?how long before letting a kitten outside?

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gavilan
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?how long before letting a kitten outside?

Postby gavilan » Thu Feb 15, 2018 11:49 am

Two weeks ago we acquired a 4 month old kitten ... he came from a local vet so is not used to el campo ... he has adjusted well to this house and finds his way around with confidence and competence ... but I am very nervous about letting him venture outside into the garden/campo ... I am afraid he will be frightened/surprised by something and not remember the way back to house/safety etc ... I would be most grateful for any advice/experience of when/how to introduce him to the Big Outdoors ...

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gerryh
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Re: ?how long before letting a kitten outside?

Postby gerryh » Thu Feb 15, 2018 12:02 pm

We have fostered and raised several kittens.
We live in the campo.
First we let it have the run of the terrace but block up any holes so it can't get outside.
We have always taken the attitude of when the kitten can jump up onto a table and/or climb a tree then they can be let out into the campo.
First we let it have the run of the terrace but block up any holes so it can't get outside.
Cheers
Gerry
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gavilan
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Re: ?how long before letting a kitten outside?

Postby gavilan » Thu Feb 15, 2018 12:35 pm

thanks for your comments gerryh ... I like your idea of paso a paso ... problem here is that to enclose the patio (like your terrace) would mean major fencing works ... patio is 6m wide by 14m long ... ?have you ever tried putting a kitten on a lead?!

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Re: ?how long before letting a kitten outside?

Postby El Cid » Thu Feb 15, 2018 12:48 pm

You can use a lead but use a harness, not a collar. It won't like it at first, but it's worth a try.

SID

gavilan
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Re: ?how long before letting a kitten outside?

Postby gavilan » Thu Feb 15, 2018 12:56 pm

a harness is a much better idea than a collar/lead ... hadnt thought of that ... thanks Sid

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gerryh
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Re: ?how long before letting a kitten outside?

Postby gerryh » Thu Feb 15, 2018 1:36 pm

I should have said that if you feed the kitten, play with it, cuddle it so it knows it lives with you, then it is not likely to wander far from home and will always come back home if there is any sign of danger.
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Gerry
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Wicksey
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Re: ?how long before letting a kitten outside?

Postby Wicksey » Thu Feb 15, 2018 1:40 pm

We've used a harness and lead in the past. We've let them have a good sniff all around the main boundary close to the house so they get to know where they are and where they need to get back to. We haven't lost a cat yet!

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Re: ?how long before letting a kitten outside?

Postby casita-bonita » Thu Feb 15, 2018 3:42 pm

We rescued, or should I say kidnapped a kitten from the village a few month ago. I guess it was around 6 months old at the time and used to people since it and it's siblings scrounged food from the restaurants in the village, hence no problem catching it. The following day we took it to a vet to be spayed. The next couple of days we kept it indoors in a cage where it seemed pretty settled. Occasionally we let the other cat in to take a look and get a little used to there being another cat around.

Anyways after a couple of days we figured that the poor thing probably needed a poo so we'd better let it out of the cage and into the garden. Our patio/land is completely open so if it was gonna bolt there was nothing we could do about it. We put the cage outside and opened the door. On release it explored the patio a little then came back, then it ventured a little further and came back and so on. After maybe it's fifth extended venture across the patio it climbed up a terrace and disappeared into the campo. Thinking that it would get lost we felt really bad having kidnapped it and had it operated on. After 4 or 5 hours we had pretty much decided that we wouldn't see it again when suddenly it reappeared.... Must be the lure of food and it obviously has a much better sense of it's location than we thought it would have.

So that was a couple of months ago now and it has turned into a lovely friendly cat that wanders around as it pleases but loves sitting on one's lap. Have no idea where it sleeps but it is always waiting by the door in the morning for breakfast, and again in the evening for dinner. Mostly it hangs around the house, but some days it disappears all day coming back for dinner.

So I think the upshot is that they have a great sense of location and can find their way around. So I would say don't worry too much about just releasing it onto the patio as long as it knows where it can get food it's come back.
Regards

Bob

gavilan
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Re: ?how long before letting a kitten outside?

Postby gavilan » Thu Feb 15, 2018 3:54 pm

thanks for replies from gerryh again, wicksey and casita-bonita ... gerryh: this cat does get lots of attention! ... from both of us! ... the previous cat I had invited herself here when she was about a year old, she was campo-wise and knew her way about ... so I didn't have to introduce her to anything ... this one is a 'different kettle of fish' and I am nervous ... but the idea of using a harness seems to me to be the best way forward ... until he and I get used to freedom to roam without major disaster! I appreciate very much all of your responses ...thanks again

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Re: ?how long before letting a kitten outside?

Postby Miro » Thu Feb 15, 2018 5:01 pm

We found our cat, now eight years old, in the garden in Spain when she was about a year old - very frightened and clearly not streetwise. Must have been abandoned, not feral - as we discovered she had already been spayed. She lived in our apartment, only ever going out on the small terrace from which she could not go anywhere else. Now here in the UK, she has the run of a much larger home (3 floors) but is never allowed out - she's quite stupid (in the cutest way) and as she only speaks Spanish would almost certainly get lost or worse. But she does love to sit and gaze out the window, and sometimes we do feel a pang of guilt. Funnily enough, I took her for a short stroll in the garden this (lovely sunny) morning - on a harness and lead. She was quite happy sniffing around, seemingly unaware of the restraint - until I told her it was time to go back indoors, but right now she's happily curled up on Mrs.M's lap, so no problem.
So yes, try the harness - but as others have suggested, as his confidence grows he will no doubt roam further afield, but will always come "home", since they are basically slaves to their stomachs and know where their bread is buttered, so to speak.
Don't worry about what people think, they don't do it very often

"Acquiring a dog may be the only opportunity a human ever has to choose a relative," Mordecai Siegal 1935-2010.


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