How To Stop A Cat From Wanting To Go Outside

   If you’re a cat owner, you’ve probably experienced the little zoom your feline companion does past your legs as you open or close the front door. At this point, you’ll have to spend more time trying to coax them into coming back, especially if you’ve come home late at night, when nocturnal creatures are lurking about.

This can be a safety hazard for both you and your cat (although they might not know it) – so why does this happen, and why does your cat always want to go outside? Let’s look at some of the reasons below.

Cats are wild creatures

It doesn’t matter if your cat is used to the comforts of being in a nice, clean, safe and warm home – the fact still stands that cats are wild creatures, and it is this wild instinct that makes them do a wild dash to an open door when the opportunity strikes.

There’s no doubt that the sunshine, fresh air and being in nature can soothe both humans and their pets, which is why indoor cats love being at windows and love staring out at the greenery outside, especially if you have a garden in your home.

Why do cats love exploring?

Have you ever heard of the phrase ‘curiosity killed the cat’? Well, although we’re not suggesting that the mortality of our feline companions should be taken to question, the first part of that phrase is true – curiosity. Cats are highly intelligent creatures, and they have a keen sense of caution, mixed with their drive to explore new territories.

In the wild, the only way a cat can get food is to go out and hunt. This means to go out to other territories in search of food, or to find a new territory where they can mark with their scent. Cats are also constantly on the prowl when it comes to mating time, often going above and beyond their current territory to find a suitable partner to mate with.

This behavior has been ingrained into your cats’ biological patterns, so no matter how indoorsy your cat may seem to be, there’s always a little voice inside their head telling them to go out and explore the world around them.

Hazards that may occur to wandering cats

If your cat wanders outside, they will have a heightened sense of awareness of the world around them – and you can generally trust that they will return home safe. However, in some circumstances, the safety of your cat when outdoors may be jeopardized by some bad people, or dangers in the outdoors in general.

1. Cat-nappers

 Some cat nappers have a keen eye for precious or rare breeds, or cats who look like they could fetch a good price when sold. If your cat is a rare breed, you might have to keep an eye out on her outdoor activities.

 2. Torture and killing by cat-haters

 As much as we’d like to think the whole world loves cats, there is always a part of the population that hates sharing this world with felines – to the point where they would torture or kill strays or owned cats that they come across.

 3. Being caught by the authorities

 Authorities such as animal control organizations work to keep the town or city free from overpopulation of stray animals, and your cat might be mistaken for a stray and caught, and then sent to the pound.

 4. Exposure to toxic plants or parasites

 There are beautiful, nourishing plants, as well as toxic ones that your cat may come across every single day. When in the great outdoors, there is always a risk of ingesting plants with toxic properties, or parasites that may cause your cat to suffer.

 5. Attacks by other creatures

Like Cat Stevens said, “Baby, it’s a wild world” – cats can come face to face with all kinds of creatures big and small that may just be guarding their territory, or are aggressive enough to want to start a fight with your feline friend.

How to Stop your cat from wanting to go outside

You can do a few things to keep your cat from constantly meowing at the door for you to let her out, and hiding in corners only to zoom past your legs when you open the front door.

Start by giving her more incentive to stay indoors. Your relationship with your cat should be mutual, so if she gives you all the love and care that you enjoy getting from her, you should return that affection by making sure that the home she lives in is safe, warm, and comfortable for her.

You can also give her more indoor activities as an alternative to outdoor exploration. Cats love climbing up and down things, so adding vertical space for your cat to explore is a good idea. This also ensures that your cat expends her energy in a healthy way, and if you add a glass window or a lookout spot to the setup, she can also look out at the world outside and stimulate her mind while having physical stimulation at the same time.

Keep in mind that toys and playtime should be a regular routine for you and your cat. With regular play and activity, your cat will appreciate the company that you provide and may eventually stop meowing to you to let her out – she will be tired out by the end of a fun play session!

Final Thoughts

Although there is no hard and fast rule to fully stop your cat from wanting to go outside, chances are, the best thing you can do as a pet owner is to make sure that your cat is stimulated when she is indoors, and that she views the inside of the house as her safe haven.

If you do want to bring your cat outdoors, you can also carry her in your arms, or be with her during her outside time and let her explore the sights, sounds and smells of the world in the safety of your close supervision.

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