What is an outdoor catio for my cat? Should I get one made?

An outdoor "catio" or cat patio is an enclosed structure that allows your cat to enjoy the outdoors while staying safe from various hazards like traffic, predators, or getting lost. They are often built in a yard or on a patio, and can be either attached to the house or standalone. They can range from small window box-sized structures to large, elaborate spaces complete with climbing posts, lounging areas, and toys.

Whether or not you should get one made depends on your specific circumstances. Here are some considerations:

1. Safety: If you live in an area with lots of traffic, predators, or other dangers, a catio could provide a safe outdoor environment for your cat.
2. Enrichment: Catios can provide environmental enrichment, letting your cat watch birds, enjoy the sun, and engage in other outdoor behaviors in a controlled manner.
3. Exercise: They can offer more opportunities for physical activity, especially for indoor cats.

Before you proceed, check if you have enough space for a catio, consider your budget for the project, and verify if there are any local regulations or HOA rules that could affect its construction.