The 10 Best Outdoor Cat Houses for Winter
Providing a warm, dry shelter for outdoor cats during the winter months is important for their well-being and comfort. There are several options for outdoor cat houses that can help protect them from the elements. One option is to purchase a prefabricated outdoor cat house. These are typically made of insulated materials and have a slanted roof to allow snow and rain to easily slide off. Some also have a door flap to help keep out drafts and a removable bottom panel for easy cleaning. Another option is to build a homemade outdoor cat house. This can be as simple as repurposing a large plastic storage container or an old wooden crate, and adding insulation and a door flap to keep out drafts. You can also use a pre-made cat house kit or plan to create a custom design.
Regardless of which option you choose, it’s important to make sure the cat house is large enough for the cat to comfortably stand up, turn around, and lie down in. It should also be located in a sheltered area that is protected from wind and precipitation. Finally, make sure to provide plenty of bedding material, such as straw or a blanket, to help keep the cat warm.
TIP: Use catnip, treats and a heated blanket to attract cats to use the cat house
- The 10 Best Outdoor Cat Houses for Winter
- How to Choose an Outdoor Cat House
- Our Favorite Outdoor Cat Houses
- Outdoor Cat House Comparison Chart
- 1. GDLF Insulated Outdoor Cat House
- 2. Outdoor Feral Cat House
- 3. Aivitutin Outdoor Feral Cat House
- 4. Petsfit Large Feral Cat Shelter
- 5. Petsfit Outdoor Cat House
- 6. The Kitty Tube
- 7. KatKabin Premium
- 8. K&H Pet Products Outdoor Heated Kitty House
- 9. K&H Pet Products Thermo Birchwood Heated Kitty Home
- 10. Palram Pets Mona Outdoor Cat House
- Outdoor Cat House Comparison Chart
- Frequently Asked Questions
How to Choose an Outdoor Cat House
Ultimately, the best outdoor cat house for your cat will depend on your specific needs and preferences. Consider factors such as size, insulation, and the ability to keep out drafts and moisture when choosing a cat house. Here are some features that you may want to consider when looking for an outdoor cat house:
Look for a cat house that is made of insulating materials, such as foam or fibreglass, to help keep the inside warm. This is especially important for colder climates.
There are several ways to insulate an outdoor cat house to help keep your cat warm during the winter months:
- Use insulation materials: Add insulation materials, such as foam or fibreglass, to the walls, floor, and roof of the cat house. This will help to trap heat inside the house and keep it warm.
- Add a door flap: A door flap can help keep out drafts and provide an extra layer of insulation. You can purchase a door flap separately or make your own using a piece of heavy-duty plastic or canvas.
- Provide bedding material: Add plenty of bedding material, such as straw or a blanket, to the inside of the cat house. This will help to trap heat and keep your cat warm.
- Place a heating pad or self-heating pad inside the cat house: Heating pads and self-heating pads can help to keep the inside of the cat house warm. Just be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions to ensure the pad is used safely.
- Insulate the outside of the cat house: If the outside of the cat house is not already insulated, you can add an extra layer of insulation to the walls, roof, and floor. This will help to keep the house warm and protect it from the cold.
By following these steps, you can help to insulate your outdoor cat house and keep your cat warm and comfortable during the winter months.
2. Slanted Roof
A slanted roof on a cat house can provide several benefits:
- Allows rain and snow to easily slide off: A slanted roof will allow rain and snow to easily slide off, rather than accumulate on top of the house. This can help to prevent leaks and keep the inside of the house dry.
- Prevents the buildup of ice and snow: In colder climates, a slanted roof can help to prevent the buildup of ice and snow on the house. This can help to protect the house from damage and make it easier for the cat to access the entrance.
- Provides better drainage: A slanted roof will allow water to drain off the house more easily, rather than pooling on top. This can help to prevent water from seeping into the house and causing damage.
Overall, a slanted roof can help to keep the inside of a cat house dry and protected from the elements, making it a more comfortable and safe place for your cat to spend time.
