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PostPosted: Wed May 25, 2016 3:11 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jun 19, 2015 9:26 pm
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So I have hit a bit of a pickle... I live at home and the plan always was to take Amara with me when I moved out. The plan didn't go ahead as it turns out my partner hates her, when I say hates her. He just dislikes everything about her. He did agree to let her move in, aslong as she was an outdoor cat to which I refused even known his own cat who comes and goes is quite happy to just come home for food and to sleep.

After Amara escaped from my Mam's (sorry about the Northern Brit slang for Mum) house for six days she ended up pregnant which also made my partner put his foot down more about not taking in a pregnant cat. My Mam has reluctantly agreed to keep Amara but the cat just wants to be out constantly. She is always trying to escape and you can tell she isn't happy being locked indoors anymore. Today my Mam said that she will keep Amara indoors until after all of the kittens have been rehomed but once they are gone, she is letting her out but wants me to pay for her to be spayed beforehand.

I do plan to get her spayed and I am not in a situation to argue as it is my mam's decision to let her out but I can't help but worry about Amara. Yes she wants to be out, yes she is the type to avoid strangers and is far from dumb when it comes to dogs and foxes but I just feel that she is going to attract the wrong attention. You can't miss her spotted coat and under certain sunlight she clearly has a glitter coat and the houses and gardens in the area are too close to one another that if anyone did want to capture her, they could easily fence hop to try and corner her. Though I would pity the fool who tries to pick her up! Claws and all would be straight into their arms.

Where my partner lives is abit more open, not much but even known he has neighbors nearby, all the fences are atleast six - seven feet high (which would give her a head start if anyone was trying to get her) the back of his house goes onto a open field, which is surrounded bushes and trees which without a doubt would give her loads of cover and all the local cats seem to share this area as you see different ones passing across the field to get to wherever they want to be even known a lot of dog walkers use the area aswell.

I have to accept that no matter where she lives, she is going to become a outdoor cat but am trying weigh up if she will be better at my Mam's where she seems to be settled or would she adjust well to moving in here and being let out. Either way it won't be until after the kittens are gone.

Has anyone on here had experience letting their Bengals out and what was the outcome? My Mam had a persian cat years ago who use to go out and went missing, her current Maine Coon often goes out and her moggies have always been outdoor cats. So am not new to the idea but I just think Bengals are so unique that it is a risk that can only go one way and that is them being stolen. But this seems to be what Amara wants and maybe I should take the risk, if it means she is is going to be happy.


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PostPosted: Wed May 25, 2016 9:04 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Thu May 23, 2013 2:21 pm
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I am so sorry you're going through this situation. Amara MUST be kept indoors until she has the kittens. She needs the proper nutrients during her pregnancy and you don't want her to disappear and have the kittens outdoors.

Letting your cats outside is really a personal preference. Many do -- even Bengals. Many do not! Those in the UK seem to allow their bengals outside, claiming there are no natural predators. That may be true, but there are other cats, dogs, humans, cars, trucks, poisons, etc. Cats can get themselves stuck in closed places and unless you go and find them, they can eventually starve to death.

I've had cats for over 50 years and never thought twice about letting them out. Out of 8 cats, only two had to be euthanized due to illness and old age. The rest vanished without a trace. You are simply taking a chance.

My bengal was an outdoor cat the first six years of his life and spent time at the vets after getting into fights with other cats. When I took him 3 years ago, I decided he would not be allowed outdoors unsupervised. He walks on a harness and leash twice a day and has a large outdoor enclosure he can access 24/7. I paid nothing for this beautiful, glittered bengal, but I don't want to cause him any unnecessary pain of bites, scratches, infections. He's been there and done that.

Now, I am taking care of a moggie -- who is about 6 years old and has always been an outdoor cat. He ran away from his home 3 blocks away and I've been carrying for him since June of last year. He has gone "missing" four times. Every time, he was stuck in someone's garage -- twice overnight and once for three days and once for four days. I was frantic with worry and spent my time canvassing the neighborhood, talking to neighbors, posting on lost pet Facebook pages. It wasn't fun!!!! I worry about him every single day, but he can't come inside as Raiden wants to kill him and he won't return to his home as there are 8 other outdoor cats and 5 indoor cats.

