Cats are free spirits. Sometimes, this means that they do unpredictable things such as wandering around seemingly without purpose. While we recommend that all domestic cats remain indoors, this is not always the case. Understanding why your cat wanders (or roams) outside is important in understanding how to best keep them safe.
Why Do Cats Wander?
Many cats possess an urge to explore the world around them. As humans, we know very little about feline roaming behaviors. We know that they are quite savvy in a constant environment; they remember familiar landmarks and furry friends. Regardless, cats with an urge to roam are near impossible to restrict once they are already outside.
Cats may also wander during mating season. Typically, experts place kitten season in the period from April to October. However, it can begin as early as February. Cats that have not been spayed or neutered exhibit changed behavior during mating season. Females will howl and sometimes act overly affectionate. Both males and females will wander quite a bit more, subconsciously seeking a mate.
Dangers of Wandering
Roaming, while beloved by many cats, has its risks. Domestic cats are usually too small for drivers to avoid or even see crossing the street. Therefore, cars and other large vehicles pose the most major threat to outdoor cats.
Cats may also encounter living risks. Other animals such as foxes, coyotes, and fellow cats also roam the streets. Many of these animals are vicious, and some carry diseases such as rabies and upper respiratory infections. Additionally, your pet may run into some unfriendly humans during their roam.
During mating season, roaming has more consequences. Your male cats can impregnate unspayed females, and your female cats may return pregnant. While kittens seem cute, they require unique resources. Many kittens born in neighborhood conditions will not survive.
We heavily recommend that domestic cats are kept indoors. However, if you decide to let your cat roam, there are some precautions you can take. Always make sure your cats’ tags are up-to-date and secured. Their vaccinations should also be kept meticulously up-to-date. These steps limits some of the more common risks to an outdoor cat.
It is also extremely important that your cat is either spayed or neutered. There are behavioral and health benefits to this, but it will also ensure that they will not breed. Even if your cat stays strictly indoors, they should be fixed.
At Claws N Paws, we put your pets’ needs and safety first. We provide professional grooming services to both cats and dogs, and we provide cats-only boarding right next door. For more information or to set up an appointment, stop by our Fountain Valley location today or contact us at 714-962-1005.