Our cats may be smart, charming, and independent creatures, but all of us can agree that we always worry a little whenever we have to leave them at home for long periods of time.
There’s always the risk that our beloved pets can be lost outside of the house or worse, get stolen. According to the American Humane Association, more than 10 million cats and dogs go missing each year. What’s even sadder is that lost cats have a much lower chance than dogs do of being with their pet parent again.
So how do we keep our dearest cats safe at home when we can’t bring them with us? If you don’t have a fellow feline-loving friend who can babysit for you, you can make your house itself a secure place for your kitty. And there’s more to that than just having a spy camera.
Using a pet monitor
Pet monitoring systems are a great way to keep an eye on your cat when they’re alone at home. Cheaper models can be as simple as a video camera. Pricier ones can have features like speakers and a microphone so you and your cat can talk to each other. They also have apps so that you can watch your kitty on your smartphone or tablet.
In a pet monitor review by SafeWise, a site that reviews home security systems, the top monitors for cats have features like:
- A laser pointer that you can control through your mobile
- Treat dispenser for occasional rewards. Do note that the dispensers are usually small and can’t substitute for full meals
- Sound effects like squeaks and meowing
- Night vision (very useful since cats are nocturnal)
- A small screen so you can do video calls
Features like these let you watch over your cat and still have some quality time together even when you’re miles away.
Setting up a home alarm system
Cat thefts are always a risk no matter what your cat’s breed is. But there are also thieves who might just be there to steal your belongings but can also harm your cat in the process.
Security reviewer SafeAtLast states that most burglaries happen during the daytime when most homeowners are away. Houses without any security systems also have a whopping 300% chance of getting burglarized.
Having a home alarm system helps keep intruders from going further into your house and putting your kitty in danger. Aside from your front and back doors, you’ll want to set up sensors in your garage and in rooms with windows. If your house has two or more storeys, it’s a good idea to put sensors there as well.
Barking dogs can be great deterrents too. Thieves are just as likely to avoid homes with dogs as they would homes with alarm systems. If you’re fond of canines and your cat doesn’t mind socializing with them, you might want to get one to help protect your cat and your house. Another bonus is that your cat can have a companion to play with when you’re not home.
Choosing a pet-friendly system
A problem that many pet parents face with their security systems is that their pets can accidentally set the alarm off. And yes, your cat can trigger it too.
Fortunately, there are security system providers that do make pet-friendly alarm systems that won’t go off with every move your kitty makes. Some of them have a limit on what weights they’ll detect, which is extra helpful if you have dogs. Cove Smart’ sensors, for example, won’t detect animals below 45 lbs, while ADT still won’t detect 80-lb animals.
For homes that have features like smart thermostats and lighting, systems like Vivint have apps that let you control the settings in your home from your phone. You can make sure your cat stays nice and comfortable all day long.
Other precautions you should take
If yours is strictly an indoor cat, then you know how worrisome it can be if your cat accidentally gets out of the house. Always make sure that your windows are secured before leaving the house. If your door has a flap door for animals, you should close that properly too.
Aside from putting an ID tag on your cat, please do make sure that your cat is microchipped, indoor-only or not. In the event that they get lost and are found by rescuers, the chances of them coming back to you will be much higher if they can be properly identified.
Alarm systems are worth your cat’s safety
They can be hefty investments, but having a pet-friendly security system at home is worth it in the end. You get to keep your personal belongings safe and secure, and you can rest easy knowing that your pet kitty is safe and secure even when you’re not physically with them.