Indoor Cat Keeps Rushing Outside

Lukasmommy

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Hi!

I have had my cat, Luka(age 9 mos) for about three months now. We adopted a puppy around Christmas and have to take her outside through our side door to go potty. Luka has become increasingly curious about the door, sitting beside it when we go outside, looking out the window at us, etc. Last week, he rushed out the door and ran off and was missing for nearly 4 hours. Today, I opened the door to let the puppy out and he rushed outside again. I really want to keep him indoors to protect him from cars, predators and disease. How do I stop him from escaping? It’s scaring me to death, I don’t want anything to happen to him.
 

minish

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There are ways to prevent door dashing (I was never patient enough for them to work, it always requires careful planning and patience to prevent things your cat really really wants.)
You can lock him in another room before you go out with the puppy, preventing the chance to escape. Maybe leave him some treats etc to keep him busy.
But I think it's best to harness train Luka and take him out with a leash together with the puppy. Because it would be hard for him to understand it's ok for humans and the puppy to go out but not him. He can enjoy being outdoors without the dangers. However, it's very different to take a dog and cat out, they wouldn't do the same things, walk in sync.. But you can take them both out, leave Luca near home with his leash tied to a secure place, return with the puppy and they can go back in together. It will be difficult if you are one person in your home but much easier if there are two people and one can stay with Luca for these excursions.
These are just my opinions, there are many people here with both cats and dogs, I hope they can answer better
 

ArtNJ

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I fancy myself something of an expert, even though most of my cats have been indoor only. Typical internet "expert" I guess :) but I do have a master class escaper at the moment, and had an indoor/outdoor in the past that would sometimes escape as well.

Anyway, by far the easiest way is look at the cat when exitting, stomp your feet to scare him just a little and back him up, and carefully exit. How to do that with a puppy I'm not quite sure, but thats the concept. Coming in, I open the door 3-4 inches and close it fast 3-4 times, then stick my foot through, stomp a bit, survey the situation and enter if its safe. All of that is not necessariy necessary with some cats, but the more a cat escapes, the less it fears this stuff.

Some people vary it up a bit, maybe with an air horn, or some other kind of noise. For a time, I kept a yardstick outside the house and would poke that in and tap. A broom would work. Anything that will back the cat off without hurting it or terrifying it too much.

Of course, the "airlock" method is possible, at least when exiting and entering if someone else is home, just a big PITA. That would be where the escaper is locked in a room (i.e. behind an airlock) when you open the front door. We use this method sometimes when taking out the trash, because the cat is always hyper vigilant when he sees the trash going out, but its too annoying for routine use. Just the other day, my wife had a brain fart and decided to hold the cat rather than sequester it in another room. Yeah, don't do that -- she got scratched pretty bad when I unthinkingy slammed the door a tad and the cat got scared.

Its also important to have good strategy when the cat gets out. If at all possible, just go sit out side and chill. Act like nothing bad is happening. Call the cat. When it comes, pet it for a while first. Why? Well all cats are too fast and coordinated for us clumsy humans. If you chase, you teach the cat to run, and you simply will not catch it unless the cat allows that.
 
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sivyaleah

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You could try tossing a favorite toy or treats way across the room the door is in. Theoretically, your cat would go dashing after that while you open the door to let out your dog.

Or, making a noise like A ArtNJ suggested. We found out recently that canned air (the kind for computers) makes a hissing noise which cats dislike. My husband discovered this when one of ours found her way up to our attic a few months ago. We knew she was up there but not sure where. He smoked her out by using the canned air noise. She literally bolted out of her hiding spot and downstairs. I suppose she thought another unknown cat got up there!
 
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