Buried somewhere in these posts are tearful owners telling us their baby has died in some horrible fashion. I know you are in a pickle -- what is it with these partners anyway??? Why can't families and pets just get along???

I'm sure your mom is not happy hearing Amara crying to go outside. I get that twice a day when Raiden insists on his walks. Hopefully, your mom will not give in and allow Amara outdoors. If you're not going to have Amara with you and you are not in agreement with your mom to let her outside after she has weaned the kittens and gotten spayed, then you're going to have to decide what to do with her. She needs a stable and safe environment with people who absolutely LOVE her.


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PostPosted: Wed May 25, 2016 9:30 pm 
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I am also in the UK, and let my bengal out during the day. She has been going out since she was 8 months old, and is now 11 months, so not long, but so far it is going very well.

I let my previous two rescue cats out during the day for their whole lives. One lived to 19, the other died of HCM at 8 3/4, so going outdoors was not a factor in their lifespan. I understand most outdoor cat deaths in the UK happen at night, because they can get dazzled by car headlights and freeze. One of my cats did get bitten by another cat, but antibiotics prevented any problems from resulting.

I was quite worried though about letting my bengal out, even though it was really my preference for her because personally I think it's right for cats, and especially fairly recently wild-derived cats, to be able to do cat stuff in the great outdoors. I consulted the vet and vet nurses every time we went in for the spaying (my vet includes two follow up appts, so three visits in all), and to get FeLV added to her jabs, with different questions.

One of the vets turned out to be specialising in cat well-being, and, for what it's worth, she said the evidence is that outdoor cats have a much better quality of life.

I asked about theft. My kitten is so friendly, I could see someone just scooping her up and making off with her. She is clearly not a regular cat; I've already had one unfamiliar person say admiringly, whilst calling at my house and seeing her behind me, Oh she's one of those special ones, she looks like a leopard. She has amazing glitter that is always visible. The vet said that actually in their experience it was working dogs that were getting stolen, and not cats or other dogs. As it turns out, my kitten is much more cautious outdoors than in. She runs indoors as soon as anyone appears. And she's fast! It's amazing to see her sprint across the grass, like a micro cheetah.

I watched her like a hawk in the beginning. She stays much closer to home than I expected, which is good. My situation sounds closer to that of your boyfriend than your mum, and my house is along a footpath, so that allays road worries a fair bit.

She absolutely loves being outside. She loves climbing on all the pergolas and arches in the garden, and scales trellising as if it was designed just to be a cat-sized ladder. In fact she's a bit of a spidey-cat, and takes routes I've never seen a cat attempt before, climbing vertically up fences and an ancient brick wall. Now that it's spring she is having a fantastic time chasing flying insects, keeping watch on birds' nests (luckily mostly well-placed by the birds in thorny things) and playing stalk and pounce in the long grass. She gets very excited about helping with watering the pots, (re)directing the water, and climbing into the big pots and ending up paddling in watery compost whilst she sticks her paw into the water stream.

She is so incredibly happy to be out there, making her 'This is so much fun' sounds so much, and running back in to jump on me in evident delight. She likes it best when we're both out there, but she is slowly gaining in confidence and staying out for more than 30 seconds at a time (where she started, again to my surprise given her considerable confidence otherwise). She comes to find me as soon as she gets in, and I encourage that.

England is pretty safe on the whole (no real predators, no rabies, no assumption that a cat outdoors is a stray that needs rescuing etc) and cats love the outdoors, it's what they're designed for. I realise there is a bit of a cultural divide between the UK and the US on this issue. In the end I felt it wasn't fair to reduce my cat's quality of life for her whole life just to save myself some worry, which is really what it amounted to. Yes, there is some risk, but I think the benefits hugely outweigh those. I think the risk of theft is almost certainly much less than we fear, and any incidents are more likely to be due to bengal curiosity (getting themselves accidentally shut in a shed for instance) or bengal acrobatics. My kitten fell off the pergola early on, but of course landed on her feet. She has also been stung by a bee: the flying and the buzzing were just too irresistible! But both of those things could have happened indoors too, to be fair (a fall from a cat tree, a bee getting in through a small open window).

