Indoor Cat Vs. Outdoor Cat?
Indoor cats. Outdoor cats. A little bit of both. Believe me, this is a debate that’s been going on for years and years and todayWe’re gonna tackle that sucker. Let’s get catifiedHey, everybody, Cat Daddy here, JacksonAnd yeah, we’re gonna get into some murky waters today the whole indoor outdoor cat debateThis is not something that’s gonna be resolved overnight and let’s get to both sides of what the problem is. On one sideYou’ve got well our cats healthier when they’re outside meaningbehaviorally healthieryeah, they are when cats are able to hunt when they’re able to forage when they’re able to just discover the theProblem-solving nature’s of being the raw cat they are more grounded in cat mojoIt’s what I call raw cat mojo, that’s where it happens when nature throws you a curve ballYou learn how to adapt and that is historically, you know, where cats got their mojo. Nowthat’s one side of things. The other side of things is safety. Nowwe know that cats who are outdoor only with a much shorter life thanthe ones that are indoors only. Indoors only have a lifespan on the average of about 14 to 15 years. If they’reOutdoors only two to three years. Are you kidding me? That’s a huge differenceIndoor outdoor will fall in between but you’re still talking about a shorter life if they’re going indoor/outdoor. So that’s the problem. Cars are the problem. Disease is the problem. Fights between cats that can spread that disease,that’s a problem. Birds of prey-huge problem. Bigger predators, nasty people, I can go on and on. That’s what shortens the life of a cat who goes outside. So, where do I fall on this whole thing? I think cats should be indoors. Hey, listen, I’m selfish. I’m selfishI want my cats to live a long time. I don’t want to worry about where they are at nightI don’t want to hope that they’re smarter than a car. It’s plain and simpleSo that’s where I stand and I’ve spent most of my careerGiving you guys ways aroundThe Mojo that might be lost with cats being indoor only. That includes mimicking the hunt catch kill eattechniques that you see in my play or what we feed them or the schedules that we keep so the cats can retain theirRaw cat rhythm. I have a whole book on that kind of techniqueSo I’m trying to make it work for everybody and to keep cats alive at the same time. Ok, that’s done. Now we’re going to talk about you. You could either be sitting there agreeing with meyou could be cursing me at the moment or you could be somewhere in between. I do have a favor though to ask you ifYou are going to let your cats outsideThis is what I’d like you to do. Number one first and foremostMake sure that your cats have proper ID. That’s a tag in a collarMake sure that the collar is a breakaway the kind of it gets snagged on a fence or something like thatIt’ll just come apart as opposed to strangling your catBut that being said make sure your cat is microchipped. Only two percent of cats who arenon-microchipped make their way back home when they get lost. Number twoMake sure you have the most incredible pictures of your cat that you can get. Full onSo you get the whole face. Body shot so that you can get markings. That way if your cat gets lost you get those flyersup there full-color flyers, big paper, reward. These are the ways to get your cat home. Number three, make sure that your cat has had all their basic vaccines. Pretty self-explanatory. Number four keep your cats on a schedule. Nowfirst of all, it’s not okay to just open your door first thing in the morning,let your cats go and then you go off to work. At least, not in my book,anyway. I want to see my cat’s home by sundownI want to make sure that I’m in control of their schedule and I’m not just hoping they come homeThat’s where stopping free feeding comes in. If you feed meals especially do it this wayyou can let your cat out in the morning if you got to but then make sure that they’re hungry so they come home whenYou call their name same thing in the afternoon. As I’ve always saidcats aren’t gonna just do stuff for you because you want them to there’s got to be something in it for them andFood is usually that’s something. Now I’ve told you guys what I’d like you to do if you’re going to let your cats outBut I’m gonna make one more case for not letting them out thereYou can still bring the outdoors in for your catsAnd here’s a few ways to do that: Number one a CatioIf you’ve never seen a catio before you should pick up a copy of my book, Catification, or my other design bookCatify to Satisfy. Kate Benjamin and I go through greatdetail about what you can do to bring the outdoors in for your cats and a Catio is a great way of doing this soIf you have an existing space like a screened-inPorch or something like thatYou can make it a lot safer with very little money and get your cats that experience of going outdoorsWatching the birds from there. Hunting little bugs or whatever come into that catioBut that way you’re still controlling the outcome of things. The second thing to try: harness training! NowI know a lot of you guys kind of laugh when I talk about harness trainingBut if you’ve watched My Cat From Hellyou’ve seen me train many many people and many cats howTo work on a harness. Now, not all cats are gonna want itBut if your cat is one of those cats that really wants to be outside all the timeThey might be okay being on a harness. It’s a step by step thingI go through that process in other places, I won’t do it right nowBut consider that. Again, the idea is that you have control over the outsideThe outside doesn’t have control over your cat. Another thing that you might not have thought of is cat TVMaking sure that you have things like bird feeders outside the windows so that your cats can look outside and sort of passively engage themselvesWith that sort of raw cat rhythm. To that end,Make sure that every window that looks out to the world has a bed in it, has a window box, has one of thoseledges that you can get for very little money that create anesting placefor your cats where they could just hang out all day long and watch the traffic go by watch the birds go by watch thefunny-looking people go byStay engaged. Finally, the last thing I’ll give you if you don’t want to do the catio and you still want your cats to be outside ifYou have a backyard you can use one of those systems that you’ve seen me use on my show many timesThere are cat proofingfences that you can have in the backyard some of which get attached to existing fences some of which arefreestanding that can come with you when you move and that’s as close as you can get to a win-winWhen it comes to safely letting your cats go outside. So there you have it the indoor/outdoor debateYou didn’t think I was actually gonna settle this debate here todayBut at least I’m shedding some light. In my bookYou keep cats indoors and if you can’t keep them fully indoors that you try tocompromise a little bit and keep control over the outdoors like with Catios and andFenced in ways of approaching your backyardAnd if you insist on the cats going outsideI gave you some tools for that as well at the end of the day. This is a parenting choiceYou make your choices make them wisely make them lovingly and what more could we ask for right?I want to hear what you guys have to say. Find me on Twitter. Find me on Instagram. Find me on FacebookJust find me and let’s talk this out. Shall we? All right until next time folks light, love, mojo to you. Meow