Thursday, February 22, 2024

How To Take Care Of An Outdoor Cat

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Attacks By Other Animals

What Your Outdoor Cat Needs to Stay Healthy

While our discussion will primarily focus on common threats, it is important to note the threats of lesser known predators. Beware of coyotes and other critters such as owls, foxes, or raccoons and even bobcats and mountain lions that have been spotted occasionally in north Fresno along the San Joaquin River. They have been known to make easy prey out of house cats. Now lets dive into the nitty-gritty.

If your cat is attacked and comes home wounded, you should immediately contact your vet. Antibiotics are essential to help your pet heal from their wounds and when administered within 24 hours, can stop an infection in its tracks.

Bacteria from scratches and bites can result in infections, regardless if the wound is severe or mild. If an unnoticed wound is left to fester, a cat can become gravely ill. Symptoms of a worsening infection include lethargy, pain, swelling, and extensive licking in a certain area more than usual.

Larger animals can overpower your cat in obvious ways, but wounds sustained during a domestic feline dispute also come with the added risk of feline disease transmission. Bite wounds are one of the main ways diseases such as Feline Immunodeficiency Virus and Feline Leukemia Virus are transmitted. Thus, prevention and quick treatment is key.

Why Don’t Feeding Bans Eliminate Community Cats

The logic behind bans on feeding feral cats is that if there is no food available, the cats will go away. This rarely happens.

First, cats are territorial animals who can survive for weeks without food and will not easily or quickly abandon their territory. As they grow hungrier and more desperate, they tend to venture closer to homes and businesses in search of food. Despite the effort to starve them out, the cats will also continue to reproduce, resulting in the deaths of many kittens.

Second, feeding bans are nearly impossible to enforce. A person who is determined to feed the cats will usually succeed without being detected. Repeated experience has shown that people who care about the cats will go to great lengths;to feed starving animals. In addition, there may be more than one feeder and other sources of food, including dumpsters, garbage cans and other animals.

Providing The Cat With Necessities And Removing Dangers

  • 1Provide water. When your cat is outside, make sure to provide access to plenty of fresh water. Though your cat may find other sources, providing clean water ensures your cat will stay hydrated even in hot weather.XResearch source
  • In the winter, consider using a thick plastic bowl or even a solar heated bowl to keep the water from freezing.
  • It’s best to keep water underneath an overhead cover if possible, to help keep contaminants out of it.
  • 2Make sure the cat has shade. Believe it or not, cats can get sunburned, particularly light-colored cats. In addition, cats can overheat. Providing access to shade outdoors helps keep your cat safe from the sun.XResearch source
  • 3Create a winter shelter. If you take care of a strictly outdoor neighborhood cat, providing shelter in the winter can help keep them alive. Basically, the shelter should be be built to trap the cat’s body heat, helping them stay alive through cold winter nights and days.XTrustworthy SourceThe Humane Society of the United StatesNational organization devoted to the promotion of animal welfareGo to source
  • Keep it small. If it’s too big, it will allow too much air and heat to escape, and it will be less effective. One easy solution is a storage container with a lid . You can also build small shelters out of wood.
  • While it’s tempting to use things like blankets, towels, and stacks of newspaper, that’s not a good idea, as it absorbs heat rather than reflects it back towards the cat.
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    Caring For Outdoor Cats: How To Keep Them Safe And Healthy

    Your outdoor cat loves living life in the fresh air. But what about safety? Find out how to keep your outdoor cat safe with these ten tips.

    Estimated reading time: 6 minutes

    Youve got your feline friend used to being outside or maybe theyve always been an outdoor cat. And they wouldnt have it any other way they love to roam free, exploring the neighborhood and following their natural cat instincts. Although your cat comes home regularly, you still worry about them running away. Or that theyll get sick, injured or in trouble. So, what can you do to make sure theyre safe when youre not with them? Here are 10 things to consider when it comes to keeping your outdoor cat safe.

    Transitioning A Stray Cat To Your Home

    How to Take Care of an Outdoor Cat in Winter

    Before transitioning your stray cat into your care, you will want to make sure you have all the right cat supplies.

    According to Delgado, if your new feline friend was previously a house cat, the transition indoors should be relatively easy.

    If a cat is hanging out on your back porch, shes probably lived inside before and is socialized to interact with people. In this case, Delgado recommends earning the kittys trust with food and then providing necessities indoors. This includes a cat litter box, a place to snuggle up, and food and water. and a cozy environment will help the cat transition into this new life, she notes.

    However, if the stray is a feral cat, this process will take a littleor a lotmore time. You have to gradually increase their comfort by associating your presence with something they really likeusually food, she says.

