Cat-containment: Contentious follow not about demonising free-roaming moggies

Sarah Chamberlain with her cats, Salem and Cocoa, in their purpose-built 'catio'. Photo:...

Sarah Chamberlain together with her cats, Salem and Cocoa, of their purpose-built ‘catio’. Photograph: College of Canterbury

New Zealand is a nation of cat lovers. We’ve one of many highest charges of cat possession on this planet, says Canterbury College grasp’s scholar Sarah Chamberlain, who has devoted her thesis to higher understanding individuals’s engagement in and angle in the direction of cat-containment.


Cat-containment is a contentious subject and Chamberlain says it is very important keep in mind it’s not about demonising cats for the impression they’ll have on the environment, it’s additionally about conserving cats wholesome and secure.

“Cats allowed to free-roam can result in predation of wildlife, together with native wildlife, disruption of wildlife behaviour, spreading illness like toxoplasmosis, which is a risk to our endangered marine mammals and might be transferred to people as effectively, however cats are additionally at an elevated danger of harm or hurt to themselves,” she stated.

The examine aimed to look at which elements finest predict engagement in cat-containment, and whether or not there are distinctive audiences of cat house owners in New Zealand that differ considerably within the set of things that predict their behaviour.


Chamberlain surveyed 395 cat house owners utilizing a Lucid Marketplace pattern. Responses got here from a broad viewers.

“Our findings have been that respondents not often meant to carry out or have interaction in cat-containment, which is what we anticipated based mostly on earlier analysis.


“From all of the elements assessed, individuals’s engagement in cat-containment and intentions to have interaction sooner or later have been influenced by a broad vary of things, not only one,” she stated.

Elements included if somebody had the bodily and psychological functionality to have interaction, the social and bodily alternative to take part and the motivation to have interaction.


This contains if somebody had constructive interpersonal influences – a vet that supported cat-containment for instance – whether or not they have the time or sources accessible to switch their house or atmosphere, have been involved in regards to the unfavourable penalties associated to free-roaming cats and believed that cat-containment is helpful for cats.

The findings enabled Chamberlain to phase cat house owners into 4 distinct audiences. The teams have been labelled engaged – 6 per cent; receptive – 17 per cent; ambivalent – 48 per cent; and opposed – 30 per cent.

Mentioned Chamberlain: “Every viewers differed considerably within the set of things predicting their behaviour and likewise carried out cat-containment to considerably completely different extents.

“The engaged phase participated in cat-containment probably the most and believed it’s useful to cats. Compared the opposed phase participated the least and have been the least involved in regards to the unfavourable impacts of free-roaming.”

Cat-containment might embrace conserving cats inside or conserving cats inside at evening), cat enclosures, escape-proof fenced yards, and supervising cats exterior.

Chamberlain stated it is very important have a look at cat administration in New Zealand.

“Broadly talking, in future I’d prefer to see a rethink on what it seems to be prefer to be a accountable cat proprietor.

“An vital a part of that is bringing individuals on the journey and altering attitudes.

“I don’t suppose it’s nearly placing guidelines and rules in place at a council degree, it’s a must to change individuals’s beliefs and attitudes, educate them in regards to the problem, and provides them the instruments and sources to make it straightforward to have interaction.

“Key contributions from the analysis are that now we perceive the principle causes of individuals’s choices to take part or not, interventions might be designed that truly deal with this stuff for various audiences of cat house owners.”

Chamberlain has determined to maintain her cats at house, constructing them a ‘catio’, which provides them entry to the home and out of doors.

“Some concepts to extend engagement in cat-containment based mostly on these findings is to teach individuals in regards to the prevalence of roaming-related cat harm, use influencers on social media as position fashions to construct constructive associations with conserving cats at house and environmental restructuring – making instruments simply accessible for cat containment.”

  • Share your views on cat-containment. E-mail your response in 200 phrases or much less to [email protected]

Show More

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Adblock Detected

To browse our website, please disable your Ablocker.