Cats are very independent creatures, and sometimes it seems like they don’t need us at all. Cats that spend time outside have a reputation for being able to fend for themselves, but there are a lot of dangers for outdoor cats. Whether you have found a feral cat you want to adopt or you want to transition your feline to a fully indoor cat, Shiloh Veterinary Hospital can help.
Take Your Time
Cats are creatures of habit, and they need some time to adjust to a new environment. If you bring an outdoor cat inside without any transition period, the animal will become very agitated and anxious. Instead, move slowly and give the kitty a chance to get used to being inside. A great way to make this transition simple for your cat is to feed him inside the house. Keep the cat inside for a little more time each time you feed him. This will give him a positive association with being inside the house.
Set Up the Litter Box
For an outdoor cat, the whole world is her litter box. So when you are transitioning a cat from outdoor living to indoor living, it will be the first time she uses a traditional one. Although her instincts will kick in and she will most likely know what to do with it, you might have to show her where it is and use your finger to shift the litter to help her smell it. Give her a little time to get adjusted to this new way of doing her business.
Encourage Cat Scratch Fever…Kind Of
From trees to dirt to other animals, outdoor cats are used to being able to scratch whatever they want. If you want your new kitty to feel safe and comfortable inside your home, you have to provide plenty of scratching posts where he can get out the need to scratch (without destroying your furniture).
Provide a Great View
Outdoor cats get a front-row seat to all the bird, lizard, and insect-watching their little hearts desire. If you want to make your space homey for your new indoor cat, you should make the windows desirable spots for your cat to lounge. Put a cat tree near a windowsill or set up a cat perch where the kitty can still get a great view of the outside world.
At Shiloh Veterinary Hospital, we love animals as much as you do. As a Fear Free Certified Practice™, we do everything we can to ensure your pets feel safe and comfortable in our care. To learn more about our practice or to schedule an appointment, please call (818) 614-9929.