Keeping cats indoors for their whole lives is "not ideal" as they miss out on a lot of what life has to offer them, a vet has said.
Jo Inglis, writing for the Metro, said that while it is sensible to keep a cat indoors if they live next to a busy road, if this is not a risk there is no reason to keep them indoors.
He was contacted by a reader who keeps her two cats indoors with plenty of pet toys, as she would be "devastated" if they were stolen or hit by a car.
In response, Dr Inglis wrote: "I don't like the idea of cats being kept indoors permanently as it is so at odds with their natural hunting and territorial instincts.
"If there is no particularly strong reason to confine them, let them out to enjoy the world. However content they seem, they are missing out on a lot of what life has to offer a cat."
He added that there will be risks with letting the cats outdoors but life cannot be lived to the full without embracing some of those dangers.
According to the RSPCA, cats can be kept indoors but they need additional care, as an indoor environment can become boring and lead to inactivity and obesity.