A simple solution for limited building skills from Connie Terwilliger.
But be warned that some cats may outsmart this system, and watch out for trees close to your fences.
For those of you, that are braver or able to build something special for your kitty, scroll down!
Indoor or outdoor? Enclosures give you some of each.
By Peggy Scott http://www.animalnetwork.com/cats/photosClever Cat Fancy readers have discovered that enclosures allow their cats to enjoy some of the benefits of outdoor life without all the dangers. Some of them have offered to give you a look at their creations. After viewing these enclosures, be sure to look in the April 2001 Cat Fancy for more, along with coverage of both sides of “The Outdoor Debate.”
Dog-gone Design: Ironically, Dave and Denise Lanara of Lyndhurst, Ohio, found the inspiration for their cat enclosure in the dog supply department. They took a wire dog kennel and attached it to their dinette window by placing it on the sill and suspending it with lashing wire. They then attached a modified pet door to the screen surrounded by plexiglass. They cut a matching opening through the bars, and added a stoop via an inverted utility box and blocks of wood. They used wire to add a closet shelf for a second level. Cats Buddy and Patches love this enclosure that cost the Lanaras about $200 and a day’s labor.
Coyote-proof: To keep his cats safe from area coyotes, Tim Claypoole opted for a wire cat enclosure in his yard of his Woodbridge, Conn., home. His cats access the wood-framed structure via windows to the house.
Screened Sanctuary: Mary Sue Katzenmayer of McHenry, Ill., devoted a summer to create this feline-friendly screened-in porch. She put in two trees with carpeted perches, lots of shelves and ramps, plus a 4-by-4 wrapped in sisal for climbing and scratching.
Thrifty style: Kim Gaul of North St. Paul, Minn. used her modest carpentry skills to construct what she considers a humble-but-happy enclosure for her cat, Andy. He seems to be quite content. Gaul spent less than $20 and six hours to build the 4-foot by 5-foot enclosure. She made the sides from garden fencing attached to a wood frame using staples. The top is a recycled window screen and a tarp. The entrance is the loose end of the tarp, secured by hooking the tarp’s grommets onto screws extending up from the frame.
Expansion Plans: Mike and Sue Sliz of Decatur, Ill. doubled their cat enclosure from the original 12 feet by 16 feet to a 24-by-16-foot enclosure in their glassed-in back porch. The addition used 4-by-4 posts, 2-by-4 framing and poultry netting. They have added shelves, platforms, rope-wound posts, tree limbs and stumps for their seven cats’ enjoyment.
Chicken-Wire Creation: Edwin and Juanita Ludwig of Hemet, Calif. built an 8-foot by 9-foot enclosure using mostly 2-by-2s to frame with and 2-by-4s for the base. He covered it with chicken wire and painted it white. Their cat, Raven, is more active now, stalking birds, flies and butterflies from inside the structure, which also holds chairs and other furniture for the Ludwigs to sit, relax and watch Raven’s antics. The enclosure cost about $100 in materials and took less than a day to build.
Window Entry: Brenda Freeman of Austin, Texas built a wood-frame and wire enclosure onto the back of her house and provided feline access via a window with an indoor/outdoor pet door. A ladder offers ground access and there is plenty of room for chairs and a table for entertaining human guests.