8 Best Catios for Cats To Safely Explore Outside

Written by: Molly Weinfurter
Molly Weinfurter is a writer for iHeartCats, and she’s passionate about helping animals in need. She volunteers for Bailing Out Benji and a local dog rescue.Read more
| Published on June 14, 2023
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Catios for cats, also known as “cat patios,” have gained popularity as a wonderful addition to any home, allowing cats to experience the outdoors while keeping them protected. Cats love to explore outside, but there are too many safety concerns to let them roam freely. So, catios are a great way to give your feline some extra freedom while still keeping them safe.

In this article, we will dive into the world of catios and highlight some of the best options available to cater to your cat’s needs. While some cat parents like to build their own catios, there are plenty of great pre-made catios for sale.

Cat stretching outside

Buyer’s Guide: Catios for Cats

Catios are enclosed outdoor spaces for cats. However, not all catios have the same design, materials, or features. So, consider the following aspects to help you decide which catio is best for you.

Size and Space

Consider the available space in your home, yard, or balcony to determine the appropriate size of the catio. It should be small enough to fit on your property but large enough to give your cat ample room to roam.


Look for catios constructed with sturdy and weather-resistant materials such as wood or metal. Ensure that the materials used are durable and can withstand outdoor elements for long-term use.


Choose a catio with proper ventilation to allow proper air circulation. Additionally, consider catios with built-in roofs or shade covers to protect from excessive sunlight and rain. If there’s lots of mesh, your cat will also be able to see their surroundings better.


Focus on catios with secure and scratch-proof materials to prevent your cats from escaping and to keep them safe from potential dangers like predators or traffic. You may also want an entry point for humans so you can easily take your cat out if needed.


Look for luxury catios that offer additional features to enhance your cat’s experience, such as multiple levels, ramps, perches, hiding spots, or scratching posts. These features can provide mental stimulation and exercise opportunities for your cats. If you like to travel, you may want to look for lightweight, portable catios.

Assembly and Maintenance

Check if the catio comes with clear assembly instructions and is easy to set up. Additionally, consider the ease of cleaning and maintenance, as it’s important to keep the catio hygienic for your cats.

Outdoor cat enclosure

Best Catios for Cats

1. Aivituvin Cat House Outdoor Catio
  • Weather-resistant materials
  • Made of natural fir wood
  • Has wheels for easy transport
  • Multiple doors and platforms
  • Small sliding door connects it to a window
  • You can buy more than one and attach them

The Aivituvin Cat House Outdoor Catio is a highly regarded catio option designed to provide a secure and spacious outdoor environment for your felines. Constructed from sturdy and weather-resistant materials, such as natural fir wood, this catio offers durability and protection from the elements. The multi-level design features multiple doors and platforms, allowing your cats to climb, explore, and lounge to their heart’s content. It has a small sliding door that can connect to a window, and it has wheels for easy transport. If you want more space for your furry friends, you can buy two and attach them.

2. PawHut Outdoor Cat House Big Catio
  • Several platforms to climb on
  • Water-resistant materials
  • Durable wire and fir wood
  • Large access door
  • Provides lots of fresh air

The PawHut Outdoor Cat House Big Catio provides a safe, roomy area for cats to play in. This catio is made from durable and weather-resistant materials, offering a sturdy structure that can withstand various outdoor conditions. The generous size provides ample space for cats to roam, play, and lounge comfortably. It features multiple levels and platforms, promoting exercise and entertainment. With a large access door and multiple windows, cats can enjoy fresh air and have a clear view of their surroundings. It may take some time to assemble and attach to a window, but most cat parents have found the extra work well worth it.

3. TRIXIE Pet Products Wooden Outdoor Cat Sanctuary
  • Includes six large platforms
  • Removable back panels to attach to window or door
  • Works as wall mount or free-standing structure
  • Durable wood with waterproof finish
  • Easy 30-minute assembly

The TRIXIE Pet Products Wooden Outdoor Cat Sanctuary is a similar design to the PawHut Outdoor Cat House Big Catio, but it’s known for being easier to assemble. It’s built with sturdy wood that has a waterproof finish. Plus, the sanctuary features a spacious interior with six large platforms, providing cats with various levels for climbing, lounging, and exploring. It has removable back panels to make it easy to attach to a window or door on your home. You can either mount it to a wall or use it as a free-standing structure. Once your cats have access to it, they won’t be able to resist lounging outside.

4. PawHut Large Wooden Outdoor Cat House
  • Ramps, platforms, and hiding places
  • Weatherproof materials
  • Plenty of shade
  • Sturdy fir frame and metal wires
  • Two doors for easy access

    This PawHut product is a fantastic choice for cat parents looking for a cozy space with shaded areas. It has several covered platforms that cats can hide in, along with a ramp leading to the bottom level. Also, it features a protective roof to shield your cats from rain or harsh sunlight, while the open-air balcony allows them to bask in the fresh air and observe their surroundings. It has a small door on one side to attach to a window and a large door on the other side so you can easily access your felines if needed. Your cats will love the ample space to explore in this product.

