How To Keep Your Cats From Going Outside

Nick Durante
by Nick Durante

Cats are just as loving and adorable as they are mischievous and adventurous. While it can be annoying when they make a break for the door each time you open it, that doesn’t mean that behavior will always carry on. Don’t fret, as we have compiled several key tips on how to keep your cats from going outside.

Keep a spray bottle by the door and spray your cats to keep them from going outside. You can also place a battery-operated spray bottle near the door that will automatically spray them when they approach it. Otherwise, you can keep their favorite toys near the door to throw and distract them when you need to go outside.

Make sure to get your cats spayed or fixed before they reach 5 months, old as this can also help keep them indoors. Bring your cats outside every once in a while on a leash and harness so they are less likely to try to go outdoors on their own. Follow along as we explore how to keep your cats from going outside.

How Do I Keep My Cats Indoors?

Whether it be distracting them or setting up automated spray deterrents, there are several ways to keep your cats from getting out of the house. Let’s look at the best ways to keep your cats from going outside.

1. Train Them

While it takes some time and patience, the best way to keep your cats from going outside is to train them. Keep a spray bottle near the door and lightly spritz them with water when they inch closer to it. Over time, your cats will be less likely to make a break for the door.

You can also teach your cats some audible triggers, such as whistling or clapping. Clap, stomp, or whistle anytime your cats do something, including approaching open doors. They will associate the sound with discipline, and they will eventually drop the behavior.

2. Keep Them Preoccupied

Cats don’t take as well to disciplinary training as dogs. Because of that, you may have to simply keep them preoccupied so your cats don’t go outside. For example, place a small dish with cat treats far away from the door anytime you need to keep it open for a while.

It also helps to keep some cat toys near the door that you can throw in another other direction to get them away from the door before you open it. Wait for your cats to take off after the toy before you open the door. Otherwise, you can rely on your roommate or spouse to distract your cats when you need to leave the door open for a while.

3. Put Them In Another Room

Nothing is more annoying as a cat owner than having to constantly corral your pet when you must make several trips outside. They are more likely to get outside when you must leave the door open for a while or go back and forth bringing groceries inside. Put your cats in another room and close the door if you are going to be making several trips outside.

This is quite useful when you move furniture in and out of the house. It’s also a good idea to separate your cats if you have guests that aren’t familiar with how to keep cats from going outside. You may hear them whining through the door, but that’s better than your cats making their way outside and getting lost.

4. Spray Deterrent

You can find several battery-operated spraying devices that can keep your cats from going outside. These devices are motion-activated, and they lightly spray your cats when they are triggered. Simply place the spray deterrent can near your doors.

It helps to let your cats walk up to the can at least once and get sprayed so they know it can happen. This may sound cruel, but it won’t hurt your cats. It will annoy them and discourage them from trying again. These cans can spray up to 100 times per day, and that’s more than enough to keep your cats indoors.

Cats are quite intelligent, and they will eventually learn that it’s not worth the risk of getting sprayed.

5. Give Them Outdoor Access

It may sound counterintuitive, but giving your cats some outside access can stop them from going and staying outside when they shouldn’t. Many homeowners install a cat door, knowing that their cats will go outside for a little while and return later in the day. This gives your cats some freedom and makes it so that you don’t have to retrieve them later.

However, you should only do this if your cat is chipped and wears a tag. It also helps to get a cat door that you can lock when they come back inside to limit how often they can go outside.

6. Get Your Cat Fixed

Cats that aren’t fixed tend to behave quite unpredictably. They are more likely to go outside, have accidents inside, and even scratch your furniture. It’s important to get your cat spayed or neutered before they reach 5 months old, otherwise, they will be too mature for the spay or neuter to hinder their aggressive behavior.

You will thank yourself for fixing your cat later when you don’t have to clean up urine throughout the house. It will also curb some of their more mischievous and adventurous behavior.

7. Play With Your Cat Outside

If you play with your cat outside, it’s less likely to make a break for the door each time you open it. Giving your cats some time outside can help them expend their energy and improve their mental health. Attach a leash and harness to your cat and let them explore your yard.

Dedicate 10-20 minutes toward outside time for your cats a few times per week to satisfy their need to go outdoors. Much like walking a dog, your cat will exert plenty of energy and will likely be on their best behavior when they get back inside.

Is It Legal To Have Outdoor Cats?

There is no blanket law regarding having outdoor cats in the United States. Laws vary between states and municipalities. Generally, however, you can have outdoor cats without any legal repercussions.

The biggest downside to having outdoor cats is that they are at a greater risk for danger as well as several ailments. Cats can attract ticks, fleas, and bugs that can transmit diseases to them when outside. Most of these problems are treatable, but it’s important to exercise caution and monitor your cats closely if you let them go outside freely.

There is also always the risk that your cat will get picked up by someone that assumes they are a stray. Make sure to get your cat chipped and make them wear a collar if you let them go outside so they can be returned to you if something happens.

Summing It Up

Spray your cats with a bottle when they try and get outside, as this will eventually train them to stay inside. Lock your cat door when your cats come inside for the day so they can’t go back out. Get your cats fixed before they reach 5 months old to curb aggressive behavior and ensure they don’t go outside.

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Nick Durante
Nick Durante

Nick Durante is a professional writer with a primary focus on home improvement. When he is not writing about home improvement or taking on projects around the house, he likes to read and create art. He is always looking towards the newest trends in home improvement.

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