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Cats/Cat flap issue


Hello, I have a 7yr old male cat and two 1 year old sisters. We have a cat flap and whilst one sister just copied our male cat and has been going in and out a while now, the other girl is basically an inside cat. If I leave the door open (or hold the flap open for her) she will venture out and is interested, but I worry if she runs off and then comes back later she won’t be able to get back in because she can't use the flap! I don't want to tape the flap up because the other sister is really good at using it now and I wouldn't want her to 'unlearn' pushing it open. She watches the others go through and seems fascinated but doesn’t try to copy them.  I have spent ages trying to get her to go through it with treats etc but she just doesn't understand and if I push her through she goes nuts. How can I help her to learn to use it? Not sure what else to try. I feel bad that in this nice sunny weather she is alone inside watching her sister and out other cat through the window!


Often indoor cats have agoraphobia (fear of open spaces), like people some are affecxted by the phobia whereas others are not (even within siblings).  The answer to this is to never force the issue. I believe your one cat does understand what is going on, but just does not want to go out.  I would respect her issues and not worry about whether she is jealous of her sister being outside.

You may feel bad for her, but this appears to be what she wants.  One must be careful not to ascribe human emotions and motives to cats.  They do not think like we do!!!!!!!

I know this is not what you wanted to hear, but, I feel, it is best to just leave things alone.

Best regards... Norm.


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Norman Auspitz


I can answer most non-veterinary questions about cats. My particular expertise is pedigree cats, breeding and showing. However, I am versed in feline behavior, cat breeds and their characteristics, general feline husbandry, and the like.


I judged for the Canadian Cat Association from 1975 until 1982. I am currently an approved allbreed judge for the Cat Fanciers'' Association (the world''s largets cat registry), and have been judging for them since 1991. I have been breeding pedigreed cats since 1971 and have been exhibiting pedigreed cats in shows since 1970. I obtained my first pedigreed cat in 1970 and have never looked back. In 1971, I obtained my first Abyssinian which has become my primary breed. In addition, I have bred Manx and Persians. Currently, besides the Abyssinians, I am also breeding Maine Coons.

Cat Fanciers'' Association, inc. (CFA) and the Manx, Maine Coon, and Abyssinian breed councils. I am currently Abyssinian breed council secretary.

Cat Fancy Magazine, The Abyssinian Chapter in The Cat Fanciers'' Association Complete Cat Book, and Articles for various editions of The Cat Fanciers'' Association Yearbook

I received a B.S. from Drexel University in 1968, a M.Math from University of Waterloo, in 1970, a Ph.D. from University of Waterloo in 1975, and a MBA from McMaster University in 1980. I received my approved allbreed judging status in the Cat Fanciers'' Association in 1999.

Awards and Honors
We have produced a number of Cat Fanciers'' Association (CFA) National winning Abyssinian and Maine Coons. We have produced a number of Abyssinian and Maine Coon Distinguished Merit females (an award for a top producing cat), including the first Distinguished Merit Abyssinian in the red (sorrel) color. I am the CFA Abyssinian breed council secretary and belong and/or hold office in a number of cat clubs. I am also a member of the CFA Judges Association.

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