    Delgado says, You absolutely dont want to trap these cats and bring them inside overnight right away. That can be frightening and stressful, as well as detrimental to your long-term goal of turning your stray into a house pet.

    To start the process of bringing a feral cat inside, you can put out a cat bowl;full of wet food, and then sit near it while the cat eats, moving the bowl closer to you over time until you are able to pet or scratch the cat while he eats. It could also involve a similar process with cat treats. Whatever whets your new cats appetite should be your go-to.

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    Can An Indoor Cat Survive Outside

    Indoor cats live longer, healthier lives, but if you want to let your kitty outside, there are safer ways to do it. A cat enclosure gives you the best of both worlds. It allows your cat to get out in nature without facing the dangers of roaming where they please.

    Why Are There Feral Cats

    If they don’t have early contact with people, the kittens of stray or feral cats will become feral themselves, too fearful to be handled or adopted. Since a female cat can become pregnant as early as five months of age, the number of feral cats in a neighborhood can rapidly increase if cats aren’t spayed or neutered.

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    What Should I Do If My Cat Wanders Outside

    Its an excellent way to identify them if they are located after wandering off. When you get one, make sure you keep your contact information up-to-date on the chip. A collar for your cat with a tag that has your phone number is also a good idea. Don t declaw. Veterinarians say you should never let a cat outside that doesnt have claws.

    Living With A Blind Cat

    Indoor Cat Vs. Outdoor Cat?

    A blind cat is a disabled cat and we have lived for 19 years with my little blind cat Kyra.There’s a difference between cats that are born blind and cats that are blind by disease or accident. The latter might experience more difficulties in adapting to their blindness. For a cat that’s born blind the world has never been bright and sunny. Our cat Kyra was born blind and her world has always been dark and formless. She learned to trust her nose and ears. She had a sixth sense for unsafe situations, especially around dogs that came into our house.I hope my experience with living with a blind cat can help others.

    Blind Cat Kyra

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    Will My Cats Behavior Change If He Goes Outdoors

    Its possible! Cats that are allowed outside may be less likely to develop behavior problems like urinating outside the litter box and stalking and attacking people in the home. According to International Cat Care, these actions can be the result of boredom and frustration. Theyre also less likely to scratch furniture since theyre already clawing trees and other things outdoors.;;

    What You Will Need

    To make this process as painless as possible, preparation is vital. Make sure you have everything ready so that your cat are as relaxed as possible. You will need:

    • A bucket or bath with a non-slip floor mat
    • A suitable cat shampoo that kills ticks and fleas. Never use your own shampoo on your cat as it has different PH levels
    • A good conditioner is essential, as well as a towel
    • Depending on your cat, you will need a brush or a grooming glove

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    Talk To Your Neighbors And Trap

    Let your neighbors know if you choose to build a homemade shelter and feed feral cats. Some people may be okay with having the cats around, but if a neighbor expresses that they do not want feral cats near their property, be courteous and place shelters and food away from that neighbors side. Also, let neighbors know if you are participating in Trap-Neuter-Return , so they are not questioning the cat traps in your front yard! TNR is a humane method that improves the lives of feral cats by trapping them in cages so they can be taken to be spayed or neutered then returned to the exact location where they were trapped. Learn more about TNR in this One Green Planet article, Get Involved to Improve the Lives of Feral Cats Through Trap-Neuter-Return.

    It is advised that you do not bring feral cats inside of your house. These cats are not socialized and may become aggressive if you approach and attempt to touch them. Since they are not housebroken, they wont use a litter-box and could run around tearing up your house. You are already helping enough to significantly improve the lives of neighborhood feral cats simply by providing an outdoor shelter, food, and water.

    Image source: sakurai_dayo / Flickr

    Whats The Best Way To Keep My Outdoor Cat Safe

    Taking Care of Your Outdoor Cat

    Many vets say owners should limit outdoor time as much as possible, or just choose to keep the cat inside. Another option, says Ariel Mosenco, DVM, of the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine, is to let your pet out only in a confined, fenced area while youre watching.

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    Tips For Introducing Your Cat To Outside For The First Time

  • Keep your cats outdoor visits short for the first few weeks. Call them inside after 10-15 minutes and offer them food that they like.
  • Feed them at a particular time and let them outside before mealtime, so that they come to you as they feel hungry.
  • For the first few times, its a good idea to go out with your cat to give him reassurance. Leave the back door open if your cat is a little timid so that he can go back to its safe place if he gets frightened.
  • Keep an eye when your indoor cat going out and call them inside if you see them wandering too far. But dont take them inside every time you call them. Give them rewards like their favorite treats or toys. Dont make them feel that going to you means going back indoors, especially if they love being outdoors.
  • You can increase their time outdoors but slowly. Let them outside regularly and add a few minutes to the trip gradually. Once they seem relaxed and confident while being outdoors, you can start to let them outside unsupervised.
  • You may consider installing a cat flap to allow your cat to come and go as he wishes. Its the easiest way to give free access to your cat rather than you opening the door for him every time.;
  • Provide Enough Food And Water

    Cats that go outside will likely get a lot more physical activity than cats who stay indoors. You may need to feed your cat accordingly, and always make sure your cat has access to plenty of fresh water. If youre curious to see active your cat has been and to see how many calories theyve burned try using an activity monitor for cats.

