Provide An Outdoor Shelter And A Refuge From Cold And Wind
While pre-built cat shelters can be purchased, for a low price doggedly devoted cat lovers can keep kitties high and dry all winter long with a sanctuary made from a Styrofoam cooler that can easily be constructed in five minutes.
Even a slightly altered large storage tub can give our purring pals protection from frigid conditions.
To create wintertime accommodations for a cat colony:
- elevate the shelter off the ground.
- place the construction in a spot where it will be undisturbed.
- a good-size shelter offers space just big enough for three to five cats to huddle, although space should be limited if only one cat needs a place to stay.
- keep predators at bay by making the shelter door no larger than 6 to 8 inches wide.
- put a flap over the door to keep snow, rain and wind from getting inside.
Insulate The Shelter Against Moisture As Well As Cold
- Straw provides both insulation from the chill and a comfortable spot for sleeping. Do not place blankets inside the shelter, as they absorb moisture like a sponge.
- If your garage or shed is acting as a shelter, take out dangerous antifreeze products, which are lethal when consumed. If the use of antifreeze products cannot be avoided, choose to use a less-toxic antifreeze made with propylene glycol rather than the highly toxic ethylene glycol.
Outdoor Cat Houses For Multiple Cats
Do you want to build outdoor cat houses for multiple cats? Reuse the old wood or leftover wood from home to build this large cat residence! A luxurious cat bungalow that has the capacity to house multiple cats at one time in different stories! Each story has a carpeted floor where cats can rest easy to enjoy the resting hours! This huge design comes with a chevron roof!
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How To Set Up An Outdoor Cat House For Pets Strays And Ferals
I’ve been a pet mom for most of my life and have volunteered to help animals in need. I like to share tips to help make their lives better.
This article will show you how to set up an insulated outdoor cat house to help keep any and all of the cats in your life warm and dry during the tougher months.
Cat Walk Outside House
This bigger vertical cage is the next most beautiful outdoor cat enclosure for your cat! Just install the building frame using wood pillars and cross supports and then cover the frame with chicken wire! Install custom tree branches and ladders there for cat gym routines! An airy type of outdoor cat residence!
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Most Commonly Asked Questions
Q: How much do they cost and where can I find them?
A: These bins are generally used to ship perishable food and medical supplies. Restaurants and medical offices often end up throwing them away, so ask them to save the boxes for you or just trash-pick them. Some shelter, rescue and TNR groups stockpile foam boxes to give away to community cat caretakers, so you may want to start doing that at your organization. And check out free giveaway sites like the Freecycle Network.
Q: What about the need for keeping the cats out of harm’s reach?
A: Placement of shelters is important in keeping cats safe from predators. If unleashed dogs are in the area, place your shelter behind a fence where the dogs can’t get in, or have the entrance face a wall so only the cats can get in and out, and be sure the shelter is weighted down and hard to move. Having a small cat-sized doorway will also keep larger predators from getting in, or make two doorways to provide an escape route. Two doorways means less protection from cold, so be sure to put flaps over the doorways. If snow is deep, it’s possible you might need to shovel out the doorway so the cats do not get trapped inside.
Q: Why should the bin be raised off the ground?
Q: Would this attract other animals such as rats?
Q: Would cats try to chew on the foam where the opening is cut?
Q: What’s the best bedding material?
Q: Why is the bin on a slant?
Q: Wouldn’t cats claw the foam to shreds?
Q: How about using old dog crates?
Diy Heated Outdoor Cat House
As much as we love our cats, its completely natural to be worried and conscious about their safety. If they are outdoors, especially with so many predators around them, it becomes more worrisome. With this DIY outdoor cat house, you dont have to worry about your cat falling into the wrong hands! It will also allow your cat to have a peaceful and warm nap. After all, we are all aware of how lazy cats can be! To build this cat house, all you need is some basic supplies like wood glue, wood, clamps, hinges, screws, and paint, oh and an afternoon to spare. catsinmyyard
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How To Help Outside Cats In Winter
When the temperature outside begins to drop, its time to make sure the outdoor cats in your community have warm shelters where they can go to remain safe and comfortable. Community cats stray cats who live outdoors grow a thicker coat of fur when it gets cold outside, but they still need protection from the harsh weather.
