Relocating with an outdoor cat
August 26, 2008 7:40 PM   Subscribe

What sortve cities/towns should I consider moving w/ my indoor/outdoor cat? A yard, trees, plants, and small animals to hunt required...and things for me to do as well.

I'm wondering what sort've cities, large or small, have some nice affordable suburbs just outside the city (or spots within), where I could find a reasonable apartment or house for me and my cat?

I just moved from State College, PA, which was perfect for me and Lizard (the cat) in that I had cheap, decent housing with a nice wooded yard, within a 15min bike ride from downtown.

Some of the other cities I've been looking at are Madison, Tucson, Portland, Eugene, Chicago (Evanston?), Asheville, Chapel Hill, Providence, Austin, Ithaca, etc.

I'm sure some of these choices can be scratched right away based on my requirements. But the general theme is youngish cities, w/ a lively arts scene, outdoor activities nearby, maybe a university, and outdoor cat friendly - either in the city or a within a short commute.

The cat has been indoors and outdoors her entire life, so switching her to indoors only isn't an option I'd consider.

Thanks for the suggestions!
posted by pilibeen to Travel & Transportation (6 answers total)
Well, I'll plug Corvallis OR like I always do. Its smallish with a university, 'young' may be a stretch but the university is a large portion of the population. The hiking, mountain biking, and backpacking in the area is incredible (and its easier to get to than Eugene & Portland, imo). The arts scene isn't what it is in Eugene or Portland, but they're close enough to drive to on the weekends. Our cat is an outdoor cat, as is almost every cat I know, and that's within the city. You can probably think of the whole town as a suburb. There are plenty of places to rent, including full houses with good yards.

Both Portland and Eugene may work. Look at SE Portland if you want to stay in the city. I don't know the suburbs well enough to recommend one. Both Portland and Eugene have very good art/music scenes and universities, and are a bit faster paced than Corvallis is.
posted by devilsbrigade at 7:51 PM on August 26, 2008

We live just outside Cincinnati. It can be a hard area to break into, sort of, because lots of people seem to be from here. But it meets your other requirements -- it has colleges, it has an art scene, it has tons of neat parks and outdoorsy things to do, I live in a suburb 7 miles from down town with great schools, reasonably affordable homes, and almost everyone seems to have indoor/outdoor cats (our cat stays inside and on the deck. I'm scared to death that if he got out he'd get eaten by other cats/animals, or hit by a car. No one else in my neighborhood seems to share this concern, although last year someone's sick cat was eaten by a coyote).
posted by dpx.mfx at 7:51 PM on August 26, 2008

As a general plug for Oregon, Corvallis, Portland and Eugene are all insanely bikeable. The mountains and lakes here are beautiful, and you'll learn to realize that a little rain doesn't really have any reason to stop you from enjoying it. Very few weather extremes, no natural disasters (except for the massive earthquake sometime in the next hundred years), no sales tax, lower gas prices than California and you'll never have to pump your gas again. And, if you get tired of the rain, the east side is significantly drier even in the fall & spring.
posted by devilsbrigade at 7:58 PM on August 26, 2008

I live in Redwood City, CA and there are squirrels-a-go-go for the hunting, it's wicked bike friendly, the downtown is cute and not overrun with yuppies or hipsters, and it's adjacent to everything in the Bay Area, including hiking trails, beaches, etc.

Affordability, of course, is relative to the possible increase in earning potential for you, depending on your field. But it's very much a community in the best sense of the word.
posted by padraigin at 10:00 PM on August 26, 2008

Skip Tucson. It's dry, dirty desert with few redeeming qualities (save a gorgeous college campus in U of A). While it actually meets several of your criteria, the artsy side is a bit on the smallish side and it's so brown. (I live in the Phoenix area. And haven't been thrilled with that face for the past 14 years...)
posted by disillusioned at 11:11 PM on August 26, 2008

Duluth, MN. it has more public green space than any other city within the lower 48. has three universities (St. Scholastica, University of Minnesota-Duluth, and University of Wisconsin-Superior right over the bridge). relatively inexpensive, with loads of places to live in that are on the edge of town and amazing parks. The Superior Hiking Trail goes right along the ridge through town, and feels like you're nowhere near a city. lots of people bike, there's loads of wilderness nearby, and a fairly decent arts/music community that encourages participation. the lake is awesome, and you see it everyday (cuz everyone's on a hill), unlike places like Evanston.

downside--you must like cold weather to be happy here.

we live on the edge of town, and i can bike downtown inside of 15 min. (nearly all downhill, and take the bike rack/bus back up.) my cats believe they are in heaven.
posted by RedEmma at 12:23 PM on August 27, 2008

« Older Casual relationships in high school?   |   iTunes/iPod conversion - temp file? Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.