats and do terrible things to them, it sickens me to think that they could wander off and be captured by one of these monsters. I just read a disturbing article about what a man did to a cat and I am not even going to repeat it. I am not saying this to scare you because while these things do happen they are rare - I truly think your cat is safe and if he doesn't come home, he most likely went back to the place he came from or the area he was previously familiar with. When I was younger, before I found out I was allergic to cats, my family had a cat that we raised from a kitten and when they found out I was allergic, my parents too him to a shelter MILES away. Somehow he escaped and found his way back home! It was unbelievable! If you had a cat that was two years old for only one month, perhaps he needed more time to think of your home as his home - he has lived two years elsewhere and maybe wanted to go back to his original home? Aside from rescuing an animal, the ideal situation would be to raise an animal as young as possible so that they can be trained. While it is possible to train an older animal it just may take more time and patience.

Peace~
Silvia



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