If youre caring for a colony of outdoor cats in your community, this guide to caring for stray cats in the winter can help. Here you can find tips on how to build an outdoor cat shelter, as well as tips on what to feed stray and feral cats during winter months and how to make sure they stay healthy and safe.
You Might Be Asking How Big Do The Containers Have To Be
An outdoor cat shelter doesnt need to be very big. The goal is to give the animal a dry, safe place to sleep and thats it.
My starting point was to choose the size of the green/inside container first since that was where the cat would actually be sleeping. Containers like these are usually measured in gallons, but thats not how I originally was thinking.
Since I was building an outdoor cat shelter for only Mama Rose, and I knew how big she was, I picked a relatively small container for the inside. I simply measured how much space one of The Bambinos took when curled up asleep on the floor. Then, I bought a container that had about that same space in length and width. It was small: roughly 11 inches wide by 14 or 15 inches long and about 10 or 11 inches high.
I simply chose the size of the grey Outer Container so it could hold the inside container with room to spare for insulation. Ive long since thrown away the receipt and label for it, but its a Latching Tote made by Sterilite. The outer dimensions are roughly 18 inches wide by 21 inches long by 17 inches tall, and according to the Sterilite online catalog, that size makes it a 20 or 22 gallon container.
Notice the vertical height of the containers. I had read that the opening for the shelter should be off the ground to keep out moisture and other animals, so I made sure to pick a container that had some height to it. The grey container is about 17 inches tall. Its plenty tall enough for this shelter.
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How To Make The Most Out Of Your Winter Cat Shelter
To provide extra insulation for the cats, you can make a curtain for the door hole out of two layers of bubble wrap or excess plastic wrap. Cut the wrap to make fringes leave the top few inches solid, and cut vertically to make the fringe. Then tape your curtain over the door hole.
If your outdoor cat house will be exposed to the elements, its best to put a piece of plywood over the top of the shelter as well as a piece of wood at a slant over the doorway. Another idea is to create an awning out of plastic, cardboard and Gorilla Tape. Its important to do what you can to keep moisture out of the shelter. Placing the cat house on a pallet works nicely to keep it up off the ground and away from moisture, but it is not always necessary.
The shelters should be weighed down with bricks or boards because they are lightweight and can easily shift in the wind. You want them to be secure so they do not tip forward and trap cats inside.
If youll be placing the cat shelter near a building or on a porch, situate the shelters door hole near the structures wall , as opposed to facing it outward toward the elements. If you have multiple shelters in one spot, you can face the door holes toward each other and place a board on top.
To entice the cats to use the shelter, put some catnip inside, and if youre going to use a bubble or plastic wrap curtain, its best to tack only part of it up at first so the cats can easily see the entrance.
Final Comments On Building This Outdoor Cat Shelter
Overall, this was a fun project for a worthy cause. It took about 2 hours to build the entire shelter once I had all the materials on hand. If you have a reasonable amount of dexterity, you should be able to build your own shelter in about the same amount of time.
The final step was placing the shelter in a good location. Most rescue organizations recommend placing outdoor cat shelters far away from human intervention. In our case, that would mean placing the shelter in a corner of our fenced-in backyard. We knew that Mama Rose rarely ventured into our backyard, and we couldnt see her changing her routine in the winter.
However, in the front of our house, we have a large Rhododendron bush and some other shrubs. We knew that Mama Rose had a tendency to walk back and forth in the area between the bushes and the house so she could get to our porch to be fed. So, we simply placed the shelter along that path in the front of our house.
There was a double benefit to this placement, the bushes helped shield the shelter from rain, snow, and harsh winds. The bushes also helped make the shelter practically invisible from view by anyone walking by the house.
Overall, the construction project was a great success. We werent sure if Mama Rose actually used the shelter until it snowed. Thats when we saw footprints in a pattern suggesting she had gone in and out of the shelter entrance.
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How To Make A Outdoor Cat Shelter
First I cut a 6×6 square door on the container with the box cutter. You want the door to be just large enough for the cat to get in but not larger than necessary so it doesnt let too much cold air inside.
