If you have a cat, you may be debating on whether or not to let him wander outside. A cat’s natural instinct is to pounce on prey, so it’s no wonder they’re constantly starting out the window, longing to wander outdoors. Before you decide if you want your cat to be indoor only or not, take a look at the pros and cons of letting them outside:
Pros of Outdoor Cats
There can be some benefits to letting your cat outdoors. Some of the positive aspects are:
- Cats who go outside get a lot more exercise, making them less prone to being overweight.
- Your cat can practice his natural predatory habits by going outside, and this lets him play and do the things cats are made to do naturally.
- Some cats learn and then prefer to go to the bathroom outside.
- Outdoor cats tend to climb, jump, and balance more frequently, improving their dexterity.
Cons of Having an Outdoor Cat
Cats who go outside can face a myriad of possible dangers, diseases, and other problems. This can lead to pain for your cat and visits to a cat clinic for you. Before you decide if you want to cat to roam outdoors, consider the following:
- Cars can pose a serious threat to cats and outdoor cats have an increased risk of being run over.
- Many cats like to play with other cats, so they’re more prone to various communicable diseases.
- Cats that go outside can deal with the threat of pests including worms, ticks, and fleas.
- Predatory animals like possums, foxes, or large birds of prey may look to cats for a food source.
- Outdoor cats can get hurt, stuck in trees, or risk other serious injuries.
- Extreme weather fluctuations like too much heat or very cold temperatures can affect cats if they don’t have access to food, shelter, and water.
- Your cat may try to eat plants that he doesn’t know could be harmful or even toxic.
The Bottom Line
Deciding whether or not to let your cat play outside is ultimately up to you, the owner, Where you live can play a big role in this decision. For example, if you live in a neighborhood where there is little to no traffic and not many other pets roaming around, letting him outside might pose less risk.
Another option is to let your cat go outside while you accompany him and he wears a harness. This way, he can still enjoy the outdoors without you worrying about his safety and well being.