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What is High Rise Syndrome in Cats?

High-rise syndrome is the term that’s used to describe injuries that cats sustain when they fall from height. Not all cats will land on their feet, and any fall from a second story window can be extremely dangerous. If you follow our Facebook page you’ll know that we recently posted about this month’s Intelligent Cat Care Magazine. In this latest edition there’s a very useful post titled ‘High-rise Syndrome in Cats: They Don’t Always Land on Their Feet’. It’s an excellent post that is definitely worth reading, which you can do so by signing up to the iCatCare community, for free. You’ll receive a monthly magazine and newsletter for being part of the community. 

Careful of Open Windows and Balconies

Cats have very strong hunting instincts. They can’t resist watching, stalking or pouncing when the opportunity presents itself. They don’t give much thought to their location or how high up they are which is why open windows and balconies can present real threats. However, many of the cats that are injured, accidently fall rather than willingly leap. They slip or lose their balance or may fall after being startled.

Cats Always Land on Their Feet

Cats do have a righting reflex, which is why they’re able to land on their feet. The reflex does help to reduce the amount of damage that cats endure during falls, but doesn’t stop injuries entirely. 94% of cats taken to the vets will survive a fall but there are common injuries sustained:

  • Facial traumas
  • Fractured limbs
  • Dislocations
  • Dental fractures
  • Shock
  • Hypothermia
  • Lung injuries

Protecting Your Pet

There are easy steps you can take to protect your cat from high-rise syndrome. You could choose to never open any windows located on the second floor or higher, alternatively install a protective mesh screen that will stop your cat getting out and insects getting in. Balconies present further difficulties as they are more challenging to cover. We have the ideal solution, a cat containment system that is specifically designed for balconies. The containment system provides you with a simple way of using your balcony without putting your cat at risk of injury.

Don’t forget to sign up to the iCatCare community for free to receive useful articles and information each month.