cats: indoors vs outdoors - the pros and cons

Australia
March 26, 2007 6:52pm CST
i've had pet cats pretty much all my life. the first cat i had we let outdoors during the day and night, when we got a second one, we put a curfew on both cats, keeping them indoors overnight. it turned out that both of them had FIV, or Feline Aids. both have since passed away and we recently got 2 kittens. we have had them vaccinated against FIV and the rest of my family are ready to let them outside. i'm not so sure... i think that while they're happy being indoors that we should keep them that way. so for all other cat owners out there - what do you think? do you keep your cats indoors or do you let them roam freely? is there a problem with FIV in your area?
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2 responses
@magikrose (5423)
• United States
27 Mar 07
I have neverheard of FIV but I can say that there are other reasons we decided to keep our cats as indoor cats. When we first decided to get cats the first thing I wanted was kittens so they could get used to my kids abuse. The we had to decide if we wanted them to be indoor or outdoor. I toldmy husband I wantedi ndoor cats because we live off of the main stree in our tiny town. I really dont want to have the risk of 1 or both of our cats getting hit by accident. Plus it would the kids more affeced if that happened, and we didnt want that. My husband understood and we decided that for the safety of our cats they were going to be indoor cats. There is special food that you can get for indoor cats to help them get the nutrients they need and there are plenty of toys and things you can get for them to play with. Honestly deciding to keep indoor or let out is like deciding to get them fixed or not in my opnion. The choice is yours.
• Australia
27 Mar 07
FIV affects around 30% of domestic cats in Australia. fortunately there is a vaccination and it covers the strain that we have here. you make a good point about getting run over. my previous cat was scared enough of cars to completely avoid them, but i don't know about these kittens. in the past, i've always had trouble keeeping my cats indoors - are yours happy inside? do they give you any trouble about wanting to go out? mine don't yet although that may be because they are still quite small (4 months old). i'd like to keep mine indoors, to protect them and also the wildlife. it's convincing the rest of my family that's the problem :P
• United States
27 Mar 07
I havent heard of FIV. I had a cat get feline lukemia but that is passed down generally from the parents. My cat is supposed to be an inside cat, But she sneaks out or tries to when my husband goes outside to smoke. Frankly i think it depends on the personality of the cat and your lifestyle as should it be inside or outside or combo. We own our property and in summer leave our doors open quite often, So we figure by summer our cat will be outside during the day, but inside at night because she loves to sleep with us. However i have had cats that were terrified of being outside and would panic and freak out if they ever touched grass. are your cats TRYING to get outside? I mean you open the door and have to push them back because they are trying to get ouside? If so, i would let them out, its only a matter of time before they go out anyway. Wheres if they are happy and content with being inside, keep them there.