Caging Cats: When and Why it's Sometimes Necessary


Years ago when I first started owning cats I thought there was no excuse to ever cage a cat. I thought they were free roaming beasts and needed to be treated as such. This opinion was shared with many other cat lovers and continued for a number of years. I guess the idea of caging a cat is an emotional topic because when you mention it everyone automatically thinks of the cat version of a puppy mill with cats piled in tiny cages and meowing to get out. There are kitten mills out there that operate this way; I am not in support of them. Caging should be used as a tool for keeping happier healthier cats, not a form of lifelong incarceration. With this in mind I am going to write this article about when it is appropriate and helpful to cage felines.

Caging kittens for the first few weeks of their life is the best way to ensure good litter box habits later on in life.
Caging kittens for the first few weeks of their life is the best way to ensure good litter box habits later on in life.

Litterbox Training

I always suggest to cage a mother cat and her kittens for the first 4-6 weeks of the kittens’ life regardless if the kittens were planned or the result of a pregnant feral. There are a number of reasons for this but the main one is to ensure good litter box habits. I had a litter of kittens which I let run around free in my house since birth and they decided to use the entire house as one huge litter box. The older they got the bigger the problem became as they were harder to retrain. This is so easy to prevent by just caging the family. The cage should be only big enough to contain a litter box, food and water bowl, and a nesting box. Make sure to house them in a one-level cage. Most female cats will go to the highest shelf of a cage to put her kittens and this is just not safe for them if they happen to tumble off in their infancy! Besides this a smaller cage will give them no choice but to use the litter box. If you want to let mama cat out for exercise once in a while that’s fine as well, just make sure that she’s in the cage for at least a few 24 hour stretches to make sure she uses the litter box as well (as the kittens will learn from watching her!) This method can also be used on older cats with poor litter box habits, though it make take a few weeks to reinforce the behavior.

Feral cats can be tamed easier when temporary caging is employed as a tool for re-domestication.
Feral cats can be tamed easier when temporary caging is employed as a tool for re-domestication.

Taming Ferals

 Many cat lovers will adopt neighborhood ferals and try to tame them down. This is a noble and often challenging cause that can be made easier by the use of cages. If you take in a pregnant feral please cage her with her kittens just like detailed above but put the mother in a separate cage directly after weaning. If the mother is fearful of humans the kittens will pick up on her tension, even if constant handling in their infancy made them docile and trusting they can start to go backwards on their progress when they are slightly older and able to pick up on their mother’s fearful behavior. By taking mama out of the scene the taming of the kittens should become much easier. The cage can be used as a tool for this because the confined quarters will guarantee they have to come into contact with their human care takers. This will speed the taming process greatly and with any luck will result in cats that are trusting of their caretaker and often times these ferals can become mellow house pets, particularly if attention is given to them when they are young. That’s not to say that it won’t be a long and tough process because it will be!

A luxury suite as far as quarantine cages go! This enclosure is made by
A luxury suite as far as quarantine cages go! This enclosure is made by


Quarantining new cats is very important if you have a multi-cat household, and even more important if the new arrival is a feral, rescue, or from a situation involving a whole colony of cats. Of course with any new arrival you should have them tested for Feline Leukemia and Feline AIDS (the FeLV/FIV test) which are both very catchy. Most pet stores will set up clinics to do these simple blood tests for as little as $35. In the meanwhile you should be looking out for any other problems like gooey or glassy eyes, snotty noses, diarrhea, etc. Only after the tests come back clean and the cat appears absolutely perfectly healthy for a *minimum* of two weeks should you even consider letting the new cat anywhere near your resident cats! The quarantine cage can be any size you’re comfortable with (unless it’s also a taming cage in which case it’s probably better to be on the smaller side) and should be kept in a part of the house the resident cats have no access to. This could be a garage, or a spare closed bedroom, it doesn’t really matter. When the cat receives a clean bill of health you can move onto the second part of this caging ritual. Quarantining can also be used when one cat becomes sick within the household to prevent the spread of disease, which will save the multi feline owner a lot of work and money (only having to treat one cat instead of two or more.)

