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Catio Resources - Your One-Stop for everything catio-related. 

Whether you're a seasoned catio enthusiast or a first-time builder, find all you need to create a safe, stimulating, and stylish outdoor cat enclosure for your feline friends. Elevate your catio experience with The Catio Company today!

Catio Building Materials

What kind of wood is used for a catio?

The ideal wood for a catio is a weather-resistant lumber. This choice ensures the longevity of your outdoor cat enclosure, protecting it from the elements. The choice of wood is crucial for durability, reducing the need for frequent maintenance and repairs.

What is the best wood for a Catio?

Cedar is an excellent choice for building catios due to its natural properties. Here are some reasons why cedar is commonly used:

  • Weather Resistance: Cedar is naturally resistant to decay, rot, and insects, making it well-suited for outdoor applications and providing durability against the elements.

  • Aromatic Properties: Cedar has a pleasant natural aroma that acts as a natural insect repellent, contributing to a healthier and more comfortable environment for your cats.

  • Durability: Cedar is known for its durability, providing a long-lasting structure that can withstand various weather conditions.

  • Aesthetic Appeal: Cedar's warm color and natural beauty add an aesthetic appeal to your catio, creating a visually pleasing outdoor space.

  • Stability: Cedar has excellent dimensional stability, meaning it is less prone to warping or twisting, contributing to a stable and reliable structure.

While cedar is a popular choice, other woods like redwood are also considered suitable for catios. It's essential to consider your specific requirements and local conditions when selecting the best wood for your catio.

Can I use pressure treated wood for catio?

Some pressure-treated woods contain chemicals that may be harmful to pets. We don't recommend the use of pressure-treated wood for catios due to potential risks. Your cat's safety is our top priority.

A catio constructed using cedar lumber

Natural Cedar Catio

Cat in Catio

Natural Cedar Catio

Catio Painted to match house

Catio Painted to match the house.

Small catio

Consider adding trim to your catio for a polished and finished appearance. This not only enhances the aesthetics but also covers the edges of the mesh and the staples, providing a seamless and secure look to your outdoor cat haven.

Catio Finishing Touches

You can choose to keep your Catio natural, paint it to match your house or stain it.


If left natural, cedar will gray over time. This isn't a structural issue but will change the aesthetics of your Catio. 

We do recommend at least using a clear sealer to prolong the life of your Catio.

Natural Cedar Tone Catio

Catio Flooring Ideas - What do you put on the floor of a catio?

Selecting the ideal flooring for your catio involves considering factors such as location and maintenance. Whether it's a deck, concrete area, or nestled in your backyard, different flooring options cater to various needs. Explore the pros and cons of different flooring options to find the ideal surface for your catio.

  • Natural Grass:

    • Pros: Soft and comfortable for cats, provides a natural environment, cost-effective.

    • Cons: May bring mud indoors, requires regular maintenance, lifespan can be affected by weather conditions.

  • Soft Round Rocks:

    • Pros: Drains well, offers a unique texture for cats to explore, low maintenance.

    • Cons: May not be as comfortable for cats to lounge on, and can be challenging to clean.

  • Mulch:

    • Pros: Soft and cushioned surface, natural appearance, helps with water drainage.

    • Cons: Needs periodic replacement, may attract insects, and can become compacted over time.

  • Pavers:

    • Pros: Stable and durable surface, easy to clean, adds a beautiful look to the catio.

    • Cons: Hard surface may not be as comfortable for cats, limited drainage, may require leveling.

  • Interlocking Tiles:

    • Pros: Versatile and customizable, easy to install, provides a comfortable surface for cats.

    • Cons: Some types may retain heat.

  • Pet Turf:

    • Pros: Mimics the feel of real grass, easy to clean, durable, and provides a pet-friendly surface.

    • Cons: Initial cost, may require occasional cleaning, may not provide the same sensory experience as real grass.

Remember, the best choice depends on your specific needs, the local climate, and your cats' preferences. Consider the pros and cons carefully before making a decision.

Catio on a Deck.

Catio Fencing Wire 1x1
Catio Mesh 2x2 galvanized

What mesh should I use for a catio?

Selecting the right mesh for your catio is crucial for ensuring the safety and comfort of your feline companions. Here are some mesh options along with their key characteristics:

14 Gauge Black Vinyl Coated Welded Wire Mesh Size 1 inch by 1 inch:

  • Key Features: Made of 14 gauge heavy-duty galvanized wire, providing a double coating for maximum rust resistance and long life, vinyl coated for extra protection, making it the most popular and recommended choice. Particularly suitable for small cats.

15 Gauge Galvanized Welded Wire Mesh Size 2 inch by 2 inch:

  • Key Features: Made of 15 gauge heavy-duty galvanized wire, Galvanized before welding, Characterized by bigger openings for a more seamless feel.

1/2-Inch Mesh Size, 16 Gauge Galvanized Steel with Vinyl Coated Welded Wire:

  • Key Features: Made of durable steel. Galvanization and a black vinyl coating provide maximum rust & corrosion resistance. 

Pet screen: 

  • Effectively keep bugs away and enhance the overall functionality of your catio.

Ultimately, the choice of mesh depends on your specific preferences, the size of your catio enclosure, and the visual aesthetic you're aiming for. Consider factors such as durability, appearance, and grid size when making your decision.

Providing your catio with a roof is vital to ensure the safety and comfort of your beloved cats. Our recommended roofing options include durable corrugated metal and versatile polycarbonate materials. These choices not only offer reliable protection from the elements but also add a touch of durability and style to your feline haven. 


