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Will Your Kitten Run Away?

Will Your Kitten Run Away?
by Lucinda Beeman

Read time: 4 min

So, you’ve brought home a kitten. As you watch your new pet explore every nook and cranny of your home, a niggling question might creep into your mind: is your kitten a flight risk? These are the risks.

The Short Answer: It Depends

Kittens are curious creatures by nature. And their instincts can sometimes lead them to wander. But whether your kitten will actually run away depends on several factors. Like their environment. Personality. And how well you’ve prepared your home.

Why Kittens Might Wander Off


Kittens are naturally inquisitive. They love to explore, and sometimes that exploration can lead them outside if the opportunity presents itself.

Fear or nervousness 

Loud noises, unfamiliar people, or sudden movements can scare a kitten. Prompting them to bolt.

Mating instincts

As kittens mature, especially unspayed or unneutered ones, they might be driven to roam in search of a mate. Learn how to tell if your kitten is in heat here.


Without enough stimulation and playtime, a bored kitten might seek adventure elsewhere.

How to Stop Your Kitten from Running Away

Create a safe and stimulating environment

Secure the perimeter: Make sure all windows and doors are securely closed or have screens that a kitten can’t slip through.

Microchip and get ID tags: Microchipping your kitten and ensuring they wear a collar with an ID tag can help you reunite if they do manage to escape. In England, it’s now the law for cats to be microchipped. So book in that appointment.

Entertainment: Keep your kitten entertained with plenty of toys, climbing trees, and interactive playtime. A tired kitten is a happy, homebound kitten.

Routine: Establish a routine for feeding, playtime, and quiet time. Kittens thrive on routine. And are less likely to wander if they know what to expect from their day.

Spay or neuter: Spaying or neutering your kitten reduces the likelihood of roaming behaviour. Without the drive to find a mate, your kitten will be more content to stay at home.

Gradually expose them to the outdoors:If you plan to let your kitten explore the outdoors eventually, do it gradually. Supervised outdoor time in a secure yard or on a leash can satisfy their curiosity without the risk of them running away.

Signs Your Kitten Might Be Thinking of Bolting

  1. They hover around exits: If your kitten is frequently found by doors or windows, they might be contemplating an escape.

  2. They’re restless: A kitten that’s constantly pacing or seems restless might be looking for more stimulation.

  3. They dash outside when you open the door: Watch out for any attempts to dart out when you open the door. Because it’s a sign they’re curious about the great outdoors.

What to Do If Your Kitten Runs Away

First, don’t panic. Kittens are often nearby, hiding because they’re scared. Here’s a quick action plan:

  1. Search Nearby: Look in hiding spots close to home. Kittens usually don’t wander far.

  2. Call and use familiar sounds: Call your kitten’s name. And use familiar sounds like a shaking treat bag to lure them out.

  3. Notify neighbours: Let your neighbours know your kitten is missing. So they can keep an eye out.

  4. Social Media and Flyers: Use social media and put up flyers in your neighbourhood with a photo and description of your kitten.

Kittens are adventurous, and their natural curiosity can sometimes lead them to explore places they shouldn’t. By creating a safe, stimulating environment (and taking preventive measures), you can reduce the risk of your kitten running away.

And remember, your kitten isn’t trying to escape you. They’re just exploring the world. Now go give your kitten some extra love and playtime — they’ve earned it. 

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