Round Table Farm

Donkeys, Goats, Books and Chickens

A Catyard?

Witness the stalking prowess of Pico!

Witness the stalking prowess of Pico!

Yes, we have a catyard. In 2002, we moved here from a small town, but we were in the middle of the town, two blocks from the college. We had a catdoor and our little furry beasts could come and go as they pleased and we never lost one to traffic or dog attack, and certainly not to wild animals. So when we moved to the sticks of northern NM, we kept the same behavior. We installed a catdoor and allowed our clawed friends to come and go at all hours of the day and night.

After loosing one, we decided to close all kitties in at night. However, we continued to loose 2 more, during daylight hours. Loosing that many pets, and young ones too, in less than a year was difficult. So, we decided to make out cats indoor kitties. Well, after a taste of freedom, none of them were happy with that. Riots ensued which involved some very disagreeable cat behavior. I’ll let you use your imaginations, but my pillow is sacred and shall not be peed upon by any!

Phil truly believes he is camouflaged.

Phil truly believes he is camouflaged.

In response, we decided to put on the work gloves, get out the fencing, and do some cement work. Along 1 side of the house is a fully enclosed catyard that is ~60 foot long and roughly 7 feet wide. The cats can access their yard through the washroom window whenever they please, and they do please quite often. We also put a variety of logs and questionable furniture in their yard for them to play tag around. There are also several fast-growing elms that provide shade during the summer. We have to cut them down 1-2 times a year as they will push through the catyard ceiling and possibly damage the foundation of the house.

Pico and Phil spend quality time hunting each other in the catyard.

Pico and Phil spend quality time hunting each other in the catyard.

The sides of the yard are chainlink with 1 people gate on the east end. WE then put some crossbars from the roof to the top rails of the chainlink. To these bars we attached chickenwire since it is lighter to work with. Along the bottom of the chainlink, we did a few inches of cement work to dissuade digging. The catyard has been open for business for several years now and we and the cats are quite happy with it.

Once upon a time, the variety of wildlife (cougars, bears, coyotes, hawks, owls) and the occasional neighbor dog threatened our cats. Since we put the catyard in, we have not lost a housecat to these predators. The cats even manage to catch the occasional sub-IQ bird that gets trapped in the catyard. Bliss for the cats; peace of mind for us.

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