Keeping Your Kitty Happy Indoors

Did you know that one of the best things you can do for your cat is to ground her? Our feline friends can be quite adventurous. Fluffy loves fun outdoor kitty activities like leaving paw art on the windshield, rolling around in the driveway, and dropping dead animals on your porch. Nevertheless, she will be much safer staying indoors. In this article, a local London, ON veterinarian offers advice on how to keep your inside furball happy, healthy, and purring.


How Can I Get My Cat To Stay Inside?


While some cats are determined to get out, others are much more comfortable staying inside. If Fluffy prefers staying in, you’ll find it much easier. Otherwise, you may constantly be trying to corral your feline friend.


We have a few tips for this:


Start Young


If your feline friend is still a kitten, raise her to be an indoor pet from the start. Kittens who are raised indoors are usually happy to stay there as they grow up. Set down these ground rules from the day you bring your feline friend home. As your kitten grows, she may lose any desire to explore, and may even get scared of outside.


Make The Outside Less Enticing 


The trick here is to make Fluffy a bit wary of going outside. Whenever she sniffs around the door, do something that will startle her. You don’t want to hurt or scare her: that will only make her more determined to escape. Try squirting her with water. Loud noises are also effective. Options here include using your bike horn, setting an alarm on your phone, shaking a change jar, or even clapping your hands.


Offer Enrichment And Entertainment


Fluffy loves to do as little as possible, but she can’t spend all of her time snoozing. Cats need to have entertainment, just like we do. Make sure your cat has lots of toys to pounce on.


Also, just spend time with Fluffy. Let her snuggle up to you, talk to her, pet her, and play with her. 


Small comforts can also make a big difference. Put a light and TV on your cat before you leave if you won’t be home before dark. A comfy window seat with a good view will also score you some purrs, as will fun pieces of cat furniture.

Ask your London, ON vet for more information.


Provide The Best Of Both Worlds


Our feline pals do need exercise and stimulation. The best way to give Fluffy the best of both worlds is to provide a safe, secure area that offers some of the perks of the Great Outdoors.  


The purrfect option, of course, is a cat enclosure or catio. A screened or enclosed porch or patio, a spare room, or even a sunny corner is all you need. Incorporate some kitty furniture and toys. Voila!


You may also want to add some pet-safe plants for your kitty to explore and nibble at. Catnip is one obvious choice, but there are many others as well. Wheatgrass is a good choice: it’s healthy for us and is good for Fluffy, too. It contains nutrients such as riboflavin, Vitamin E, and folic acid. Plus, you’ll have fresh ingredients for smoothies. Speaking of ingredients, herbs are also a good option. Rosemary, basil, lemongrass sage, thyme, mint, dill, and cilantro are all safe for our feline friends.


Houseplants can help clean the air, give your place a great vibe, and give your pet something to nibble on. Some safe plants include Spider plants, Boston ferns, Prayer Plants, Ferns, Bromeliads, Cast Iron Plants, Peperomias, And Friendship Plants. As for flowers, some safe options include Zinnias, Marigolds, Asters, Freesia, Gerbera Daisies, Orchids, Roses, Snapdragons, and Sunflowers. 


Be sure to double-check plants and flowers before bringing them home. Not all are safe for Fluffy. For instance, any True Lily lily is highly toxic to our feline pals. 


The ASPCA website is a good place to find information about safe and unsafe plants. You can also check with your  London, ON vet.


Should I Keep My Cat Inside?


We’d answer this one with a hard yes. Your adorable pet is much safer indoors. As soon as she steps outside, she’s vulnerable to many different dangers, including cars, weather, wild animals, parasites, chemicals, and stray cats and dogs. 


In general, indoor cats are less prone to illness and injury. Kitties that go out are more likely to get hurt, lost, stolen, or even killed.


Keeping Fluffy inside is safer for local wildlife as well. It turns out that Man’s Second Best Friend is a serial killer. Cats kill billions of small creatures every year, mainly birds, reptiles, and rodents. With so many native wildlife populations under threat, every little thing we do to help matters.


What Is The Best Way To Keep My Cat Healthy Indoors?


Your feline friend’s care regimen should begin with good, age-appropriate food, fresh water, and a comfortable shelter. These basics are the same, regardless of whether Fluffy is an indoor cat, an outdoor cat, or is allowed to go in and out as she pleases.


Veterinary care is also crucial. Kitties should be microchipped, spayed or neutered, and kept up to date on vaccines and parasite control. Fluffy will also need regular examinations and screenings. Consult your veterinarian for specific advice.


What Can I Do To Keep My Cat Safe At Home?


Petproofing is very important here. Our feline pals are curious, playful, and a bit reckless. This makes for a very cute combination, but it can also be a deadly one.


Anything that could be dangerous for your furry pal should be addressed or secured. A number of small or sharp objects can pose a serious threat to a playful furball. That includes fishing lures, pens, safety pins, craft kits, and pins. Ropes and strings can also be dangerous, as can toxic plants and chemicals.


Keep large appliances closed when not in use, and make sure your windows and screens close securely. Ask your veterinarian for more information.


Should I Take My Cat For Walks?


We can’t give a universal thumbs-up or thumbs-down for this one: it depends on the kitty. While some bold and adventurous furballs enjoy taking walks, others may be too scared to do so. If your feline pal seems content as an indoor pet, well, let sleeping kitties lie. Otherwise, give it a shot. Ask your London, ON veterinarian for training tips.


What Can I Do To Keep My Kitty Happy Indoors?


A healthy, happy, and safe pet requires both TLC and entertainment, so make sure you provide plenty of toys and play with her on a regular basis. Kitties also appreciate scratching posts and boards. Cat furniture like cat towers can also keep their motor running. It’s also a good idea to have a window seat for your cat. There is no need to buy beds, boxes, or window seats, but they tend to get your cat’s motor going.


Conclusion: Our feline friends are adventurous, but they are much safer staying indoors, where they are safe from cars, weather, and other hazards. Be sure to provide a fun, comfy and safe environment.


As your London, ON animal clinic, we are dedicated to providing great care to your pets. Please feel free to contact us anytime.

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