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Who can help with a cat playground?

By candelabra - 15 August 2010 22

Hello everyone,

I would like to know if there is anyone in Canberra who can assist me in designing and building a backyard cat enclosure encompassing most of the backyard (not along the lines of the modular units).

I am hoping for something that isn’t an eyesore and gives my cat ample room to climb/run/jump/play inside it (ideally it would involve landscaping too because the backyard needs it!) while she is safely contained during the day and night and not eating the wildlife etc.

Desirable features:

  • Lots of light and some shade
  • Protection from the elements
  • Cat safe plants
  • Fountain, pond
  • Platforms for sleeping and climbing on
  • Convenient gates for people to enter and exit
  • Cat hammock
  • Provision for digging and doing poop etc outside (would like to avoid litter trays)
  • A cat door entrance and tunnel leading to the area

To give an idea of what would be ideal here are some pictures I’ve found on the net in my search for ideas:

Thank you for your suggestions 🙂

What’s Your opinion?


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22 Responses to
Who can help with a cat playground?
Peppablack 8:23 am 17 Aug 10

Hi, I built a cat enclosure for my cat when I moved house. It utilises the whole area at side of the house which was 18 or so meters. I went through catsafe (http://www.catsafe.com.au/) who cut the netting to size, and will helpful instructions on installing it myself. The guy is spoke with and that helped me through the process was Ken, he was only a phone call away if I got stuck. It was alot cheaper than (www.catmax.com.au), who are well known in designing and installing cat enclosures with the netting, but they never had a consutant to come to canberra. In the end, my cat was happy, I was happy and it worked well. My cat can go out at night in his own area, with no threat of him getting out or something comming in. Good luck with your project. I’m happy to send you a photo of my enclosure, just need your email.

Claymore 7:56 am 17 Aug 10

candelabra said :

@Claymore I’d love to see the photos, it sounds great and something like what I am aiming for, have you been able to do it all yourself? Where did you source materials from?

I will post some pics this weekend.

Mine is a little different as we had the existing two brick walls (our property and the neighbor’s) to use as a base.

Most materials i bought from the local hardware, except for the perspex panels (to get an open space look) which i purchased through my work.

Icepoet 9:37 pm 16 Aug 10

threepaws said :

@ Captain RAAF

When I am having a bad day I just remind myself that I am not you, nor am I friends with you, nor am I related to you. Everything seems brighter all of a sudden, and I feel happy to be alive.

+1

threepaws 6:02 pm 16 Aug 10

@ Captain RAAF

When I am having a bad day I just remind myself that I am not you, nor am I friends with you, nor am I related to you. Everything seems brighter all of a sudden, and I feel happy to be alive.

candelabra 1:22 pm 16 Aug 10

Thank you for all the encouragement so far.

So no one knows of any places that specialise in building such things? If I contract a builder/engineer do I need to design it myself? I’m not sure I have the expertise to attempt the construction myself.

P Taker said :

Wow. I really doubt that you would get development approval or building approval. Definitely look into that before you fork out 1200 bucks for something you may have to take down.

What happened to just putting cow size bells on tabby’s collar?

Very good point, thank you for that. How do I go about the development approval process? How much detail do I need to give? Full plans?

My vet advised me that Burmese cats are a bit daft and get themselves into trouble in the outside world (they are so very, very curious by nature) so I haven’t in good conscience been able to let her wander around (and now that she has been inside for 10 months it’s probably a worse idea).

@threepaws thank you for the list, that will be useful.
@Claymore I’d love to see the photos, it sounds great and something like what I am aiming for, have you been able to do it all yourself? Where did you source materials from?
@andym Good idea
@Holierthanthou I’d love to see pics if you have them?

P Taker 12:41 pm 16 Aug 10

Wow. I really doubt that you would get development approval or building approval. Definitely look into that before you fork out 1200 bucks for something you may have to take down.

What happened to just putting cow size bells on tabby’s collar?

troll-sniffer 11:42 am 16 Aug 10

When I saw this post I immediately thought of getting John Cleese to build your cat house…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e2PyeXRwhCE

Captain RAAF 11:10 am 16 Aug 10

threepaws said :

Here is a very comprehensive list of plants toxic to cats http://www.cat-world.com.au/plants-a-other-chemicals-toxic

You Sir, are a bloody legend!!!

If I plant now will they be ready by Summer? I’m off to buy a bigger mortar and pestle, I can solve all of (insert Captain RAAF’s home suburb here) cat problems in a single weekend of unbridled concoctioning!

*fetches wizards hat

Captain RAAF 11:02 am 16 Aug 10

I can help. But first I must ask what your feelings are towards pit traps, catapults (tehehehe, get it), Guillotines, clothes pegs on tails, sticky tape on feet etc. Once I have this info, I will design you a cat playground that will be hours of fun for anyone watching!

Holierthanthou 9:31 am 16 Aug 10

Congratulations on keeping your cats secure and the wildlife uneaten!

I’m building one right now. I just concreted in a rectangle of sleepers, concreteted in stirrups at the corners, put up posts (which were cut at the tope to fit in beams, which were bolted on), brace all round the top and middle, bracer diagonally top and bottom. I’m in the process of putting wire mesh and a door on on. Lastly, I will make a shade cloth roof. Most material are recycled, most expensive part is the mesh and paint. I’ve spent ~$150 and I’ve amost finished.

The fun part will be the planting and making climbing posts, lesdges and sleeping slings.

There are places that will do it for you, including covering an enter garden with mesh.

andym 8:52 am 16 Aug 10

Have a look at people who build aviaries…same principle.
Col Western Sheds A.C.T. comes to mind.

Claymore 8:38 am 16 Aug 10

Hi All,

New here…been lurking for a while and thought i would post on this subject.

We recently built in Forde and i built our own cat enclosure to protect our cat and the wildlife also. The project has taken me around 5 weekends so far but it is wonderful to see her have a bit of fresh air and freedom.

I will get some photos next weekend (i get home to late to take photo’s during the week) and post them for you. The whole project has cost me around $1200 so far and is about half way (enough for her to enjoy it). We wanted it big enough for us to be able to enjoy the area with her, with lots of plants, a water feature, decking and some play areas.

grumpyrhonda 6:19 pm 15 Aug 10

What a great idea. So nice to see something like that where the cat can’t get out and slaughter the wild life, stops other cats getting in trying to slaughter your cat and it’s stimulating for the cat. I’ve wanted to get a cat but hesitated because I’ve been worried about it getting out and fighting with other cats. This is splendid.

NeedHelp 4:45 pm 15 Aug 10

Lucky puddy.

threepaws 4:29 pm 15 Aug 10

Lucky cat 🙂

For a free standing structure that size you would most likely need to engage the services of a licensed builder/engineer. Most cat enclosure companies, whether they supply modular or custom enclosures, tend to utilise existing structures such as walls, fences and pergolas to affix the enclosure to.

Here is a very comprehensive list of plants toxic to cats http://www.cat-world.com.au/plants-a-other-chemicals-toxic

I have had a cat enclosure built and it is absolutely wonderful. My cats are safe, wildlife is safe, they don’t roam and they will never go missing. Prior to getting the cat enclosure the poor things had never set foot outside 🙂

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