Do you keep your feline pal indoors? If so, that’s great! Cats are simply too small and vulnerable to roam freely outside. As soon as Fluffy sets her paws outdoors, she’s exposed to several serious threats, such as weather, wild animals, and traffic. However, kitties do enjoy and benefit from the fresh air, sunlight, exercise, and stimulation they can get outdoors. Want to offer your furball the best of both worlds? Make her a catio! In this article from Westside Animal Hospital, a Savannah, GA vet offers some advice on building a kitty enclosure.
As with any other real estate, location is key. Ideally, you’ll want a spot that’s on level ground and offers a good view and a mix of shade and sun.
Fluffy’s outdoor room can be as big or small as you want. If you want to completely pamper your feline buddy, you can offer a large space, complete with catwalks, kitty towers, mazes, and, of course, plenty of lounging spots. However, your furry friend will likely be just as content with a simple box-like structure with just a few spots for lounging. It just depends on your budget, motivation, and space. Your situation is also a factor: homeowners have more leeway for making structural changes than renters would. That said, you may find it easiest to put the enclosure in a spot where Fluffy can use an existing window as a kitty door. You won’t have to keep the window open: you can find lockable cat doors that fit into existing windows.
Many people use some form of deer fencing or poultry wire for enclosure walls. Screen also works. Just make sure that nothing can get in or under the enclosure. You may want to bury chicken wire under the floor or walls for extra protection. There are plenty of great blueprints available online!
A cat tower is, of course, the ultimate piece of kitty furniture. You can buy one, but you can also get creative with things like old stepladders, book cases, or even tree branches. Fluffy may also appreciate having some pet-safe plants. Some good ones are Rubber tree plants, Areca palms, and Ponytail palms. You can find a full list at the ASPCA website here.
Do you have questions about your feline friend’s health or care? Contact Westside Animal Hospital, your Savannah, GA animal clinic!