FunNature & AnimalDangerous heights (at home) for a cat

Dangerous heights (at home) for a cat

Indeed, cats are very agile, and of course, they are not going to throw themselves from heights they do not control . This does not mean that, under certain circumstances, they can suffer accidents by tripping or running excessively and falling.

Three situations in which our cat can suffer an accident due to height

1. Flying stairs

In general, in houses with several floors, the stairs are usually secured, either by bars, or with glass partitions. Not so much for our beloved cats, but for safety with small children. Although there are in different places, cantilevered stairs that do not have this security and that can be candidates for our cat to suffer a fall.

We assume, and it is true, that our cat is smart enough not to jump. And it is like that, although there are some situations, such as a race without control, that can cause his fall. It will not be the first time that we see this type of situation in consultation, causing very serious spinal injuries in our cats, which sometimes have no recovery.

So, as beautiful as they may seem to us, we must control the possible blind spots through which our cat can fall and thus avoid unnecessary scares.

2. Open windows

As soon as the good weather begins, another of the frequent causes that we see in clinics are falls through the windows.

How many times have we heard, “my cat is going to fall on us, he has it under control” or “don’t worry, my cat doesn’t look out the window because he’s afraid of it, so I can open it without problems”.

And how many times, after that sentence, have they returned to the clinic with the fright in their bodies and the cat injured.

In fact, this problem is so frequent that it has its own name “High Rise Syndrome” (in Spanish parachuting cat syndrome) and is associated with cats falling from heights greater than 8 meters or two stories high.

Cats are curious by nature. That a cat at a certain moment does not want to look out the window, does not mean that it will not do it if there is something on the other side that interests it. And of course he is going to be careful, but he can slip, see something beyond that catches his attention, stumble and fall into the void .

While it is true that there are cats that have survived, without a scratch, at heights of 7 stories, there are many others that from the first floor have had fatal consequences. When videos of cats falling from a height are seen, we see how the body turns so that it falls with all four legs on the ground. This way of landing can cause bone fractures, epistaxis (nosebleeds), pneumothorax (accumulation of gas inside the chest that prevents it from breathing well) or fractures of the soft palate that we see as an open line on the palate of our cat. .

As we can see, these possible consequences are not worth it, being able to take advantage of various solutions that exist in the market, such as nylon nets, which, being transparent, do not seem like we are locked in our own house. In fact, many of these nets are made to prevent children from falling, so the weight they support is much greater than that of any cat, giving us absolute security. Always be careful that they do not bite them and check them from time to time.

3. Elevated areas at home with no escape routes

Veterinarians specializing in cats always recommend carrying out a good environmental enrichment at home in order to try to provide our house cat with the same possibilities as their congeners in nature.

For this, one of the tools that we recommend is to enable our house with platforms and elevated areas, so that they can access heights, turning our house into an amusement park for them.

The inconvenience may be that by doing so we do not control the distances well, or that if there is some kind of quarrel between our cats (in multi-cat houses) we do not provide alternative escape routes and accidents such as falls may occur.

To avoid these falls, we will think about what possible alternatives they have if they want to get down from those heights quickly, in this case placing shelves at accessible heights for them, in the form of a ladder so that they can descend without any problem.

As we can see, we can avoid all these possible accidents if we think about it beforehand. Our cat will continue to be happy at home and we will avoid unnecessary scares.


Merbl, Y., et al 2013. Epidemiological, clinical and hematological findings in feline high rise syndrome in Israel: a retrospective case-controlled study of 107 cats. Israel Journal of Veterinary Medicine, 68(1), 28-37.
Vnuk, D., et al. 2004. Feline high-rise syndrome: 119 cases (1998–2001). Journal of feline medicine and surgery, 6(5), 305-312.

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