Catios is a word that combines ‘cat’ and ‘patio’ – and they do exactly what that sounds like. A craze that has recently hit the UK from America, catios typically extend from a doorway, window or porch in your home. By allowing your pets to enjoy the sights, sounds and stimulation of the great outdoors, these increasingly popular enclosures provide a range of fabulous benefits.
Peace of mind
The fear of losing your furry friend to the road, thieves or the dangers of a busy city means the number of indoor cats living in the UK is growing. However, cats that spend their lives surrounded by four walls are at greater risk of becoming bored, inactive and obese. By giving them a safer environment to exhibit their natural behaviour, catios help prevent your pet from developing these problems that can come from a lack of stimulation.
Cat in a flat
Cat owners who live in flats or high-rise buildings usually don’t have gardens to convenient access to green space. In such circumstances, a catio provides the opportunity for daily exercise that cats need to stay fit and healthy. If you have a balcony, you can build a catio by attaching chicken wire to the railings to construct a roof. Please note: if you’re not DIY confident, we would recommend purchasing a pre-made catio to keep your pet safe and secure.
Cats with disabilities
Just like you, cats can suffer from a range of disabilities. Some are born with their disability, whereas others become incapacitated after an accident or as the result of old age. Generally speaking, cats are adaptive creatures. As a result, catios can provide a protective environment where blind, deaf and cats with disabilities, can exhibit natural behaviours such as climbing and exploring without any fear of running into trouble.
What should a good catio include?
Without the freedom to go outside, you will ned to put a bit more effort into making sure your indoor cat’s needs are catered for. A good catio should therefore include a clean litter tray, and opportunities for rest and relaxation, such as a scratching post and comfortable bedding. Catnip, rubber plants and lemon button ferns also help catios feel and smell more like a garden or green space.
Indoor cats often live longer and safer lives than cats allowed to explore outdoors. To this end, catios can provide a comfortable, relaxing and stimulating home environment, which is a crucial part of making sure they get the love they deserve. For more tips and help on looking after your feline friend, head to our advice centre for cats.