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should cats stay inside for good?

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  • lnseagraves
    replied
    Speaking of immunizations with cats, I wanted to bring up the fact that if you have an indoor only cat you DON'T have to vaccinate against certain diseases. FIV (Feline Immunodeficiancy Virus) is an especially dangerous vaccination to give your furry babies as it has a high incident of actually GIVING the kitten the disease. A cat CANNOT get FIV unless it gets it from another cat. Best way to protect your kitty baby is to keep them inside.

    There are still some diseases (like rabies) that you still must vaccinate against, but there are a number that only outdoor cats need. And I think the fewer the vaccinations the better....

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  • chainsaw
    replied
    Should cats stay inside for good?

    I had 2 cats since 1993, our one cat (Socks)we just had to put down back on November 10th, 06 due to Advance Kidney Failure. They have always been indoor cats. The cat that we had to put down we got from a cat shelter when she was about 6 months old. The cat (Scarry) we still have, we actually found outside when she was just a tiny kitten, and she has been indoors ever since (will be 14 years old in October). Socks and Scarry didn't mind living indoors. They were NOT declawed. They loved to sit and look out the windows at the birds. The one house we used to live in had a nice big Florida room, and they just loved that, they had really big windows and patio doors to look out of. They would sit and chat with the birds outside. I am a beliver of keeping cats & dogs inside. I get very upset when I see these kittys and dogs that have been killed and laying in the middle of the road or beside the road. I think, someone's pet is dead. Yes, if they are going in and out of the house, they can catch diseases or illnesses (they need to be vacanated for certain diseases) , they can get fleas and ticks as well. They can also be attacked by wild critters too.

    I do miss my cat Socks. Scarry has since started sleeping in bed with us. She never slept with us until Socks passed away.

    Kim

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  • waterflow
    replied
    I used to have ducks and fed them the same time every day. There were 2 chipmunks that knew the time of day too so when I went walking to the pen or inside the pen they would run across my shoes. Almost stepped on them a few times but I think they are so cute when they stuff their cheeks as much as they can and then run. I feed them too. have one chipmunk by the front window in the flower bed. I put a fence up around it so at least it would ahve a better chance of surviving.

    Glad you found a great vet. Sorry about Cali passing. It's hard when you know they have to have surgery but you know they might not make it too. Animals sure can tug on your emotions.

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  • traceann
    replied
    You're right Mary - that's just heartless! The vet's office I go to, they are practically crying with you when something bad happens! When my Cali passed while knocked out for a procedure (she had a really bad abcess that was making her severely ill and her little heart was too weak...) they were more kind than I ever expected, I couldn't believe how wonderful they were with me, and somehow that helped...

    Oh I love my little chipmunks, lol. Everyone would tease me about them - I used to feed them sunflower seeds outside, and they got so friendly I could sit on the grass and they'd hop in my lap to get to the seeds. One little guy used to hear me on the walkway, hop out and sit and stare at me, lmao!!!

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  • waterflow
    replied
    I was thinking of the fainting goats too. Thanks for the tips on leash training. Never thought of all of them. Sure is lot more training with cats then dogs.

    I went one time to pick up my dog from a vet (which I wouldn't go to again) and a woman came in with a small box and her little dog that had to be put to sleep. THe woman at the counter (some nurses) asked if she wanted to be there and she said no. After the woman left the building those woman started laughing about it!! I feel awful guilty about not speaking up and saying something but I was trying not to cry myself. I think some people are just heartless even if they work at an animal hospital. Patches better not get my chipmunks.....I love those little guys

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  • traceann
    replied
    You know, I wasn't with Mr B (Bandit's nickname, lol) either, my husband at the time took him in for me, and the vet called and gave me the news - he wouldn't have even let him come home for that matter, would have been horrible for my little monster. It must be a vet thing with garbage bags, the vets out here do the same thing. I remember being in the vet's office I used to go to (I refuse now, just don't care for that one) with one of my brood and a woman came in to pick up her deceased kitty - she brought a pretty box and everything, they brought out her baby in a garbage bad - now the poor devastated woman was even more horrified and devastated, geesh! I was crying right with her...now, come to think of it, I had Bandit with me that trip and when I went back outside to wait for our turn (we sat in the car, too many pooches for kitty, lol) she came over to the window, we were still crying, and asked if she could pet him, oh my, I started crying even harder then!!!

