What is a Catio? And Other Pet Patios

Woman with a yellow jacket holding a cat. The cat is resting its head on her shoulder

Catios are the latest trend in home improvement projects in the US. Pet owners all over the country are scrambling to HomeDepots and Lowes to build their own Catio, or pet patio, only to discover that the size is all wrong–it’s too high, short, long, small, large even!

If you’re here, then you’ve heard of a Catio, and you’re probably even curious to understand more about this new fad. Or maybe you want to know how to get one installed? Or, most importantly, are Catios even safe for your pets? 

Well, you’ve come to the right place. Here at Screenmobile, we’ve been on the Catio wagon (quite literally) a while now. We have the answers to your questions and then some. 


What is a Catio?

A Catio is a patio, but for your cat, a private studio built for their comfort. It’s an enclosed  outdoor area offering four options:

  1. Built around a window. A smaller option and usually accessible by cats only through the serving window. 
  2. Built around a door. This allows us humans to also benefit from the space. A very attractive option for those living in hot climates. The screens can be tinted to shade the sun and keep out annoying flying pests. 
  3. Built independently, away from your home’s walls. A dedicated outdoor and enclosed space for your cats to live wild. 
  4. Upgrade of existing porch/patio/balcony. The open areas are closed off with beautiful screens. 

The main concern is so your pets can be outside without the danger of them running off. Many homes don’t have the luxury of a large garden, and many pet owners don’t have the luxury of letting their pet’s in and out as they need during the day. 

Work is busy these days, and you have so many things that need your attention when you get off. Then, when you get back, it’s late. You ate on the drive home, and when you come through the door, the 1,000 chores on your list come into full view. So Kitty gets ten minutes on her own, outside.

You flop into bed, exhausted, and give an apologetic look at your loyal pet. “Tomorrow”, you promise weakly. 

However, if you had a Catio, Kitty would be able to exercise all her outdoor needs while you’re away. She can curl in the direct sun, dig her claws into the soil, and chase the smells of the slow-moving snails.

A Catio, or pet patio, is peace of mind for any pet owner. 


What’s the difference between a Catio and a Cat Flap?

A cat flap is still used in both instances. A cat, or other pet, is free to roam in the enclosed room without getting into trouble. Many pet owners lock door flaps to prevent their fur babies from running out and getting lost and hurt while they’re not at home. 

You can keep your cat indoors, as many cats prefer, with the freedom to choose when to go outside. 


Are cats happy in Catios?

We only have our customer feedback to rely on when it comes to defining the happiness levels of cats and other pets in these pet patios. Saying that, our feedback has been mainly positive. Frustrated, old, and sick cats tend to make a mess, whereas free-roaming cats go outside into their Catio.

You might not see a smile on their face, but you’ll be smiling with no mess to clean up. 

San Diego Screenmobile Yelp Review

Jean A. on Yelp, 12/10/2021

Cats are safe in these outdoor enclosures. They can’t get out, but neither can anything get inside. They have the wind, fresh air, soil, and direct sunlight. You can create a whole adventure for your cat with intricate and challenging equipment. He may not want to come back indoors!


Are Catios good for indoor cats? 

Outdoor cats and indoor cats have different sets of needs. And while an indoor cat may enjoy lounging about the house, they still benefit from being outdoors. Provide your cats with a space that is safe while outdoors. An outdoor cat enclosure is the purrfect solution for your domesticated pet. 

If anything, a Catio is more important if you have an indoor cat. It will encourage cats to get outside without leaving their comforts. Your indoor cat will love basking in the sun in her custom Catio. 


How to Build a Catio

You can easily build a Catio. You don’t need to build a foundation and alter any structural modification. Consider building a screened-in porch or patio using screened walls and doors. 

You can easily turn an existing space into a Catio, like a balcony or open terrace. And just because you’ve got arches doesn’t mean we can’t do the job, we love a challenge at ScreenMobile!

Pittsburg Screenmobile Yelp Review

Screened in arched patio now purrfect Catio


At ScreenMobile, we have experience building sunrooms, three-seasoned rooms, patios, and porches customized to your personal needs. We come directly to you. We discuss your needs, take measurements, peruse the options, and get to work. Professional installation will save you many headaches in trying to mount a DIY Catio.
Thinking a Catio is what you need? Please your pets and give us a call to set up a free consultation today.

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