It’s getting cold, a tough time of year for any outdoor-dwelling animals. Like feral cats, which likely inhabit a colony somewhere near you.
Luckily, it’s easy to build a simple, feral cat shelter using easily obtainable and affordable materials. This picture shows a simple how-to:
The purple outer box is a larger, 35-gallon tote, e.g., Rubbermaid “Latching Tote” or similar. Cost $6-15. Whatever brand of totes you buy, make sure that one easily fits inside the other with enough room for the installation.
The pink stuff is 1″ rigid polystyrene insulation, also available at Lowe’s or Home Depot. A large sheet costs about $10, and cuts easily with a utility knife.
Having difficulty cutting a hole in the plastic? Soften it first with hot air from a hairdryer. (Watch your fingers!)
Here are a few more good ideas.
- If you can find one, use a piece of a discarded solar pool cover/blanket as a liner. Ask a neighbor who has a pool.
- Keep an eye out for those mylar “solar blankets,” which are great at reflecting body heat.
- Consider surrounding the shelter with bales of straw — a wonderfully efficient insulator.
- Place shelters where they are protected from wind and snow (especially shelters like this one, without a covered door).
- In an area frequented by predators, consider adding a back door as an escape hatch.
For many more feral cat shelter ideas, visit the Pact Humane Society’s website. Or Google “feral cat shelter instructions.”
Have you built a feral cat shelter? Are you planning to? Please share your experiences, ideas, photos, instructions, etc., in the comments below, so we can all learn from your experience. Thanks!
The kitties thank you!