3. Raised Flooring
It is generally a good idea for a cat house to have raised flooring or legs for a number of reasons. One reason is that raised flooring or legs can help to keep the interior of the cat house dry and free of moisture. If the floor of the cat house is in direct contact with the ground, it may become damp or wet, which can be uncomfortable for the cat and create an unhealthy living environment. Raised flooring or legs can also help to keep the cat house warmer in colder weather, as it will be off the ground and less exposed to the elements. In addition, raised flooring or legs can help to keep the cat house clean and free of debris, as it will be elevated above the ground and less likely to accumulate dirt or other materials. Finally, raised flooring or legs can help to prevent the cat house from being flooded in areas with heavy rainfall or standing water. Overall, raised flooring or legs can provide a number of benefits for a cat house and are worth considering when building or purchasing one.
3. Door Flap
A door flap on a cat house can provide several benefits:
- Keeps out drafts: A door flap can help to keep out drafts and provide an extra layer of insulation. This can make the inside of the house more comfortable for your cat, especially in colder weather.
- Protects from the elements: A door flap can also help to protect the inside of the house from wind, rain, and snow. This can help to keep your cat dry and comfortable when spending time inside the house.
- Provides privacy: A door flap can also help to provide privacy for your cat, giving them a place to retreat to when they want to be left alone.
Overall, a door flap can help to make a cat house a more comfortable and protected place for your cat to spend time. Just be sure to keep the flap clean and in good repair to ensure it is functioning properly.
4. Escape Door
An outdoor cat house should have an escape door to allow the cat to escape in case of an emergency, such as a fire or a predator entering the house. If a cat feels trapped within an outside cat house, some cats won’t utilize it. The escape door should be located on the side of the house that is farthest from the main entrance and should be large enough for the cat to pass through easily. It is also a good idea to place the escape door at a lower level so that the cat can easily access it in case of an emergency. An escape door can help ensure the safety and well-being of your outdoor cat, and provide peace of mind for you as the owner.
5. Removable Bottom Panel
A removable bottom panel on a cat house can provide several benefits:
- Makes cleaning easier: A removable bottom panel can make it easier to clean the inside of the cat house. You can simply lift the panel out and sweep or scrub the inside as needed.
- Allows for ventilation: A removable bottom panel can also allow for better ventilation inside the cat house, which can be especially important in warmer weather.
- Allows for inspection: A removable bottom panel can also make it easier to inspect the inside of the cat house for any issues, such as pests or damage.
Overall, a removable bottom panel can make a cat house easier to maintain and keep clean, which can help to ensure that it is a comfortable and safe place for your cat to spend time.
The size of a cat house will depend on the size of the cat or cats that will be using it. In general, a cat house should be large enough for the cat to comfortably stand up, turn around, and lie down.
As a rough guide, a cat house that is at least 18 inches (46 cm) wide and 24 inches (61 cm) long should be sufficient for most cats. If you have a large breed or multiple cats, you may want to look for a larger cat house.
It’s also important to consider the height of the cat house. Cats should be able to stand up and move around inside the house without their head or tail touching the ceiling.
In addition to these considerations, it’s a good idea to look for a cat house that is made of sturdy materials and has a solid construction. This will help to ensure that the house is safe and comfortable for your cat to use.
When choosing a location for an outdoor cat house, there are several things to consider to ensure that it provides the best possible shelter:
- Protection from the elements: Look for a location that is sheltered from wind, rain, and snow. A spot under a porch or deck, or in a corner of a garage or shed, can be a good option.
- Sun exposure: Choose a location that gets some sunlight during the day, but not so much that the house becomes overheated. A spot in the shade or partial shade can be ideal.
- Safety: Look for a location that is safe and secure, away from busy roads and other potential hazards.
- Accessibility: Make sure the cat house is easily accessible for the cat, with a clear path to the entrance.
By considering these factors, you can help to ensure that the cat house provides the best possible shelter for your cat.
8. Bedding Material
There are several options for bedding material that you can use in a cat house to keep your cat warm and comfortable:
- Straw: Straw is a popular choice for outdoor cat houses because it is inexpensive and easy to find. It is also biodegradable and absorbent, making it easy to clean up. However, it may not be as warm as other options.
- Blankets: Blankets or towels can provide a softer and more comfortable surface for your cat to lie on. They can also be easily laundered if they become soiled.
