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I have been adopted by a very affectionate gray tabby. She had been coming around more and more to the point that I decide to feed her. I noticed that other neighborhood cats were coming around and eating her food so I started feeding her in my laundry room. Once she got comfortable with this arrangement I invited her into my home. She has taken to being inside rather well. She gets curious about certain areas but doesn't cause any damage or get into anything dangerous.

I took her to the local Humane Society for rabies, vaccines, etc. She had been spayed and does not have a microchip. So she is now my cat. When I am home, she stays inside with me and behaves very well. When I go out for anything, i.e. school, errands, etc., or when I go to bed, I will put her outside and she will be waiting for me when I get home or the next morning.

At what point is it safe to leave her in the house during the night and when I am away from home? I did read a post (Cat in a electronics hobbyist house) about how to keep the environment safe for her, but I am not sure how I can tell when "all is safe" for her.

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    Do I understand correctly that you're asking how to make sure that your home is save for a cat, not at what specific time it's safe for a cat to be in your home?
    – Elmy
    Oct 26, 2022 at 6:27
  • Do you have anything in particular in your house that is causing you concern? If not, go ahead and let her stay inside.
    – Allison C
    Oct 26, 2022 at 14:03
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    @Elmy It's not the how but more as when can I tell by her behavior that she is comfortable in the house so as not to cause a mess. I realize that each cat is different but I am wondering if there are indicators to look for.
    – agarza
    Oct 26, 2022 at 14:19
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    Are these unusual cords and small items, or the same things that most people would have in their homes? Everyone has cords and small items, after all. :)
    – Allison C
    Oct 27, 2022 at 14:00
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    @AllisonC My main workspace has the usual cords but just more than the usual since I have a computer, monitors, 3D printers, etc. I guess my concern is if she feels alone in the house she will start doing things outside her norm.
    – agarza
    Oct 27, 2022 at 14:26

2 Answers 2

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Congratulations on your new cat! It sounds like she's very comfortable in your space already, and very likely is a former housecat who was either lost or abandoned. If you have a local social media group (Facebook groups, Nextdoor app, etc), I'd suggest doing one final check beyond the microchip one to ensure she doesn't belong to anyone and then officially considering her your cat.

As she's become very comfortable, and as you've clarified you don't have a lot of particularly unusual dangerous items, I would say you're fine to start keeping her inside going forward. At the start, you can close doors to rooms of concern (for instance, where the 3D printer is located) until you have a better sense of her behavior. Be sure you also have plenty of options for her to entertain herself without getting into your things. A selection of cat furniture (you can start small here, but consider a taller tree in the near future), scratching posts, blankets/beds, and various styles of toys--start small with all of these to get a sense of what she does and doesn't like.

If she's comfortable and not bored, there should be no issues with any of the power cords you have in your household. Millions of cats live in similar settings without issue, as computers and other powered devices are commonplace throughout the developed world. She very likely came from a setting that had similar cords, and unless she was abandoned due to issues with chewing on them (a situation you likely would have noticed by now), the risk she'll start this behavior is low, unless she gets bored. Avoiding boredom with appropriate outlets is the best way to prevent a cat from getting into things they shouldn't.

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    I'm happy to report that all is well. She has been well-behaved at night with only one instance where she decided to explore the lower kitchen cabinets (I put rubber bands on the doors for now). Since her behavior during the day was well-behaved then that carried over to other times she has been unattended.
    – agarza
    Nov 6, 2022 at 1:06
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    @agarza that's great! You may find a need for child locks on some cabinets longer-term (some cats just really want to explore those spaces), but overall everything sounds very normal, including the desire to check out those cabinets. :)
    – Allison C
    Nov 7, 2022 at 14:50
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Congratulations on having been adopted! As Allison mentioned, it seems that she's very comfortable in your home already and has adapted well. I'd suggest starting to look for signs that she wants to go out versus looking at if it's okay to keep her in since there's no mention of her displaying concerning behaviors (chewing, scratching, getting into things she shouldn't).

Before you spend too much on any toys or bedding, see what she's drawn to - my cats have always loved "caves" and prefer burrowing under blankets over store-bought kitty beds. I leave a throw tossed over my couch that has a little room for them to poke under and burrow, which has rendered all of my cute little caves useless.

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    Welcome! Let me encourage you to take the tour and browse through the help center, especially How to Answer. For all answers, the Stack Exchange rules demand that they first and foremost answer the question - in this case, “when is it safe for the cat to be left alone inside”. I would recommend you focus a bit more on that aspect. Anecdotes and further information is nice, but can distract from the core answer. If you want to simply share stories (we all do occasionally with the numbers of pets we have!), the Litter Box is the better place.
    – Stephie
    Oct 29, 2022 at 4:35

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