You might find that Amara behaves differently once she is spayed, and not in the grip of her hormones, seeking a mate. She may be more cautious for instance.

Everyone must decide for themselves; it's a personal choice. I completely understand why some people choose to keep their cats indoors. There are valid arguments for both options. But no one in the UK would dream of keeping a moggie in, unless it was medically necessary. Bengals deserve the same enriched environment, imo.


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PostPosted: Wed May 25, 2016 11:03 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Sat Jan 09, 2016 10:24 pm
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I'm in a good situation because I have a porch that's good size and safe for my cats so we go outside every evening / afternoon, anything from one to five hours, sometimes even more. The cats are so happy being outside, even when it's hot and they're not too keen on running around like crazy. And I'm certainly much happier seeing them outside and liking it so much.

Now, it's quite obvious that anything can happen. Lily escaped once when I was in the kitchen for a few minutes. She managed to jump from a tree that's inside the porch to the wall. Where I live, it's a dead end short street with few neighbours so there's no immediate danger for the cat. I found her at one of my neighbour's porches. He has two big dogs, however he keeps them inside at all times (his porch is very small). I'm not sure if she was scared (didn't look it), intrigued etc. but she was safe. Depending on the particular outdoors in anybody's case it may or may not be safe for the cat.

Some time ago I had a moggie who was mainly an outdoor cat. He had to cope with a few house moves within a limited time period but he always went exploring his environment and enjoyed it a lot. It was natural to him. I have to say, however, that that was how he appeared at my door in the first place - very clean, well fed, spayed etc... but with no owner. He had no chip and nobody seemed to be searching for him (it was a small village) yet he was anything but abandoned. So they can get lost.

I'm currently looking at moving and when viewing houses I always think about the outdoor conditions for my cats. If there's nothing "natural" I plan to build something so they can have fun outside.

On the other subject, I agree with Sherry and I can't understand the problem with partners hating cats. I'm single, I live on my own and I can't imagine getting a partner who doesn't like cats. Had I had a partner when I got my cats, it would have been discussed before. I consider cats at least equal to human companions and imho if you actively decide to get one, you should at least make sure they're happy and comfortable. they will sense if people don't like them and they won't be happy.

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PostPosted: Wed May 25, 2016 11:13 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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Location: Portland Oregon, USA
Here's a pretty good rundown from a credible source.

http://www.americanhumane.org/animals/a ... -cats.html

But there are anecdotes and then there are facts. The last statistics I recall seeing had indoor cats having about triple the lifespan, on average, as outdoor cats.

Also, I don't quite understand this statement:

"I have to accept that no matter where she lives, she is going to become a outdoor cat..."

Because there are many obvious alternatives to this...

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PostPosted: Thu May 26, 2016 12:11 am 
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Senior Bengal

Joined: Fri Jun 19, 2015 9:26 pm
Posts: 59
brianj12 wrote:
Here's a pretty good rundown from a credible source.

http://www.americanhumane.org/animals/a ... -cats.html

But there are anecdotes and then there are facts. The last statistics I recall seeing had indoor cats having about triple the lifespan, on average, as outdoor cats.

Also, I don't quite understand this statement:

"I have to accept that no matter where she lives, she is going to become a outdoor cat..."

Because there are many obvious alternatives to this...


The only alternative is an outdoor run and personally I don't want to take up my Mam's garden space when it isn't mine to take and my partner's garden simply doesn't have the room to build one. It isn't a small garden but the lay out doesn't give off much room to build a fair sized run that leaves us with alot of garden space for ourselves (not to mention that the idea of a caged cat would seem offensive to my partner as he believes they should be allowed to come and go) and I don't think it is fair to rehome her just so she will be kept indoors.

I have spoke about the alternatives with both my Mam and my Partner and they both seem to agree on the idea of letting her out to be a cat. Sadly I am at the mercy of both of them. If she stays at my Mam's it looks like she will sooner or later be allowed to go out, if she comes here he will want her to go out without question.

