Learning how to build a cat enclosure is the perfect compromise between allowing your feline companion to enjoy the great outdoors, yet doing so in a supervised and safe environment with none of the dangers usually faced by outdoor cats. This particular enclosure is not made with wood and it is therefore very durable and easy to keep clean. Since the construction relies on the use of stakes and security ties, it can be assembled or disassembled in a matter of an hour. This makes it the premier cat enclosure for the cat lover on the move or for seasonal outdoor placement.
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Things you need
- Prebuilt 10-foot by 10-foot gazebo
- Galvanized chain link fencing (11 feet high and 40 feet long)
- Wire cutters
- Large package of plastic security ties
- Pet door (large)
- 12 Camping stakes
Purchase a prebuilt gazebo that simply needs to be put together. These cost between £22 and £130, depending on the frills you would like. A sturdy model crafted from steel with a waterproof polyester roof costs about £117. This structure makes an attractive addition to any backyard and you will love the look and feel this gazebo gives to your home’s overall appearance and appeal.
Choose an area that is not in full sun during the heat of the day. Cats love the morning sun and if there is any chance that your cat enclosure could face the rising sun, your feline companions will love you for it!
Clean the area you have chosen and make sure there is no debris, ant hills, or anything else that might annoy your cats.
Assemble the gazebo by following the instructions contained within the packet. Usually you will require a hammer, screwdriver and a ladder for this undertaking. Having a friend along to help you with the pieces would also make the task a lot easier. Make sure you follow the instructions closely and also anchor the gazebo to the ground. Stakes for this purpose should also be included with your gazebo.
Start at the corner of the gazebo closest to your house and secure the top and bottom of the galvanised chain link fencing with a few of the plastic security ties. The one foot overage—the chain link fencing you are buying is 11 feet tall versus the 10 feet the gazebo measures—goes on the bottom. Simply fold it over and out so it covers about 1-foot of ground all around the outside of the gazebo.
Pull the chain link fencing tight whenever you get to a corner of the gazebo and then secure the fencing with a few of the plastic security ties. Once you end back up at the corner of the gazebo closest to your house, secure the fencing with more plastic security ties.
Walk around the cat enclosure and jiggle the fencing. It should be virtually unmovable. Secure the fencing also to the top of the gazebo structure with the plastic security ties.
Install the large cat door. Follow the instructions offered in the package and use the wire cutters to remove the portion of the chain link fencing where you wish the door to be.
Work on securing the bottom of the enclosure next. Place the first camping stake about 1 foot to the right from the gazebo corner closest to your house. Even though you have about a foot of folded over chain link fencing to work with, it is advisable to place the camping stake as close to the actual cat enclosure as possible.
Hammer the stake into the ground and attach the chain link fence to the top of the stake with a security tie.
Repeat Steps 9 and 10, but go 1 foot to the left of the gazebo corner. Do this with each corner of the gazebo.
Secure the remaining four stakes by placing each in the middle of one 10-foot side and attach the chain link fencing as explained in Step 10.
Tips and warnings
- Even though you could build the gazebo from scratch with lumber, it is a lot cheaper to start with a pre-manufactured structure. In addition, this set-up is easy to clean and can also be taken down quickly, if needed.
- Cats are escape artists. Do not skimp on the number of security ties you use for this project!
- Do not put chicken wire or any other kind of fencing on the bottom of the cat enclosure in an effort to prevent the cats from clawing their way out from under the corral! You will end up with cats suffering from torn claws and bloody paws. If you pull the chain link fencing tight enough during the construction of your cats’ home away from home, the odds are good that they will not dig their way out.