Best Cat Enclosures for Caravans

Growing up I remember some great camping trips, one of the biggest moments was setting up the tent in a hurry before night fall. Fast forward to today and I have a family to consider. But what do you do if you are traveling with your cat in your caravan? How do you keep them under control?

You travel with your kitty, and its starting to get restless riding around. You want it to get some time outside, but since cats are little escape artists, you want to be sure your cat will be in the same place you left it.

There are a few different ways to accomplish this, but the way a cat will probably appreciate is by having an enclosure system that you can set up on beautiful days for your cat to play and get fresh air.

We’ve compiled a list of some excellent enclosures and we’ve answered your questions about how to choose below. Let’s take a look.

Quick Comparison of Cat Enclosures


How to choose a cat enclosure

There are a few different things to consider for your cat enclosure. You may want to consider any of the following features.

Temporary or permanent?

Enclosures made of fine mesh are great for travel, but you’ll need to set them up each time. If you pick up to travel a lot, and you’re available to supervise your cat’s outdoor time, then a temporary cat dome might be the best option.

If you stay in one place for extended periods of time and want to be able to set the enclosure up and leave it out for a while, there are metal structures similar to kennels that you can pop into place and leave outside.

Protection

What’s the environment like? If your cat is exposed to harsher elements, you might want something with a dedicated rain fly or sunshade so that your cat can be outside without being miserable.

You also want to consider predators. If you are in a remote space and plan to leave your cat outside unsupervised, there’s a good chance you’ll need a stronger enclosure than the typical mesh one. Enclosures that are metal offer some measure of protection from predators, especially if you have kittens, but you will need to have some moderate supervision.

Set-up

Sturdier enclosures, or ones that offer multiple levels, are not as easy to set up, but they do provide some degree of durability and permanence. They allow your cat to climb and offer better protection than mesh enclosures.

The downside is that you might need two people to set up the enclosure, or it might take you longer than a few seconds to get things situated. If you must set up the enclosure and take it down again every day, this could get old.

A mesh enclosure is ready in seconds. You pop it out and place it where you want your cat to play. The downside is that it isn’t as durable and you need to offer a lot more supervision of your cat’s playing.

If you don’t need to set it up and take it down every day, then you might enjoy something that can be assembled and left outside for a period of time. Your cat can climb higher and be kept safer.

Why use a cat enclosure?

It’s essential to give your cat some time to spend outside. Indoor cats that receive access to outdoors are less likely to be bored and destructive inside your house or camper. They need to be able to fulfill their evolutionary needs by spending some time outside.

Juggling your cat’s mental and physical well-being. This video explains both:

With dangers the outdoors poses isn’t easy. First of all, your cat can climb out of any barrier that you might put around it, so the enclosure must be fully enclosed to retain your cat.

Second, outdoor cats are highly likely to die in a traffic accident. In fact, this is the leading cause of outdoor cat death.

Third, other issues involve your cat’s immune system. Kittens are susceptible to diseases and parasites they pick up freely roaming outside. Serious transmittable diseases and parasites include toxoplasmosis, feline leukemia, and feline immunodeficiency virus. All of these shorten your cat’s lifespan or are quickly fatal if left untreated.

Cats can also be detrimental to local wildlife. Cats are hunters at heart, and the risks to local bird and small animal populations are severe. Although nothing can be done about feral and wild cats, by enclosing your pet cat, you allow the bird and small wildlife population a short respite from hunting.

Fourth, cats that can play outdoors show fewer signs of physical issues such as unnecessary weight gain. They remain more flexible and can stimulate their senses more frequently. They also have a chance to wear down claws more naturally which causes less scratching indoors.

Our best choice cat enclosures

Let’s take a look at the list of our favorite cat enclosures. Many of them are easy to set up, and all offer necessary protection from elements but allow cats plenty of room to play.

01. Kittywalk Systems Cat Teepee

Kittywalk Systems Cat Teepee is a multifunctional cat enclosure designed to accommodate multiple cats. It’s made of steel framing with nylon net designed to keep cats in when the area isn’t secure. It’s also possible to use without netting in protected areas.

There are a few platforms for cats to sleep up high, satisfying their urge to move upwards away from danger when vulnerable. The bottom part is open to the ground so they can get some time with the earth while they play.

The entire piece can be put together in just about 20 minutes, and it’s easy to take down for transportation. Although the levels aren’t just pop-out-and-go, it does offer your cats space to jump and climb that single level enclosures don’t.

It is compatible with other Kittywalk products and has two standard doors to connect to other things. It comes with its own storage bag for easy transport.

Pros:

  • Designed for multiple cats
  • Plenty of space for cats to jump from one level to the other.
  • Easy and quick to assemble

Cons:

  • The top layer is only big enough for a small cat or kitten
  • Cannot be left outdoors permanently
  • Doesn’t come with an optional floor piece for areas with less than ideal ground space.

