We all love our pets and would be devastated if something happened to them. Some animals, like guinea pigs or goldfish, are easy to contain within our yard with no need for fences. Others have more of a free spirit. Cats are particularly this way inclined. If your cat is an outdoor cat and has a love for jumping over the fence, then keeping it safe and within the limits of your yard is going to be a challenge.
The key to restricting your cat’s access to the outside world is how much it likes climbing. If your cat tends to wander along the top of the fence or make itself comfortable on the house roof, then no substitute comfortable locations will prevent it from jumping.
There are several solutions to the question of trying to prevent your cat from jumping over the fence. They range in cost for installation – some are commercial products, but some can be an excellent DIY project for you or your family. As each cat is different, some methods will be more successful than others when it comes to cat containment.
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Some people use the method of keeping their cats indoors but allowing them to roam within an enclosed area. These can be framed with plant latticing or wire mesh. They don’t block the view or airflow, but the cat is limited to that particular space. If you have a decent-sized yard, these can work very well, but if you have less space, you may wish to try other methods, especially if existing buildings limit your space.
Putting wire or netting at the top of your fencing acts as an effective deterrent to your cat getting over the fence. Commercial products are available, or you can buy flexible garden mesh and attach it to your fence – this works exceptionally well on wood panel fences. The narrow mesh strips make balance difficult when a cat attempts to jump onto or from the cat fencing.
Unlike a dog, your typical pet cat often has no apparent concern for its safety. It aims for high posts and tops of the fence using trees or any nearby building to escape your yard. Although it may look amusing as your cat attempts to climb this fine line of fence edging, be prepared. As it lands inside the fence boundary of your yard, expect to get displeasure expressed about the attempts you have made to keep it safe. Sometimes it’s a challenge to keep cats happy.
Fence edging also has the benefit of keeping other cats out of your garden, which should lead to less spraying by tomcats and other territorial behaviors.
Similarly, putting roller bars or commercially available cat-spikes on your fence edge will make life difficult for your cat when attempting to balance on it.
Roller bars lack stability, and your cat will very rarely be able to balance on them. They do not add much extra height to your fence but check for governing statutory requirements and your neighbors before installing them. Metal cylinders, attached to your existing fence with brackets, prevent cats from jumping on the top of the fence due to their rolling motion. If your cat can keep its balance on a cat fence like this, make videos and get it on social media #fencing cat, perhaps?
Cat-spikes are exactly as they sound – rows of spikes are attached to the top of your fence. These are safe for cat fences as they are on the blunter side. Cats don’t often find this sensation acceptable, so this stops them from jumping onto your cat fence. Again, check with the statutory requirements and your neighbors first.
These methods will work best on higher fences. You may seriously have to consider making your fence higher with lattice-work if your fences are low enough for your cat to jump over. This depends on the athletic ability of your cat to jump.
There are commercial products that send signals from a collar worn by your cat to a buried wire. There are some pros and cons to this method. Your cat may not like collars – the flea collars you buy somehow don’t stay on and as for collars with bells to protect birds? Impossible. However, it should not take long for your cat to realize that the signal from the buried wire is not pleasant, and so the collar may not have to be a long-term accessory.
This system has the benefit of not being visible. You can keep your fences at their current height, without unsightly meshes/spikes or rollers. Wires are also ideal for tenants to use due to the lack of infrastructure.
This method will only have the effect of keeping your cat in, not keeping other animals out. If other cats entering your property is also a problem, then a dual approach may be a better solution.
The effectiveness of your cat fence is dependent entirely on how well the fence keeps your cat from jumping over it. An athletic cat will see the fence as a challenge, so to keep cats like this near the ground is also a challenge. Of course, you want your cat fence to look the best it can, so yet another challenge. But the main thing is the safety of your pet, which we hope you can achieve with the help of options like these.