black and white cat stretching out in his catio
Credit: Courtesy of Etsy

Let Your Cat Enjoy the Sunshine With These 6 Catios

Catios keep your cat protected from predators, and you can rest assured knowing they won’t make any great escapes.
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Just like humans, cats love to soak up the sun. Think about how often you catch your cat by the window, sprawled out on the floor, basking in the glory of a sun ray. If you've ever considered giving your indoor cat a taste of the outdoor life, a catio might be the perfect solution.

What Is a Catio?

A "catio" is just a fancy word for an outdoor enclosure meant to keep cats safe. They can be as fancy as custom-built cages and tunnels throughout your whole backyard, or as simple as a small box by your window.

Is It Safe for My Cat Outdoors?

Provided that indoor cats have plenty of toys, a scratching post, or a tower to keep them busy, your cat can enjoy a healthy, well-stimulated life completely indoors. However, cats have a natural instinct to roam around outdoors. Because of predators and environmental risks, it's not a good idea to leave them in your backyard unprotected. That's why catios are a great solution for letting your cat get outside without risking their safety.

The Best Catios To Buy

There's been a recent trend of designing and building catios, but if you'd rather purchase a fully constructed catio that's ready to use when it arrives at your front door, you can! Here are the seven best pre-built catios you can buy online that will protect your cat from the dangers of nature.

Outdoor jack outdoor cat enclosure
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Outback Jack Outdoor Cat Enclosure

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Complete with a tunnel and a tent, this pop-up cat enclosure provides over 30 square feet of play room for your cat to move around while still getting the feel of fresh grass on their paws. The mesh walls give your cat 360-degree views of what's going on outside and you'll be able to interact with them as they run. Also: the zippered door will give you peace of mind that they won't escape.

Shop Now: Outback Jack Outdoor Cat Enclosure, $70;

cat solarium weather window box
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Cat Solarium

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Don't have a huge backyard to place a catio in? No problem! This cat solarium can be placed in your window and provides your indoor cat a taste of the outdoors all day long. Your cat will love the feel of the breeze through their fur as they lounge in their handmade window box. This Etsy maker offers a few different versions of this window catio, but we think the weather package that comes with a back panel, weather enclosure, and mesh screen is your best bet.

Shop Now: Cat Solarium Weather Package, $350;

K and H pet products window kitty sill
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K&H Pet Products EZ Mount Kitty Window Sill

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So this one is technically not an outdoor enclosure, but if you're in a high-rise apartment or have literally zero outdoor space, this kitty window sill will let your cat soak up some rays while still inside. Just attach this to your window with the suction cups, and watch in delight as your cat jumps up onto it to get some light and stare out the window. Your kitty will feel like they're on a tropical beach getting a tan, cat-sized mocktail in paw.

Shop Now: K&H Pet Products EZ Mount Kitty Window Sill, $36;

portable cat kennel
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Necoichi Portable Stress Free Cat Cage

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This pop-up enclosure is a simple but effective way to let your cat join you outside, wherever you go. Perfect for travel, you could even take your cat along for outdoor picnics or camping trips—just fold it up flat and throw it in your backseat before you leave. There are two mesh sides for ventilation, and the two sturdy handles on the top allow you to move it around even with your cat inside.

Shop Now: Necoichi Portable Stress Free Cat Cage, $37;

wooden outdoor cat enclosure
Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

PawHut 6-Platform Tall Wooden Outdoor Cat Enclosure

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If you really love the look of DIY and custom-built catios, this highly elaborate catio will provide your cat with so much room to roam, and you won't have to make a trip to the home improvement store to get wood and tools! Yes, there is some assembly required, but reviewers say it's very easy and straightforward to put together. The six elevated platforms and ample space inside make this a great option for multi-cat households.

Shop Now: PawHut 6-Platform Tall Wooden Outdoor Cat Enclosure, $418;

precision pet kitty condo
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Precision Pet Kitty Condo

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And if you're not into the uber-trendy catios you're seeing on the internet and would rather go with something more familiar, there is nothing wrong with placing a classic kitty condo with a wire cage enclosure outside! Two lofts provide plenty of vertical space for playing and napping, you can move it around thanks to the wheels on the bottom, and it collapses easily for travel or storage. We recommend placing this underneath an awning or covering outside to better protect it from weather, and make sure you're regularly cleaning the inside.

Shop Now: Precision Pet Kitty Condo, $130;

Purrgola outdoor cat house
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The Purrgola Outdoor Cat House

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This 8x8x8.5-foot luxury outdoor catio enclosure can fit multiple cats comfortably and has multiple levels and perches for each cat to have his own space to enjoy the outdoors. This design from a custom catio builder includes a free site visit to help with sizing and choosing the best spot for your catio build as well as offers you a choice of wood product (pressure treated, cedar, redwood) and a free Ring camera system so you can monitor your cats at play. 

Shop Now: The Purrgola Outdoor Cat House, $6,000;