I guess I just want some reassurance that I won't be only Bengal owner out there that will be taking the risk. I am just trying to decide which will be better for her... My Mam's house where she is settled or here where she will not only have to adapt to a new household, she would have to learn about a whole new area when she eventually does go out.


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PostPosted: Thu May 26, 2016 6:46 am 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Sun Feb 02, 2014 8:11 pm
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I'm in the uk and my two go out, like skyblue, they are not allowed out at night for the reasons quoted. I'm confident they won't let anyone near them as they are very wary of people they don't know, it's mainly open vehicles/garages/sheds I worry about. Hendrix got in an open work van earlier this year and ended up 10 miles away and it took me over 2 weeks to find him and get him home. They wear trackers now but it isn't cheap!

In your situation, I think I would opt for Amara to stay with your mum. This is on the basis that your partner apparently hates her. She would need to stay in for a good couple of weeks to bond with her new home, and it doesn't sound like your partner would countenance that. Plus she would feel the bad vibes from him to her and probably wouldn't be very happy.

I am a bit confused though! Your partner likes cats enough to have his own but hates Amara. What's that all about?!

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PostPosted: Thu May 26, 2016 11:09 am 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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Location: Portsmouth, England
Hi. My two-penneth...
If Amara has been out and got a taste for it, you will end up with a very unhappy cat by not letting her out - One that will look to escape at any cost, at the slightest opportunity. Merlin was nearly 9 when I got him, and had been allowed out for many years. Because I was only two miles (as the crow flies) from where I got him, I though keeping him indoors, and harness training him for walks would be the answer. WRONG! He cried the house down and had me out on the end of his lead at every opportunity - Sometimes for 2-3 hours at a time! The neighbours thought it was hilarious that a cat ruled me so much, but they heard him wailing one day and realised WHY he was out for walkies so much...

He and I came to an agreement of sorts - He wore the harness out the front for walks, and we would go in the back garden together and he would walk round with me, or play in the grass, etc. This was working for a couple of years, until one of the neighbours fence panels fell down behind my garage. They left it, and Merlin saw the chance and was gone... 4 hours of climbing through bushes, brambles, and knocking every door, I finally located him in a big bramble three gardens over. The households children had seen and chased him, and he had run in there in fear, and was crouched down in terror! It took me about 30 minutes to coax him out, and numerous scratches from both him and the brambles... Oh - The collar remained (probably hung up) somewhere on the trip and has to this day never reappeared!

After this his taste for the outdoors returned and he was distraught being kept in, and fought the harness as if it was a devil! Any chance and he was off over the fence and gone for hours, worrying me sick. He did always return though, so he now has a cat flap, and comes and goes as he pleases by day. At night he always comes straight back indoors when called, the cat flap is locked, and he sleeps with me. He is now 16.5 and so much happier....

As for fights - He used to. He lost a fang and had a scratched eyeball one time, requiring significant treatment at home / vets. Now if any other cats approach his gardens, he howls for me, and I go out and chase them off! He has an army, and knows how to use it...LOL!

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GONE TOO SOON.


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PostPosted: Thu May 26, 2016 9:17 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Thu May 23, 2013 2:21 pm
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I agree that kitty cats love fresh air and the outdoors and some manage fine out there. Mine is a terror and wants to go looking for a fight with another cat. It happens on our daily walks when I can limit him to 10 feet of leash. Females are probably different. They generally do not wander as far as males. I'm sure Amara would do fine outdoors as long as she's weaned the kittens and has been spayed (she will have to stay indoors for a few days after the spay). She should also come in a night. I'm thinking she may be and indoor/outdoor cat. Come in for a rest and some cuddles and go back outside when she wants to explore.

I don't know how much you paid for Amara, but it's whether you want to risk your investment in the event of something happening. There is nothing so terrifying to find the body of your cat that has been torn to shreds by some creature -- knowing the terror and pain the kitty went through.

You will NOT be the only bengal owner to have your kitty outside. Everyone has an opinion on the pros and cons -- but it's up to YOU to decide what is best for Amara and everyone else involved.


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