are a number of benefits to keeping pets indoors, yet there can also be
some challenges. For cats, being an indoor pet has significant health advantages.
Indoor cats live longer and face much fewer threats from traffic, disease,
and other animals. Most dogs will go outdoors routinely even if for only
short periods of time. However, there are more and more dogs, particularly
smaller dogs and city dogs that spend very little time outdoors. This can
be an ideal living arrangement for many pets, but there are some potential
issues to be aware of.
The most common problem for indoor pets is getting enough exercise. For
cats and small dogs often a few toys and some time spent playing with your
pet each day will remedy this problem. For medium size or larger dogs,
typically there is not enough space for them to get enough exercise indoors.
As dogs typically need some time out of doors anyway this is a great time
to take them for walk or to go to the park and play. Depending on your
dog’s energy level they may need exercise both indoors and out. If
a high energy dog is contained in an apartment or small home for extended
periods of time they will often become destructive as they physically need
more exercise than they are receiving. If you are planning on having an
indoor pet there are certain breeds of dog that are not well suited for
indoor living mainly due to their high energy level. Sporting dogs such
as Labradors, and other large or active dogs need room to run and exercise.
On the other hand, many indoor dogs can be very content as they spend more
time with people which as pack animals they often crave. Conversely the
opposite situation is rarely good. Pets that live outside typically have
a lower quality of life. They suffer from being isolated and may not adapt
well to people due to lack of contact. For dogs a good balance can usually
be found between indoors and outdoors. For cats, if kept inside from kittenhood
they will typically show little interest in going out. Windows, window
seats, or enclosed porches can often satisfy any lingering desire to go
A related problem to lack of exercise for some indoor pets is actually
being overly spoiled. Some pets have everything they could possibly wish
for. This can result in not only a lack of exercise, but sometimes too
much food or too many treats are given. The combination will most certainly
result in a weight problem. Small dogs often adapt to being carried everywhere
they go, but in reality this may not be what is best for them. Even the
smallest dog needs exercise. Even though the owner is well intentioned,
extra treats or giving human food as a treat or a special meal does not
help them in the long run. There are numerous health problems that are
associated with obesity, so making sure your pet is fit is wise.