- Fleece: Fleece is a synthetic material that is soft and warm, making it a good choice for cold weather. It is also machine washable and easy to care for.
- Dog bedding: Some people use dog bedding, such as foam or a self-warming pad, in their cat houses. These materials can provide a soft and warm surface for your cat to lie on.
Ultimately, the best bedding material for your cat house will depend on your specific needs and preferences. Consider factors such as warmth, comfort, and ease of cleaning when choosing bedding material.
9. Sturdy Construction
When choosing a cat house, it’s important to look for one that has a sturdy and well-constructed design. Here are a few things to consider:
- Materials: Look for a cat house that is made of durable materials, such as wood, plastic, or metal. These materials are more likely to hold up well to the elements and provide a stable structure.
- Insulation: If the cat house will be used in a cold climate, look for one that is made of insulating materials, such as foam or fibreglass, to help keep the inside warm.
- Roof: The roof of the cat house should be slanted to allow rain and snow to easily slide off and prevent the buildup of ice and snow.
- Door: The door of the cat house should be properly fitting and secure, to keep out drafts and protect against the elements.
- Floor: The floor of the cat house should be solid and sturdy, to provide a stable and comfortable surface for your cat.
By considering these factors, you can help to ensure that the cat house you choose has a sturdy and well-constructed design that will provide a safe and comfortable place for your cat to spend time.
10. Easy To Clean
Look for a cat house that is easy to clean, either by having a removable bottom panel or a design that allows for easy access to the inside.
11. Attractive Design
While an attractive design is not essential for the functionality of a cat house, it can be a nice feature for both the cat and the owner. A well-designed cat house can add to the aesthetic appeal of a home or yard and can be a source of pride for the owner.
Our Favorite Outdoor Cat Houses
There are many different outdoor cat houses available, and the best one for your cat will depend on your specific needs and preferences. Here are a few options that may be worth considering:
Outdoor Cat House Comparison Chart
|Image||Check on Amazon||Cost||Recommended|
|Insulated||Heated||Waterproof||Slanted Roof||Raised Flooring||Door Flap||Escape Door||Cleaning||Size||Weight|
|GDLF Insulated Outdoor Cat House|
|21.5 x 34.5 x 27.2 inches||41 lbs (18.6 kg)|
|Outdoor Feral |
|$54.99||1 adult cat |
or 2 kittens
|23.6 x 20.9 x 18.3 inches||36.8 lbs (16.7 kg)|
|Aivitutin Outdoor Feral Cat House||$139.99||1-2 cats||No||No||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Openable|
|With Ramp: 35.4″L x 28.86″W x 33.27″H||42 lbs |
|Petsfit Large Feral Cat Shelter||$152.99||3 adult cats or|
mum & kittens
|29.5″ L X 19″W X 29″H||32.7 lbs (14.8 kg)|
|Petsfit Outdoor Cat House||$147.99||1-2 cats||No||No||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Removable |
|30″ L X 22″W X 29″H||32.7 lbs (14.8 kg)|
|The Kitty Tube||$169.99|
2-3 adult cats or 4-5 kittens
|Yes||No||Yes||No||Yes||Yes||Unique door design that protects cats from predators||Removable lid||24 x 24 x 23 inches||23.6 lbs |
|KatKabin Premium||$78.85||1 cat||No||No||Yes||No||Yes||Yes||No||Can be taken apart for cleaning||22.83 x 16.93 x 14.57 inches||7.17 lbs (3.25 kg)|
|K&H Pet Products Outdoor Heated Kitty House||$79.99||1-2 cats||Yes||Available heated or unheated||No||Yes||No||Yes||Yes||Hook and loop fastening can be easily opened||21.5″ x 26.5″ x 15.5″||6.9 lbs (3.11kg)|
|K&H Pet Products Thermo Birchwood Heated Kitty Home||$94.99||1 cat||No||Available heated or unheated||Yes||Yes||No||Yes||Yes|
Large front door opening
|16″D x 18″W x 15″H||10 lbs (4.5 kg)|
|Palram Pets Mona Outdoor Cat House||$79.99||1 cat||No||No||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Large front and back opening||23.7 x 20.35 x 21.7 inches||8.1 lbs (3.67 kg)|
1. GDLF Insulated Outdoor Cat House
This feral cat shelter comes with cosy foam insulation on every wall, ceiling, and floor. This provides cats with the best protection against cold and heat. The door curtain and an L-shaped offset entrance design significantly lessen the amount of rain and chilly wind that enters the house. The roof opens for easy cleaning. The raised legs help keep the shelter dry. This cat house is probably the best and warmest outdoor cat house for winter, especially if you add your own heating pad to it.