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    Food And Water How To Feed Feral Cats In Winter

    • Cats can benefit from extra food during winter, so increase food portions to help them conserve energy. Also make sure to set out fresh water twice a day.
    • Wet food takes less energy to digest, but should be served in plastic containers to prevent freezing. Providing dry food, which will not freeze, works for frigid temperatures, too.
    • Warm up canned food and water before serving or use heated electric bowls.
    • Use bowls that are deep rather than wide and place them in sunny areas to keep water from freezing.;Check out some bowls tested by caregivers. Avoid using metal bowls.
    • Spray insulation foam into the underside of plastic feeding dishes and water bowls to help prevent food and water from freezing as quickly.
    • Build a feeding station as this is the best way to feed feral cats during the cold months. It will shield food, water, and the cats from the elements. An insulated feeding station that is built in the same fashion as a cat shelter works even better.
    • Put a microwavable heating pad, like a;Snuggle Safe, under the bowls. You can even make your own homemade heating pad by filling fabric pouches with rice, and heating it in the microwave.
    • If theres a water source like a spigot, run the water slightlyit wont freeze as fast as still water. You can also use a water fountain or water bowl with a fountain feature.

    Signs Of Feline Dementia

    Keeping outside cats warm in the winter.

    Odd changes in behaviour of your old cat might point to feline dementia. Kyra sat for hours in the middle of the room staring into the unknown. Then sometimes she started meowing very loud. When we called her she started to walk in circles. It seemed that she couldn’t trace where the noise was coming from.We found her in the most peculiar places, just sitting doing nothing.At one point she couldn’t find her standard litterbox anymore. She had several spots where she peed on the floor. We turned a few stackable plastic letter trays into litterboxes. We put them on all those places. She used them most of the time. They’re open boxes of course, but if you don’t fill them with too much grid and clean them every day, they won’t smell. It’s a bit of work, but who cares.

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    Letting Your Cat Outside: What You Need To Know


    Cats with access to the great outdoors enjoy lots of fun experiences but they also face risks too: traffic, dogs, other cats, picking up fleas or contracting nasty diseasesthe list is endless. Understandably it can be a nerve racking experience to finally allow your cat to step into the wide world. Luckily, there are things you can do to help keep your cat safe.

    Kyra Is The Boss Over All Cats And Dogs In Our House

    In our house, Kyra was the boss. She was bossing the Tortoise Red and she was bossing the Border Collie dogs Tipper and Dixie.The only cat she respected was our big Tomcat Bram, but he passed away, bless his darling soul.Kyra and the Tortoise were enemies from the start. Whenever the tortoise was getting too close, Kyra would jump her. Then the flocks of hair flew all over the place. The tortoise was so stupid to let herself get caught all the time. The only thing she had to do was to jump on a chair or a table to avoid getting attacked by Kyra.

    Blind cat Kyra and Bram

    They Say About Blind Cats #3

    A cats sense of hearing is amazing. Cats can hear high frequency sounds we cannot. They can also distinguish the tone or pitch of sounds better than we can. And their ability to locate the source of a sound is highly advanced. From a yard away, a cat can distinguish between sound sources only three inches apart. They can also hear sounds at great distances four or five times farther away than humans.

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    Keep Spending Quality Time

    Outdoor cats may be moreindependent,;but they would still appreciate the occasional quality timewith you. Every time he comes back, spend time playing or just sitting downwith your cat. Most owners of outdoor cats prefer to have their cats indoors bynight time. Try luring him back inside with treats before its dark, for hisown safety.

    My Blind Cat Kyra Was Still Having A Ball At The Age Of 18 Years

    How to Train & Take Care of an Outdoor Cat

    At the age of 18 years she was still doing very well, though I saw some signs of old age appearing. I was feeding her cooked chicken and soft cat food, because she couldn’t chew the dried pet food anymore. She very much loved to eat.Where ever she was, when you happened to eat a sandwich or another snack, she was there in front of you in no time. Our garbage bin stands in front of the kitchen counter. Kyra used that as a step up to the counter. Once I had the garbage bin open when cleaning onions and she jumped right in the bin. Kyra was an amazing cat with a mind of her own.

    Blind Cat Kyra at the age of 18 years

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