How To Make A Cat Kennel
A cat kennel can be a great addition for of your feline friends. No matter how domesticated they are, any cat can become bored with indoor life, especially if they have strict rules about what they can and can not climb on and play with. Constructing a kennel system is perfect for the cat in need of a place of their own where they can do what they want.
Step 1: Planning
First, you need to make a few decisions about your kennel design. This is a good time to observe your cat and figure out what he or she likes to do for fun. Are they a climber? Do they like swatting at hanging toys? These things will figure into your design.
Also, you need to know where you’ll be placing your kennel, and how big you want it. One optional feature we’ll be building into this design is access to the kennel directly from the house for the cat, whenever they like.
Step 2: Make Your Cat Door
If you want direct access for your cat, you’ll need to install the pet door in the side of your house. Basic construction tools are needed for this, and most pet doors will come with instructions on how to install them. Do this first, as you’ll need to place your kennel where the door is.
Step 3: The Frame
Use 4x4s as posts, at least one for each corner, probably around 7 or 8 feet tall. Having a 4x4x8-foot kennel should be big enough, though you can add to length or width if you have the space, or many cats. Your posts should be long enough to fit an extra foot or more in the ground, and the hole you dig for them needs to be at least 5 inches deeper than that.
Fill the extra 5 inches with sand or gravel to promote water drainage. You can construct your posts with 2x4 beams forming a square around the top, so that when you place the posts in the holes, they all stay level. Also, screw 4 more 2x4s around where the bottom will sit. For extra strength against severe weather conditions, fill in the posts with concrete rather than dirt, and let dry overnight.
Step 4: Pet Walk
You can choose to build your kennel right up against the house, or have it a few feet away. If a few feet away, lay a strip of plywood leading from the pet door to the edge of your kennel. Elevate the plywood and pet door to prevent water damage. Use the staple gun to secure a section of chicken wire as a hallway on top of the walk.
Step 5: Enclosing The Kennel
Wrap the kennel in chicken wire. If one piece isn’t big enough, try to use pieces that will at least cover an entire side. Secure to the posts and the frame with the staple gun. For your own doorway, take the last side of chicken wire, wrap it a few inches tightly around one corner, and use metal ties or something comparable to attach it, so that you can open it but your cat can’t.
Step 6: The Roof
Nail another piece of plywood on top of the kennel. If you like, elevate one side with 2x4s so water drains off the top, but be sure to close any new open areas with more chicken wire.
Your kennel is complete! Now all that is left is to furnish it for your pet. Throw in some large tree branches leaning on the frame for your cat to climb on. Construct an outdoor pet condo using stacked milk crates with a couple sides removed and old carpet squares for padding. Get creative in turning it into your cat’s dream play pen!