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Respecting our cats' nature
08-26-2014, 02:32 AM,
#1
SevenWays Offline
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Respecting our cats' nature
I sometimes feel guilty when looking at my cat. He is mainly an indoor cat, and at times I feel that I'm depriving him of a "normal" life. I know cats have been domesticated for thousands of year, but it still seems to me that we are forcing them to a life which is different from their nature.
I know I am providing him safety, warmth and love, but I can't shake the feeling he'd be happier to just fight for reproduction, stalk a prey, explore his surroundings.

I've gone to great lengths to find a compromise between keeping him safe and giving him a varied and interesting life. There are only so many things he can do in a house, and stretching out on the grass probably beats most of them. I started to take him out for walks. It would surely be much easier if I had a garden, I've seen the way people make those wonderful cat-proof enclosed gardens, but alas I live in an apartment.

Another thing I found useful was to understand their natural behavior. Knowing that I try to not get angry when he does something which humans perceive as bad, but which is actually natural for him. I make an effort not to force him to do things he doesn't want to do, and I leave him his spaces.

Perhaps I'm worrying too much, probably cats are much simpler creatures who just want to be well-fed and comfortable. What do you think?
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08-26-2014, 07:23 AM,
#2
evelynmcgregor Offline
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RE: Respecting our cats' nature
Even though cats started out as an outdoor animal, today they have a much longer and healthier life when kept inside. When allowed to roam, they suffer from " attacks " from cars, dogs, other animals, kids teasing them, ect. So inside is the place to be. Before the takeover of cars, when a cat was outside, the world was not as dangerous a place for them. When my grandson and daughter moved in with me, he let my cat our and he was run over and killed. So I lost my "baby" on the road.
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08-26-2014, 10:29 AM,
#3
MindyT Offline
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RE: Respecting our cats' nature
I would be so scared if my cats got outside. I would be afraid of a car hitting them or another animal attacking them. I have heard that many people take their cats out on a walk, but I don't think my cats would like it. I would never be able to get a leash around one, and the other one just likes to do his own thing. They get plenty of exercise in the house. They hunt inside my house too! They are great at catching all kinds of bugs.
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09-13-2014, 08:24 PM,
#4
helaofthenorns Offline
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RE: Respecting our cats' nature
MY three cats are indoor cats. I only let them out for a few hours, so they can run around and explore the great outdoors. I am afraid that they would get hit by a car or get lost. I also worry sometimes that another cat might bully them. Fortunately, ever since I got them, they haven't experienced any untoward incident. My cats know their schedule as well, so I don't worry about them too much. They would go home before lunchtime, and wait until the next day to go out. They are behaved that well. When they bring "gifts" such as dead rats and birds home, I just let them. As long as they don't eat those things, I don't get scared so much.
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09-14-2014, 02:45 AM,
#5
klarson Offline
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RE: Respecting our cats' nature
My cat was born outdoors under my neighbor's car. The rest of the family scattered, but he moved himself into my family's driveway and just stayed there. We ended up taking him in when winter started setting in and he showed no signs of leaving. Despite technically being an "outdoor" cat, he adapted to indoor life really well. A few years ago, he got out of the house, got a couple of steps out the door, looked around, and walked right back in the house. He knows which side his catnip's buttered on, haha.
That said, it's definitely good to read up on animal behaviors to understand why your cat does the things he does. You sound like a very conscientious pet owner.
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