Though you may feel it is unfair to keep a pet inside all the time, there are dangers in allowing your dog or cat to roam freely.It is not only unsafe, but also illegal in many areas to allow your dog to be “at large”.Cats are indoor pets!Cats are best kept indoors at all times. Cats that are allowed to roam at will are in danger
from cars, dogs, other cats and people.A cat living outside has an average lifespan of just 2 – 5 years. Indoor cats can live as long as 17 years or more.Outdoor cats will come in contact with a variety of contagious feline diseases, including feline leukemia.Cats also kill birds. Domestic cats are threatening many native bird populations.Cats and dogs that have not been neutered and are allowed to roam contribute to the pet overpopulation problem.If you still insist in letting your cat out, at least be sure she is wearing a collar and tag.
That way she can’t be taken for a stray. A break-away collar is safest for cats.
Cats have enemies
Not everyone likes cats, and even those that do don’t always appreciate other people’s cats using their flowerbeds as toilets or other trespasses.
People shoot cats. They poison them. They may trap them and take them to the shelter illegally.Your own cats can be killed by neighborhood dogs, or your dog may threaten the neighbors cat.Dangers lurk outdoorsCats and dogs both are often stolen. They may be sold to other pet lovers, especially if they are of a currently “hot” breed. Though illegal, they are often sold to research laboratories.Dogs may chase and injure or kill livestock. It is legal in many rural areas for anyone to kill a dog that is chasing livestock not on the dog’s property.Drivers don’t always slow down for animals, and the animal may freeze in panic rather than run from the danger.Ways to keep them happy insideI’ve often thought about building a screened in porch just for the cats. I have seen some simple cat runs that can be used for small dogs as well. These allow the cat to enjoy the sights and scents of the outdoors while remaining safely at home.
A deep windowsill or cat perch will also keep them happy.
Keep dogs in at night
Dogs can be as happy as cats when kept indoors, especially if people are at home. It is certainly the best place for them at night.Dogs allowed to roam can get into packs. Dogs in packs are more likely to chase livestock and other animals, and are more likely to behave aggressively.If you prefer to leave them outside during the day it should at least be in a fenced yard. Unless they are adept at jumping the fence, tunneling under or opening the gate themselves this should be a safe option. Though keep in mind some dogs can even climb a fence!Safety first!Be sure your dog is wearing a collar and tag at all times.You can even get safety tags with lights or that glow in the dark.A sad and unfortunate truth is that animals at large are vulnerable to abuse. There are those who think it is fun to throw rocks at dogs or set cat’s tails on fire.So for the safety of your pets as well as the safety of your neighbors, please keep your animals in your home and on your property.