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PostPosted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 2:24 pm 
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Hey everyone,

We're wanting to let Fionna sit outside on the perch on the window sill. We're on the second floor so we need something that's secure. I want her to be able to go on the wide perch outside the window if she wants to but still be as safe as possible.

Any ideas on how to go about this?

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 2:54 pm 
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You would need to totally enclose the whole window aperture to keep her safe.

Wooden frame with strong wire mesh very securely fixed to the wall might do it, but she may hurt her feet by climbing it still.


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 4:12 pm 
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Definitely has to be completely enclosed with some type of fencing to keep her safe from jumping or falling off. Have you considered walking her outside on a harness and leash? That way she could experience the true outdoors. It's a great time for just the two of you to spend together. They do get used to the daily walks and want to go all the time. Currently, I brought the cat trees from our cat enclosure inside and Raiden loves to sit on them and look out the window. Once the weather improves, they will go back out into the covered cat enclosure. I know cats love being outside and it's great that you want your kitty to be safe. I don't know if you rent or own your place or whether you can make modifications to the window. There doesn't appear to be a screen on the window to where you could open the window and make sure the screen is secure.


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 5:24 pm 
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We aren't walking her mainly because we live in a city, in the middle of London actually. The second reason is that she is a frightened cat, she does not enjoy being anywhere outside the house one bit, she is scared of strangers and just generally a cat that personally I don't see being able to be walked. She'd have to be comfortable with dogs, and people don't walk their dogs here with a leash, which means there's a possibility of a dog attacking her, both in a park and outside our house. The guy on the groundfloor does not take care of his garden and that's not gonna change any time soon, so we can't ask him to let us borrow it to walk her. We asked if he'd swap flat with us but he doesn't want to so we have to respect that of course.

I just really want to give her that kind of feel of the wind and being able to observe everyone from there. She's actually been on there once, by accident, scared the living crap out of me lol but luckily she walked back in when I spotted her.

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 5:38 pm 
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If she is able to go outside the window at that height, she certainly will have the ability to jump down (I've seen cats do it, non-bengals in fact). And depending on where the room is, she may have access to the roof as well.

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 9:37 pm 
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Hmmm difficult one.
What about putting a mesh on the window frame?
Yes, she won't be able to go out of the window and sit outside as you wanted , but she would be able to see and explore through the mesh? Plus being secure of course.

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 9:42 pm 
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I didn't realize you were in the heart of London. I can understand completely. If you are unable to add an enclosure around the window or at least a screen to keep her from going through, I'm not sure what you can do. It may pain you to see her wanting that fresh air, but for her safety, she may just have to settle for sitting and looking through the window. There are some people who drive their cats to a more secluded area and walk them. That is a lot of work and travel time. Do you not have rights to the garden as well?


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 12:02 am 
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Sherry wrote:
There are some people who drive their cats to a more secluded area and walk them. That is a lot of work and travel time.

Thats what I do on occasion ... to vary Cleo's outdoor experience and build her confidence (its a long gradual process). It is time and work but IMO, she is worth it.
Also, I sometimes walk my girl at like 10:30 at night for half hour (we both goto bed around 12) when no normal/average person is walking their dog... I also avoid dog walkers cause yeah, they let them off the leash alot.
You could try walking her just around the patch of land I see from the window (its a playground?) - and at night if required to avoid dogs - and with a helper on lookout if required to pre-warn you to scoop and walk back to house if something scary is on its way to the walk location.

My local park closes its gates for parking at dusk (they all do I think?) so I just park in a nearby street and carry Cleo into the park on foot and we never see anyone ... just kids drinking cans sometimes but you can hear them a long way off and avoid also.

Cats dont need a long distance walk necessarily (like a dog would)... just getting out in the fresh air around their home* and sniffing a few things ect is enough. especially at first.
Ive already suggested car training and walks before so dont wanna drone on and have read before you say its not gonna happen.

As for your shelf plan,
Brackets, raw plugs, a sturdy wooden shelf and some wire mesh could be used to make an outdoor shelf (wood stain/weatherproofed) and enclose it.... the problem would be the ladder... looks like you would need a big one.

I suggest looking up your local ads for handymen... there are plenty looking for work and if you find one or more with a decent ladder you can hire a guy to attach a wooden shelf to the outside of that window and screw some wire mesh into the shelf and surrounding bricks.
Its do-able but might have to add a handyman's fee to the overall cost to see this done.
(My local guy I called for a quote said he would knock up a few shelves in a couple of hours for 35 quid plus fuel)

Another Idea... that garden your neighbour doesnt care about?
Have you thought about offering to maintain it and do a bit of planting maybe? (stick a birdfeeder out there is a good idea too) - if he agreed (give him any reason you want inc walking kitty) then bingo.. you have a garden to let your kitty own and sniff around and catch bugs for 30mins every few days.

