Maybe you have recently adopted a cat and are trying to decide if you should let him or her venture out into the great outdoors or stay indoors. Although the thought of your new friend sunbathing in the grass or chasing butterflies in the yard seems inviting, outside can be a dangerous place for kitties. According to WebMD Pets, an indoor cat's average lifespan is about 17 or more years while an outdoor cat's lifespan is approximately 2 to 5 years.
The best option for your cat is to stay indoors exclusively. Visits outside to the yard are OK as long as they are supervised. Some cats have no desire to go outside whatsoever. The list of injuries your cat can acquire outside is endless.
Bite wounds from other cats are one of the biggest offenders. At first the wound may be unnoticeable, but owners usually notice a lump after a day or two from the initial bite. This lump is an abscess, filled with pus. Usually the vet is able to lance and drain the wound fairly easy. Some patients need to be anesthetized and have a drain tube placed as well. Pain medications and antibiotics are typically prescribed.
Cats are also likely to be attacked by dogs outdoors. When cats are attacked by dogs, the injuries can be extremely severe. Broken bones, painful bite wounds, and ruptured organs are some things that can happen if your kitty were attacked by a dog. Unfortunately, these injuries are very likely to be fatal.
Not to mention all the other creatures felines could get into a tussle with when they don't stay inside - possums, raccoons, skunks, poisonous snakes, and so on.
And ldon't forget about the ever unforgiving cars and trucks. Injuries obtained from being hit by a car are very likely to be fatal.
There are many other random ways for cats to be injured outside too. Getting a tail stuck in the garage door, acorn ingestion, lacerations, eye ulcers...the list goes on and on.
The safest option for your cat is to keep them inside the safe walls of your home. Of course, this may require some litter boxes and kitty proofing in your home, but the efforts will be well worth it in the long run. Remember that just because your cat is kept indoors at all times does not mean that they are completely safe from injury.
It is still a good idea for your cat to get a little sunshine and many cats refuse to be kept indoors 100% of the time. There are many great outdoor cat enclosures that can be found in pet stores or even online. One example is the Kritter Kondo, which is a safe way to let your feline friend have some outdoor time.