Sometimes even the introduction of a kitten can be stressful to resident cats. Temporary caging of the new cat often eases them into the territory with less problems.
Sometimes even the introduction of a kitten can be stressful to resident cats. Temporary caging of the new cat often eases them into the territory with less problems.

Introducing a New Cat into the Household

 How would you like it if one day a complete stranger moved into your house without warning and insisted on staying? You probably wouldn’t be happy. Cats aren’t normally pleased either. If you wish to respect your resident feline/s and ease an introduction please consider the use of a cage, this is a particularly useful tool when introducing a new adult cat into a household with one residential cat who is used to being alone. The size of this cage doesn’t matter as long as both cats and meet face to face at all points of the cage (if it’s multi-layered.) The cage will give the new cat a sense of security and allow the resident cat to get used to the new cat’s smell. Don’t rush this process! If you rush this process you may end up with the cats getting stressed out and spraying or fighting with each other. Trust me, correcting spraying and mending cat friendships are much more difficult to deal with then a temporarily caged cat. Make sure the resident cat is completely OK with the caged cat before opening the cage door. There should be absolutely no growling, no staring, no thrusting the ears back, and no poofing up of fur. After you open the cage door keep the cat within one room, making sure the resident cat has to deal with him/her and then gradually increase the territory (which rooms the newbie can go into) until both cats have the same amount of territory. This should ensure an easy transition and if the resident cat shows any ambivalence during this process it means you’re going too fast and may need to backtrack a bit. Trust me going slowly will not psychologically scar the new cat. They’re rather hardy in this aspect!

Wabbitat cages work well for diagnostic cages - they're very small but the cat won't be in it for more than a day (and if no urine and/or stool is produced in that time consult your vet!)
Wabbitat cages work well for diagnostic cages - they're very small but the cat won't be in it for more than a day (and if no urine and/or stool is produced in that time consult your vet!)

Using a Cage to Help Diagnose Ailments

In multi-cat households sometimes it is hard to figure out which cat is having a problem. Diagnosable problems can be vomiting, diarrhea, crystals in the urine, blood in urine or stools, etc. If you only have one cage rotate each cat until you find the culprit and consult your vet. Sometimes a cage can also be effective in diagnosing things like urological issues, diabetes, internal parasites or even constipation. If your cat is in a situation where their urine needs to be tested (as for PH levels for diabetics or stool samples for routine parasite testing) or inspected (for crystals, blood, or strange colors) then cage the kitty you think is in trouble and give them a litter box with no litter in it. Yes, you heard me right, an empty litter box. With any luck you cat will still use this and you’ll be able to peer in and see if there’s a problem. If this does not work then you can collect urine the old school way by keeping the cat in a cage with a grated bottom and a tray, giving them no litter box and waiting until they can’t wait any longer to relieve themselves where they’ll pee on the grated floor of the cage and into the try. Personally I liked to try the first method as it’s less stressful for the cat. Only if that doesn’t work should you try the second.

Cat carriers are a must for anyone who wants to safely travel with their kitty. Cats can become spooked easily and a carrier will ensure they can't scratch you up and get away.
Cat carriers are a must for anyone who wants to safely travel with their kitty. Cats can become spooked easily and a carrier will ensure they can't scratch you up and get away.

Very Short Term Penning & Crating

If you have a cat that likes to disappear into the black hole that every feline-friendly household has, then temporary crating and penning may be useful to you at some point in the future! If you have a vet appointment or are moving then gather the cat the night or week before and then you won’t have to scramble around the morning of trying to find the missing beastie! Temporary caging can also be used wonderfully if you are having a gathering of some sort and can’t trust your visitors not to let your cat outside or in an area of the house it’s not supposed to be. This is more for the cat’s safety and for your own peace of mind then anything. Also please crate your cats when you bring them anywhere. It doesn’t matter how mellow the cat appears to be if it’s suddenly spooked it’ll only take a second for it to leap out of your arms or out of the car. I have heard so many cats permanently lost in this manner so pleeeease, if you are travelling with your cat make sure to crate them! (And I don’t want to hear “well you can leash them” because certain cats can wriggle out of harnesses and leashes in the bat of an eye, and most can if they’re panicked.)

