Cats love the outdoors, but allowing your cat to roam freely in your yard is not the best idea--for your cat, the birds and other wildlife in the neighbourhood or for neighbours who might be allergic or annoyed by your pet. If you want to provide your cat or kitten with a taste of the wild without risking the dangers of a free-roaming lifestyle, you can build an enclosure that attaches to your home and keeps your kitty safe. Here are the easy step-by-step instructions to build an add-on structure to your home or patio.
Use stakes and string to mark out the planned enclosure area. If you are attaching the enclosure to your patio or house, run the string parallel to the area first, then run the string at right angles attaching it next to the structure with stakes.
Measure to make sure your corners are square and for post placements. Your posts should be roughly 3 to 4 feet apart and equally placed around the outside of the string. They should be as high as the roof of your house or porch, or descending in height on a slope.
Dig your post holes at least 2 feet deep and fill the holes with quickset concrete.
Put posts into the holes, and hold them upright until they set. Leave them to dry for at least 4 hours or until concrete is completely set.
Measure and cut wooden rails to fit between the posts, and attach them with screws at even intervals one third from the bottom and one-third from the top of the posts.
Run chicken wire fencing or screen around the perimeter of the enclosure, and attach with staples first, then secure with nails.
Drape wire, mesh, screen, deer netting or mosquito netting across the top of the enclosure, and attach it to your rooftop if it is adjacent to your home. Attach seams with wire, plastic ties, tent adhesive or needle and thread.
Create a cat door to the enclosure so that your cat can enjoy the fresh air and sunshine anytime he pleases.
Fill your cat enclosure with carpeted kitty condos, cat ladders and scratching posts. Provide soft bedding, food and fresh water if you're planning to leave the cat outdoors without access to the house for periods of time.
Be sure to protect your cat from potential predators by fully enclosing the space. Cats that are allowed outdoor access should be well-vaccinated against diseases that spread through other cats and animals.