When you have just adopted a cat, it is obvious that letting him out is a concern because he may not come back for different reasons. So how do you prevent your cat from straying too far? I explain everything to you in this article so that you can let your feline frolic without risk.
How to prevent your cat from wandering too far: What you need to know
If cats can be accustomed to living indoors, they will necessarily prefer to have access to the outside. They will be able to hunt there, go out at night, go out in the sun, come into contact with smells they love, such as trees.
But letting your cat out can also present dangers, such as fighting, injury from a fall or bump, or not having the reflex to return.
So here’s how to make sure your cat doesn’t stray too far outside.
The different solutions
To prevent your cat from straying too far, the following solutions will allow you to keep him close, here is everything you need to know to keep him around.
Wait for the right moment
If you have just adopted a young kitten then it is vital that he gets used to you before you go out, he needs to know that you are his family and that he is at home, cats have a period of adaptation of about 30 days and when he starts to play with you regularly and shows signs of affection, it will be possible to take him out.
It is from this moment that you will be sure that he knows that he is at home and that he will have the reflex to come back. But of course this is not enough. This is however the basic before letting it out.
Start at the harness
The harness, if the cats don’t like it, is very useful in the beginning and especially if you have roads nearby, it is vital to keep it under control at the very beginning. That he can immerse himself in his environment without risk and without taking any danger.
The fact that he is young and does not know his surroundings puts him in danger. From the moment he begins to mark his territory by urinating, you will know that he has understood where his home is.
Put a cat flap
The cat flap is optional, it’s more of a practical solution if your cat is afraid of something in the yard, for example. But you can also leave it open so that your cat can take refuge in your home in case of a problem or simply to return.
Your cat will know that being outside is not a sign that you are chasing it, and it will begin to naturally come home rather than seek refuge elsewhere.
Get him used to the outside
Your cat must become immersed in its environment, you can play with it outside or feed it in your yard, so that it associates it with a place that belongs to it and learns to stay there.
It is also a way of showing him that he is safe in the yard, cats pay close attention to dangers and do not stray far from the home for his reasons.
Put him under surveillance
At the very beginning, monitoring him allows you to know if he has the right behaviors, do not hesitate to take odorous food so that he comes back to you by smelling the smell if he ventures too far. You can also stay close to him when he walks and bring him back in your arms when he starts to go too far.
Monitoring is essential at the beginning to observe his behavior and know how far he can venture.
Put things he likes in the yard
From toys and food to a water fountain and his personal cushion, put in anything that reminds him of home so he can associate the yard with his place outside and stay there nearby.
The yard must be associated with his personal space so that he stays in the yard when he goes outside.
Get him used to coming back
When you see him frolicking for a long time, put food, water or a toy that he likes in front of your door to condition his reflex to return to the fold after hunting to be smart in the wild.
Treat it against fleas
By treating it against fleas, your cat will be protected against fleas, ticks and worms which can injure it and cause it to attack its organs, for example. Deworming him regularly will ensure that he has enough energy to come back.
Parasites can make him run away from a place and take his energy and he might not be able to come back.
Have him sterilized
Cats, if they see other cats can start turf wars to reproduce and can then move away and take more risks. An uncastrated cat is also more aggressive than sterilized cats.
Castrating your cat also allows it not to breed and it is closer to you when it is outside, because it will not see the point of taking risks by venturing anywhere.
The tracker allows you to locate it at any time with, for example, a GPS collar that will tell you on your smartphone where your cat is. It is a way to determine its perimeter and to know if it does not move too far away.
If he goes too far, try to find the reason, maybe it’s a mousetrap that he loves. In which case it will be necessary to see if the place is dangerous (dog, cars…) and act so that it is less tempted, by feeding it before it goes out or by preventing it from going out at the most dangerous times.
Put a collar on him
Putting a collar on him is perfect if someone sees him in his yard away from you, so he can call you back to pick him up. The collar is the traditional accessory to bring your cat back if it goes too far.
Be careful that the collar is not too tight so that it scratches and they have trouble breathing when wearing it.
Manage the day/night cycle
Day and night are different for cats. During the day, they may come out just to bask in the yard or on a tree. At night, even if he sees much better, he will tend to hunt more and take more risks.
Letting him go out at night must wait until he already has the reflex to go out during the day and come back, the stages one after the other are recommended.
Set up an electric cat fence
Ultimate solution, if the environment is too dangerous, and which ensures that you leave it in your course. The fences for cats are designed so that they do not climb on them and allow them to be left outside and to be able to always be sure that they do not put themselves in danger.
Remember that letting a cat go outside in an area with lots of traffic shortens their lifespan.
The more dangerous the environment, the longer he has to stay in the yard
If you live in a hamlet, with no dog nearby, then you can let him roam. But if you live near a road or neighbors have dogs, you absolutely must keep him within his safe perimeter.
You can start by setting up an electric cat fence, for example, which remains expensive and must be transparent so as not to spoil the view, you will be 100% sure that it does not move away.
If you have other cats
Here there is an advantage and a disadvantage. The advantage is that he will be able to mimic their behavior and perhaps even the old cats, if they have become sufficiently familiar with them, will teach him not to exceed the limits.
But a turf war will be avoided, normally cats don’t go near other cats turf, but make sure everyone is sterilized to avoid fights.
Several factors require taking maximum precautions. Because some cats are naturally more adventurous than others:
- Maines Coon : More adventurous and more hunters and can go a long way if you don’t rein them in. Their large size also makes them less fearful, especially in the face of rats .
- Cats from shelters: Who may have a different experience and therefore habits and a different perception of things.
- Cats weaned at the wrong time: A cat’s ability to adapt to its environment depends in part on the weaning period. If yours was weaned too early, it may have trouble gauging the danger.
How to prevent your cat from wandering too far?
The idea is to go there step by step and to accompany him towards autonomy instead of letting him go into the wild without him putting himself in danger for lack of sufficient knowledge from the outside. The more dangerous elements there are outside, the closer it must be kept.