21.5 x 34.5 x 27.2 inches; 41 Pounds
2. Outdoor Feral Cat House
This cat house is ideal for 1 adult cat or 2 smaller cats. It features an asphalt roof, plastic feet, PVC door flaps and a removable floor. Made from 100% solid wood. It lacks insulation though and doesn’t have an escape door at the back. A good budget option if you are happy to add your own insulation. Straw works well as a natural insulation material.
23.6 x 20.9 x 18.3 inches; 36.8 Pounds
3. Aivitutin Outdoor Feral Cat House
We like this cat house because it has great features. It comes with a detachable floor. The upper and lower levels can be joined together if the floor is removed. The most recent improvement allows for the opening of the roof. The cat home is very simple to clean, and the open roof allows for adequate airflow inside the cat enclosure. Weather- and water-resistant with an asphalt roof.
There are two front entrances and a centre little hole to prevent kitty from getting stuck, allowing it to leave swiftly in case of an emergency.
The balcony is large and has a jump platform. For resting or sunbathing, cats love the top-level deck.
With Ramp: 35.4″L x 28.86″W x 33.27″H
Without Ramp: 29.53″L x 28.86″W x 33.27″H
Upper sleeping area: 25.6″L x 11.8″W
Balcony: 25.6″L x 11.4″W
Bottom Level: 25.6″L x 25.6″W
Door:7.1 L x 8.3″ W
Ramp: 10.6″ L x 7.1″ W
4. Petsfit Large Feral Cat Shelter
The Petsfit large outdoor cat home is made to connect you with the neighborhood’s furry residents and provide a place for stray cats to rest, relax, warm up, and protect themselves from the elements and predators. This is a spacious outdoor house that is ideal for cat catios and can accommodate many cats.
We believe that this cat house would be more suited for mild winters as opposed to snowy ones. It’s not insulated and is made from light-duty wood. It has some nice features such as the slanted asphalt roof but the front door doesn’t have any cover. It needs PVC curtains to keep snow and rain out. You can add it but there are better options available that have better features.
Outer dimension: 29.5″ L X 19″W X 29″H
Inner dimension: 27. 5″L x 17. 5″W x 20″H
Front door: 8″W X 10″H
Escape door: 8″W X 9″H.
5. Petsfit Outdoor Cat House
The Petsfit cat house is perfect for 1-2 cats. On warmer days, the upper terrace is a wonderful place for cats to sunbathe. It can also be used as a feeding station. The wood is varnished with non-toxic wood protection paint. The quality of the wood isn’t that great though as spruce is a softwood. This cat house is good if you can place it in a sheltered area.
30″ L X 22″W X 29″H
Inner dimension: 19″ L X 19″W X 11″H
Front door: 6″W X 7″H
Escape door: 6″W X 6″H.
6. The Kitty Tube
The Kitty Tube is a great alternative to wooden cat houses. It’s a really good outdoor cat house for multiple cats. It’s well-insulated with straw, moisture resistant and has a raised floor to keep cats off the cold ground. The top lid can be removed for easy cleaning. The interior is smooth and can be quickly cleaned with a garden hose thanks to the one-piece design. Even in the heaviest downpours, the dome lid and machine-washable bespoke pet pillow keep your pet dry. Your pet will have a cozy, dry home in the Kitty Tube. Your cat may easily pass through the one-door design while predators like dogs or coyotes are unable to gain access to your cat.
24 x 24 x 23 inches; 23.59 Pounds
7. KatKabin Premium
The Katkabin is a budget version of the Kitty Tube. It does come with a winter warmer but customers say it doesn’t keep its shape. The plastic door flap moves easily in wind and rain allowing water to get in. Therefore, this cat house needs to be placed in a sheltered area away from rain and wind.
