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Creating A Catio

December 7, 2023

Do you keep your cat indoors? Good for you! Fluffy will be both safer and healthier staying indoors. Kitties that are allowed outdoors face a whole slew of hazards, such as weather, chemicals, traffic, stray cats and dogs, and, here in Florida, snakes and alligators. Of course, our feline buddies do both enjoy and benefit from the stimulation and exercise they get from going outdoors. Want to offer your pet the best of both worlds? Make her a catio! A Longwood, FL vet offers some advice on this below.

Choose A Sunny Spot

An enclosed porch or patio is the purrfect spot for a catio, but those aren’t the only options. You can also put one in a bay window, spare room, or even just a bright corner. 

Offer A View

Keeping your cat indoors isn’t just safer for her: it’s also safer for the small animals in your neighborhood. Kitties kill billions of small animals every year! However, Fluffy is a predator at heart. She’ll always enjoy watching birds and squirrels, and perhaps making clicking noises at them. If you can, put a birdfeeder up in your furball’s line of view. This will provide live entertainment. (We don’t advise doing this if you let your kitty out, as the poor birds probably won’t fare very well.)  

Add Some Purrniture

While Fluffy would no doubt be thrilled if you installed a full catwalk and/or even a live tree for her, you don’t have to go that far. A cat tower is a great choice for any catio. These are multi-functional pieces, which provide Fluffy a napping spot, nail-care station, lookout point, and jungle gym. You can also install window seats or even kitty shelves. On a budget? Go the DIY route, and make something! Remember to add some things for yourself as well. You may soon find that Fluffy’s catio has become your favorite place for relaxing and enjoying a coffee.

Choose Plants Carefully

You can’t have a proper catio without  plants! Kitties enjoy peeking out from behind green leaves at their humans. Fluffy will also appreciate the little taste of nature that houseplants offer. Just take care to only add safe plants. Some good options include Boston ferns, Areca palms, Ponytail palms, African violets, Spider plants, and Money plants. You can find a great list of both safe and unsafe plants at the ASPCA website here

As your local Longwood, FL veterinary clinic, we are dedicated to offering great veterinary care. Please contact us anytime! 

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