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Best outdoor cat houses: Five perfect picks for your feline friends

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Whether you're looking for a handy home for your feline or stray cats to reside, outdoor cat houses can be the perfect way to offer shelter from all sorts of weather conditions.

It's a great all-year round purchase. Cats can enjoy lazing inside a shady spot come summer, while in colder months it offers refuge away from rain and snow.

Unlike outdoor cat enclosures, the outdoor cat home is not for exercising nor for giving indoor cats a taste of the outdoors; they're generally a safe sleeping spot for outdoor cats to seek and return to, especially in the event of any averse weather conditions. once a cat has spent the night, they're free to leave at any time.

A common place to put an outdoor cat house is a yard, however you can also pop in it in your garage, barn or porch which often provides extra warmth and sheltering for felines.

If you're considering which is the best outdoor cat house for your home, these perfect picks will steer you in the right direction.

PetsRadar's pick of the best outdoor cat housesBest overall outdoor cat house: K&H PET PRODUCTS Outdoor Heated Kitty HouseBest waterproof outdoor cat house: Petsfit Large Outdoor Cat HouseBest large outdoor cat house: ROCKEVER Outdoor Cat ShelterBest eco-friendly outdoor cat house: New Age Pet ecoFLEX Outdoor Cat HouseBest budget outdoor cat house: Love's Cabin Outdoor Cat HouseK&H Pet Products Outdoor Heated Cat House

Best overall outdoor cat house

Size: 22 x 18 x 17 inches | Material: Polyester | Ideal for: 1 cat

Multiple designsWater resistantHeated cat houseNo raised designCord is not very long

If you're looking to offers kitties a cosy retreat from the elements, look no further than the K&H Pet Products Outdoor Heated Kitty House.

This handy hideout is super plush and features insulated walls and a heating pad inside with a removable fleece cover that ensures a warm and comfortable place for cats to sleep through cold nights.

Made from 600 denier polyester, it's tough enough to withstand most weather conditions and is relatively water-resistant. It's most ideal when used inside a barn, garage, or porch. The product does not feature raised feet to take it off wet ground, while the heating pad features a plug that's not ideal for being fully exposed outdoors.

The cord provided is fairly short, so many buyers opt to use an extension cord, however initial set up is easy enough. once you've found your spot to place the kitty house, simply use the hook and loop system to fasten the walls, while the roof can be zippered.

once set up, there's some great features. The K&H Pet Products Outdoor Heated Kitty House features two exits with removable plastic flaps, so pets cannot be trapped by predators, and you've got to love the additional stylish designs on offer here, including a barn or log cabin design.

Petsfit Large Outdoor Cat House

Best waterproof outdoor cat house

Size: 29.5 L X 19 W X 29 H | Material: Finnish spruce | Ideal for: 2-3 adult cats & 4-5 kittens

StylishGood sizeEasy to cleanMultiple colorsRaised designNo heatingCan require tweaks to achieve full waterproofing

Come rain or snow, keeping your furry friend dry is an essential requirement when it comes to outdoor cat houses. This stylish cat condo offers furkids a roof over their head – quite literally.

Additionally, there's also enclosure walls that are made up by boards milled with angles to precisely fit, ideal for keeping kitties inside dry.

In fact, this house has everything you'd expect from a cat home, including two doorways: a traditional entranceway and extra escape door at the back in case of predators, which is essentially a stylish catflap!

What the manufacturers don't offer their cat guests, however, is heating. Pet owners can add bedding or heating pads inside to act as insulation, which can work well in winter months.

There's some great touches here that show how much thought had gone into weather-proofing. The house is covered by wood shingles, coated with non-toxic water-based paint, to hold up against the elements, while the raised floor with plastic feet protects against decay from rain.

All in all it's a pretty decent weatherproof option, although some pet owners may look to reinforce the wood trim of the roof in the event of blizzards or heavy rain showers.

If you're looking to use mainly in winter months, adding extra insulation and covering vent holes will give it the extra protection from rainwater.

