It is unnatural for cats to live in confined spaces. Cats, like any animal, deserve to have their freedom.
However, Domestic cats, do come in a variety of breeds and some have more tendency to roam and others are quite content to remain in their ‘safe space’.
Is It Cruel To Keep A Cat In One Room
The question ‘is it cruel to keep a cat in one room?’ can only be answered, ‘it depends’! There are several factors to be considered.
Cats need exercise; Cats need some form of distraction; Cats need company, and cats also need their privacy.
The room would need to be of a certain size, so not a small bathroom or laundry room, one where the cat can have plenty of room.
If there is more than one cat, then this size would need to be doubled.
This would also depend on the time frame of which you intend to keep the cat in the room… i.e. is this just temporary, or a permanent arrangement? You would need to ensure they had a space for their food and water and a separate space for the kitty litter box.
They also will require some form of playing area and hiding places and a comfortable sleeping area too.
Why Keep a Cat in One Room?
Reasons can vary, so can judgments. Some valid reasons are as follows:
- Lack of Space: If the cat owner is living in a rented room and is only allowed the pet in one room, then there is no option but to keep her confined. A lot of thought needs to be put into this situation before obtaining the pet in the first instance.
- Allergies: A person in the household may suffer from cat allergies or asthma, so it is important to keep the cat in separate living areas from the allergy sufferer. This situation can cause friction in the human household, so needs to be thought through, not only for the health of the person but also the well-being of the cat and her quality of life in confinement.
- Medical or Injury: A cat with a medical problem or recovering from an injury may be best kept away from the noise, boisterous children, or other pets, during this time. A cat will appreciate this quiet time anyway, as long as she is comfortable and cozy.
- New Situation: So you have a new kitten or have just moved house, it is best to keep the cat confined for two or three days until they get accustomed to their new home and the smells that surround them.
- Separate from other pets: Some cats tend to fight with other cats, or if there is a dog in the house, or any other pet really, it can be advantageous to keep your cat away from such dangers. This could change over time with proper training techniques.
How to Keep a Cat in One Room
There are two key factors here. Keeping the room clean and keeping the cat happy.
The litter box will need to be cleaned once or twice a day. Cats like to be clean. If you don’t change the kitty litter, you will have a bad-smelling room, plus the cat will find somewhere else to relieve herself. The bedding will need to be cleaned regularly also.
You will need to have a dedicated feeding area and ensure she always has clean water to drink.
A cat likes to keep an eye on her territory, so if possible, she should have somewhere where she can perch and keep an eye out of the window and where she can see the room in its entirety. A climbing frame or cat tree would be ideal.
She will need somewhere she can sit or lie comfortably at a height to observe. Being up high will also allow her to feel safe.
On the flip side, cats also like to hide and sleep in cozy hidden places, so even a box may be an ideal solution for this.
A scratching post would be great also and could prove valuable to avoid furniture damage.
Cats are natural hunters, so they need exercise and toys they can play with when you’re not around. Spending time playing with the cats whilst you are available is very important so they do not get bored.
If the cat is on her own, it is an essential aspect of her confinement to have something to do and be able to entertain herself safely.
A cat’s instinct is to hunt for her food, then eat it, then clean herself before sleeping. So playtime, before feeding her will prompt her to then groom herself before sleeping – a great habit to attain before bedtime!
How Long Should You Keep a Cat in One Room?
If you have a new kitten, or perhaps an older cat but in a new home, then the time frame should range from two to three days. This helps them establish their territory whilst feeling safe. The new surroundings need to be quiet and comfortable to avoid any unnecessary anxiousness. This will assist in the toilet training also.
If the intention is to keep your cat permanently in one room, then with careful planning and preparation to ensure your feline friend is being provided with all of their necessary comforts and requirements as noted above, then this can be an acceptable option.
Is it Bad to Sleep With a Cat in Your Room?
It is bad to sleep with a cat in your room if you have an allergy to the cat or the cat brings on your asthma. If your cat disrupts your sleep, this could lead you to sleep-deprivation if ongoing.
Cats generally will have parasites also, (especially if they go outside), so regular flea, tick, and worm treatments need to be discussed with your veterinarian. Cribs can provide an attractive sleeping spot for a cat too, but this can be dangerous as cats have been known to inadvertently smother a sleeping baby.
Despite these risks, generally, if you are a healthy person with no baby in the crib, then there is no issue with your cat sleeping in the same room as you, in fact, most cat lovers would prefer this and the majority of cats love a cuddle.
Your beloved cat sleeping on your bed at night can give you both a sense of security bringing warmth and comfort. This can also be a great advocate for stress relief.
Is it Ok to Keep a Cat Out of The Bedroom?
It is ok to keep the cat out of the bedroom and the reasons are noted above. The cat may scratch at the door if they wish to come in and the best solution there is to ignore them as they will soon give up.
If you scold them, chances are they will continue to do it as they want your attention. A good tactic is to distract them when you enter the room and quickly close the door behind you. Distraction could be food or a toy.
If the cat does not like the room they will not want to go in there, so making the room undesirable is an ideal solution. You could do this by placing smells in the room that a cat dislikes. Cats hate the smell of vinegar so you could put a small amount of vinegar at the entrance.
A spray of half vinegar and half lemon juice can be sprayed in areas you do not want the cat to be in, or on furniture, you would like to keep that cat away from.
If cat’s needs are fulfilled and they are taken good care of, they will be a happy cat. Cats can be lazy and are quite independent so they do not mind being left alone for short periods of time, but if left for too long alone and bored, they can become anxious and create havoc.
If you have a lazy cat who is perhaps a bit shy then chances are she will not mind living in one room.
A cat left alone in a room without her basic needs and something to keep her occupied is cruel. If you have an active cat and she tries to escape the room and seems to be agitated meowing a lot, this is a clue, she is not content.
The issue will need addressing immediately. Also locking a cat in a room for punishment achieves nothing.
The situation is dependent on both the cat’s and her owner’s behavior. Get all your pet needs here.