If you haven’t already heard, the catio is the latest outdoor trend to follow in the steps of she sheds and vertical gardens. Is it any surprise? Everyone loves patios. Everybody loves cats. It was only a matter of time before the two came together. Now owners can enjoy their outdoor space alongside their furry friends!
What is a Catio?
A catio is essentially an outdoor enclosure for cats on your patio. Common materials include wood beams for support and wire fencing to create the enclosure. High walls and ceiling allow the space to feel spacious and give cats plenty of vertical space for perching up high, just how they like it. Typically, they connect to the indoors somehow via a tunnel or cat door. This gives cats the freedom to travel back and forth between indoors and outdoors.
A catio is a simple solution to a problem faced by many indoor cat owners: giving an indoor cat access to the outdoors without putting them in danger. Depending on where you live, there are many types of dangers domesticated cats face when stepping outside. Predators and diseases from other animals are major concerns, as well as the general health and well being of your cat. Cats who get to spend time outdoors tend to be happier and healthier, and cats who spend too much time indoors tend to get restless and overweight. Other benefits include protection from territorial strays, which will reduce vet bills associated with random bites and scratches. Some catios include an outdoor litter box. This is great for people who want to avoid the smell of cat litter inside their home. For cat owners, the biggest benefit of a catio is the peace of mind that comes from knowing their feline friend is happy and well protected.
How to make a Catio
There are many options available to cat owners. Whether you’re a DIY’er or not, you can give your feline friend a taste of the #PatioLife. If you are good with a hammer and screwdriver, it’s possible to design and build one yourself. Just a quick trip to the Home Depot will get you all the necessary materials, such as wood beams, wire fencing, screws, and washers. If you need a little more guidance, there are plenty of plans available online. The Catio Spaces website offers DIY catio plans with step-by-step instructions and diagrams so you can make your own catio. They also offer design and building services to build a catio for you! Other websites also offer do-it-yourself kits if you want a bit more guidance.
What’s the Size of a Catio?
Whether you want something small and simple, or large and luxurious, the choice is yours. Depending on where you live, a small catio might be more practical than a large one. As long as your cat can get some fresh air and sunshine, the catio is serving its purpose. If you have plenty of outdoor space, you can create an enclosure large enough for people to walk around in. These luxurious catios incorporate other types of outdoor features to make the experience even more enjoyable. Features such as ponds, outdoor water fountains, and a lounge area with chairs and ottomans are good ideas. Take a look at this Deluxe Catio featured on Houzz.
Now that you’ve learned about catios, it’s time to roll up those sleeves and get to work! The best part of a catio is seeing how much happier and healthier your cat becomes. As a cat owner, there’s a lot of value in knowing your indoor cat has the best quality of life possible. Be sure to dig around online and do plenty of research before starting your first catio. There are plenty of resources with helpful tutorials available.
About The Author
Cheryl Khan is a fellow cat lover and a regular contributor to the Patio Productions Blog. Follow our blog for her latest posts.