These rubber-tipped pillers are gentle on the cats' mouth/throat and just as effective as the completely plastic ones. I highly suggest them.
These rubber-tipped pillers are gentle on the cats' mouth/throat and just as effective as the completely plastic ones. I highly suggest them.

Doling Out Medcation

Lets face it, most cats hate to be medicated! Unfortunately sometimes it’s necessary for their health. If you have a cat with an infection or something else that needs to be medicated in the short term a cage can be your best friend. I had to treat my felines for coccidia, a nasty disease if there ever was one, and it took me 21 days worth of medication with the 21 days having to be reset if they missed even a single dose! If I did not use cages during this time I would have never solved the problem! They would have all hidden around the house in avoidance of me! Caging also is great in the sense they’re cornered which means they generally don’t struggle too much. If you have to give them pills try investing in a piller. Most pet stores and feed stores sell them and some vets might as well. Otherwise some medications might be able to be hidden in food or eased down the throat with a generous coating of butter. Make sure to ask you vet about the medication and if it is OK to mix with food or crush into food because some are not! Also if you are a cattery or rescue that has a vet that does home visits for inoculations and whatnot please have pity on the vet and cage the cats that need to be treated. It’ll take much less time and will be less stressful on both the cats and humans involved!

Cages and crates can become sources of comfort for a cat in a new environment. The quiet and safety of someplace familiar can have a calming effect.
Cages and crates can become sources of comfort for a cat in a new environment. The quiet and safety of someplace familiar can have a calming effect.

Introduction Into a New Enviroment

 If you are planning a move please consider caging your kitty or kitties to ease their transition into the new environment. A lot of cats will go missing, sometimes for a few weeks, when let out into a new house without a proper introduction! This can be a scary event for them and if your cat is particularly skittish or nervous then it may take a little while to get used to the sounds, sights, and smells before they feel safe enough to explore the world outside the cage. After the cage is opened make sure it stays open because it will be the cats own safe spot to be and it may retreat back to it from time to time until it gets settled in.

This tom cat was successfully introduced to three other unaltered toms with the use of crating as a training device. These "time out" periods worked with great effectiveness for me.
This tom cat was successfully introduced to three other unaltered toms with the use of crating as a training device. These "time out" periods worked with great effectiveness for me.

Caging as a Training Device

 Cages can be used as a weapon of peace. Sometimes even after proper introductions cats may start to squabble, perhaps when a kitten grows to maturity and challenges the status quo of the household, or perhaps there is no concrete reason us humans can see. Either way sometimes the resolution can be found by caging the offending cat for awhile until they cool down. Depending on the situation caging or crating may be necessary. I had unaltered males running around a stud room for a number of years. I always brought in new “studs” as kittens but sometimes when they grew to sexual maturity they would start squabbling. Whenever I caught them in the act I’d put each of the offenders in a crate/small carrier for an hour. If they started to squabble again after I let them out I’d stick them back in the crate. Generally after the first or second stretch they were ready to behave themselves again.  I think the record was four stints but that was it. After two months of this ritual everyone was living in harmony again, four unaltered adult males, who I was told before hand I’d never be able to accomplish!

