Cat Outdoor Dangers: What To Watch For

Spring is here, and we love it! When warmer weather arrives, you and/or your pet may want to spend more time outside. That’s awesome. However, the outdoors is a much bigger area, which translates to more dangers for your cat.  Below are some cat outdoor dangers to be aware of this spring.

Brown tabby cat outdoors looking back at camera to discuss outdoor dangers to cats

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If you think allergies are only for people or dogs, think again.  They can pose just as much of a threat to your cat.  Just like you might have an adverse reaction to pollen, dust and mites, your cat can, too. The most common allergy for cats, though, is a flea allergy.  A bite from a flea can lead to allergic dermatitis.  As a result, your cat may scratch himself until he bleeds.  If you see any symptom of this, contact your vet so he or she can prescribe the right anti-allergic treatment for your cat

Gardening products and toxic plants

Cats rely on catnip or certain plants on a regular basis in order to purge themselves. As a result, you may find your cat chewing on some plants in your garden or on some grass.  Are you aware, however, of the plants highly toxic to cats?  They are as follows:

Honeysuckle, hyacinth, belladonna, lily, ivy, aconite, dieffenbachia, arum, philodendron, aloe, amaryllis, and ficus.

Should your cat ingest any of these plants, he can suffer from digestive, cardiac and nervous system problems. Therefore, if your cat begins to vomit, have diarrhea, overly-salivate or shake, get him to the veterinarian right away.  If you know which plant your cat ate, be sure to bring some of its leaves or flowers to the vet so he can make a better assessment and administer the proper treatment.

Ticks and fleas…ugh!

While your cat can be affected by ticks and fleas year-round, it is more prevalent in the warmer months.  Even house cats are just as much at risk as cats who spend appreciable tine outdoors, as parasites can attach to your clothes and then transfer to your cat’s fur.

Flea growth is difficult to control and can result in intense itching for your cat. Again, if your cat scratches too much, he can injure himself.

Be sure to check your cat’s fur on a regular basis and administer pest-control products for your cat as recommended/prescribed by your veterinarian.


What are these? Well, spikelets are one of the greatest threats to cats during the spring and summer months.  These are small blades of foxtail grass that detach themselves when they dry out and then attach themselves to nearby animals. Because their seeds spread easily, they can stick to the fur of a cat, as well as get into a cat’s skin, eyes, nostrils, ears and between the paws. This can then lead to infection.

Beware This Cat Outdoor Danger: Caterpillars!

These are a SIGNIFICANT danger to your cat during the summer months. They typically nest in pine trees and are covered with little stinging hairs that can cause considerable damage when they come into contact with a cat’s mucous membranes. If your cat tries to ingest one of these, get him to the vet right away.  If your cat does manage to eat one of these caterpillars, he will most likely suffer from abdominal pain and will vomit. Observe where your cat hangs out while outdoors, especially if he prefers places near pine trees.

Minimize Risk From Outdoor Cat Dangers

One was to reduce risk from Outdoor risks to cats is establishing a catio. Catios are often enclosed sunrooms where your cat can have the outdoor experience without risk of encountering dangers like those we discussed above.

If your living space doesn’t have an enclosed space to set up a catio, there are many options available for an outdoor enclosure, like this one,  It’s collapseible and has several ledges for your cat to lay on and observe.

One other option to consider a harness and leash for your cat. This way, you can Keep your cat close and prevent him from venturing into dangerous areas or situations. Taking cats on outdoor adventures is becoming more popular, so options for cat harnesses and leashes are becoming much more available.
















Written by Ann Butenas

Ann Butenas

An internationally-recognized author and writer, Ann began her professional writing career at age 12 and began speaking while in college. She has been published thousands of times over the past three decades in all media forms, was former editor and publisher of KC Metro Woman magazine, and has also hosted three talk radio shows in the Kansas City area.