22.83 x 16.93 x 14.57 inches; 7.17 Pounds
8. K&H Pet Products Outdoor Heated Kitty House
The K&H Pet Products heated kitty house is great if you can provide access to a garage, barn or any other dry sheltered area. It’s weather resistant but not fully waterproof. K&H only employs materials of the highest caliber. To go beyond electrical norms, they collaborate with MET Labs. Each K&H electrical product is safety approved, giving you the assurance that your pet and your home are safe when using them.
21.5″ x 26.5″ x 15.5″
9. K&H Pet Products Thermo Birchwood Heated Kitty Home
It’s best to use this kitty home in an indoor or sheltered area (garage, shed, barn, deck etc.). It’s not insulated and does not have raised legs to keep the bottom dry in bad weather. You should never cover the heat pad with any other materials when it’s on as it could cause it to malfunction. K&H only employs materials of the highest calibre. To go beyond electrical norms, they collaborate with MET Labs. Each K&H electrical product is safety approved, giving you the assurance that your pet and your home are safe when using them.
18 x 16 x 15 inches
10. Palram Pets Mona Outdoor Cat House
This teepee-shaped kitty house comes with two doors and a transparent wall. It’s durable and lightweight. You need to use this cat house in a sheltered indoor area or anchor it to the ground. It’s too light to stay in place in stormy weather otherwise. Customers say it has gaps around the doors. This means you would need to add extra weatherproofing to it to keep it fully dry. Not the best for the price as it lacks some important features.
Outside Dimensions: W: 20.35″ x h: 21.7″ x L: 23.7″
Inside Space: W 20″ x H: 18.9″ x L: 22.5
Frequently Asked Questions
FAQ’S About Outdoor Cat Houses
Are Heated Outdoor Cat Houses Safe?
Heated outdoor cat houses can be a safe and comfortable option for outdoor cats, especially in cold weather. However, it’s important to choose a well-insulated and safe model that is designed specifically for outdoor use. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for safe use.
Do Outdoor Cat Houses Need Two Doors?
Not necessarily, however, some cats may refuse to use an outdoor cat house if it doesn’t have an emergency escape door in case of predator attacks.
How Can I Heat an Outdoor Cat House Without Electricity?
There are several ways to heat an outdoor cat house without electricity:
- Use a self-heating pad: Some outdoor cat houses come with self-heating pads that use your cat’s body heat to warm the inside of the house. These pads are typically made of insulated material and can be placed on the floor of the cat house.
- Use a heated water bottle: A heated water bottle can be placed inside the cat house to provide a source of warmth. Just be sure to wrap the bottle in a towel or blanket to prevent your cat from getting burned.
- Use a solar-powered heater: Some outdoor cat houses come with solar-powered heaters that use the sun’s energy to warm the inside of the house. These heaters can be placed on the roof of the cat house and are typically activated by a thermostat.
- Use a chemical hand warmer: Chemical hand warmers can be placed inside the cat house to provide a source of warmth. Just be sure to wrap the hand warmer in a towel or blanket to prevent your cat from getting burned.
- Use blankets and bedding: Adding blankets and bedding to the cat house can help insulate it and keep your cat warm. Just be sure to choose materials that are durable and can withstand the elements.
By using one of these methods, you can help keep your outdoor cat warm and comfortable in cold weather. Just be sure to monitor your cat’s behavior and the temperature inside the cat house to ensure that it is not too cold or too hot.
Where Should I Place an Outdoor Cat House?
When placing an outdoor cat house, there are several factors to consider:
- Shelter from the elements: Choose a location that provides shelter from wind, rain, and snow. A spot under a porch or in a protected area of your yard can be a good choice.
- Sun exposure: Cats can get cold in the winter, but they can also get too hot in the summer. Consider the amount of sun exposure the location gets and choose a spot that will provide some shade in the summer.
- Safety: Choose a location that is safe for your cat, away from busy roads and other potential hazards.
- Accessibility: Make sure the location is easily accessible for your cat and that it is not too far from your home.
- Privacy: Cats like to have a place where they can retreat to when they want to be alone. Choose a location that provides some privacy for your cat.
By considering these factors, you can help ensure that your outdoor cat house is a safe and comfortable place for your cat to stay.