Make A Deal With Your Indoor/Outdoor Cat
Did you know that completely indoor cats that never go out live an average of 8-9 years longer than indoor/outdoor cats? Indoor cats are very happy and really become great companions for life in a safe and secure home.
If you have completely indoor cats, do not start taking them out on the deck or in the yard, even for short periods of time. Some people make that mistake in the spring when their cats get vocal with spring fever. Unfortunately, lots of these cats get completely obsessed with going out, and then it’s hard to go back.
Most kittens that are born outdoors are susceptible to disease. Kittens need to be kept indoors and vaccinated until the age of 4 months to protect them from killer viruses. However, if you are going to let your cat out after neutering them, just know the risks and costs. Most importantly, tell your vet immediately if your pet’s lifestyle has changed so that they can guide you.
All cats who go outdoors are susceptible to Rabies, Feline Leukemia, FIV (like HIV in people), roundworms, Heartworms, flea diseases, etc. By simply using Revolution on your cat once per month, you can prevent Heartworms, roundworms, hookworms, and flea and tick diseases. In the past, pet owners used Frontline. That product only helps with fleas and ticks. It does nothing for all of the other diseases and problems mentioned above. Therefore, you will get more protection and savings by just using Revolution.
Also, remember cats and dogs walk on grass and lick their feet daily. They are chronically ingesting microscopic parasites, even on the cleanest of yards. As long as you give them a monthly preventative and their yearly fecal is negative, then you are doing what you can to keep them healthy.
From dusk to dawn is when all the feral cats come out and will hunt your indoor/outdoor cat. Even if you have the best cat in the world who stays in your yard or on your deck all night, sooner or later, he will be attacked. Once attacked, the ferals will come back again and again.
Cat bites inject nasty bacteria under the skin, which may take a few days to abscess. If an owner doesn’t have the area immediately clipped and flushed, and the cat treated with antibiotics, the area can become necrotic. At this point, the cat may lose a lot of skin or muscle and require more expensive surgery.
Hillsborough, New Jersey, actually has one of the biggest feral cat populations in the state with huge amounts of infectious disease and rabies. Hopefully, your pet is rabies vaccinated – but you are not. If you suspect a bite wound or any possible wet spots, Do Not Touch It! Take your pet to the vet immediately. Your vet will wear gloves and carefully and safely clip the suspect area. Usually, we will find lots of punctures that we didn’t even know were there. Most owners are horrified at what the fur was covering and how it was sealing the infection.
Finally, if you have an indoor cat that goes out at all, then make a deal with them and the entire family: The cat can go in and out all day, but must come inside for dinner and stay in for the entire night, dusk until dawn.
The way to accomplish this is to create a routine of feeding your cat breakfast and dinner indoors. Do not leave dry food out for them all day like we used to do. It is actually proven that leaving dry food out for cats is unhealthy for them. It provides no moisture and increases the risk of urinary problems and diabetes. Actually, all cats should be fed 2-4 small meals per day. Most cats should get 1/8 cup of dry food with ¼ of a 5.5 ounce can two to three times per day. Even if you are feeding just dry food, your cat should not get more than ¼ cup twice a day.