Pumpkin does paperwork

Pumpkin does paperwork

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Low-cost Ways to Protect your Cat from Outside Dangers

Commercial "catio" enclosures, components, cat-proof fencing, fence toppers and kennels can be expensive. Even many DIY projects require materials and tools. Many loving cat owners don't have the resources or technical ability to construct elaborate outdoor safety zones for their four-legged feline family members.

Raise or convert your cat as an indoor-only cat.

This is of course, the least expensive way to protect your cat from outside dangers. There is a common perception that cats must live outside in order to be happy. Cats can be perfectly happy in an all-indoor environment but there are some caveats. A single indoor cat will be much easier to manage than multiple indoor cats. Indoor cats may require more interaction, playtime and attention from their owners, in addition to the use and inconvenience of litter boxes.
  • You will need at least one "scratching station" for each cat to keep your furniture in good condition. Basic scratch boxes, posts and similar commercial products are fairly inexpensive.
  • Cat toys and such, but you don't actually need to buy anything. There are plenty of items around the house which can be made into cat toys. Our cats are perfectly fine with a wadded up ball of tin foil, or piece of cardboard hanging from a string. 
  • Cat grass as a dietary supplement.
  • Dried catnip (optional) 
Build a small outdoor "safe area" out of scrap wire fencing and chicken wire with a connection (kitty door) to your home.

This one I built is connected to a larger cat-safe yard but the concept is the same:

http://www.catcluez.org/2011/03/kitty-kafe.html


This one is a bit more elaborate, but the materials cost was under $50:

http://www.catcluez.org/2014/11/kitty-porch-protects-indoor-cats-from.html



Saturday, April 9, 2016

Local "Catio" Tour Demonstrates Creative and Effective Protection for Cats

Street sign
Our local SPCA and Native Animal Rescue organizations along with volunteers and 11 area cat enclosure "catio" owners - including our location - band together to have Santa Cruz County's first annual Catio Tour.

We opened our catio creations to the public in hopes of inspiring other cat owners to consider building protective enclosures for their cats.
Catios protect cats from predators, fights, disease and many other dangers, not to mention potentially lowering one's veterinary bills. Catios also protect local birds and small native critters from predation from house cats which can seriously impact native animal populations.

Curious cat owners check out our "catzebo" and "catwalk"
Curious cat owners tour our "catzebo" and "catwalk"Our visitors had many questions about costs, construction, acclimating cats with catios. As I point out here at CatCluez, you can spend as little or as much as you want. The primary goal of a catio is to provide a safe, enriching environment that gives your cat a taste of the outdoors. This works especially well with "indoor" cats. Even previously free roaming cats can adjust to the catio lifestyle.

Thanks to these local agencies, local businesses and all the volunteers, the first annual Santa Cruz County Catio Tour was a great success, despite the weather.


REVIEW: "Ideal Hefty Pet Side Sliding Window Insert"

For a long time I was looking for a good-looking locking pet door that would work with a horizontal sliding window. I had seen the kind that installs in full-sized sliding doors, but hadn't ever seen one designed specifically for horizontally-sliding windows, which are similar to sliding glass doors, but smaller.

I discovered this item while I was shopping for an electronic pet door for another purpose. This product is a made-to-measure insert which lets you easily install a pet door in the window frame in a horizontal sliding window. I already had built a plywood structure for a smaller cat door, but it was ugly and drafty. This product seemed like a much better solution. The cat door was larger than the one I was using, so our older cat would be able to use it more easily, it provided a two-way locking mechanism so the cats could be locked in or out, it looked very functional attractive. It was available in two colors, I chose white and placed my order.

It arrived in perfect condition. The built-in window pane is glass and the construction is aluminum, very well-made. It also includes some weather stripping, a security lock and good instructions.

I removed the old home-made plywood insert and installed the new insert in the window frame. I had to use weather stripping on both sides of the insert, so the weather stripping that came with the product was about 1/2 of what I needed. Fortunately I had some lying around the house.

To secure the sliding window up against the insert and to prevent being able to open the window from the outside, a block-type lock is provided which requires that you drill a hole in your window frame. I opted to cut a piece of wood to drop-in between the left side of the window frame and the right side of the window slider so I wouldn't need to drill into my window frame.

We've been using this product for about two weeks now and it is working perfectly. It looks good, is secure, and weather-tight, and lets more light in becuase of the glass pane above the pet door section. I highly recommend this product to anyone wanting to control their cats in and out access through a horizontal sliding-window and maintain an attractive look.

I purchased this item from the following website:
http://www.moorepet-petdoors.com/