cat running out the door

Indoor cats are notorious for dashing out the front door and zooming their way outdoors. While it’s healthy for cats to explore and spend time outdoors, it’s not always the safest place for them to be. Aside from busy streets and the possibility of other animals injuring them, cats can also get lost and find it hard to make their way back.

If your cat is often trying to escape, there’s good news. You can do simple things to keep them from running out the door.

In this article, we’ll talk about why your cat may be trying to escape and what you can do to make it stop.

Why Is Your Cat Running Out The Door?

Cats are predators in the wild, and it’s their instinct to go out and hunt for prey. In the wild, they need to hunt to survive. Even though cat owners prepare an indoor cat’s meals, their instinct remains, so it’s entirely normal for your cat to try to go outside.

Cats are also naturally curious and playful, so if you continually keep them indoors, it’s natural for them to wonder about what’s lurking outside.

They’re also semi-nocturnal animals that like to mate, so escaping outside can be a way for them to look for a potential mate.

If your cat is seemingly always ready to run as soon as you open your front door, it may be time to do something about it.

How to Keep Your Cat From Running Out the Door

Here are some tips to keep your cat from escaping outside:

1. Make the Front Door Unpleasant

You can deter your cat from escaping by making the front door an unpleasant spot. You can shout at your cat when it tries to get to the door, or you can place aluminum foil by the door as cats hate stepping on this material, or you can also put double-sided tape, as they hate sticky things.

2. Use Cat-Deterrent Oils

You can also spray your front door with oils that cats find aversive. These essential oils include citrus, rosemary, and cinnamon.

Related: Are essential oils safe for cats

3. Place a Motion-Activated Pet Deterrent By the Door

A motion-activated pet deterrent has a built-in sensor that sprays citrus scents. Since cats hate citrus, running towards the door will make them associate the behavior with the smell, helping to keep them away from the front door.

4. Spay or Neuter Your Cat

Unfixed cats are more likely to escape to look for a mate. Cats that have been spayed or neutered are known to have a reduced desire to flee since they don’t have the urge to breed.

5. Use a Cat Cage When Entertaining Visitors at Home

If you have a party at home, you will tend to open and close your doors often. To keep your cat from trying to escape, you can place your cat in a cat cage temporarily as you entertain guests.

6. Use a Cat Harness or Leash

If you want your cat to have some time outdoors, you can put it on a harness and leash. You can open your door and hook a leash nearby so your cat can explore a small area outside, or you can take your cat out for a minute out in your yard or on the street.

Consider: Best cat harnesses

7. Make a Stimulating and Enriching Indoor Environment

If your cat wants to go outside out of curiosity or boredom, a stimulating and enriching indoor environment can reduce your cat’s desire to escape. Make sure you create a comfortable place for your cat to sleep in, as well as make sure its litter box is clean, and provide your cat with plenty of toys, scratching posts, climbing ladders, a cat tree, and more.

Consider: Turf Paw Modern Furniture

It would be best if you also spent time with your cat playing, cuddling, and making sure it’s happy and well-taken care for, so it won’t have any desire or energy to linger and explore outside.

If you can’t control your cat from going out, make sure it’s protected. Don’t forget to put a collar on your cat, complete with your contact information, just in case it gets lost. You can also microchip your cat for more control since collars can come off.

You can also train your cat to respond to your voice or when you call out their name. If they do escape outside, it makes it easier for you to find them if they’ve been trained to respond to you.


Cats are naturally very agile and curious, so it’s entirely normal for them to want to escape outdoors. However, there are many potential dangers, and it’s not exactly the safest place for them to be, so as a cat parent, you must take action to keep them indoors.

Cat parents don’t need to worry, though, as the ways to keep feline friends indoors are inexpensive and straightforward. As long as you’re cautious and take the necessary steps to keep your cats safe indoors, your cat will no longer have a desire to dash for the door as soon as it opens.

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