How to Keep Cat from Running Out the Door


Do you find yourself constantly worrying about your pet getting lost because he escaped? Cats have different personalities. While some household cats would be perfectly content staying indoors, others might have a particularly adventurous streak and couldn’t stop themselves from bolting the minute they see a chance. It’s all fun and games until they get themselves injured or worse, fail to find their way back home. As a cat owner, you should definitely know how to keep the cat from running out the door.

Why Cats Try to Escape?

Why does my cat keep running out the door? There are quite a few notable reasons why cats run away.

Prey drive

Felines are driven by a predatory instinct passed on to them by their ancestors in the wild.  They see small animals as prey and tend to run after them. And while you feed them the highest quality kibble, some cats still prefer the thrill of the hunt from time to time.

Territorial instinct

Cats may decide to “claim” and explore their territory, which could extend far beyond the house. It’s also normal for them to want to roam the neighborhood just to look around. They like to be apprised of potential threats and dangers within their territory.

The Instinct to mate

Male cats, especially have a huge tendency to run away in search for a mate.

Prevention Tips

There are many ways on how to keep your cat from running out the door. From securing all possible exits to making sure that are enough things to keep your pet entertained indoors, you can overcome the problem of a door-darting feline and never have to worry about your cat escaping again.

Toys and play

How to keep my cat from running out the door? Maybe your cat is bored and wants to see what the outdoors has to offer. He would be less inclined to go on a potentially dangerous adventure on his own if you make his home a complete cat paradise. Set up a cat tree, scratching posts, or puzzle feeders well away from the door. A cat tree near the window gives your pet a good outdoor view while keeping him safely inside. Give your cat toys to play with and play with him whenever you have the chance.

Door training

How do I keep my cat from running out the door? Whenever you arrive home from work or anywhere outside, don’t greet your cat by the door no matter how excited you are to see him. Take your time removing your coat and taking off your shoes. Pat and greet your cat in other parts of the house, but never near the door. Apply the same practice before you leave the house. The idea is to keep your cat as far away from the door as possible and tempering his curiosity.

Cat doors

How to keep cats from running out the front door? If you own an indoor-outdoor cat, cat doors are designed to help you better manage your pet’s comings and goings. Train your cat that he is only allowed to go out through the cat door. Lock the cat door at night or limit access as needed. With or without a cat door, have your cat associate freedom only with one door—it could either be the side door or back door, as long as it’s one that’s used less frequently.


Allow some outdoor time

If your cat door opens to a yard, make it safer by installing safety barriers or in-ground fences. You can even build your pet his very own outdoor cat sanctuary. Cats can also be taken with you on walks, given that they’re leash trained.

Door deterrents

How to stop my cat from running out the door? The idea of running out the door can be very appealing to some cats. It would then be your job to train your pet. For his own good, you must teach your cat that trying to sneak past that forbidden door isn’t at all worth the effort. Foil any escape plans by literally laying out sheets of aluminum foil on the way to the door. Cats generally dislike the texture and sound of walking on those.

Specially designed double-sided tapes could also be effective deterrents. You can also try spraying your cat with water or making a loud noise whenever you see him moving towards the door. Do it consistently until your cat stops getting into the habit.

Spaying/ neutering

Spaying or neutering helps alleviate your pet cat’s mating drive. Studies show that up to 90% of spayed or neutered cats are less likely to want to escape. This is one of the most reliable ways on how to keep a cat from running out the door. The surgical procedure must be performed by a certified vet. Spaying and neutering also comes with a host of health benefits for felines.

Leash training

Leash training would be a great way for an indoor cat to enjoy the outdoors. Not all cats can be leash trained though but you can give it a try by knowing the basics of leash training your cat.

Basic behavior training

If your cat knows to follow commands such as “come” or “sit,” it would be much easier to prevent him from escaping or running, especially if there are emergency situations. Positive reinforcement helps your cat associate following commands with getting rewards. Offer treats if your cat comes to you when you call him.

Proper containment

How to stop a cat from running out the front door? Have measures in place for what to do whenever you’re having guests or a service repairman over. Cats can get excited if around unfamiliar people or situations and this might cause them to try to run away. Put your cat in a crate or safely away in a closed room if there are other people around and about the house.

Extra precautions

You can do all of the above and your cat might still find a way to escape. It doesn’t hurt to take extra precautions in case the worst happens. Have your cat microchipped and make sure that his collar tags are always updated with the correct information. Another precaution you can take is to put up a sign warning visitors and neighbors to watch out for the cat and to always close the door behind them.

Cats are clever and fast, and some of them could be very determined to escape. With proper training and care, you can learn how to keep an indoor cat from running out the door. Take the time to train and play with your cat, keep him happily busy, escape-proof your home, and take precautionary measures.


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