Your cat’s safety and well-being is your top priority! EndTNR.com is here to help. As you know first hand, technology is ever changing. New and improved products hit the market at an alarming rate. We have listed some tips and tricks that you can utilize to keep your kitty companion safe and sound. If you know of any products that we have overlooked that contribute to our cause, please send us an email.
The more one does and sees and feels, the more one is able to do, and the more genuine may be one’s appreciation of fundamental things like home, and love, and understanding companionship ~Amelia Earhart
I am guessing your first question is, “Will my cat ever get to see the light of day again?” The answer is a resounding, “YES!” There are two popular ways cats can enjoy the great outdoors:
- Walking on a leash
- Confined in a cattery
We will discuss leash walking first. Something I’m sure you have already realized by now…your cat is SMART! So, why leave all the leash walking to the canine species? It is not very common to see a cat on a leash, and that is exactly what EndTNR.com is here to change! Just because it isn’t common, doesn’t mean it isn’t possible. Here is a short video demonstrating just how close you are to taking your kitty cat on its first walk:
Now that you have mastered leash walking, let’s talk about catteries. A cattery is an outdoor containment unit specifically used for cats. Catteries come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and styles. They even have collapsible catteries for traveling! On the days you just don’t have time to walk your cat, he/she will still be able to get outdoors in the fresh air in a safe manner with the use of a cattery. Here are two styles of catteries:
The Stationary Cattery
The stationary cattery offers many benefits to pet owners. It is also known as an outdoor cat run or catio, or for lack of a better term, a cat cage. Most stationary catteries are made of durable wood framing and wire. They are usually high enough that you can walk in, but sturdy enough they won’t topple over. Even so, it is still a good idea to anchor the cattery to the ground in the event it is exposed to wind gusts. You will have peace of mind knowing that your kitty companion is enjoying the outdoors in his safe environment. Though the initial cost may be a little expensive, finding a quality-made cattery will not come cheap. With that being said, your cattery, with proper upkeep, should provide you safety and peace of mind for many years to come.
The Portable Cattery
The benefits of a portable cattery are, well, obvious! Have you ever gone on a picnic and wished you didn’t have to leave your kitty home? Well, now you don’t have to! Portable catteries come in more shapes, sizes, and colors than the stationary catteries. Because portable catteries take up very little space, your cat is sure to have a lot more travel time in their near future. Also, because of the materials used to construct them, portable catteries offer outdoor playtime at a fraction of the cost when compared to stationary catteries. These catteries are perfect for those who rent, relocate frequently, or may be hindered by HOA or zoning laws. However, because of the lightweight construction, this may not be a preferred option for those with turbo kitties (hyperactive cats) and the sun will deteriorate the cattery faster than a stationary cattery.
The stationary and portable catteries are just two examples of outdoor containment for your cat, but they’re not the only solution. Some people let their cats outside because they want to give them the opportunity to explore instead of being cooped up in the house all day. We discuss this owner perspective on our Freedom page. As you can see from the examples above, there is definitely a way to allow your cat time outdoors….safely! Sometimes, however, owners choose to let their cat out because of behavioral issues such as marking or scratching the furniture. Both of these habits are instinctual for the cat. They don’t mean to ‘push your buttons’. They’re just being cats.
Cats want to please their owners, especially if it means getting to stay indoors with the ones they love. As with children, some will take more work than others, but they can be trained. Remember, your cat is SMART! The trade-off is that you need to be patient with your feline friend as they learn what you are trying to communicate to them. Positive reinforcement is an effective strategy when used correctly. Now let’s look at these impurrrfect habits in more detail.
OMG…not the furniture!
There are several approaches to breaking a cat from marking and/or scratching the furniture. First, you need to make sure you give the cat an alternative to using the furniture, such as a scratching post. Second, you need to make sure that the desired behavior (e.g. scratching the post) is rewarded while undesired behavior (e.g. scratching the furniture) is made undesirable to the cat. How might you accomplish this? You have to find something that the cat really, really doesn’t like. That may be a fragrance sprayed on their marking/scratching spot, a sound (made when caught in the act), or another form of deterrent such as a water bottle.
Natural herbal remedies may offer a solution. There are many essential oils that cats are attracted to, and some that they will do anything to avoid. Each cat’s personality will be different, but some common essential oils that deter cats are: orange, lavender, eucalyptus, peppermint, lemongrass, and citronella. If you enjoy any of these essential oils, and clearly your cat does not, it may benefit you to use them in locations that you want to deter undesirable behavior in your cat. Essential oils also play a beneficial role in your cat’s health in that they can be used to calm a stressed cat, or promote relaxation. Considering the alternative to no intervention, this is worth looking into. Here are a few examples of products on the market:
There is one very important weapon in your arsenal that we have not discussed: TOYS!!!!!!
There’s no denying that cats love to play! Toys are theULTIMATE DISTRACTION for a bored kitty. They are also a great tool for positive reinforcement. As not all toddlers like all toys, you will have to find what your kitty responds to. Having a variety of toys around the home will deter unwanted habits from developing.
Finally, we address that individual that just can’t seem to find a common ground with their kitty. For that, we encourage you to never give up on your furry family member. Sometimes, we don’t realize that our daily life habits conflict with that of our cat. This is especially true if you adopted a cat. It is hard to know what quality or kind of life the cat had prior to living with you. Traumatic events may leave a cat insecure and prone to undesirable behavior through no fault of their own. Even a well-cared-for cat can develop undesirable behavior due to confusion. His life as he knew it is gone, and he is left to sort out the pieces of what’s left. That’s not to say you are a less than worthy pet owner. He will just need a little time to figure out his new routine and what is expected of him. There are a multitude of books, websites, forums, and groups devoted to caring for cats and the behavioral problems they develop. Likewise, you can consult your local animal shelter, rescue, or veterinarian for advice as well. Of course, if we can be of anyo help, we are also just a click away.
I hope you have found this information to be useful to you and your feline friend. As we have demonstrated here, there is never a reason, nor is it responsible, to leave a cat outdoors unattended. Please, make the decision to be a responsible cat owner. For the love of cats, for the love of humanity, and for the love of Mother Earth! Be blessed.