The hills of Novato are safer now that the new tabby command center/cat enclosure is fully operational. Cats can rest easier knowing that Tabs the cat is on patrol. 🙂
Here’s a closer look at the construction and the materials to build one for your feline employer.
Total cost was around $50, not including the main tools, which you may already have access to. In addition to a saw (El Hub uses a circular saw, but he says that a regular hand saw works too), you’ll also need a drill for this, a pair of gloves, safety glasses, a measuring tape and the following:
- 2 in. x 2 in. boards (we used pine, but cedar and redwood are also great) for the main frame.
- 1 in. x 6 in. boards for the walkways.
- Enough 2-1/2 in. phillips head outdoor rated wood screws to attach the 2 in. x 2 in. boards (a box of 50 should be more than enough for this enclosure)
- Staple gun
- Glue gun
- A section of remnant carpeting (you can usually find a remnant carpet store in your town that will sell small rolls of 5 or 6 feet of leftover carpeting for $15-$20. You could also use a soft fabric from a fabric store or artificial grass.
- A box cutter for the carpet
- A roll of 1 in. chicken wire (also called poultry netting)
- Wire cutters (for the chicken wire)
- Wood glue (not necessary, but El Hub says it helps to reinforce the screws)
- A gate latch and 2 door hinges
This is just a basic overview, because you’ll probably want to customize the size of everything to fit your needs. WARNING: Please wear gloves and eye protection.
- Measure and cut your 2 in. 2 in. boards for the base (4 pieces), top (same as the base), and the four tall corner posts (we made this one 6 ft. tall).
- Using your drill and screws, attach the first four pieces of 2 in. x 2 in. wood for the base, and repeat for the top (squeeze a few drops of wood glue between the ends before you screw them together).
- Attach the four tall vertical 2 in. x 2 in. posts to the corners of the base using one or two screws per corner.
- Attach the top piece to the vertical post corners using one or two screws per corner.
- Add a few horizontal cross posts using some of the 2 in. x 2 in. boards between the vertical posts to strengthen the whole structure and create platforms for the walkway planks to rest on.
- Measure the distance from some of the horizontal cross posts, and cut some 1 in. x 6 in. boards to use as walkways.
- Measure and cut enough carpeting to cover the walkways.
- Attach the carpeting to the walkways using the staple gun and hot glue gun (the glue works better than the staples for this, so use more of the glue, and just a few staples along the way).
- Attach the now carpeted walkway planks to the inside of the frame between some of the horizontal cross struts using small screws or nails.
- Once you have the basic structure of the frame built, measure and cut the chicken wire for each of the sides and the top. El Hub did this for me, and he says that it’s very important that you wear good, sturdy gloves and eye protection, because the cut ends of the chicken wire are very sharp.
- Measure a space for a door, and cut four 2 in. x 2 in. boards (the door should be slightly smaller than the actual space so it fits, and the door can still open).
- Attach the chicken wire to the frame and the door using the staple gun.
- Attach the gate latch and hinges to the door and the frame using the screws that come with them (this step can be frustrating, but any kind of simple fence gate or door will do).
- That’s it! Introduce yo’ cat. 🙂
Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,