02. ABO Gear Kitty Compound Cat Play House

ABO Gear’s playhouse is a tent style enclosure that requires no tools to assemble. It just pops out of place so you can set it on the ground and go. It comes with two stakes to keep it from being moved around.

It comes with a tunnel piece to add extra interest to the enclosure. You can use the tent piece without the tunnel if you don’t have space or you can use the tunnel alone. You can also connect it to other products from ABO to create a habitat.

Both pieces have their own storage bag, and directions are sewn directly inside the enclosure, so you don’t lose them. It also has zippered doors at both ends, and the end of the tunnel piece can also be closed off so your cats can run down but not out of the tunnel.

Getting the zippers together to attach other pieces can be a bit of a challenge since you have to fit male and female zippers together. It’s also a learning curve to place the enclosure back in the storage bag, so make sure you note how it looked before popping it out.

Pros:

  • Takes seconds to set up
  • Large enclosure at 120 x 17 x 17 inches
  • Compatible with tunnel and other ABO offerings

Cons:

  • Zippers can be difficult to match
  • Getting the cat back out can be challenging if they don’t come willingly.

Best Choice Products Habitat For Indoor Cats 

Best Choice is another tent style enclosure that snaps into place in seconds. This enclosure is slightly smaller than the ABO at 75 x 75 x 42 inches. It’s made of durable mesh that resists moderate amounts of claw contact.

It doesn’t attach to tunnels or other types of enclosures. Instead, it’s a standalone shelter that allows cats to get outside while still being fully enclosed. It has a full zipper door to make getting cats in and out of the tent easy. Although the quality isn’t as good as some other tent enclosures, it makes a great back up option or travel option.

This tent is a more straightforward version of some of the more elaborate cat enclosures and is best for someone who needs a temporary outdoor play space or is sure that they won’t want to attach other products such as a tunnel. If you are traveling a lot, this folds down and slides into a carry case and weighs just over two pounds.

Pros:

  • The simple design allows for set-up and take-down in seconds
  • A single door makes things easier to get in and out of
  • Great for temporary play spaces or travel

Cons:

  • No ability to expand to a habitat style enclosure
  • Lesser quality than other tent style enclosures

Pawhut 88" Metal Outdoor Small Animal Enclosure 

Pawhut’s enclosure is a sturdy metal kennel style enclosure with plenty of space for your cats to run around. It has a fully enclosed roof, plus top and side entrances for placing your cats inside and feeding them. It measures 87.75” long by 40” wide by 40.5’ high.

It’s more permanent than mesh style enclosures and can withstand some weather while outside. If you need something you can leave out for more extended periods of time, the metal frame is an excellent way to do that.

It doesn’t require much assembly. Snap the pieces together to bring up the frame. Taking things down isn’t hard but might take more time than the tent style enclosures. It’s a large and better-protected space.

The metal frame is galvanized and weather protected. It has a polyethylene cover, so you don’t worry about rust when it rains. You might need some help getting things to snap together the first time and to take things down, but after that, you should be good to go.

Pros:

  • Durable, weather resistant galvanized metal with polyethylene covering.
  • Spacious
  • Can be left outdoors

Cons:

  • Heavy and there’s no carry case or bag
  • Might require two people to set up and take down

RORAIMA outdoor use Instant Portable Cat Tent or Habitat

Roraima is another tent style habitat that’s easy to fold out and comes with a convenient travel bag for storage. It measures 75" long by 60” wide by 36” high and has 30 square feet of space.

It’s intended to use for multiple cats outdoors or on a large porch area. It has breathable mesh enclosures to ensure that there’s plenty of ventilation while your cat plays outside. The mesh is strong enough to withstand light clawing. It’s open at the bottom so your cat can come in contact with the ground.

It has a rain fly to keep light rain away and provide some shade while your cat plays. You can choose to attach it or not. It has two zipper doors to make getting in and out easy. You can stake it to the ground to prevent it from moving around too much. There’s no tunnel available yet.

The design of this tent is to allow maximum playspace while still being simple to set up and take down. It can’t be left outside, and you will need to stake it securely to prevent your cat from escaping from the bottom. The company plans to release other habitat offerings but doesn't have anything yet. It’s a simple design for temporary play space.

Pros:

  • 30 square feet of space
  • Attachable rain fly for shade or light rain protection.

Cons:

  • No other attachable habitat pieces though it might be compatible with other company’s products.

Our Best Choice Cat Enclosure

Our favorite cat enclosure is the ABO tent habitat. It offers a quick set up so you can move it around and store it easily, and it’s compatible with an extensive line of other ABO cat habitat products. It comes with a fun run that’s fully enclosed to give your cat an interesting, stimulating environment.

Although it doesn’t offer full protection from predators, it does prevent your cat from causing predatory harm to the local wildlife. It’s large and has plenty of room for your cat to play, lounge, and have access to outdoor stimulation.

What kind of cat enclosure do you need and what are your cat’s personalities like? Let us know in the comments below.

Lindsey Browlingdon
 

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