Keeping your cat happy indoors

"The fact is, the more time a pet cat spends safe at home, the less risk of injury or death from road accidents, fighting, and disease. A pet cat kept safe at home can live up to four times longer than a cat left to roam."

- Australian Veterinary Association 2016

More and more cat owners are realising the dangers of allowing their cats to roam freely outdoors.  Cats that are allowed to roam can have a much shorter lifespan than cats which are safely kept at home by their owners.  Outdoor roaming cats have an average lifespan of just 3 years compared to cats who are kept at home that can live to 15 years or more.

Keeping your cat indoors means that you get to spend more quality time with your cat.

Indoor cats are safe from:

Cars

Cats can be injured or killed, or cause an accident, if allowed near roads.

Cat fight injuries 

The most common injury from cat fights is an abscess.  Abscesses are incredibly painful and can require costly veterinary treatment. Diseases such as Feline AIDS can also be transmitted during cat fights.

Wildlife  

Preventing your cat from hunting wildlife and reducing the risk of your cat contracting diseases, ticks or worms from other animals.

Dogs

Cats can be killed or seriously injured in dog attacks.

Ways you can keep your indoor cat entertained include:

High resting places

Cats love to perch up high as it allows them to survey their surroundings and makes them feel secure.

Enclosed spaces 

Cats love to hide.  It allows them to get away from people and

other animals.

 

Bedding

Cats like to spend a lot of time sleeping and resting in quiet areas where they feel safe and secure.

 

Toys and activities

Provide your cat with somewhere to perch near a window.

Provide kitty with a play tunnel to explore.

Leave some empty cardboard boxes around to allow for puss to explore.

Leave a few ping pong balls around – including one in the bathtub.

DO NOT leave string, ribbon or plastic bags out for kitty to play with unsupervised – cats can easily get into trouble with these.

If you want your cat to spend some time outdoors on your property, there are a number of outdoor cat containment solutions to choose from that will keep your cat safe from wandering off. Click here to find out more.

For great information on how to transition your existing cat or a new cat/kitten to staying safe at home visit Safe Cat, a collaboration between Zoos Victoria and RSPCA Victoria providing expert advice.  

Watch Kingborough Council's Inside with Cats series. Inside with Cats is a collaboration project that introduces six Kingborough cats (along with their humans), who are embracing life on the inside. Inside with Cats is not just about containing cats inside a house, it also explores the various options these owners have used for outdoor enclosures or walking harnesses, and how they keep their cats safe, happy and healthy.

Thanks to Good Cat SA for their great information about keeping your cat happy indoors, and to Kingborough Council for their Inside with Cats series. 

© Tasmanian Cat Management Project 2019

The Tasmanian Cat Management Project is a state-wide initiative to promote and facilitate responsible cat ownership and management in Tasmania. The project is supported by Cradle Coast NRM, Kingborough Council, and NRM North through funding from the Tasmanian Government.