Cats living in the Phoenix area have some unique hazards that exist for them when they are let outdoors. In the more rural areas of the Phoenix metro area, there are bobcats, rattlesnakes, scorpions, and coyotes. These hazards can be seen in the urban areas of Phoenix, but it is less likely. If there is water near your home, the hazard of Africanized (Killer) Honey Bees could exist for yourself and your cat.
Deer Valley resident, Sandi Phillips, owns two cats that she allows to go outdoors. Her cats are named Skippyjon Jones and Lola. “What scares me the most is the coyotes getting him, first of all,” said Sandi. “Second of all, he is such a beautiful cat that I am afraid that someone is going to steal him. He is a long-haired Siamese.” For people with exquisite, distinctive cats and cat breeds, this is a common concern if they let their cat outside.
People let their cats outside for different reasons. “I let them outside to chase birds and bugs and to get fresh air,” Sandi said. Other people let them out to use the bathroom because they don’t like the smell of litter boxes in their home.
People all over the country and world have come up with a creative solution to outdoor cat safety. They have created “catios”. These outdoor enclosures are usually very big and some times even multi-leveled. Cat behavior expert, Jackson Galaxy, has a specific page on his site dedicated to these new outdoor catios. Another site, Catio Showcase.com, shows more examples of these cat-friendly outdoor additions. If you only want your cat to be in a small area, then a large dog crate from a store like Petsmart, might be your best choice. “I would absolutely build a safe place for my cat to go outdoors,” said Sandi.
Many cat owners are taking the steps to maintain the safety of their cats when they go outdoors for many reasons by creating these catios. The safest place for your cat is always indoors, but by creating an outside attachment to your dwelling, the cat is much safer from the hazards of vehicles, people, and animals that can take them away from you.