Cats bring so much joy and love to our lives, and like everything in life that we love, we want to care and protect them. But how do we protect and keep them safe when we can’t be with them all day?
There are many ways we can show our cats that we love them… cuddles, kisses, treats, toys… but what are we doing to protect them and look after their basic needs and instincts?
Cats have essential health and welfare needs, and as a responsible cat owner these needs must not be ignored. To start with, ensure your cat is desexed, registered, and vaccinated against common diseases.
Hundreds of thousands of unwanted cats end up in animal shelters or on the streets each year. Many of these cats are from unwanted pregnancies that could have been avoided. Desexing your cat will reduce the tendency for it to roam and fight with other cats, significantly reducing the risk of diseases and the risk of your cat being injured or killed on the road.
Vaccinations play a very important part in keeping your cat healthy and providing protection against some diseases. Consult with your Veterinarian to confirm a vaccination program for your cat and ensure you are following regular health and dental appointments.
A Cat Sanctuary
Creating a sanctuary where your cats feel safe and happy is so important. Research shows that a mentally and physically stimulated cat is happier and healthier, and as a result may live longer.
Research also shows that cats that are contained live longer lives than cats who roam free. This is no surprise, reducing the threat of fights, encountering poisons, dogs, and other predators, contracting diseases, becoming lost, or being hit by a vehicle.
Keeping cats contained not only protects cats and can help to reduce vet bills, it can also benefit birds and wildlife, protecting endangered and threatened species.
Keeping cats safe and contained does not mean they should miss out on fresh air and sunshine. In fact, keeping them safely contained outside is easier than you may think with an enclosure or catio.
What is a Catio?
A catio (or a cat patio), is a structure designed to safely contain your cat in an outdoor space. Catios have many benefits, including keeping cats safe and stimulated outdoors while protecting wildlife.
A catio can be built using several different materials, including cat netting which is designed to provide an unobtrusive and cost-effective enclosure. Designed with affordability, ease of installation, and aesthetics in mind, Catnets catios use high quality and low visibility netting to create secure, fun and stimulating spaces for cats to safely enjoy the outdoors.
Why use cat netting to build your DIY Catio?
There are many benefits in using netting to build a cat enclosure or catio. These include:
- Versatility – netting is easy to cut to size, shape around corners, and fill small spaces
- DIY Friendly – No heavy lifting, welding or special tools required
- Affordability – Netting is the most economical material to use, especially for large areas
- It looks fantastic – Unlike wire cage catios, our low visibility cat netting is subtle and soft and is barely noticeable once installed
- It feels great – the soft mesh feel is preferred by cats and is also cool to touch in hot summer months
Catnets cat netting is also:
- High abrasion resistant
- UV treated and tested
- Pre-stretched to tension to avoid sagging
- Maximum ¾” x ¾” mesh size
What kind of Catio is best for my cat?
The size and type of catio you will ultimately choose, will depend on your available space, budget and living situation. There is no one size fits all solution.
The good thing is, building a catio does not need to be difficult or expensive. It can be as simple or as elaborate as you wish.
Catnets has a range of portable Catios that are ready to assemble or a range of materials including netting and hardware fittings for you to build your own DIY enclosure.
Where do I start?
The first thing you need to decide is where you will position your catio. If you are planning to build a DIY catio, plan out your space and measure the area to work out all the materials you need. Catnets has all the materials including cat netting and all hardware fittings for your DIY project.
Depending on the size of your catio, and whether you are building it in your front yard, or side of house near a boundary, you may require planning permission. To prevent a situation where you would need to pull down your catio, always check with your city council and apply for planning permission if it is required. Don’t risk it.
Once you have planned out your space, choose your materials depending on your installation surface and design preference.
Catnets has a range of different netting sizes and colours to suit so many different outdoor spaces.
Our most popular netting is our low visibility ¾” black netting. Black reflects light really well, and is the least noticeable colour in the range.
If you prefer a portable catio, try and position it near a door or window, or if that’s not possible, connect a tunnel system to the catio and your house to allow indoor access for your cat.
When planning your catio, it’s important to consider how you will utilize the available space. No matter the size of the enclosure, all cats need vertical climbing space, bed perches, and places to hide to satisfy their basic instincts. Sunny areas where they can rest should also be incorporated.
It’s easy to get started, so check out our innovative cat netting solutions and enrichment products to create that catio you and your cat have always dreamed about.