A fairly small outside run produced by
A fairly small outside run produced by

Outdoor Runs

Some people feel that cats should have access to the outdoors. However the outdoors are a very dangerous place for a cat to be. There have been studies that suggest indoor/outdoor and exclusively outdoor cats live drastically shorter lives on average then housecats. This is because of the cars, stray dogs, various wildlife, and the possibility of getting into poisons and toxins you wouldn’t ordinarily have in your house. Take for instance you cat catches a mouse that just previously had ingested rodent poison. If your cat eats the mouse, or a few drops of sweet tasting antifreeze in a neighbors open garage, then the likelihood of it surviving isn’t very good. Most cats raised exclusively indoors won’t bother to try getting outside, where it may be some other cat’s territory. Some cats will still try and other cats who were previously indoor/outdoor cats may be impossible to keep exclusively indoors. This is when outdoor runs become a nice way to deal with the safety issues while still allowing your cat fresh air and sunshine. Some outdoor runs are just outdoor cages or tunnels, just big enough to sunbathe or enjoy the outside without too much room to exercise and play. Other outdoor runs can be much larger, and are often home made. They can resemble chicken coops, roofed dog runs, or even outdoor aviaries. Be creative in looking around as there doesn’t appear to be any large outdoor runs being marketed for cats. If this is an option you wish to look into please make note that whatever you choose needs both a roof and a wire, concrete, or other solid bottom. Cats can easily dig their way out if they want to and there’s nothing to stop them.

Sometimes "honeymoon suites" can be created for a breeding pair by using a small cage that reduces the ability for the female to roll out of position for the tom.
Sometimes "honeymoon suites" can be created for a breeding pair by using a small cage that reduces the ability for the female to roll out of position for the tom.

Breeding Issues

Sometimes caging can be used to aid breeders. Some females are hard to breed in an open area, either because they roll before the male can properly mount them, or because they like to tease the male and stay just out of reach. In these cases a breeding cage is often used. This is a very small cage, just big enough for two cats with no food, water, or litter box. Females need to be bred by the males five times before she starts to ovulate. This means the cats must couple numerous times over the span of at least an hour, usually several. After they are done they should be allowed out to continue their normal lives. Also the female cat should be caged a week or two before her due date. This is so you know she won’t have her kittens in some inappropriate area of your house where you can’t reach them or where they might be in danger.


I hope this article has cleared up any misconceptions people have about the caging of cats. Really it's for the benefit of the cats, their health and social stability. I know there are catteries and rescues out there that rely only on small cages and nothing else for the entirety of the cat's life and I think both the humans and the cats are missing out on a lot in these situations. That being said I know there are also catteries, rescues, and owners who have made enormous elaborate enclosures both indoors and out and I think this can't be a bad thing. All and all most cats should be kept in the home, with it's owner, where both are free to bond and enjoy each other. If anyone has read this article and decided perhaps to invest in a cage for future use then please continue onto my Photographic Guide to Proper Cat Cages.

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Comments 32 comments

Bob in Florida 7 years ago

I really enjoyed this article - very well done.

Alexander A profile image

Alexander A 7 years ago from Internet

Very well done article :)

stars439 profile image

stars439 7 years ago from Louisiana, The Magnolia and Pelican State.

Great article. God Bless

marcie plascencia 5 years ago

thanks for the article. it was very helpful.

becky 5 years ago

The reason I am looking into caging my cats is because he meows very loudly at night and wakes us up over and over. It is actually causeing major issues with my relationship and with my ability to get enoug sleep. I have a baby on the way too and won't need any other reasons to be woken up at night. I am going to try to put my cat in the cage at night and if he meows at least he will be far enough from my bedroom that I won't hear it.

AllTheseThoughts 5 years ago

Just like you, I never thought a cat should be caged; that is,until we adopted a stray kitten. My youngest was concerned that the little orphan would be hit by a car, and since we already had three older cats we weren't sure they'd like him, so we put him in an extra-large dog crate in the house. Luckily the little guy (Shika) was so thankful to have a home that he gave us no qualms about being in a crate. After a few days we allowed him out but when the other cats chased him, he always ran to the safety of his crate.

Three years later we have more cats and have used crates for their bedrooms,quarantining of the sickies or injured and also as 'time-out' when the playing gets way to rough.

Eden 5 years ago

Thank you for this article. I am getting ready to cage my cat for the first time in her life and I am really daunted thinking about it. However, she has a heart problem, can't be spayed (can't undergo anesthesia), and is marking everywhere. She did okay being confined to our bedroom/bath for two years, but now she marks on our bed. We have tried prozac, flower essences, feliway, etc. My husband and I have been kicked out of bedroom and live in separate rooms. The cage is the last resort for us and was recommended by our vet. We would hate for her to survive this heart problem that was supposed to kill her before her first birthday, only to have the marking do her in. I hope she takes to it okay.