    Oh, my little Cali was a great hunter - not great for the critters though, lol. When she escaped the house way back when, (I wasn't married to her "dad" yet) you could follow where she'd been by the little corpses - chipmunks and birds, bleck!!! A handy girlfriend of mine, bought a playpen at a garage sale (the kind with mesh sides, etc) and made a fabric "lid" for it out of the netting/mesh stuff as well. It was way cheaper than the ones made just for kitties, and her's loved it! I wish I could remember how she kept the "lid"on, I want to say velcro straps or something....

    Oh Jen, I got laughing so hard at Zues's story, that's hilarious, like those fainting goats, lol. Hmmm, he was probably thinking "oh no way humans of mine, I am not a common dog!" LMAO! As much as it kills me when they pass, they do bring so much joy and fun into our worlds don't they???

    GREAT tips Inseagraves!!! And I think my Freddie was too old for training (the one I tried the harness with), he just couldn't stand it. Bummer. Would have been fun! He's also the one who when I was outside, would sit at our front doors (French doors with all glass) and scratch at the glass in rhythm, not use claws but just keep up scratching, it was hilarious because his little pads of his paws squeaked on the glass, oh too fun.....

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  • lnseagraves
    replied
    Hey,

    For leash walking, I would really recommend a harness over a collar. Ruby pulls on her leash a lot or will start bounding after a bird or a leaf or something. A collar would choke her.

    To train her, we put the harness on her inside at home and then put her in the cat travel carrier and drove her to a park nearby. At the park, we attached the leash to the harness and put her on the grass. The first few times she was scared and kept making beelines to the car, but after awhile she got used to it as a treat. After 10 or so excursions, I can put the harness on her and walk her outside our home. I started far away so it was a TOTALLY NEW experience. She had "escaped the house" a number of times, and I didn't want her associating the leash with escaping or encourage her to keep doing that. Our method seemed to work. That said, she was only 6 months old or so when we started.....

    Now, she never tries to escape. As I said earlier she will actually grab her leash and sit by the door. (She also sits with her nose on the door if she can't reach the leash, itself). When we put the harness on her she sits really good and holds her right paw up, ready to put the leash over the paw and head. She also is purring the whole time. Sometimes, she'll also go and get in her cat carrier if we're leaving the house. Thats another hint that she wants to come and go for a walk somewhere...

    Some tips:

    1. When walking your cat, ALWAYS carry them over the threshold of the door to the outside. If you let them walk it themselves, they get the idea that they're allowed to and they're not allowed without you.

    2. First few times when putting the harness/ leash on give lots of treats and encouragement. Make it as positive a memory as possible.

    3. Make sure you have the right size harness, maybe measure kitty belly before you go and buy it.

    4. If using a collar, don't use a breakaway collar. Thats designed to break when pulled, which is great for kitty who gets stuck in tree... but not so good for kitty on leash that saw a neat looking bug fly by.....

    5. Keep kitty's personality in mind. Our cat is really social and loves doing whatever me and my husband are doing, so we walk her as a family. She seems to think of it as the whole family's out together... walking her just by myself hasn't been as successful. Contrarily, if your cat is shy, walk them alone in a secluded area. Less stress for kitty.

