Every pet parent wants their cats to have a happy including experiencing the outdoors where they can get some physical exercise and a good dose of sunshine. However, the thought of your cat escaping can be terrifying. There are various ways to keep your cat in your yard such as by installing a cat enclosure or through the use of an invisible fence.
How to keep your cat in your yard?
Here are some ways to keep your cat safe and secured within your yard:
1. Putting your cat on a leash.
Here are the ways on how to train your cat to use a leash with a harness:
- let your cat get used to wearing a harness indoors
- once she gets used to it, let your cat walk with the leash without tension indoors
- let your cat get used to leash tension indoors and make sure to supervise it
- once your cat gets used to the leash and harness, try to walk her outdoors and ultimately you can leave her leashed on the yard
- always reward your cat with treats each time she behaves and follows your instructions
2. Installing an outdoor cat enclosure like a catio.
Cat containment systems are a popular way among pet owners who want their cats to have a taste of the outdoors while keeping them safe from harm. A catio or cat enclosure lets your cat roam outdoors although in a limited area only.
Cat enclosures are made from various materials like wood and may be do-it-yourself ones or store-bought. A good example of an outdoor cat enclosure is the Kittywalk Outdoor Net Cat Enclosure for decks and balconies.
3. Using wireless technology as an invisible fence.
If you are into modern technologies, you may opt for the so-called invisible fence for pets like the PetSafe Free to Roam Dog and Cat Wireless Fence. It allows your cat to roam outdoors and lets you set up specific boundaries so your cat is safe from any danger. It also keeps cats away from trees and dangerous areas outdoors.
4. Planting catnip around your yard.
You can try keep your cat in your yard by planting catnip which most cats love. Catnip leaves and stems contain nepetalactone which, when smelled by cats, stimulates receptors that sense pheromones. As a result, cats experience happiness and euphoria. This will also keep your cat from venturing away from the yard.
Here are other plants that are appealing to cats:
- cat grass
- licorice root
- wheatgrass sprouts
- cat thyme
Inversely, you may also try planting certain plants that cats hate along the fence to deter your cat from going beyond that area. Some examples of plants that cats detest include the following:
- coleus canina
- lemon thyme
5. By training your cat.
Cats are naturally adventurous and every outdoor excursion will always be met with excitement. You can try to keep your cat safe within your yard with a proper training program. Be sure to train her to go outside and come back inside when you are present to direct and monitor her. This may take a while and will take a lot of patience but this is also doable since cats are smart and inquisitive.
The best chance of success comes with training program that provides well-defined steps, discipline, and rewards. Disciplinary methods may be needed if your cat tends to be stubborn and may include catching her and taking away her outdoor time. This is usually done by cradling her in both arms and taking her inside right away with your back in your yard if and when she tries to run away.
6. Installing a high metal fence with overhead netting.
Another option to keep your cat in your yard without any chance of escaping is by placing metal fencing specifically made of chicken wire. A cat’s claws won’t be able to get a good grip on this type of material. Opt for a barrier of two meters or higher and be sure to plug any holes underneath the fence. You should also cat-proof potential springboards so your cat won’t be able to jump over the fence.
Overhead netting that rests at an inward angle is also advisable to prevent your cat from climbing or jumping. Other add-ons you can place on your fence include roller bars, spiky plastic strips, and a rotating paddle or oscillot which can be installed on top of your fence. If your cat tries to climb the fence, it rotates toward your cat, causing her to fall back to the yard. It is also helpful in keeping away your neighbor’s cat from your yard.
Your cat’s safety and wellbeing are a cat parents utmost concern especially if she ventures outdoors. You can reduce the risk of the cat escaping your yard with the methods above.
Image: istockphoto.com / Nils Jacobi