Saturday, March 15, 2008

Cat Space - some ways to create more of it

Cat Space always makes me think of Space Cat, the first kitten my husband and I adopted. The pale beige tabby did look a bit like an astronaut...with green eyes and that usual deranged kitten look. He also frequently was airborne, although never in earth orbit.

But before I get too nostalgically side tracked, let's talk about Cat Space, a very important issue to the cats involved.

Those of us who have multiple cats may sometimes find ourselves in the middle of territorial issues. There are several strategies to bring harmony to a multi-cat household so our territorial kitties don't have turf disputes.

Think hideaway. Creating privacy zones for the shyer cats helps. This can be as simple as a box or a towel or blanket draped around a chair to turn it into a lair for a cool kitty. I always make sure that there is more than one entrance/exit, because an already shy cat will not want to be backed into a corner with no back or side exit if a more aggressive cat blocks the front entrance.

Think vertical. Cat perches are also extremely popular, and any kind of perch put near a window will instantly become more alluring. Cats love to climb to high ground, and a couple of different levels can make for happy cats. If those wonderful cat perches you see at pet supply places are out of your budget range, here's an inexpensive way to do it.

A woman who does cat rescue and provides an elder sanctuary for several cats came up with a brilliant idea to give her elderly cats a space to climb and lounge. She set up a 6 foot step ladder (which cost about $25 and might be less if purchased used) and put a chair under it. She put a blanket on the chair. Voila. Instant cat perch.

She reported that her cats love to sit on the steps of the ladder and the cat on the top of the ladder is always rather smug about being up there.

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