From "Cat-sita" to "Catio"

Submitted to Community Café

After building the "Cat-sita", my daughter was lamenting because her cats had to stay inside and couldn't enjoy the outdoors unless they leashed them and took them out - so mom to the rescue with a "Catio". 

They already had a 5 X 10 foot concrete pad on the side of their house, which just happened to have a drain in the center - how perfect.  A tunnel now leads from their corner window (a sliding window, so I was able to open it and secure a thick plexiglass window and put in a cat door) into the Catio.  Once inside a plank leads to the floor, although cats hardly need it since they could just jump down (photos 4-7).

A set of shelves along the side also allow for sitting or jumping.  What looks like a sandbox will actually be filled with soil and grass for them to lay in, or they can just lay on the side and relax.  Stairs lead to the top of the "Tree" which has a perch at the very top.  The bottom of the tree is covered with sisal rope for them to scratch.  The swing is just for fun with the added "mouse" and a cutout in the bottom trunk of the tree has a little play toy.  The green box was made by drilling holes and putting a jingle ball inside-then sealing the final side so that they could bat at it, but never get it out.  I still have to add a bench at one end, so that the family can sit out there and play with the cats (photos 1-4). 

So far, they are loving it and have been running back and forth.  My daughter added another litter box out there, so they don't have to come dashing inside when the need arises.

I tried to upload the photos in order; but they kept appearing backwards no matter what I did.