Everyone’s talking about catios these days, and for good reason. Allowing your cat to engage in species specific behaviors, in the “wild,” can be so therapeutic for so many cats. So how do you know if a catio is right for your cat? And how much is it going to cost you?

Before you invest money into building an elaborate catio, there are a couple of things to consider. Having access to a more natural environment can be scary for some cats, and for others, it can be quite overstimulating at first. Make sure that you’re prepared to ease your cat into their new space and their new routine gently. If they are very scared in their catio, make sure to have lots of treats and delicious wet food and fun toys to help them feel safe and confident with their person. And if they become a little overstimulated, you can distract them with–you guessed it–treats, delicious wet food and fun toys! We want their new space to be fun, relaxing and full of interest, but if their too nervous or hyper aware to have fun, it won’t quite give the effect you were looking for.

Now that you’re prepared to help your cat feel safe and comfortable in their new space, how about some tips on the catio itself?

Check out this great article from HSUS on catios, it’s got tons of ideas and a variety of types of catios, from those that are pre-made to DIY spaces.

And, as always, cat guru Jackson Galaxy has a lot to say about catios.

Be sure to share your catio pic with us on Facebook!