Line the box with foil insulationcut to fit the shape of the container. First cut a piece to fit on the bottom of the container and make sure its big enough to touch all four sides. Then line the sides with a continuous piece of the insulation. Dont worry about covering the door youll cut it to fit in the next step. Then used duck tape to attach the insulation to the sides of the container as well as to the piece of insulation on the bottom. You want all the insulation to be taped together so its not drafty when the kitty is inside. Finally, tape a piece of insulation to the inside of the top of the container.
Next use the razor blade to cut the insulation on the top and bottom of the door but do not cut the sides. Instead, slice it down the middle to make a flap door. You could also cut the bottom and sides but leave the top attached, like a doggie door. Either way, the flaps will stay partially closed to help it stay warmer inside. Line the cat house with pine straw or hay. Towels or blankets will get wet and mildew so are not ideal to use as bedding.
Find The Best Outdoor Cat House Plans:
From a single cat house to multi-story cat houses, you are going to get free plans and instructions for all. Shape up a big wood box or go to the next level and build mini cat bungalows with a chevron roof, veranda, deck, and scratching posts, will make your cat live the luxury. Choose any of these DIY outdoor cat house plans according to your budget, skill level, and needs.
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Free Diy Outdoor Cat House Plans Outdoor Cat Shelter
Even though cats are indoor pets, they love to enjoy some time outside roaming freely here and there. For this reason, you can build an outdoor cat shelter, for which we have 25 fun and easy DIY outdoor cat house plans compiled below. We all know that pet furniture dominates the market. Now, there are multiple DIY cat houses that you can find in the market, but making it yourself at home will give you the liberty to customize it in your own way, even if you are not a professional at woodwork! These outdoor cat house plans are a great way to cozy up your four-legged furry friend and help them relax in it after a long day of binge eating and playing around. So unleash the creativity in you and get crafty with your imagination by making a nice and comfy place for your cats.
Easy Winter Cat Shelter
This easily constructed cat shelter is perfect for our outdoor feral friends during those cold months. From start to finish only took me less than a hour to complete. I had everything to make do this project around the house, besides the styrofoam cooler which was only a couple dollars.
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The Ark Workshop Outdoor Cat Houses
I do love these sturdy houses! You have a couple of different options to choose from. I do tend to prefer heavier duty wood or similar building material as it does provide more protection from predators.
The Ark Workshop does a fine job with these! Be prepared to wait for your order though as it does take some time. They do have emergency cat shelter options that can be shipped much faster. These are also kind of pricey.
I wouldnt recommend their wood shavings though for bedding. I would do straw, personally, it keeps cats warmer and doesnt soak up the water as much.
One Of Our Favorite Designs Uses Two Storage Bins With Removable Lids
An earth-tone bin blends in best with the environment, making it aesthetically pleasing to you and your neighbors and more natural in appearance to the cats. Common sizes of bins are 30-35 gallon and 20-22 gallon . Exact sizes vary by brand, so just make sure that the smaller bin will fit completely inside the larger bin with the lid on both bins. Youll also need an eight-foot by two-foot sheet of one-inch thick hard Styrofoam, a yardstick, box cutter, and straw for insulation.
Special Cats with Special Needs
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How To Keep Outdoor Cats’ Food And Water From Freezing
What you put food and water in can make a difference. A thick plastic water container that’s deep and wide is better-insulated than a thin plastic or ceramic container. A solar-heated water bowl can prevent or delay water and canned food from freezing.
If shelters are well-insulated, you can put bowls of dry or moist food inside them, far from the doorway. Even if the moist food freezes, the cats’ body heat will defrost it when they hunker down in their shelter.
Don’t put water bowls inside the shelter. Water is easily spilled, and a wet shelter will feel more like a refrigerator than a warm haven. Do your best to keep water from freezing.
Cheap Diy Outdoor Cat House For Multiple Cats
Have you ever looked up the prices of cat condos? Highway robbery, right? Do they really think we have our wallets splayed wide open because we have heart eyes for our cats? Not to mention that it sure does put you in an awkward situation. But dont worry, there is a way! BUILD IT YOURSELF! This DIY outdoor cat house for multiple cats is the cheapest and most fun to make! Moreover, the supplies include a cardboard box, a t-shirt, and a pair of scissors, and that it! Youll have your cat house ready in no time, and you can even wear your t-shirt back when your cat is not using it. smartfundiy
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