|Dora & Mittens "strutting" on the playground!|
I have multiple cats and a nice large backyard that I have enclosed with a “cat fence” – netting attached to brackets which keeps my cats from getting over the fence. Unfortunately, there are no large trees inside my backyard, so nothing for my cats to climb and scratch on (two very important activities for a cat’s emotional and physical well being).
|Mittens demonstates the "horizontal" scratching technique.|
|Dora demonstrates the "diagonal" scratching technique.|
|Cricket demonstrates the "lazy" scratching technique.|
And if you haven’t figured it out by now, I am a rather frugal person. Not to mention I have zero woodworking skills whatsoever. So when I decided to build an outdoor “playground” for my cats to compensate for my lack of trees, I was stumped (no pun intended) as to how I could build it for hardly any money and hardly any skills. I Googled “outdoor cat playground” and did not find anything that was either premade which I could buy or anything easy to build myself.
Then one day I was looking at my extra wire fencing and garden stakes lying around the yard. Hmm … an idea was forming (and you know how I love to recycle!). So I took six 5’ stakes and a 3x8” piece of wire fencing. I put the stakes in the ground, three on a side, spaced 3’ apart, with three more stakes on the other side about 3’ across from other stakes. I then attached the wire fencing along the top of the stakes using the little notches in the stakes plus some zip ties. I put another shorter stake between the pairs of 5’ stakes to give the structure a little more stability. I then took some old big branches I also had lying around and put the heavier branches leaning diagonally from the ground to the top of the fencing and the lighter branches horizontally along the top of the wire fencing (some of the branches I also zip tied to the fencing for extra stability).
|You can see the wire fencing and the stake across for stability.|
|Full cat playground (with a couple of canines - Galaxy & Bamboo).|
I then added a few cats (I have plenty to choose from) and my cat playground was born! My cats now have a place where they can climb, scratch and get away from the sometimes annoying canine family members. They can also take wonderful cat naps under the structure.
|Cosmo climbing up the playground.|
|Cricket, just "hanging" (Galaxy, annoying canine in background).|
|Cosmo, king of the mountain!|
So if you have only a small yard with no large trees for your cats to play on, you can build your own cat playground for less than $40. Or if you’re handy, you can use untreated wood posts and boards instead of the stakes and wire fencing … the sky’s the limit!
(If you build your own cat playground, I’d love to see pictures! You can go to our Facebook page and post your pictures: https://www.facebook.com/greenearthpetfood
|Cricket & Cosmo - one goes up, the other goes down.|