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How To Cat Proof Your Home

It is critical to know how to cat-proof your home if you’re keeping cats or fostering them. High rise flats must have meshed windows, invisible grilles or aluminium grilles with a cat-safe gap of at most 1.5 inches to prevent your cat from falling out. Also, a meshed gate prevents your cat from escaping and getting lost.

 

Most Recommended: Get 1.5-inch cat-safe aluminium window grilles!

(For a completely worry-free solution or if you have kittens, get 1.3-inch aluminium grilles.)

Cat-safe grilles. Image courtesy of Central Aluminium & Glass Construction Pte Ltd.
 
 
 

I have existing window grilles.

If you already have existing window grilles, the most affordable solution is to DIY with cable ties and hard metal mesh you can get from Daiso, hardware shops or online. Measure the size of your windows before visiting the store. An average HDB kitchen window only requires about 9 pieces of Daiso mesh, a total of $18!

You can get hard metal mesh in black or white, at different sizes here: https://s.lazada.sg/s.JKML

 

Tip: When using cable tie to secure mesh to your windows and gates, be careful of side gaps. The furkids are good at squeezing through!

Hard metal mesh from Daiso.

 

Fit the mesh on each window panel individually, either on the inner or outer side of the grille, so you can still slide the grilles. (Place your cats in another room before sliding open the grilles.)

Tip: Lock your window grilles.

Hard metal mesh is preferable over soft flimsy mesh when it comes to securing onto windows. However, soft mesh may be a good solution for other applications.

 

Qittun DIY Services also provides reinforcement solutions by revamping your existing window and gate grilles. They do installation of grilles for bathroom windows as well.

Qittun cat proof window cat safe aluminium grills grilles
Grille reinforcements for windows. Image courtesy of Qittun DIY Services.
Customised reinforcements for windows. Image courtesy of Qittun DIY Services.
Customised reinforcements for windows. Image courtesy of Qittun DIY Services.

 

 

I do not have window grilles.

Do consider installing window grilles for the safety of your cats.

You can also install invisible grilles, though these are more inconvenient to maintain. Go for thinner gaps as cats have been known to squeeze themselves through invisible grilles as well. A cat-safe gap size is 1.5 inch or less. You will also need to request for stiffeners for the invisible grilles as those grilles can be quite flexible (as opposed to aluminium grilles). As they do get looser over time, it is important to tighten invisible grilles every 2 years.

Invisible grilles are more suitable as cat-proofing for adult cats instead of kittens. You may need temporary meshing with smaller gaps if you have kittens. If there is furniture below your window where your cat can stand on and try to squeeze through the gaps between the grilles, please go for a smaller gap size for invisible grilles. Or shift the furniture away from those positions.

There are also DIY solutions that involve securing mesh with tiny screws or 3M hooks to the wall area around your window.

Harpstrings for your window.
 
Cat squeezing through 1.5-inch invisible grills as these can be flexible. (Credit: Danielle Chang)

 

I have a balcony.

Look for customised solutions by different solution providers. The Cat People is a recommended solution provider for customised cat-proofing. You can also get quotes from a few places and decide from there. Ideas here: thecatpeople.sg/cat-safety-with-cat-proof-balconies

You can also DIY with cat safety net kits like this:

focuspet cat safety net

 

This cat safety net kit can be found here: https://s.lazada.sg/s.oXj6

Please do not leave out the balcony when cat-proofing your home. It’s a dangerous spot especially when balcony doors are so easily slid open. They may be left open by anyone who forgets. Cats are curious creatures, and sometimes slip through quickly without us noticing once the doors are slid open.

Remember, it only takes one accident for your cat to lose their life.

Not Recommended: Magnetic insect screens or mosquito mesh.

There have been multiple incidents of cats tearing down these insect screens. They’re not cheap yet still unsafe.

 

 

mosquito screen cat proofing mesh
Torn by a cat.

 

mosquito screen cat proofing mesh 2
Torn by a cat.
 
 

We hope that through this article, you’ve gained a better understanding on how to cat-proof your home with the best methods that will give you a peace of mind. 🙂

 

Common Reasons (Or Excuses) For Not Cat-Proofing:

  • I’m worried about cost : The cost of cat-proofing your home will never be more expensive and painful than your cat getting injured and vet treatments of above $2000, or worse, your cat losing his or her life.

 

  • I stay on the second floor : Your cat can still get seriously injured falling from the second storey, depending on how he or she lands. If your cat is unscathed, they can get disorientated and traumatised, or run away where you may not be able to locate them. There are other dangers in the outside world like road traffic, abusers, stray dogs and heavy downpours.

 

  • My cat knows not to jump out from the window or balcony : You never know for sure what can happen. By not cat-proofing your home you are leaving it to chance. Cats CAN get distracted by birds or insects outside the window, forget themselves in a moment and lose balance while they are engrossed with the “prey”. Many owners have said “It will never happen” but it ended up happening to them. Our negligence, our cats pay the price.

 

  • I never open my windows : If you don’t ever open your windows, it should be fine to cat-proof them anyway. This creates a level of awareness where, in the event that the windows ARE eventually opened to be cleaned (or by an unsuspecting visiting relative or friend), they, and you, will be reminded that it is unsafe for the cats to leave the windows open and unmeshed. Moreover, you never know what stunts cats can eventually come up with, including turning window handles and opening sliding doors. 😱

Remember, it only takes one accident for your cat to lose their life.

Cats fall from windows on a daily basis because of ignorant or errant owners. Don’t let that happen to your cat!

 

p.s. We compiled a list of cat-proofing products and contractors here.