Marti 4 years ago

This article was very informative. I'm getting my last feral cat spayed and I will cage her for security and

cleanliness reasons. She will be recovering in the garage with 8 other cats. I just wish I could find out how long I should cage her post op. Thanks, Marti

Theophanes profile image

Theophanes 4 years ago from New England Author

Marti: Post op caging is usually best at two weeks. Some vets say one but I always keep them in for two just to make certain and this is only if there's no problems. Sometimes if they get an infection or complication it can take longer but this is rare. Good luck!

ABoyer 3 years ago

I have a 16-year-old cat. She was fine for years, but now when we leave town for the occasional weekend, she poops outside the litter box. At first, the lavender-scented calming collar sold in stores helped, but lately it doesn't. We don't want to board her because of the expense and because our younger cat (11) has never lived a day of her life completely alone in the house. The two of them aren't close, but they're companions of a sort. I'm wondering if we could cage the older one (we know she's the guilty party) while we're away for a three-day weekend--maybe put the cage in her favorite spot. She's never been caged before. Is it safe to leave her alone caged for 2-3 days (obviously, with plenty of food, water, and litter)? Should I try it for a day or two while we're home to see how she accepts it? Thank you so much--I'd really appreciate any advice!

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Theophanes 3 years ago from New England Author

I'd definitely try that ABoyer. Put the cage in a spot she likes open, and allow her to explore it herself. Maybe even feed her treats or canned food in there while it's open. Give her a bed and make her feel like it's a safe and secure place to be. It'll make eventually locking her in for a while a lot less stressful. Also try locking her in for a day or two while you're home to make sure she doesn't do anything crazy after you've done this introduction. Other than that she may or may not use the litter box in the cage (as it seems your absence is the stress factor causing this) but plastic tray bottoms are easier to clean than the floor if she is bad! I know how hard it can be to own elderly cats and animals with separation anxiety. I know none of us want to keep anyone in a cage but you never know... the cage might provide the security she's looking for when you're gone. You just don't know until you try. Best wishes!

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CarolynEmerick 3 years ago

My concern is that caging will become a trend for shallow people looking for convenience. Not that the reasons in the article or the comments were like that at all, far from it. However. I have seen the dog crating trend get out of control where people don't use it just for training, they use it so they can leave a dog home for 12 hours and when it inevitably relieves itself, he does it in the cage. I have seen and heard horrific situations where people abuse the crate regularly and make jokes about their dog being in his crate from 7am and it was then 7pm. Now we have vapid celebrities on TV shown tossing their dogs in their crates when they are home! Dogs and cats are social animals and for a dog to be left to rot alone in a tiny cage instead of being with the family is awful. Believe me I understand the reasons described here, but I'm just worried we'll have people who don't want to deal with cat hair or the occasional hairball and resort to the cage. So i think its important to be very careful when talking about caging dogs and cats to be very clear to spell out the right and wring way to do it. For every intelligent, rational, compassionate person out there, there is also a dimwit who will abuse it and not even realize... I have seen these people often.

And by the way, one of my cats does the howling thing. No I can't stop him from doing it so I shut the hallway door, run a fan by my bed for white noise, and sleep with earplugs.

Theophanes profile image

Theophanes 3 years ago from New England Author

Although I understand your concerns this article is about proper cat husbandry - not an excuse to cage things you deem annoying. I've had many cats both in and out of cages over the years for many reasons and let me tell you - it's actually harder to keep a caged cat clean then it is one running around! I've used cages for quarantine and somewhat long term medication routines.... and wow... given a confined environment they can surely mess both their habitat and themselves up right fast. I don't really worry about people inappropriately using cages for cats for this reason (did I mention when they're not happy they also have a tendency to be very very loud?) It's just not worth it for that.... if you're that annoyed by a cat you keep it penned up in a cage then chances are you won't have a cat for long or ever again.

