As everyone knows, some cats are indoor-only cats and never go outside, unless it’s somewhere annoying, like the vet’s. (I’m indoor-only.) Other cats are indoor-outdoor, and they get to go outside on their own. But when it comes to humans, I’ve noticed something interesting: they are almost all indoor-outdoor. Sometimes they’re inside, catering to all our needs and whims, but other times they leave the house, and who knows what they are doing out there! This can be frustrating if I want a treat, or the litter box needs scooping, or I want to play with the Cat Dancer, and nobody is here. So I’m wondering — is it possible for me to train my human to be indoors-only?
Humans Belong Inside
Other than the obvious — food, shelter and a clean litter box, be it plastic or porcelain — humans and cats have completely different needs. If they are cooped up for too long, humans can develop all sorts of negative behavior patterns. They may stop washing themselves and spend countless hours staring blankly at the moving screen they keep in their living rooms and bedrooms. If they stay inside for too many days, they can get depressed, moody and may even display bursts of anger and impatience. It’s a well-known syndrome, something humans themselves call “cabin fever.” Whereas we cats can find any number of ways to entertain ourselves indoors, humans cannot get enough stimulation inside the house to maintain a normal state of being.
So it’s not a good idea to try to make humans stay inside all the time. When they get bored and stagnant, it can be very unpleasant. Even humans themselves realize this, which is why they create sometimes-frivolous excuses to leave the house, such as that thing called “work,” or even sillier, “shopping” (unless the shopping involves a trip to the pet store). That’s the other thing you need to keep in mind: all the stuff you need for a happy life — food, fresh litter, toys and cat trees — must get to your home somehow. And while more and more humans are using the internet to have these things delivered, most of them still find it necessary to go out and get them themselves. Also consider this: if your human were indoors all the time, she would probably bother you for attention far more than you want, and you would never get a chance to do things she doesn’t like, such as sleep on the dining room table or look for crumbs on the kitchen counter. So an indoor-outdoor human is good for your mental health and recreation too.