Wednesday, February 6, 2008

The Hunter and the Tracker

I took the cats out this Sunday and we spent an hour in our garden. The sun was shining but the wind made it chilly anyhow. I was all bundled up and suffered through the winds as Skorpan and JumJum had a great time.

It's funny how "at home" they seem to be in the garden considering what kind of chickens they usually are. Sure, they leap for the door when the neighbours start their car, or when someone walks by chatting or laughing loudly. But still... They walk around the garden. They sniff. They chase leaves and invisible things in the grass. They climb on our bikes. They seem utterly satisfied.

When being outdoors they're kept in harnesses and on leashes, but I let them walk around without me holding the leashes. I just want them to be leashed so I have a greater chance at cathing them (the leash) if they do something I don't want them to do. This past Sunday, Skorpan suddenly decided to climb one of the trees and I wasn't okey with that. Got hold of the leash and could get him down without me being in a panic mode with a cat stuck in a tree...

I can't wait 'til spring when it gets warmer so we can spend time outdoors even during the week. And I look forward to feeling secure enough to have them in the garden on their own. Without me watching them.

Do you have any experience with indoor cats that get the opportunity to be outdoors? My intellectual guess is that they'd be to afraid to venture away from the garden but my heart puts me in panic mode thinking about everything bad that could happen to them "out there". I cut their claws so they wouldn't be able to defend themselves if they ended up in fights. They aren't trained to kill so I doubt they'd be able to catch their own food if they escaped/got lost. They're not used to cars. We live close to a biking path where sometimes mopeds come by real quick. I just don't want them to get hurt. Boyfriend claims that they're too chicken to attempt to go outside of the fence and that they'd instinctively would run indoors if something scared them... Any thoughts?


Geek Knitter said...

Oh goodness, look at those wonderful cats!

friskums said...

My cat LOVES going outside (I live in an apartment now, so he can't really), but he's been an indoor/outdoor cat for about 8 years. He is declawed in the front, but still manages to climb trees and kill mice, birds and squirrels.

That being said, I HATE letting him outside, because we've had a number of indoor/outdoor cats that have disappeared, and I'm terrified something will happen to him.

Cats aren't really like dogs though - if they get scared by something, they don't go running home. They just find the nearest spot they think is good for hiding and will stay there for a long time.
But, they probably wouldn't go past the fence, either, and they probably really enjoy it.

Just my fuzzy thoughts, this early in the morning. :)


Archiknist said...

I've never had a cat, so I'm no help in that regard. I did have an indoor rabbit and I tried to put a leash on him once (also so he could go outside under supervision). Luckily I tested it inside, because he HATED it. He was sure I was trying to strangle him so he ran around the room in a panic and then bolted back to his cage. (We ended up building a little pen for him, so he could be outside without the leash.) So your cats are definitely smarter than my bunny!

essjay said...

My two indoor cats hated being outside but they rarley got enough time outside. I used to let them out on the balcony with me and they loved that! I'm glad your two are having a good time!