Right now the only abuses I've seen for cages are kitten mills.... which is the same story for any solely money-based animal breeding business and as much as I'd like to see these places not exist anymore I know there will always be new ones popping up to replace old ones for the simpler reason that money makes people do stupid things.

Thank you for commenting. I do appreciate the insight and the fact you took the time to reply to my article. Hope your and your kitty have a good day. :)

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epbooks 3 years ago from Las Vegas, NV

Great information. I have a friend who is looking to adopt a new cat into her household. Will share this with her!

rose-the planner profile image

rose-the planner 3 years ago from Toronto, Ontario-Canada

Great article! This is very insightful and you have provided some valuable information regarding caging cats. Thank you for sharing. (Voted Up) -Rose

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peachpurple 2 years ago from Home Sweet Home

well done article. I never quarantine my cat but i had seen my neighbor caged her cat because she had kittens-afraid other male cats to attack them.

hellovictoria profile image

hellovictoria 2 years ago from Atlanta

this is a great article! I actually just bought a crate to put my cats in because I'm in the middle of moving. I haven't really thought about crating them for other reasons. Thank goodness when my cats were kittens I didn't have any litter box issues with them. I've had them for two years and never had a problem with them relieving themselves on the carpet or my furniture.

I am working on getting them used to the crate so they won't be so stressed out come moving time, and it will help as I introduce them to the new place since they do get terrified when I have to take them out of the place they've grown up in.

Voted up - thank you again!

dave g 2 years ago

I have been taking care of a feral cat and her two five WK old kittens . Last week when I let her out a waiting coyote got her . These little ones are great but they are getting into everything . I got a large dog cage to put in while at work and at night . Anything I need to do to make it Easter on them . The male is Sylvester and the female is Daisey .

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poweranni 2 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

I love my kitty so much that it hurts. He has his own "condo" outfitted with an "indoor toilet" and a "kitchen" and "running water." It is also carpeted and has two stories.

In other words, he has an all-you-can-eat feeder, a water bowl, litter box and a ledge that he can sit on.

Why do I do it?

Well he has this habit of chewing up wires, which could actually end up burning the house down.

He also has this mild obsession with chewing plastic which I fear could get him an intestinal blockage.

That is a harsh way to go. And no matter how much I clean, he manages to find some kind of plastic to chew on.

That is why he lives in a condo, but he gets out of it, pretty much on request.

Theophanes profile image

Theophanes 2 years ago from New England Author

Poweranni - I hadn't thought about the destructive aspect but I have had animals before that fit that category! Animals can be weird sometimes. It's a shame when you have to take such measures but sadly sometimes it's the best thing to do.

dave g - Just make sure they have a place to hide within the cage as well as some entertainment (toys) and they should be fine in temporary kenneling. :)

hellovictoria - You've probably moved in by now. I hope you had good luck with it! Thanks you for commenting, I am sorry for my slothful reply.

Charlie 19 months ago

I have a 16/17 year old cat who seems to be leaving no option other than caging her at night. We bought a large rabbit hutch with two rooms (she is very small too) and this worked well for a while with her litter box in another room.

Lately however she has been completely trashing the inside of the box pooing and weeing everywhere, completely missing the litter tray. It gets up the walls, in her bed, in the water bowl and then drips onto the floor through gaps in it. It can take an hour a day to clean it up.

Recently she was left loose at night a few times and behaved perfectly well for a while until today when she urinated all over the kitchen table despite having access to a clean litter tray. My father is threatening to put her down. I feel this is a shame as there is nothing else wrong with her.

The only solution I can think of is to construct some kind of entirely waterproof and easily removable version of the hutch she has now so that if she makes a terrible mess of it, it stays contained and can be easily lifted outside and cleaned on the grass with a hosepipe and then some bleach solution.

Has anyone had a cat problem like this before?! If I didn't know better I would say that she deliberately makes as much mess as possible!

Michelle 18 months ago

My poor kitty needs to be crated for 8 weeks after surgery on a broken femur! Non. Stop. Meowing It's only day 2....

Rissaroo 18 months ago

What do you do if your parents won't let you let your cat roam around and keeping him in the cage??