Good luck and brups to Fiona... I hope she is happier and settled now.

*giving kitty access to the immediate surrounding area of your home is the main area they care about and may consider their territory that they can SEE from your windows... its these areas that can sometimes create territorial stress if other cats are all around and marking your kitty's ''stuff''


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 12:12 am 
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something a little like this:

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 11:38 am 
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We've two windows that I see her being able to use, we have one window that overlooks the roof, and I was wondering about getting a cat flap installed or opening the window and creating a secure outdoor space for her there. But it will of course cost us a lot of money as we'll need someone to do it for us I think. I am not sure.

Thanks for understanding why I don't walk her. Taking her out isn't much of an option as she is deeply afraid, I tried a few times and she howls like she's about to die. I can't access the playground unless I walk around the buildings, also I don't want to because that is a troubled area with a lot of bad families, I wouldn't even go there myself. I do not either have the rights to the garden it's owned by the guy on the ground floor fully.

I will have a look at the mesh so I at least can have something to secure the window etc :) Altho I'd love to build her something even better.

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 1:17 pm 
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Cant tell from a piccy what an area is like to be in... from what you say it sounds iffy yeah.
About that garden.... if you go out and buy a tall bird table and a big bag of bird seed will your neighbour plonk it out there? ... and maybe (if you dont have access) chuck and handfull of seed on it in the mornings?
This will increase Fiona's viewing pleasure from her window alot... it will take a while for local birds to find and remember the feeder but after a while they WILL and will visit often in good numbers... squirrels will maybe raid it too - if you add nuts to the seed, but its all good.. its entertainment for Fiona just the same.

I have managed to do alot around my home to create exercise and play space for Cleo during this winter (which thankfully now seems over) because Cleo has not been able to get the exercise and climbing she normally does outdoors with me on walks (with all the crappy weather we had)
Ive done it on an extreme budget too ... so if money is a issue (did you ever get that cat wheel btw?) perhaps my carpet tube climbing pole idea is worth sharing here.

Cat pole in my bedroom

Ive done a few of these round the house next to shelves ect.

>Carpet: FREE - offcuts I asked for at local carpet store.
>The Tube itself: FREE - again they throw these away so they will give you one for free, take it full size and measure at home to cut it to right height.
>Glue: I just bought cheapest homebase own brand pva (white stuff) and gave it 2 days to set.
>Staples: I used an standard staple gun along the edge where my strip of carpet meets (wrapped around)

with a helper I covered the tube in pva (in the garage away from Cleo) and rolled it slowly to wrap carpet around it and cut with a box cutter and scissors where the carpet meets (leave no gaps but also dont overlap too much) and stapled along the join, lots of staples.

While you are on Youtube have a look for cats on (human) treadmills... You can get a cheap second hand treadmill that frankly are usually rubbish for a human (too small and basic speed control, no incline ect) but just fine for a kitty.
Start off by introducing it to a corner of a room for a good old sniff and rub.. then let it run (ignore it yourself ofc) with Fiona hearing that from another room till she ignores then gradually let her discover it (running) so she doesnt have any fear of it... when she is not fussed by its noise and moving belt start to train her (treats) to walk on it slowly to take a treat from your hand (keep the treats coming - loads to begin with). And then give her a favourite treat/meal (thats fish here) at the end of the session... extend the length of the sessions gradually.

Over time you can get a kitty to run a decent pace on a treadmill for treats and eventually (some of them) just for fun and exercise with a reward meal at the end that they have earned.

Its a budget idea for energy draining BECAUSE you really only need a knackered old second hand running machine that you can get cheap... and small (folding one is perfect to stash between running sessions)

/edit.
Youtube taking forever to add my speech bubbles.
fyi - at the bottom its thin strips of wood tapped into place (add more as carpet compresses over time) to wedge the tube in place.
The middle string is tied tight to a metal hoop screwed into the 1st shelf - too add stability.
(that top string is just for me to tie toys to it for playing)


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 3:15 pm 
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I have a treadmill that Raiden will stand on, but it's really noisy and I'm sure he would be scared once it's running. He leaves the entire area of the house when I'm on it. I think the picture that was provided with a wider ledge on the outside of the window and then screening or wire fencing that attaches to the house would be the cheapest and safest way to go. I'd loved to see the kitty go out in to the garden area. It may be worth it to clean it up, especially if it is there to be shared between you and the person living below. BengalDaddy has some of the best ideas and advice on this forum. We are all very devoted bengal owners and you are trying to do a wonderful thing for your kitty. I really hope you find a solution that works for you.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 11:26 pm 
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I appreciate the posts about everything else we could do but I was really just wondering about the window and ideas around what to do there.

I cannot fit a treadmill, sorry. London flats have extremely limited space. But it is fine, I will buy some mesh for the windows first and then I'll see what I can do for the roof.

Thanks!

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