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 Post subject: Freedom Options
PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 2:08 pm 
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Bengal Cat

Joined: Tue Nov 20, 2007 2:17 pm
Posts: 35
Location: Windsor, UK
I was wondering if anyone can advise me as to the best way to allow Bengals out to have restricted freedom. Both Khaan & Hobbes look all forlorn when they sit by the patio windows looking out at the birds etc and even have cute conversations with visiting cats :lol: They've even tried to breakout by burrowing into both the patio doors and the skirting boards making big holes which have had to be filled!! So, to grant them their kitty wish my OH and I would like to find a way of allowing them to go outside but to keep within the property boundaries as we live near the town centre.

We have a small courtyard garden and have heard of a couple of ideas but both seem to have their drawbacks. The first is the use of a a type of electric fence. Both cats would have to wear a collar (which I think is quite heavy) which would beep when they got too near the fence and then give them a small shock if they got very near the fence. In time, they should learn where the boundary is. The second option, is a type of wire fencing (which the vet recommended) which is placed horizontally around the top of the garden and as cats cannot climb horizontally then it stops them getting out. Regarding the fence, I'm a bit worried about the shock the collar would give Khaan & Hobbes to begin with as I would be devastated to think that they would be in any pain. Regarding the fence, I'm a bit worried that any cats that jump into our garden would not be able to get out if we weren't there to let them out.

Does anyone have any experience of any of these as I'd appreciate personal experiences of using either!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 2:37 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Fri Aug 24, 2007 3:43 pm
Posts: 2445
Location: France (Dijon)
I guess when I have a house I'll go for the second solution. I don't think a neighborhood car would try to break in (if the fence is high enough) given that there would be some other maybe not gentle cats in the garden (whereas your cats would try to get out but can't !) ;).

Last you have the solution of an enclosure... no one can get in, no one can gete out ;). Of course in a small garden it wouldn't be easy, apart from turning the whole garden into an enclosure :lol:...

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 2:51 pm 
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Bengal Cat

Joined: Tue Nov 20, 2007 2:17 pm
Posts: 35
Location: Windsor, UK
Hi Annc!

I'm not sure how high the fence would be. We currently have two six foot fences either side of us and neighbouring cats visit Khaan & Hobbes everyday (which is rather sweet :) ). I was thinking that the horizontal wiring would be fixed across the two existing fences which would still mean other cats being able to get in. Unfortunately I don't think we'll be able to increase the height of the fence due to legal and property regulations.

Like you say, an enclosure would be ideal but I think our garden is a wee bit small and we would end up having summer BBQ's in a cage....hmmmm....could be interesting!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2008 2:14 am 
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Bengal Kitten

Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2007 7:02 pm
Posts: 11
I walk my cat on a leash. =) You might think it's crazy but I'm afraid of someone steeling my bengal (I don't have a closed yard). I walk her in the morning and in the afternoon and she has adapted to this schedule and is excited everyday about putting her collar on. =) I mean, bengals are special.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2008 3:19 am 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Tue May 22, 2007 7:25 pm
Posts: 591
Location: Reading, Berkshire, UK
I've seen those cat fence collars first hand. They do NOT look comfortable or natural. I wouldn't feel "free" with a heavy gadget like that hanging 'round my neck. Yikes.

We'll be building an enclosure in the spring. We have a decent size garden, but in the meantime I do want to take them to the park on a lead/leash.

I know that's not as ideal as letting them run free but after having been called to the aid of 3 road accidents in front of our house...no... not my babies...


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2008 9:05 am 
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Senior Bengal

Joined: Mon Aug 13, 2007 12:10 pm
Posts: 70
Location: Warsaw, Poland
There is a commercially available fence that is pretty much the same thing as your vet's recommendation except it is hung at a 45 degree angle from the plane of the ground and is from a nylon net/mesh, which, according to the company, cats don't climb on because it feels too unstable to them. The extra height from the sloping angle plus the nylon mesh might keep the neighborhood kits out as well, but I've never actually seen it in person.

I'll try to find a link, but I'm not too lucky right now. I think I found it through http://cats.about.com

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2008 5:58 pm 
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Bengal Cat

Joined: Tue Nov 20, 2007 2:17 pm
Posts: 35
Location: Windsor, UK
Thanks guys for the advice. I think I can safely say that the collar option is now definitely not an option. Thanks for the link to the mesh fence ManofLetters. I'll take a closer look at that as it sounds really promising :D

In the meantime, the leash sounds a good idea. Our boys have never worn a collar (as I'm worried about that they'll get caught on something when we are not around) so would a harness be better for them? (Sorry for all of the questions but this is the first time that my OH and I have ever had cats let alone Bengals!!!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 13, 2008 2:09 am 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Wed Sep 12, 2007 1:55 pm
Posts: 8421
Location: south east england
the good thing about a lead & harness is it isn't permanent, so you only put it on for trips out. therefore no balding patches on the necks, & no chance of accidents when you're not there to supervise :wink:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2008 11:46 am 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Fri Aug 24, 2007 3:43 pm
Posts: 2445
Location: France (Dijon)
Yes I use harnesses ;)

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2008 1:58 pm 
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Bengal Cat

Joined: Fri Jul 13, 2007 10:57 pm
Posts: 28
We are also looking for something to secure the garden.

It's not so much of an issue in the horrible winter weather, but we've a lovely south facing garden and a conservatory the full length of the back of the house, so we're going to want to have the doors wide open to help with the greenhouse effect, and for those summer evening BBQ's. Our 2 boys love playing out there (supervised) on the nice days at the weekend, but a way to make sure they can't get over the fences would mean no more worries!

Does anyone here actually use a method for the garden that doesn't involve building a pen?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 9:34 am 
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Bengal Cat

Joined: Tue Nov 20, 2007 2:17 pm
Posts: 35
Location: Windsor, UK
I have ordered a brochure from the company that ManoLetters suggested. The website address is http://www.purrfectfence.com and I think it is based in the States. It'll be really interesting to see how it all works :-) Has anyone had experience of using these mesh fences?


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