My two cats spend the first two and half years of their lives living in a one bedroom flat. There was no way for them to get out, and even if they could, I wouldn’t have let them as I lived on a very busy road.
Now I live in a 3 bedroom house in a much quieter location and yet I still keep them inside. I know people who think this is crazy, but I personally think those that let their cats out are crazy-but I’m not judging, and I won’t. It is a very individual choice. Having never been outside, my cats have no street smarts. They are not used to navigating roads or dealing with cars. There are also foxes and other predators out there, and of course, just some seriously sick people who just want to harm animals or just really don’t like them as they don’t like having random animals use their gardens as litter trays (which is understandable).
My cats are as safe as they can be inside the house. They have plenty of space, plenty of toys to occupy them, and a warm bed no matter what the weather. They are loved and looked after. They don’t know what they are missing as they have never been out, but I do not think that this means their lives are not as fufilling as other cats who go out. That’s like saying because we don’t go and stand in the middle of a motorway our lives aren’t as fufilling or exciting as those who do.
I would ask that people respect my decision to keep my pets in side my house, as much as I respect theirs to let them out. The way I see it, you wouldn’t let your dog, or hamster or child go out on their own, so why is it acceptable for cats to come and go as they like?
Every time I see a post online about a missing cat or someone has seen one that has been hit by a vehicle it breaks my heart a little. No I don’t particularly enjoy cleaning out the litter tray, but it’s a small price to pay for their safety. If I let them out now and something happened to them, I’d never forgive myself. That might seem a bit dramatic but they are my pets and my family.
Ultimately, having indoor or outdoor cats is a personal decision!