    6. Keep excursions short. It is stressful, even when theyre having fun.

    7. Don't drive far, driving is also stressful.

    Leave a comment:


  • Sarojini
    replied
    I had one cat, Zeus, when I was younger -- he was a silver-shaded Persian. I tried to get him to do the harness/leash thing, but every time I put the harness on he'd act like he was paralyzed... he flopped down on one side and pretended he couldn't walk. LOL

    Paddington will walk on a leash -- BUT we have to get a harness made for a small dog because even "large" in the cat sizes is too small... We don't take him for a walk often either. I've just used it if he is traveling with us for a long distance (like when we moved)-- if we stop, I put it on him and let him stretch his legs a little on a quiet grassy area.

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  • waterflow
    replied
    One of the dogs I had, had his kidneys fail too. The vet said he could do dialysis but he was having a breathing problem and was losing weight and the vet said instead of putting him through tests it would be best to put him to sleep. He was 13 years old. I always feel guilty about him. (His name was chubbs, was the fatest puppy but grew up to be the thinnest). All the other dogs we had someone was with them when they were put to sleep. No one was with him. I wanted to be there but my brother told the vet over the phone to put him to sleep. I was so mad and then when my brother brought Chubbs home they had put him in a garbage bag of all things! He was a pet not garbage.

    Bandit sure did sound like a character. Funny how they have their own little minds and actions. I will see if I can leash Patches. She has been wanting to go out but I don't want to let her out. I've seen where you can buy little cat outside holders but those things cost a fortune. At least with her inside the birds are safe. She was stalking one through the window. Not sure if the bird knew she was inside or he was just going "na , na, na na" at her on purpose.

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  • traceann
    replied
    Thanks Mary, Bandit (the 23 yr old) was the first cat I'd ever had. My poor little old man, I had to have him put to sleep as his kidneys failed completely, and the doc said he'd only have a couple weeks anyway and they wouldn't be good for him, so I had no choice. I was at peace with it though, as I knew it was just old age getting to him, still miss him lots though, my little "sassy face", lol.

    I tried to harness and leash one of my cats, but he hated it, lol. It's a 50/50 shot I think, lol. At least I tried! LOL, and couldn't get anyone to wear collars either, ugh. But I tried that too! LMAO! My Bandit (the one above) would run out the door - and just stop. Like "wait a minute - I don't want to be out here!" then he'd turn around and claw at the door to get back in! The funniest time was when he pulled that stunt - and it was winter, so there was snow! The look he had was priceless, couldn't get back to the door fast enough! hee hee!!!!!

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  • waterflow
    replied
    I was thinking about using a leash to walk her but thought cats were not leash trainable. Was it hard teaching her? Patches doesn't even have a collar so not sure she will let me put one on her.

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  • mary124
    replied
    When I had my cat many years ago, she was mostly an inside kitty, but every once in awhile, she would venture on the front porch. Wouldn't go very far.

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  • lnseagraves
    replied
    Hey,

    Like a few other posters, my cat is contracted by the breeder to be an inside only cat, although thats how I would have it anyway. Too many risks in my opinion having them outside.

    That said, we walk Ruby (my siberian). She has a little harness and leash. She's so cute about it that she will go get the leash and sit by the door when she wants out. (Just like a dog!!) She NEVER makes a run for it since we started walking her. However, she is only a year old and has never known different. It might be a hard adjustment to bring outdoor cats in, but its probably worth it in the long run.

    Leave a comment:


  • Sarojini
    replied
    That's funny; when we had Paddington fixed, we brought him to the vet in the morning, and picked him up after work that day so the vet could monitor his recovery for a while (that vet was excellent and I so miss her now that we've moved). Anyway, he was still out of it a little when we got him, and once home, he would just sit and sway a little and just kept purring and purring. LOL I guess he liked his pain meds

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  • meme
    replied
    I've never had a cat that had a period. They do calm down a lot though once they're fixed. When we brought Rosalita home after getting her fixed she was so out of it I laid her on the couch....bad idea...she tried to get up and rolled right off! I felt so bad. I hated to declaw her too, but she was killing my furniture. They keep their back claws so they still have some protection, although Rosie didn't need it! She hated everyone but me. I think that's why I like cats so much. If they let you pet them its b/c they really like you

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