“Catios” provide cats an enclosed space outside where they can take in the fresh air, sounds, and sights of the season
How can you keep your cat free of spring fever and allow them to safely explore outdoors? A catio can serve as a great option for felines friends, and a fulfilling do it yourself (DIY) project for you.
In a company release,1 Cynthia Chomos, founder and DIY designer at Catio Spaces, explained just what a “catio” is: “At Catio Spaces, we value the role pets play in our lives,” she said, adding, “While fences may be suitable for dogs, they’re not a solution for adventure-seeking cats who can be fearless climbers. Our goal is to provide felines and those who care for them with a beautiful and secure outdoor space that complements a home or garden and caters to a cat’s curiosity and craving for the outdoors.”
Many dangers are present when cats venture outside without an enclosed space, including the risk of being hit by a vehicle, ingesting toxins, and vulnerabilities to injuries or illness. “Our beloved companions should have easy access to fresh water, food and exercise, and protection from injury, disease, fear, and distress. Unattended pets, even when left alone briefly, are vulnerable to hazards or even life-threatening illnesses,” she added. The catio enables them to revel in the fresh air, scenery, and sounds without these dangers.
Along with being a fun DIY project for those up to the challenge, the catio also helps protect birds and wildlife as bird breeding season is underway. In fact, research by the American Bird Conservancy (ABC) displayed that the median number of birds killed each year by cats is 2.4 billion.2 “Every bird matters. There’s nothing as heartbreaking as ‘feathered gifts’ deposited at a doorstep by a free-roaming cat,” said Chomos.
Chomos began building custom outdoor enclosures (“catios,” or cat patios) in 2014. This licensed contractor says there are many ways to create safe environments for cats, with catios being an increasingly popular solution. Plus, there are different avenues you can take for when installing a catio. You can consider a kit, a DIY plan, or hire a carpenter, and project planners should bear in mind various common mistakes to avoid, Chomos suggested. Catios spaces’ website offers resources on building your own successful catio. “When building a catio, you want it to last and provide freedom from stress and worry. Planning and making some sensible up-front decisions can ensure your catio is a safe, enriching, and attractive haven that you and your cat will enjoy.”
Chomos supports animal welfare organizations and has worked with Humane Society of the United States, the National Wildlife Federation, various Audubon chapters, and other groups to raise awareness of solutions to keep cats and wild birds safe. To support such organizations, Catio Spaces has an Affiliate Program in which animal welfare organizations and advocates that improve awareness of catios’ benefits can generate revenue for their cause. Enrolled organizations receive a unique promotional code, supporting materials including social media posts, photos, and tips to support their community outreach. Catio Spaces donates 10% of any sales back to the participating organization.
“Creating safe spaces indoors and out for all family members helps create harmony for happier homes and happier pets. It’s a joy to be involved every day with cat safety and enrichment while also protecting birds and wildlife. Life is good in a catio!”
- Animal welfare advocate offers tips, DIY plans to help keep pets with spring fever out of harm’s way. Catio spaces.February 21, 2023. Accessed March 2, 2023. https://catiospaces.com/wp-content/uploads/2023/02/Catio-Spaces-NR_Pets_Spring-fever-2023_final5pm1-17.pdf
- Outdoor cats: single greatest source of human-caused mortality for birds and mammals, says new study. American Bird Conservancy. January 29, 2013. Accessed March 2, 2023. https://abcbirds.org/news/outdoor-cats-single-greatest-source-of-human-caused-mortality-for-birds-and-mammals-says-new-study