Skip to Content

Summer Safety: Advice on Using your Deck and Catio Safely with your Feline Companion

Summer Safety: Advice on Using your Deck and Catio Safely with your Feline Companion

❇︎Affiliate Statement: The services and products that I may link in this article are ones that I use myself and am proud to recommend. If you follow one of my links please be aware that I will receive a small commission from Amazon or other vendors. I’d also like to say a big Thank You for your trust if you do.

When the weather gets warmer, many of us want to make the most of our outdoor spaces. This also applies to our indoor cats, as we can create a safe and secure area for them to enjoy the outdoors. In this article, we will provide advice and safety steps for granting your cat outdoor privileges.

What’s A Catio?
A catio is a combination of the words “cat” and “patio.” It is essentially a personal patio for your cat. If you’re interested, there are guides available that provide step-by-step instructions on how to build a catio. Alternatively, you can purchase a pre-built catio if you prefer not to construct one yourself. Catio sizes range from large deck-sized structures to smaller boxes that are similar in size to a window air conditioning unit. If you’re looking for simpler options, you can also find cat tents or enclosed playpens that can be easily set up and moved around in your yard.

The Importance Of An Enclosed Space
Ensuring that your catio or deck is completely enclosed is crucial. The use of screens or wire is common for this purpose. The benefit of an enclosed space is that your cat can enjoy outdoor time without coming into contact with other animals that may carry diseases or pose a threat to them. It also prevents your cat from wandering off and potentially encountering dangers like traffic.

Checking Your Cat’s Outdoor Space
Unfortunately, even the most well-designed catio or deck is not fail-proof. It’s important to regularly check the screens for any holes or signs of damage that may have been caused by outside animals. While you don’t have to constantly watch your cat when they’re outside in an enclosed space, it’s a good idea to be nearby and check on them regularly, especially during their initial outdoor adventures. Keep an eye out for any potential weaknesses that your cat might exploit to escape. Additionally, provide a shaded spot to prevent overheating and always ensure there is water available for your cat while they are outside. If you decide to add plants to your deck or catio, make sure they are feline-friendly. Consult the ASPCA’s list of toxic and non-toxic plants and herbs for cats if you’re unsure.

Granting your cat outdoor privileges can be a wonderful way for them to enjoy the warmer months. Whether you choose to build a catio, set up a cat tent, or create an enclosed deck space, ensuring the safety and security of your cat is essential. Regularly check the structure for any damage and always provide shade and water. By following these precautions, you can provide a safe and enjoyable outdoor experience for your feline friend.

1. What is a catio?
A catio is a secure outdoor space for cats, combining the words “cat” and “patio.” It allows cats to enjoy the outdoors while remaining safe and protected.

2. Are there alternatives to building a catio?
Yes, if you don’t want to build a catio yourself, you can purchase pre-built cat tents or enclosed playpens that can be easily set up and moved around in your yard.

3. Why is it important to enclose the space?
Enclosing the space ensures your cat’s safety by preventing them from coming into contact with other animals and potential hazards. It also prevents them from wandering off and risking accidents like traffic-related injuries.

– Regularly check your catio or deck for any signs of damage or weaknesses that your cat may exploit.
– Provide a shaded spot and water for your cat while they are outside.
– Choose cat-safe plants for any greenery you add to your outdoor space.
– Be nearby and check on your cat regularly, especially during their first few outdoor adventures.