Mindful Monday – Is Your Cat a Roamer or a Homebody?

First, let me share my news: The Kindle version of Catnapped, the first book in the Klepto

Lily recommends Catnapped

Cat Mystery series, is FREE all week—Monday through Friday. Download your copy here: https://www.amazon.com/Catnapped-Klepto-Cat-Mystery-1/dp/0991106512/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1497812453&sr=1-1&keywords=klepto+cat+mysteries

Now to the topic at hand. Everyone has an opinion about cats. In fact there are some major controversies involving the feline species. Should we spay-neuter or not? Should we breed or not? How many cats are too many? (See Wednesday’s post for more on this sensitive subject.)

One of the biggest controversies and difficult decisions for some cat owners is, should I let my cat outside or make him stay indoors? For some, the decision is made by the cat—she is either too frightened to venture out or you cannot—no matter what you do—keep the cat inside.

Since I became a supporter of the inside-only kitty, I’ve actually had the sort of cat who insists—I mean insists—on spending time outside.

It was several years ago. We had just lost Daisy, a beautiful calico, and we had room for one more cat. We found a sweet teenage girl at the animal shelter waiting for a home and her name was Katie. Oops, we already had a cat named Katy. So we ultimately changed the calico’s name to Dinah.

Well, Dinah let us know quite early on that she would not…I mean WOULD NOT use the litter box. No, she didn’t soil the carpet—never ever did she pee or poo in the house. But she had to do her job outside. In the heat, even when it was raining, she insisted on going out. She went in and out throughout the day—which meant someone was constantly opening the door for her. And she loved joining me when I gardened. It worked for us. And the other cats we had at the time were content to stay inside. As you can see, Dinah also enjoyed being inside and always appreciated a lap to curl up in—even if the lap belonged to a dummy.

Seven years ago, my sister-in-law gave my mother a kitten from her “oops” litter. Her

Smokey, the inspiration for this series

ragdoll cat had slipped out at the wrong time and met up with a neighborhood “Cat-sanova”. The result included a ragdoll look-alike, a calico, and a grey-and-white kitten, who was destined to be Mama’s lap cat. Wrong. While Smokey loves a little lap-time now and then, he prefers the out-of-doors. In fact, there was no way to keep him in. However, Mama does bring him in at night.

Cat experts say that inside cats have a greater life expectancy than those who go in and out or who live outside. In fact some say that a feral cat lives to an average age of eighteen months. That’s a dismal statistic. However, when left intact, they live long enough to create several litters of kittens.

I have to say that before I adopted the mandatory indoor cat ruling, my cats never lived to be even ten years old. I’ve lost cats to cars, coyotes, gopher poison, dogs, leukemia (before the vaccine), something akin to AIDs, a brain tumor (the illnesses probably not associated with outdoor living). Since I’ve kept my cats inside, I’ve had two live to be over 17 and one died from cancer at the age of 12.

What’s your experience?

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