Liam 18 months ago

What do you do when two cats don't stop the squabbling even after doing what you advised? What if it keeps continuing for months and they only behave when caged, yet misbehave and purposely fight after being out of the cages for so long? What then? Please help!

Robyn 17 months ago

Thanks but you forgot a major reason, the main reason I've had to cage cats, and that's for the end of life. At some point, cats can no longer control their bodily functions, require constant care, sometimes can barely move or instead hide, and/or don't get along with the other animals, and spending the end of life in a cage is the only option. My cat, GK, had an abscess lanced today so she can no longer be outside. My father has dementia so he'll open doors even if I tell him not too so no bathroom for GK. GK won't use a litter pan either. She's 16, 4 pounds, and on the way out. She hates being touched. I hate to cage her but what other option do I have. 16 months ago

Great article's!! Thank you!

You mention a lot about introducing kittens to new homes, feral cats and cats to multi cat homes, but what about a 2 yr old bengal that is used to 2 dogs to a new owners home with no other pets?

Any tips please :)

Bella 16 months ago

hey my mom wants my kitten Roco outside, but we have other wild cats that aren't nice to each other, so i keep her in a nice square door cage. im not around all the time to let her out, so how much should i let her out of the cage. ps i have a dog and it kee nuzzlings the kitten is that ok

Kristen 13 months ago

I have a about 10 week old kitten who was dumped at our house by an unknown party. Some people in my house are highly allergic to cats. I have been looking at keeping her in a outdoor ca

LauraPalka 11 months ago

This article was helpful to me in so many ways! 1) I will be moving soon 1-1/2 hours away and have been concerned as to how to best move my 4 cats with the least amount of stress on us all. I was going to use pet carriers but crates will be much better. 2) Two of my cats fight so I have to keep them separated so I have been desperately looking for a way to re-introduce them. Nothing has worked (they are currently separated as basement vs. main floor cats). Putting them in crates when they fight will work great. 3) When I move I am going to set up a kitten fostering room and your explanation of how a cage will come in handy, particularly for litterbox training, is amazing. I can't thank you enough!!

Kramer451 5 months ago

We rescued a litter of 4 kittens who are almost 1 year o!d now. They have been crated, at night and when we are not home, since we got them. The crate is huge, has a ledge and litter box as well as food, etc. They can look out the French doors into the garden. They are crated for their safety. One eats hair ties, etc. One chews wires. And 4 kittens playing and climbing on tables with no supervision can be destructive. We allow one kitten at a time to run at night (not either of the ones who eat things). The kittens and, their cage and most importantly are safe. We block toddlers from harm, either with gates, playpens, or bouncy seats, why not kittens?

Maitreyi 5 months ago

I have 2 male cats from the same litter which started getting rough and aggressive towards each other around 1 year. And that didn't stop even after getting them neutered. Caging was the only solution to keep them safe and give us some peace of mind while we were away at work. It worked out really well since we didn't have a spare room to separate cats before reintroducing. Now we have a cat being fostered, and not tested for any illnesses yet. So having a cage is helping us manage pretty well. I don't think it is cruel to keep cats in cage as long as they are large enough for them to move around (usually a big dog crate works well) plus enough place for their food bowl just in case. After all you want them to be healthy, safe and happy! :) I have spent many weeks feeling guilty for caging the cats but I am over it now ...such a good article..makes so much sense..esp for concerned cat parents!

Jane Ehrlich 3 weeks ago

Outrageous. As a cat behaviorist--accredited with the IAABC--I cannot condone cageing cats, outside of transport. There are kinder ways of introducing, or altering a cat's way. Read Prof Tony Buffington of Ohio State on the physical damages of stress that comes from using cages, and Beth Adelman's data--not opinion, but researched--on the cat's 'learned helplessness' response. I do not know of any respected vet-behaviorist or behaviorist that approves of cageing cats for the reasons suggested here, including Nick Dodman, emeritus of Cummings School of Vet. Medicine at Tufts and former Director, the Behavior Dept. there. Jane Ehrlich, Cattitude Feline Behavior

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