Cats love their independence as much as they love their space. As curious as they are, cats need to move around whenever and wherever they want to. Although most domesticated cats live indoors, they are natural hunters who enjoy being outside.
Because of the pandemic, most of us will be staying at home, as will our cats.
If your home has a balcony, your cat will want to lounge there. Expect your cat to spend lazy afternoons napping and stretching in the open air. This outdoor setup will give your tabby ample opportunity to sunbathe and possibly catch a bird or two.
As much as your feline appreciates the warmth and comfort of your living room sofa, they also need to spend time outside. You can give this liberty to them by cat-proofing your apartment balcony.
Are Balconies Safe for Cats?
Balconies are not recommended for cats or other pets. Cats usually land on their feet, but this doesn't guarantee that they won't get hurt from jumping or falling from extreme heights. A cat’s fabled nine lives won’t save them from a nine-story drop. Even with their superb agility, they can still get injured or even worse from that miscalculated fall.
How to Cat-Proof Your Balcony
Fortunately, it’s possible to ensure that your tabby will be safe in your balcony even without constant supervision.
Here are some easy and practical ways to cat-proof your outdoor space:
- Install Mosquitoes Nets – Although these are intended to keep mosquitoes or insects out, they can double as a protective barrier for your cat. Choose sturdy screens that fasten securely. The only disadvantage is that you will lose some natural light because screens can be quite dense and unappealing.
- Invisible Grills – If you have some extra budget, this is one of the most effective ways of allowing cats to claim the balcony as their territory while keeping them safe and making your apartment look nice. When you want to get some fresh air, you can take your cat outside or just leave your windows open.
- Create a Catio or Cat Walk – If you are skilled in DIY, schedule this as your next project. Use some plastic mesh or wire to create a cat patio for your pet. This will allow your cat to have visuals of the outdoors while still being in a secure space. Another option would be to build a catwalk or a vast open air box where your cat can stay while chilling on your balcony.
- Introduce the Cat Leash – You can also put your cat on a leash. It takes a lot of training and time before your cat is comfortable wearing a leash, so expect your pet to be unhappy at first. Once your cat accepts the leash, you can progress by heading to the balcony together. A leash is also a good idea when you bring your cat to the vet or other public spaces.
As a cat parent, we understand you want to share your favorite al fresco spot with your cat. We've all heard numerous horror stories about cats falling off balconies or windows, and this mishap could have been avoided. Before getting a cat, we strongly advise all cat parents to cat proof their apartment using the methods outlined above.
These tried-and-tested tips ensure that your tabby stays safe while doing so. That is a win for both of you with no sacrifice required.