A pet cat is an environmental hazard which can have a devastating effect on local wildlife populations. The average cat brings home 32 small animals each year (16 mammals, 8 birds and 8 reptiles) or more than 300 animals during its average life span. Cats also create environmental dangers through their droppings. Cat droppings contain the germs for toxoplasmosis, a disease that can damage unborn babies. Cats left to roam freely are also at risk themselves: they may be attacked by dogs or other cats, hit by cars, they can catch infectious diseases and some suffer from sunburn.
It is a good idea to keep your cat indoors, not only to reduce its environmental impact but also for its own protection. More and more councils around Australia are tightening legislation in regard to cats, and it is possible that cat owners will one day be required by law to prevent their cats from roaming freely.
In our segment, Don looked at two different types of cat enclosure. These protect cats and enrich their lives by giving them limited outside access, without jeopardising native wildlife.
Catnip Modular Cat Parks
These enclosures are made from galvanised or powder coated mesh and come in a range of shapes, sizes and colours. They can be custom built and installed to suit any outside area, or they can be mail ordered in modular kit form for self-installation. The enclosures can be freestanding structures, or they can be connected to the house by way of a small cat door allowing the cat to come and go as it pleases.
Catmax Clearnet Enclosures
A safe, durable, pre-stretched netting is available to enclose outside areas like patios, balconies, gardens and even trees. You can use the netting to enclose pre-existing spaces without compromising the look and function of the area, or you can create new spaces exclusively for your cat. Catmax also sells pre-fabricated, freestanding enclosures in a range of sizes that can be easily erected outside or inside the house.
Catnip Modular Cat Parks start from around $700 for the smallest DIY kit. Prices for custom-built enclosures are based on the number of modules used and the intricacy of the design. Catmax Clearnet Enclosures are priced from about $545.
(Note: prices do not include freight)
Both products are available in most capital cities and some regional centres. For more information contact:
Catmax Installation Service
14 Oriana Crescent
Yeronga QLD 4104
Phone: 1300 306 605 for your nearest installer
Catnip Australia Pty Ltd
PO Box 176
Stawell VIC 3380
Freecall: 1800 639 998 (within Australia)