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Is Your Outdoor Cat Safe at Night?

Risks to Cats at Night

Cats enjoy displaying their independence and exercising their freedom. While giving your cat access to nature may make them happy in many ways, it also exposes them to a whole new level of risk.

  • Outdoor cats are more likely to be hit by cars or attacked by other animals, and they are also more likely to contract illnesses like parasites and the feline immunodeficiency virus.
  • Outdoor cats are particularly vulnerable at night. Concerning nighttime hazards include:
  • Cats are at risk from nocturnal predators like coyotes, foxes, and even owls.
  • Other cats – Other outdoor cats might be skulking around their territory as well, increasing the likelihood of confrontations.

The components while you are sleeping, it may be more difficult to safeguard your pet from extreme summer or winter weather.

Making your indoor/outdoor cats more visible is one of the simplest methods to ensure their safety, especially for drivers who are more prone to miss them when it’s dark outdoors until it’s too late. Crepuscular, or active at dawn and dusk, describes cats. In other words, during these two periods of low light, cats that have access to the outdoors are most likely to be prowling their local streets.

(While staying home at night is the safest option for your indoor/outdoor cat, we understand that’s not always possible for all cat owners.)

Your best bet is to spend money on a reflective collar because asking your cat to wear a reflective safety vest when they walk outside is probably not going to work. These collars multiply the moonlight, streetlights, and car headlights so that your cat is considerably more visible even from a distance.

No, leaving your cat outside at night is not a good idea. Letting him stay outside all night is very risky. Your cat runs a variety of risks when you let him wander free outside. These dangers include contracting infections, suffering animal injuries, becoming lost or trapped, being run over by a car, or being harmed by poisonous flora. Given that some of these risks are increased at night, it is particularly hazardous. Additionally, you cannot let a cat that is terrified or hurt to come back inside while you are asleep.

Here are a few instances of typical ailments that cats may contract outside:

  • Animal leukemia
  • Upper respiratory illnesses
  • Rabies
  • Cat distemper
  • Cats can readily get the following parasites when they are outdoors:
  • Fleas
  • Ticks
  • digestive worms
  • Aural mites

Being struck by cars

One of the biggest risks for cats wandering around outside at night or when visibility is poor is being hit by a car. Even if you believe your cat has the common sense to stay out of the way of oncoming traffic, all it takes is one slip-up to get run over. In the United States, 5.4 million cats are hit by cars each year, according to the National Traffic and Safety Administration. Keep your cat from becoming one of them! If your cat does venture outside after dark, be sure to at the very least fasten an LED safety light on his collar to increase his visibility, such as this one, which has received a lot of positive feedback.


Cats are known to be inquisitive animals. They have a propensity to get involved in anything and everything. Cats that are left outside at night on their own run the risk of ingesting something that will make them sick or possibly kill them.

Cats are poisoned by a number of common plants, including:

  1. Lilies
  2. Bulb tulip
  3. Rhododendrons and Azaleas
  4. Oleander
  5. Cane toluene
  6. Marijuana

Following are a few instances of typical harmful substances that cats could easily consume:

  • Antifreeze
  • Pesticides
  • poisonous rat
  • ice-melting salts
  • shorter life span

In terms of longevity, indoor cats outlive outdoor cats. Most indoor cats live between 12 and 17 years, while some make it into their 20s. The likelihood of your cat living that long is greatly decreased if you let him go outside, especially at night. Every time he leaves the house, he puts himself in danger of losing his life.


Despite the fact that cats are naturally predators, there are many larger creatures outside that could be a hazard to domestic cats. One of the most frequent predators of cats, coyotes are widespread throughout much of the United States. Additionally, because they are nocturnal hunters, it is crucial to keep your cat inside during the night.

The following animals could also hurt or kill a house cat:

  • Dogs
  • Cougars
  • Large raptors like hawks and owls
  • Snakes
  • Scorpions
  • Wild cats

Getting stuck or lost

A cat may occasionally stray too far from home and become lost, or he may encounter circumstances that make it impossible for him to get back home. They may become too terrified to turn around and return the way they came after being hunted by a predator far away. Other times, they might erratically into an open service vehicle and be taken who knows where.

It’s easy for your cat’s collar to become tangled up in something if it’s on. This is why it’s crucial to buy your cat a collar like this one from Safe Cat that automatically releases if excessive pressure is applied. In order to increase the cat’s visibility at night, it also features reflective patterns. These worked because my old cat Bela, who I occasionally let outside, once returned home without one of them, so I know they do!

Another frequent occurrence is a family taking in a lost cat. They might be treated as a stray and forced to live with someone else permanently, or worse, they might be brought to a shelter.

Unfavorable weather

Extreme weather conditions could hurt or even kill your cat, which is another reason you shouldn’t let them outside at night. They might become dehydrated during a severe heat wave or develop hypothermia during the chilly winter. Wet snow or chilly rain may make your cat’s body temperature drop because a cat’s fur coat only keeps them warm in dry conditions.

Accidentally overstayed outside

Even if you want to let your cat back inside before you go to bed, he may sometimes linger outside for a lot longer than you anticipate, making the evening an especially bad time to let him out. It’s possible that you’ll grow weary of phoning him, give up, and go to bed or pass out. Then, as daylight arrives, the awful realization sets in: Oh no, the cat is still outside! Is he okay?

As a result,

Cats should ideally be kept indoors almost constantly. If you do decide to let your cat outside, limit its time outside to the day and only allow brief, supervised trips.

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