    5. COZIWOW Upgraded Large Catio Enclosure
    • Premium water-resistant fir wood
    • Protects cats from rain and sun
    • Wire mesh removes to connect to window
    • Several platforms and hiding places
    • Easy to assemble and modify

    The COZIWOW Upgraded Large Catio Enclosure is a top-notch choice for cat parents wanting to give their felines lots of space outside. Made with high-quality materials and upgraded features, this catio provides a safe and stimulating environment for cats to enjoy the outdoors. The large size offers ample space for cats to roam, play, and lounge comfortably. The enclosure is constructed with sturdy metal wire panels that ensure durability and protection against potential predators. Parts of the wire mesh can be removed to connect the catio to a window of your home. It features multiple access doors, allowing for easy entry and exit, while the weather-resistant roof provides shelter from rain or excessive sunlight.

    6. Outback Jack Outdoor Cat Enclosure
    • Gives your cat a 360-degree view
    • Includes tent and tunnel
    • Lightweight, portable design
    • Easy to set up and collapsible
    • Provides a safe space indoors or outdoors

    Also available at Petco

    The Outback Jack Outdoor Cat Enclosure is a highly regarded option for travel. It’s collapsible, lightweight, and easy to set up, making it convenient to move it from one spot to another. You can even bring it on trips with you. The product includes a tent and tunnel, both of which are made of polyester mesh so your cat can see their surroundings in all directions. It works well for both indoor and outdoor use. So, while it makes a great catio, you can also use it as a way to isolate sick, young, or injured cats from other pets in a house.

    7. Kittywalk Outdoor Net Cat Enclosure
    • Provides a small walking space outdoors
    • Self-standing, open net design
    • Lightweight and portable
    • Made with rip-stop netting
    • Water-resistant materials
    • You can attach multiple together

    The Kittywalk Outdoor Net Cat Enclosure provides a small walking space outside for cats. It’s made with durable and breathable netting, so your cat can walk outside and observe their surroundings safely. The enclosure is lightweight and portable, making it easy to set up in various outdoor spaces such as gardens, patios, or balconies. If you buy more than one of these net enclosures, you can attach them to create a longer walkway for your furry friend. The rip-stop netting is water-resistant to help it last longer.

    8. Aivituvin Large Cat Enclosure Wooden Catio
    • Provides over 56 square feet of space
    • Several doors, bridges, and platforms
    • Small sliding door and human-sized door
    • Weather-resistant and UV-resistant materials
    • Durable mesh on all sides

    This beautiful catio provides over 56 square feet of space for cats to explore. It has several bridges and platforms so your cat can get the exercise and mental stimulation they need. It’s made of weather-resistant and UV-resistant materials to make it durable for outdoor use. Plus, it has mesh panels on all sides so your cat can easily observe their surroundings. The enclosure includes a small door to attach to a window of your home and a large human-sized door so you can enter the space with your cats if you wish. It’s perfect for a multi-cat household because it provides plenty of space for cats to explore the outdoors safely.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    What is a Catio?

    A catio is an enclosed outdoor space specifically designed for cats. It provides a safe and secure environment for cats to enjoy the outdoors while protecting them from potential dangers like traffic and predators. Catios can vary in size and design, ranging from small window enclosures to larger outdoor structures with multiple levels.

    What are the Benefits of a Catio?

    Catios provide a safe and controlled outdoor environment for cats to experience fresh air and engage in natural behaviors like climbing and exploring. Catios also help prevent potential dangers, such as accidents or encounters with predators, while giving owners peace of mind knowing their cats are safe and content.

    Are Catios Safe?

    When properly designed and constructed, catios are safe for cats. They provide a secure enclosure that prevents cats from escaping and protects them from outdoor hazards like predators. However, it’s important to ensure that the catio is built with durable, secure materials to maintain its safety. Regularly inspect it for any potential wear or damage.

    How Much Do Catios Cost?

    The cost of catios can vary depending on factors such as size, materials, and features. Smaller and more basic catios can range from around $100 to $500, while larger and more elaborate catios can cost several thousand dollars. Custom-built or professionally installed catios may incur higher costs.

    Can You Build Your Own Catio?

    Yes, it’s possible to build your own catio. There are numerous DIY plans, tutorials, and resources available online that provide step-by-step instructions for constructing a catio. By following these guides and having the necessary tools and materials, you can create a custom catio tailored to your specific needs and budget.

    Can Other Small Pets Use a Catio?

    Yes, other small pets like rabbits or small dogs can also use a catio, depending on its design and size. However, it’s important to consider the needs and behaviors of each specific pet to ensure their safety and compatibility in the shared space. Additionally, certain modifications or adaptations may be required to accommodate the specific needs of different pets in a catio environment.

    Are There Any Legal or Zoning Considerations for Installing a Catio?

    Yes, there can be legal or zoning considerations when installing a catio, depending on your location and local regulations. Some areas may have restrictions or regulations regarding the construction of outdoor enclosures or modifications to existing structures. It’s important to check with your local authorities or homeowner’s association to understand any permits, codes, or restrictions that may apply before installing a catio.

    Cat sitting in enclosed patio

    Final Thoughts

    Catios provide an excellent solution for cat owners who wish to offer their feline companions a safe and enriching outdoor experience. Whether you pick a ready-made catio or decide to build one yourself, these enclosed spaces allow your cats to enjoy the outdoors while protecting them from potential hazards.

    By investing in a high-quality catio, you’re providing your cats with an environment that promotes physical activity, mental stimulation, and overall well-being. So, if you buy a catio, you can enhance your cat’s life by letting them explore the great outdoors safely and securely.

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