15 votes

How Bad Is It to Let Your Cat Outside?

12 comments

  1. [2]
    Tygrak Link
    I am pretty surprised that everyone here is pro keeping your cat inside. Obviously if you live in an area with dangerous wildlife or in the middle of a city it's probably not a good idea, but if...

    I am pretty surprised that everyone here is pro keeping your cat inside. Obviously if you live in an area with dangerous wildlife or in the middle of a city it's probably not a good idea, but if you live in a safe area I think letting your cat outside is a good idea. And I can still see why everyone would do this, my last cat got lost after about 8 years ago now, she was about 9 years old I think and yeah it hurt - she was such a awesome caring cat, it was actually unbelievable how nice she was, especially compared to the cat I have currently haha, but if I imagine myself being a cat I would certainly want to have the freedom. Is that a good argument? I don't know. But if I was a cat I wouldn't want to spend most of each day alone in the house with nothing to do.

    9 votes
    1. Tau_Zero Link Parent
      It's not about protecting your cat from relatively dangerous things in the area, but the safety of things in the area from your relatively dangerous cat. Edit: I see some of the newer comments...

      but if you live in a safe area I think letting your cat outside is a good idea

      It's not about protecting your cat from relatively dangerous things in the area, but the safety of things in the area from your relatively dangerous cat.

      Edit: I see some of the newer comments you're referring to, about protecting the cat itself. Even if that's the primary reason for some folks, the environmental issue exists, so I'm glad the net result of keeping the cat inside is the same.

      4 votes
  2. [5]
    Comment deleted by author
    Link
    1. vektor Link Parent
      Also, last I checked nothing about the areas cats roam is natural anyway. My neighborhood isn't a "ecosystem" by any definition that implies ecosystems demand human non-intervention or...

      Also, last I checked nothing about the areas cats roam is natural anyway. My neighborhood isn't a "ecosystem" by any definition that implies ecosystems demand human non-intervention or protection(such as ecosystems that are in balance). Pet cats hardly ever venture into areas that are not substantially predicated upon human intervention anyway. Also, someone would like to have a word with the author over the argument that cats don't work as pest control. If urban bird populations are stable with cats right now (the article didn't make a case regarding that) then I'd say leaving the cats is the eco thing to do, or else birds will become a nuisance.

      7 votes
    2. [3]
      alyaza Link Parent
      the jury is still out on a lot of this, honestly. studies have definitely show that cats are major predators when introduced into environments that they're not native to, but how much of a...

      The article mentions two billion birds and twelve billion mammals killed annually, but what’s the context of those numbers? Are any species’ population numbers getting wrecked on a macro level? And on a micro level, how badly are local ecosystems disrupted by a psycho murderer cat’s twenty weekly kills?

      the jury is still out on a lot of this, honestly. studies have definitely show that cats are major predators when introduced into environments that they're not native to, but how much of a negative impact that has on the ecosystems of those environments seems to still be controversial. with smaller ecosystems they seem to absolutely have a negative effect and could potentially drive endemic species to those ecosystems into extinction (although to my knowledge they have yet to do this anywhere), but there just don't seem to be very many conclusive studies on that count (or with respect to larger ecosystems or networks of ecosystems).

      5 votes
      1. [2]
        cfabbro (edited ) Link Parent
        Invasive predators and global biodiversity loss

        could potentially drive endemic species to those ecosystems into extinction (although to my knowledge they have yet to do this anywhere)

        Invasive predators and global biodiversity loss

        Rodents are linked to the extinction of 75 species (52 bird, 21 mammal, and 2 reptile species; 30% of all extinctions) and cats to 63 extinctions (40, 21, and 2 species, respectively; 26%) whereas red foxes, dogs (Canis familiaris), pigs (Sus scrofa), and small Indian mongoose (H. auropunctatus) are implicated in 9–11 extinctions each (Fig. 2)

        6 votes
        1. vektor Link Parent
          Also regarding the part you quoted: If urban areas are the only remaining refuge of a species, that species has bigger problems than just cats: Humanity. That species is already lost, they just...

          Also regarding the part you quoted: If urban areas are the only remaining refuge of a species, that species has bigger problems than just cats: Humanity. That species is already lost, they just didn't get the memo. Conservation has to start before that point is reached.

          2 votes
  3. [2]
    NeonHippy Link
    I never allow my cats outside - but then, I live in an area where there are raccoons, coyotes, and even bobcats.

    I never allow my cats outside - but then, I live in an area where there are raccoons, coyotes, and even bobcats.

    2 votes
    1. Cosmos Link Parent
      Same here. Although I had one cat who had a tumor in his mouth and didn't have much longer to live. So I decided to let him be free to enjoy his final days. First few times he leaves, then comes...

      Same here. Although I had one cat who had a tumor in his mouth and didn't have much longer to live. So I decided to let him be free to enjoy his final days.

      First few times he leaves, then comes back a few hours later. Then, a full day goes by where he doesn't come back. We thought that was it, he's gone, eaten by a fox. But then we get a call from a vet saying they had him.

      Turned out, each time he was let out, he managed to find the one house, about a mile away through the woods and down a hill, that left food out. The woman who lived there said she took him to the vet after noticing the tumor. She also said he got along very well with her other cats, which we couldn't believe since he hated the other one we had. We also couldn't figure out why he would go all that way for food, when we gave him plenty. We must have been awful parents.

      I'll never forget Teddy. By far the most adventurous cat I've ever had.

      2 votes
  4. [4]
    jprich Link
    Chances of your cat being killed by something outside your house are much higher than inside. Do you love you cat? Then keep them inside.

    Chances of your cat being killed by something outside your house are much higher than inside.
    Do you love you cat? Then keep them inside.

    1 vote
    1. emdash Link Parent
      This entirely depends on the context of your home situation. Would you say that if I don't live near a road? Or if I live in a country without any predators? Saying things like "Do you love you...

      This entirely depends on the context of your home situation. Would you say that if I don't live near a road? Or if I live in a country without any predators?

      Saying things like "Do you love you cat? Keep them inside" is incredibly dismissive and ignores the positives of not trapping your pet within the confines of what is effectively a jail cell for its entire life.

      5 votes
    2. [2]
      hhh Link Parent
      Is it a life worth living for your cat if they are stuck inside? It seems almost a little cruel to me.

      Is it a life worth living for your cat if they are stuck inside? It seems almost a little cruel to me.

      1 vote
      1. Atvelonis Link Parent
        Something that no one has mentioned here is that not every cat likes to go outside. Both of my cats are absolutely terrified of the outdoors; even just stepping onto the grass for more than a...

        Something that no one has mentioned here is that not every cat likes to go outside. Both of my cats are absolutely terrified of the outdoors; even just stepping onto the grass for more than a second freaks them out. I've tried just plopping them down out there as a trial run, but with or without leashes they aren't fans. I think they have enough space to roam around indoors that they are comfortable with it.

        1 vote