How To Make A Feral Cat Shelter – the Short and Long Term Shelters
23 December, 2015

If you encounter a stray or feral cat and would like to build the kitty a home outside of your own home, below are two different structures you can put together on your own.  You don’t even have to be a master contractor (way easier than IKEA), but just have some materials handy.  The first shelter is you find yourself in an emergency and need something quickly and the second feral cat shelter is more durable.

Below is a quick way to build a feral cat shelter in an emergency:

In an emergency, you can quickly make a temporary shelter out of a cardboard box, trash bags, duct tape and shredded newspaper.  The cardboard provides some insulation, the trash bags will keep the shelter dry and the newspaper will let the cats some warmth and comfort.

1.  Take a cardboard box and tape all the seams shut with the duct tape.  Then try to wrap a heavy duty trash bag around the cardboard box and secure it with duct tape around the sides of the box.  Make as few seams as possible and cover duct tape over any to keep it well insulated. 

2.  Try using one of the shorter sides and a few inches above the ground, cut open a doorway about 6 inches by 6 inches.  It’s important to leave some room at the bottom of the doorway and not have the opening right on the ground.  Use duct tape to hold the loose bag around the doorway in place.  Fill the interior up to the bottom of the doorway (and a little higher towards the back of the box) loosely with shredded newspaper.

3.  Place the box shelter underneath something to protect it, like a porch and on top of something to raise it off the ground, like a pallet.  Weigh it down with a couple of bricks or rocks, heavy enough to keep it in place but not to crush the top.   Done and should last at least a few weeks!

Instructions to build the longer term more durable feral cat structure

If you want to build a more, durable long lasting feral cat shelter, here is how it’s done:

Materials needed are: a large Rubbermaid storage bin, an eight foot by two foot sheet of one-inch thick hard Styrofoam, a yardstick, a box cutter or utility knife, and straw, shredded newspaper or other insulating material. Then assemble as follows:

1.  Cut a doorway six inches by six inches in one of the long sides of the storage bin towards the corner. To prevent flooding, cut the opening so that the bottom of the doorway is several inches above the ground.

2.  Line the floor of the bin with a piece of Styrofoam, using the yardstick and box cutter to cut out the piece.

3.  Then line each of the four interior walls of the bin with a piece of the Styrofoam.  P Don’t make the Styrofoam go all the way up to the top of the bin, but leave a uniform gap of at least three inches between the top of these Styrofoam pieces and the upper piece of the bin. There needs to be room for an interior Styrofoam roof to fit.

4.  Cut out a doorway in the Styrofoam where it is lined up with the doorway that has been cut out already in the storage bin. Trace the outline of the doorway on the Styrofoam first before cutting.

5.  Stuff the bottom of the bin with straw or other insulating material to hold the Styrofoam interior wall pieces in place.  Then cut of a Styrofoam roof to rest on top of the Styrofoam interior wall pieces.

6.  Cover the bin with its lid and you are done!

Both are great ways to build shelter for a feral or stray cat that you encounter and feel good that you are taking care of the kitty.    If you want to read more about feral cats, take a look at my article:   Feral Cats are not Scary and can Be Cared for with Caution!



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