Bringing Your Outdoor Cat Inside
Overcoming the Lure of the Outdoors
Although indoor living has many perks, the call of the wild can
be intense for some cats. Given the opportunity, these cats will attempt to
dash for freedom whenever a window is opened or a door is left ajar. Make sure
screens fit snugly in windows and cannot be dislodged by a persistent cat.
Dissuade door-dashing by drawing your cat away from doorways before entering
and departing your home. Roll a toy or toss a treat across the room to focus
kitty's attention away from the door. If there are children in your home who
come and go frequently, stage practice runs with your cat. Leave the door ajar;
if she begins to saunter out of it, startle her with a blast of canned air or a
spritz of water from the outside. If the outdoors proves inhospitable, it's
likely to dampen her ardor for adventuring. A backyard cat enclosure can
fulfill the fresh air needs of a hardcore outdoor lover while keeping the cat
and nature safe from one another.
By the time winter sets in, you'll be able to sit back and
enjoy watching the first snowflakes fly. Hildegarde will be napping on the
hearth, safe and warm and there to stay.
Jacque Lynn Schultz, CPDT
ASPCA Companion Animal Programs Advisor
National Shelter Outreach