Can Cats Find Their Way Home If Lost (Answered)

can cats find their way home

Can cats find their way home is a question often asked by most cat owners who end up looking for their lost cat, in this article we will do justice to this question.

Cats are one of the most popular home pets, and can be kept as an indoor or outdoor cat whichever one you keep they will always prefer to roam about which makes the cat go missing.

Have you ever wondered whether cats can find their way home? It’s a question that’s been on many minds, but the answer is a little complicated.

In this article we will try to answer the question can cats find their way home and also provide a few tips that will help a lost cat find its way home.

Can cats find their way home?

Yes, a lost cat can still find its way back home if the cat wasn’t killed by a predator, trapped, taken away by cat nappers, taken away by an animal control team, or taken away from the city. Cats most likely have an inborn ability to remember their way home, provided they cat do not roam beyond 1-3 miles away from home.

About one in three pets are lost at some point in their life, and about 10 million pets are stolen in the United States each year, according to the American Humane Association.

In Europe, about 6.5 million cats disappear at one time and about 25% or about 1.6 million cats are never reunited with their owners.

Cats getting lost are highly associated more with cat owners who keep an outdoor cat than those cat owners who keep indoor cats.

An outdoor cat will always find its way home, provided the cat wasn’t killed or taken away by cat nappers or taken to another city accidentally.

80% of outdoor cats know the in and out of their environment or neighborhood and if they are not trapped they will definitely find their way home.

Reasons A Lost Cats Never Return

Here are some common reasons why a lost cat never returned home:

  • The cat was killed by a predator.
  • The cat was taken to another city
  • The cat was killed by a vehicle
  • The cat was taken away by a professional cat napper
  • The cat travel beyond 3 miles away from home and lost its way
  • The cat was taken away by an animal control team
  • The cat got killed by the human trap.

Why cats run away

There are a few reasons your cat would want to go outside and we present here some of these reasons.

  • An un-Neutered male cat will always look for a way to run outside for mating.
  • An un-sprayed female cat on heat will be wanting to go outside to mate with a male cat.
  • Cat finding a better food source or option
  • An abused cat will run away from home
  • A starved cat will run away from home
  • Shouting at your cat unnecessarily
  • Beating up a cat
  • When the house becomes noisy
  • A threatened cat will try to run away
  • A neglected cat will run away from home
  • Other animals can chase a cat away from home.

Tips to help a lost cat find its way home

Here are some useful tips that will help your cat find its way back.

Show your Cat around the Neighborhood

Showing your cat around the neighborhood is very important, be it an outdoor cat or an indoor cat, as this will help you someday.

Ways to show your cat around the neighborhood
  • Visiting other cat owners around the neighborhood.
  • Walking down the street with your cat on a leash.
  • Taking your cat to parks
  • Playing with your cat right outside your compound.
  • Inviting other close cat owners with their cat and walking them home with your cat.

There are many benefits of showing your cat around the neighborhood, if you ever take your cat around it will be hard for your cat to get lost or stuck with people around.

Benefits of taking your cat around the neighborhood
  • People around will get used to seeing your cat and will feel relaxed with the cat.
  • Your cat will hardly get trapped because people know the owner
  • Your cat will not be removed by animal control because people know the owner
  • Your cat will have both human and animal friends around
  • Your cat gets more food for visiting other cat owners because they know the owner
  • Your cat gets more play time because there are lots of places to go
  • Your cat will expand its territory
  • Identification of your cat will be much easier
  • Easy tracking of your cat way about

Get a Good tracking system

A good tracking system will help your cat find its way home because with a good tracker you will just go and pick up your cat.

Benefits of tracking your cat
  • It gives you peace of mind
  • Tracking your cat helps you know where to pick up your cat
  • Easy identification around your neighborhood
  • Help you check your cat’s way about
  • Tracking helps you to know when your cat gets trapped
  • Saves you the stress of asking questions about your cat

If you have a good tracker on your cat even if it is a microchip you will track your cat down to where ever it goes and recover it.

If your cat gets trapped in your neighbor’s basement or your cat gets locked up in someone’s garage, you can not find such a cat unless the cat is microchipped or has an active track.

Your cat may remain stocked somewhere for many days, and you will be asking people and research not knowing it’s trapped, but if you had a tracker on it, you will pick it up without stress.

Showing Your Cat all the Junctions and Entrances

This is most important to those who keep an outdoor cat. As it will help your cat always find its way home no matter the distance traveled.

Cats are great hunters and will travel long distances when hunting.

A cat can go 8 blocks away from home where it’s trying to be a hunter and could lose its way home.

But for the fact it knows the junctions, it will find its way home.

When cats are in heat they are restless and if they have the chance they will run away looking for a mate.

The cat travels far until they get a mate, they can miss their way but if you have shown them all the surrounding junctions this will help them find their way home.

Showing them all the surrounding junctions should not be a problem at all.

Just train them to walk on a leash and take them on evening walks when you are done with the daily activities.

When you take your cat around for some time, it will be difficult for your cat not to come home unless the cat is trapped, taken away, or killed.

Do cats actually care about their owners when they go missing?

Yes, your lost cat care about you - Can a lost cat find its way home
Yes, your lost cat cares about you – Can a lost cat find its way home

Yes, cats do take care of their owners and that is why whenever they run or go far to see their friends or hunt no matter how comfortable they are with their friends, they always come home knowing that their owners will be looking for them.

Even before the cat goes missing you will always notice that each time come home from work, your cat will always greet you by rubbing your head against your leg or body. It’s a way of saying welcome and that they missed you.

Another way to prove that your cat cares about you is that your cat may go out and find a better food source or another cat lover that cares more, but at the end of the day your cat will still come home, even with all the love and care received from outside it still come home.


Cats are known to be very independent animals. The problem is that they are not as good at finding their way home if they are lost.

It is estimated that only one in ten cats will find their way home and be reunited with their owners if lost.

Could you imagine if your cat was lost? You might be feeling hopeless or helpless, but you are not alone.