February 2008 Issue

Finding Lost Indoor Cats

They exhibit certain behaviors when they wander from home, and this information can make a big difference in your search.

Perhaps one of the scariest thoughts for the owner of an indoor-only cat is that of your cat having to fend for himself in the great outdoors. Julia Albright, DVM, a resident in animal behavior at the Cornell University Hospital for Animals, says, "Keeping your cat indoors is the best way to provide a safe environment for him. Outside your home the cat may be exposed to other cats, cars and predators." However, accidents do happen, no matter how careful we are. A window screen may pop out unexpectedly, or a repairman may leave the door open "just for a second" while he grabs a tool from the truck. But apart from regularly checking window and door screens and making sure that all visitors know that your cat is strictly an indoor cat, the only thing you can do is prepare yourself for the occasion when he does get out.

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