Prevent Feline High-Rise Syndrome

Cats may have excellent balance and can right themselves from a fall, but this doesn’t mean they are invincible. Any pet parent who lives in a tall building and has a patio area knows how nice it is to sit out there. It’s also great to share that space with your cat. However, cats hanging out on the edge of open windows or on a patio puts them at risk for falling.

Cats don’t deliberately jump from high places, many accidentally fall from open patios, windows, and fire escapes. When cats focus on something, it can distract them and they may lose their balance or not realize just how high they are. Cats also do not seem to have a great fear of heights.

How many of us have found our cat sitting on top of the fridge? Or at the top of a ladder? Some cats even hang out on the rooftops of houses. Because of their fearlessness, it seems they would be fine and be able to balance and take care of themselves. But this isn’t the case.

Unfortunately, when cats fall from high places, they don’t land squarely on their feet. Instead, they land with their feet slightly splayed apart and this can cause severe head and pelvis injuries.

High-Rise Syndrome is preventable with a few tips:

  1. Check your screen windows and make sure they are sturdy.
  2. If you use adjustable screens, wedge them tightly into the window frames.
  3. Cats can slip through window guards do not use them as a deterrent. Screen windows and adjustable screens are needed. Screens also keep flies out of your house.
  4. If you want your cat to share your patio with you, consider creating a small screened in section for him or invest in a catio.

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