  • Key Features: Virtually unbreakable, long-term weather resistant, sunlight resistant, lightweight, and available in a variety of colors.

  • Options: Choose from corrugated or flat multiwall designs.

Corrugated Metal:

  • Key Features: Ideal for shielding against wind, heat, humidity, and water.

  • Material: Crafted from durable galvanized steel, ensuring rust resistance.

  • Longevity: Known for its enduring strength.

  • Aesthetics: Offers a rustic charm, enhancing the overall appeal of your catio.

  • Recommended for: Areas prone to heavy debris, such as locations with large tree branches.

Catio with metal roof

Catio with metal roof

Catio with polycarbonate roofing
Catio building tips
Catio Building Tips
  • Cat's Favorite Spot: Place the catio near your cat's favorite window or area inside the house.

  • Shared Spaces: Opt for a location that both cats and humans can enjoy together, fostering interaction.

  • Check Above: Ensure there are no obstacles like power lines or large tree limbs directly above the catio.

  • Secure Mesh Outside: Staple the mesh on the exterior for added security.

  • Safety First: Use cat-safe materials to ensure a secure and non-toxic environment.

  • Consider Sun and Shade: Position the catio to provide both sunny and shaded areas for cats.

  • Select Durable Materials: Choose weather-resistant materials for longevity.

  • Include Vertical Space: Cats love to climb, so add shelves, perches, and vertical elements.

  • Incorporate Enrichment: Include scratching posts, toys, and hiding spots for mental stimulation.

cat in catio
  • Create Resting Zones: Design cozy spots like beds or hammocks for relaxation.

  • Install Cat-Friendly Plants: Choose safe plants to enhance the natural feel.

  • Regular Maintenance: Keep the catio clean and well-maintained for hygiene.

Pet doors and Catio Access
How Do I get my Cat in the Catio?
Pet Doors and Catio access

Getting your cat into the catio is easy with a pet door. Install a cat-friendly pet door in a convenient location, encouraging your feline friend to explore the outdoor space at their own pace. You can use treats or toys to lure them through the pet door initially, and with time, they'll associate it with a fun and safe outdoor adventure. Patience and positive reinforcement are key to a successful introduction to the catio through the pet door.

  1. Sash Window Pet Door Insert:

    • Ideal for windows with a vertical opening.

    • Provides secure access without compromising window functionality.

    • Easy installation and removal.

  2. Sliding Window Pet Door Insert:

    • Perfect for sliding windows or doors.

    • Offers a snug fit and easy installation.

    • Allows cats to move seamlessly between indoor and outdoor spaces.

  3. Through-the-Wall Pet Door:

    • Designed for a permanent installation through walls.

    • Creates a dedicated entry point to the catio.

    • Sturdy and secure for long-term use.

  4. Microchipped Through-the-Wall Pet Door with Collar Tracker:

    • Innovative solution with added security features.

    • Microchip technology ensures access only to authorized pets.

    • Includes a collar tracker for real-time monitoring.

    • Locks and unlocks remotely through an app.

Choosing the Right Size: A Quick Guide

  • Measure Your Pet:

    • Measure your cat's height and width to ensure a comfortable fit.

  • Consider Growth:

    • If your cat is still growing, choose a slightly larger door to accommodate future size.

  • Check Installation Requirements:

    • Different doors may have specific installation requirements. Ensure your chosen door suits your catio setup.

  • Read Customer Reviews:

    • Gain insights from other pet owners who have used the same door.

Selecting the right pet door is crucial for a smooth and secure transition between indoor and outdoor spaces in your catio. Explore our options to find the perfect fit for your feline friend's needs.

Catio Maintenance Tips: 

  1. Regular Inspections:

    • Conduct routine checks for any wear, tear, or damage to ensure structural integrity.

  2. Clean Surfaces:

    • Wipe down surfaces regularly to remove dust, debris, and any potential contaminants.

  3. Mesh and Screens:

    • Inspect and secure mesh or screens to prevent any escape routes or wear.

  4. Weather-Resistant Materials:

    • Choose materials that withstand the elements, reducing the need for frequent maintenance.

  5. Trim Vegetation:

    • Trim nearby plants to prevent them from encroaching on the catio space.

  6. Safe Cleaning Products:

    • Use pet-safe cleaning products to maintain a hygienic environment without harm.

  7. Check Furniture:

    • If using furniture, ensure it remains stable and free from any sharp edges.

  8. Inspect Enrichment Items:

    • Regularly check and clean cat toys, scratching posts, and other enrichment items.

  9. Secure Access Points:

    • Ensure pet doors and access points are secure and functioning correctly.

  10. Monitor Cat Behavior:

    • Observe your cats for any signs of stress or discomfort and make adjustments accordingly.

  11. Weatherproofing:

    • Reapply weatherproofing agents to maintain the catio's resilience against the elements.

  12. Remove Waste Promptly:

    • If your cats use a litter box in the catio, promptly remove waste to keep the space clean.

  13. Replace Worn Elements:

    • Replace worn-out elements promptly to prevent safety hazards.

  14. Replenish Catnip and Plants:

    • If you have catnip or cat-friendly plants, replenish them for continued enjoyment.

  15. Inspect Roofing:

    • Regularly inspect any roofing materials for leaks or damage.

By incorporating these maintenance tips into your routine, you'll ensure your catio remains a secure, clean, and enjoyable space for your feline friends. Regular attention to these details will contribute to the longevity and safety of the catio.

Catio main.

We are proud sponsors of the Cats Safe at Home Catio Tour, showcasing our commitment to creating innovative and enriching outdoor spaces for our feline friends. Explore two of our featured projects from the virtual tour below:

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