How do you keep a cat indoors? Is it cruel to keep cats indoors? There is no absolute rule that utter feline happiness relies on outdoor activities. Some owners may feel guilty when they keep their furry friends indoors; however, zoologist John Bradshaw claims that there are cats who find experiences in outdoors stressful. This is due to the fact that cats are naturally territorial and is, therefore, likely to find ‘rival felines.’ Whilst this may not be the case to all cats, creating a perfect environment for them will keep your cats away from unnecessary stress and troubles. Here are some cat-friendly house ideas that will keep your indoor felines happy and safe.
Provide a vertical space.
Firstly, it is very important to remember that cats seek the comfort of any hiding spots or areas that have safe vantage points. Vertical spaces are ideal when creating a cat room. Imagine your cat purring in content of the view and feeling in control, perching high on top. It allows them to survey and monitor their world on their own terms. In addition to that, it encourages them to exercise through jumping on vertical spots. Keep in mind that the lack of challenges of exploring, hunting, and social contact prompt cats to entertain themselves in grooming, sleeping, and eating. Fortunately, there are many furniture designs that are not only creatively designed but are functional, beneficial, and comfortable for your furry pets as well.
Creating vertical spaces may include:
- Cat shelves
- Cat trees
- Cat climbing wall
- Wall shelves
- Swinging ropes
- Lotus cat shelves
Look for the perfect space that has a view. Make sure that it is positioned in an appropriate and safe location, which can either be on a shelf or a bookcase. This will give her the opportunity to climb on a sunny window perch as well as some alone time.
Provide stimulation for your cat’s well-being.
A laser pointer is just one of the various types of interactive cat toys. However, it is important to note that cats will not be happy over the same old toys over time. Seek different types of toys that allow her to enjoy chasing, stalking, kicking, and pouncing.
Provide her with a comfortable spot to retreat to.
You may have noticed that some kitties enjoy a good hiding game under the bed or behind curtains. The said secret area can also be supported with some fabric or bookshelves. Further, this is especially beneficial to cats that are more timid and anxious. Create a safely screened porch for your cats to give them space and time to hide when they feel the need to. Apart from that, active cat breeds may be prevented from rushing out the door as soon as it sees the door open. The screen material should have a smooth surface such as tempered glass.
Consider improving your multicat toilet.
Remember the ‘plus one’ rule when providing litter trays to multicat households. For example, if you are rearing three cats, you should provide them with four litter trays situated in different areas. Keep them in a place where they are most likely to spend most of their time. However, keep them away from the shower room. There are some cats that despise water and may easily associate litter trays as something inconvenient when they are kept wet.
Additional tips in creating a cat house
Apart from the basic needs—shelter, food, and love—cats, too, have specific needs that should be taken into consideration.
- Avoid composite and solid-wood flooring. Instead, choose the right material that is an ideal choice in a house full of cats. It should be flat with a layer of epoxy paint.
- Despite carpets providing warmth in a room, it may not be the best choice for a room with cats. Cat hair may remain tangled on the carpet, which makes it hard to clean. Aside from that, your little feline may also have the tendency to urinate or defaecate outside her litter tray. If you persist on having carpets, make sure to keep it clean at all times. It might pose a threat to you and your cat’s well-being.
- Be sure to keep all fragile utensils and equipment stored in a safe place. Avoid placing them on open shelves, which are a welcoming sight to your naughty feline.
- ‘Curiosity killed the cat’ is an adage applicable up to the present. Your kitchen rubbish bin is a temptation in the eyes of your cats, which can be filled with leftovers. Place it on an inaccessible area or choose one with a firm lead.
- Indoor spaces may have plants, too, on the balconies, yards, terraces, and others. It is important to be mindful that all plants should not pose a threat to your felines. Here are some plants that are considered as a red flag: azalea, caladium, elephant’s ear, lily, mistletoe, philodendron, and poinsettia.