Are Ragdoll Cats Indoor or Outdoor? [The Dangers They Face]

The answer is that Ragdoll cats are indoor cats. Ragdoll cats are very trusting creatures and not well equipped to cope with the great outdoors. However, that doesn’t have to be a blanket “indoors” at all times; all pet owners have different perspectives. If you want to let your Ragdoll cat out, you need to take precautions to keep it safe.

This article will discuss why Ragdolls are best kept as indoor cats and the dangers they can face in the outside world. While all outside cats face danger, Ragdolls may be more susceptible.

As well as the precautions to take should you let them become both an indoor and outdoor cat?

It’s important to know everything you can about a certain breed before getting one. Ragdolls make great pets, but like any other breed, there is a lot to know about them.

Why Shouldn’t My Ragdoll Cat Go Outside?

Ragdoll cats face a lot of dangers in the outside world. Many felines do, but according to UKRRC, Ragdoll cats are particularly trusting and not very capable of handling the dangers beyond your front door.

Many awful things can happen to cats, and if you love your kitty, it can be devastating to have a night where they don’t come home. This may be followed by months of searching – sometimes resolved in tragedy, sometimes never resolved at all.

Ragdolls tend to be relaxed cats, which can lead to more significant dangers when they are not in the safety of your home. They may not recognize threats and might walk into bad situations without even realizing something has gone wrong.

What Dangers Do They Face?

There are many dangers for cats in the outside world, and most are present no matter where you are – though some areas may be safer than others. We’ll look at some of these problems, but there may be others that your kitty faces.

Other Animals

One of the biggest dangers to cats is other animals. This may vary depending on where you live, but a few examples include coyotes, foxes, wolves, hawks, eagles, and other predatory animals. Even if they don’t kill your cat, they could seriously injure it.

You may live somewhere with few predators, but that doesn’t mean your Ragdoll is safe outdoors. Cats tend to wander into other people’s gardens, and dogs pose a real threat. 

Even other cats can be a danger to your Ragdoll. Catfights can be surprisingly vicious, and if your cat gets in a scrap, it’s possible it will need a trip to the vet for stitches or to drain an abscess; cat bites often get infected.

You might think that your cat wouldn’t fight, but cats are ferocious things, and another cat might attack your Ragdoll, even if your furry friend isn’t a fighter.

Cars, People, And Disorientation

Alternatively, one of the biggest dangers that felines face is traffic. Fast-moving vehicles are responsible for vast swathes of cat deaths. You may live in a quiet area, but even a quiet road can present significant dangers to your cat if it tries to cross at the wrong moment.

Another potential issue is neighbors who don’t like cats. Sadly, many instances of people harm other people’s pets because they object to the animal’s presence. 

It is usually hard to prove this sort of thing or find the culprit, and if you know any of your neighbors dislike cats, you need to be even more careful.

Ragdolls, being a pedigree cat, are also at risk of being stolen. They are distinctive, beautiful, and may tempt thieves if they are outside unattended. 

Equally, your cat could get lost if something startles it and causes it to run from its familiar territory. You should get your cat microchipped even if you don’t intend to let it out; this increases the chance of it getting returned if something happens.

Chemicals And Diseases

Your cat could pick up a mouse that has been poisoned, or accidentally ingest a toxin from a weed killer. They might also brush past or chew on a toxic plant (lilies, for example, are incredibly poisonous to cats). There are lots of natural and unnatural hazards in the gardens around your home.

Diseases are a further worry. Your cat could pick up something unpleasant from the soil. Fleas, ringworm, and heartworm are all potential problems, and while they are treatable, you need to be aware of them. 

It’s important to regularly treat your cat for these parasites to keep them in good health – even if you think it’s unlikely they have them!

If your cat enjoys digging, it may also pick up more obscure things from the soil. Remember that cats lick their feet, so your kitty can easily ingest something it has walked over. You may feel that it’s better to be safe than sorry.

How Can I Let My Ragdoll Cat Enjoy The Outside World?

However, there’s no doubt that most cats get a lot of pleasure from being outside, so if you want to give your furry friend that happiness while still protecting it, what are your options?

It depends on how much risk you’re willing to take. Some people are happy to supervise their Ragdoll’s exercise every day. This is usually done in a fully enclosed yard, which keeps them safe from most of the dangers listed above. Predators, people, and vehicles are unlikely to be a problem in a garden, especially if you’re nearby.

However, it does carry the risk of your cat escaping and getting lost, even if you are watching. There are also other potential dangers to consider.

Some people prefer to help their Ragdolls explore the natural world by using a harness and teaching them to walk on a leash. 

Not all cats will tolerate this, but they can interact with the outside world with minimal risk of getting lost or hurt if yours will. You might enjoy walking your cat on a leash!

If so, check out these cat leashes and harnesses to get started.

Another option is to build a “catio” (cat patio). These can give your cat access to the garden without the need for supervision and with no risk of them getting lost, hurt, or hunting the local wildlife. 

If you are going to let your Ragdoll use a catio unsupervised, you should check it regularly for any signs of damage or deterioration. 

Remember, cats can fit through surprisingly small gaps, and you don’t want a cat that isn’t used to the outside world roaming free. They are in even more danger than other cats.

It’s best to supervise your Ragdoll for the first few weeks that it uses a catio, especially if you have constructed it yourself. 

Look out for any signs of weakness and make sure that you secure them. You should also make your garden as secure as possible to minimize the chances of your cat going further if it does happen to escape.

Final Word

There are many reasons to keep your Ragdoll cat indoors, but many people also feel that they want their cats to enjoy life to the fullest. If you are going to let your cat out, keep it safe by taking the above precautions.

You should also make sure your cat has a collar with your contact information and an up-to-date microchip at all times to minimize the chances of losing it. 

Do this even if you plan to keep your cat indoors; accidents happen, and an indoor cat will be far less capable of coping with the outside world and so needs to be returned home as quickly as possible.

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