After touring various Catios last fall, I spent many months mentally constructing a catio for my cats. Said catio will have access from the kitchen window and let the cats have the run of the north side of the house. Said catio will also cost a hefty amount and need a concentrated time of work to build it. I'm not sure if said catio will appear in the cats' lifespan, but I did have an epiphany recently and can construct a catio for now.
I bought a roll of wire fencing, four of those double ended hook thingies (I don't know what they are called, but you will see them later) and got out my wire snips, drill, drill bits and eye hooks leftover from another project.
My epiphany had to do with the fact that the back porch is already enclosed on three sides. So I only needed to find something to close off the other side. It had to be movable, because I need access to the back yard, but also secure enough so the cats couldn't get through it.
Enter the fence. I had to buy 50 feet, but I can probably sell on Craigslist the 38 feet I didn't use on. Also, FYI, when you unsnip the wire holding the roll of fence in place, get ready to jump back because there is a dramatic and somewhat scary unspooling. In this picture, if you squint, you can see that I have attached eyehooks to the house, clipped the clippy things to the eyehooks and have clipped the other end of the clippy things to the fence.
Here are the clippy things I'm speaking of. V-necked shirts make good holders of said clippy thingies.
And here the fence has been stretched across and attached to two more clippy thingies which are attached to eyehooks.
I'm not really sure about the amount of give in the middle, but we shall see what happens.
Here are the cats investigating their catio. Predictably, they went right to the fence and worked long and hard at getting out in the yard. I told them that the concrete was as outside as they were going to get for now.
The project took me only an hour and cost about $20.00. It's pretty easy to put up and roll away, once I figured out I should mark which junctions of fence the clippy things were best clipped to. I just used some twist ties to mark said junctions.
I've taken to leaving the left side clipped, and rolling up the fence and leaving it in the corner of the porch. I use the lower right clippy thing to keep it rolled. But if I want it off the porch entirely, it's also easy to unclip everything and set the roll in a corner of the yard.
Two weeks later, Sentinel is working pretty hard to push the middle of the fence enough to get under it so he can get to the yard. We shall see what happens there.