A lot of cat owners feel guilty about keeping their cat inside and feel they are depriving their cat of their natural habitat. Here at North Town, we are firm believers in making educated decisions and that includes being aware of all the hazards outside that your cat could face.
First let’s discuss disease; There are many stray and abandoned cats that live outside that do not receive vaccines or medical treatments, these cats can carry many different virus’ and diseases, a number of which can be serious or potentially fatal. Some examples include: feline leukemia feline AIDS (FIV), FIP, Panleukopenia and upper respiratory infections. We always recommend keeping cats up to date on their vaccinations to help prevent these diseases. Another concern would be parasites, commonly not life-threatening for cats, there are some common parasites outdoors including: fleas, ticks, ear mites, intestinal worms and ringworm. Many of these parasites can be prevented by getting your cat on a parasite prevention medication that can be recommended by your veterinarian. Another thing to keep in mind about parasites is that many of them can be picked up by humans.
In addition to the risk of disease, there are other hazards that can affect your cat. Some of these hazards include getting hit by cars, suffering from animal cruelty and getting attacked from other wildlife. Then there is the danger they face from coming into contact with toxins, like antifreeze, many of which seem to have a pleasant taste. These concerns can result in unexpected veterinary bills but worse of all could cost you your pets life.
Then there is the topic of the population of stray and abandoned cats and how the numbers continue to grow. Below is a sample of how quickly the population of cats can grow. All the photos are of kittens that have been adopted out through the ‘Four Paws One Heart’ adoption program. This program takes in abandoned and stray kittens that have been found and has adopted out over 130 cats and kittens. Keeping cats indoors helps to keep the population of strays down.