ROCKEVER Outdoor Cat Shelter

Best large outdoor cat house

Size: 24.4 x 36.2 x 20.8 inches | Material: Weatherproof wood | Suitable for: 2-4 cats

Multiple colorsMultiple sizesRelatively rainproofGood protection against predatorsExpensiveCan be prone to structural damage

If you've got a whole crowd of stray cats to accommodate, then ROCKEVER Outdoor Cat Shelter is ideal. There's two sizes on offer here: you can choose a single storey, which works for 2-3 cats, or add a floor with the 2-storey offering that'll bring that number up to 3-4.

It's roomy enough for multiple felines to enjoy together, with a few openings for them to pop in and out of, which also offers a quick getaway in face of any potential predators.

With its two-storey apartment design, ROCKEVER Outdoor Cat Shelter is an ideal fort against coyotes.

It's also a fantastic choice for those looking for a rainproof option. No outdoor cat house is typically able to stay completely dry due to multiple openings, but ROCKEVER Outdoor Cat Shelter's design means very little rain comes through.

We love the multiple color choices and the inclusion of two warm mats is a nice bonus.

On the downside, it can be an expensive buy to treat the neighborhood stray cats and some buyers experience quality issues with the cat house.

New Age Pet ecoFLEX Outdoor Cat House

Best eco-friendly outdoor cat house

Size: 21.8 x 19.1 x 20.2 inches | Material: ecoFLEX | Suitable for: 1 cat

Made from recycled woodTwo stylish designsCan be customizedNo heatingCould have better predator protection

New Age Pet specialize in creating homes for pets made from ecoFLEX, which is a type of non-toxic, recycled wood and plastic polymer composite. It's not completely plastic-free, with the addition of the frame, but it's a great step in the eco direction.

Fortunately, it happens to be a rather good outdoor cat house too. Sturdy enough to take on the elements, while being cool in heat and warm in cold damp weather.

This stylish house doesn't feature insulation or heating, so you may opt to pop in a heated mat yourself. For cooler months, the house features an elevated floor that helps with ventilation.

This cat house is 1.5 inches off the ground, handy once the rain starts to accumulate on the ground. If you live somewhere with feral animals, such as deer or coyotes, note that the cat house is not so far off the ground that it would prevent curious wildlife from poking their heads in.

The product looks to help this by providing two doors to give your cat the freedom to come and go as she pleases, but it's worth considering where you place this cat house.

If you're finding that buying the stylish Mossy Oak design costs too much money, a great alternative is to buy the Tan instead and paint it with non-toxic paint.

Love's Cabin Outdoor Cat House

Best budget outdoor cat house

Size: 13 x 17 x 16.25 inches | Material: Oxford material | Suitable for: 1 cat

InexpensiveDurableRelatively waterproofCan be used inside the home tooNo raised designNo predator protectionNot suitable for feral cats

If you're looking for an inexpensive addition to your garage or porch, then Love's Cabin Outdoor Cat House could do the job.

It's an indoor/outdoor cat house so much like the more expensive K&H Pet Products Outdoor Heated Cat House it's best placed somewhere that's not directly exposed to the elements.

The cat house is made from a waterproof Oxford material, so it will stand up to light rain, but its design does not feature raised feet or solid exterior walls to handle water from the ground nor a double door feature to protect from common predators.

You'll likely find, however, that Love's Cabin Outdoor Cat House is much more durable than you expect at first sight. Its stylish grey design looks like an indoor kitty cabin, but its tough material gives it dual use. You can use it inside the home, then move it outside for your pet to sleep in.

Just keep it sheltered away from high winds as the cat house may need a spot of extra weight to keep it locked to the ground.

All in all, it's a good choice for your own pets to retreat to in the event of light rain, but if you're looking to buy for feral cats, that lack of escape door could be the deal breaker.

How to choose the best outdoor cat housePredator protection

Are you looking to buy the outdoor cat house for feral felines or pets? If it's the latter, then consider how the house will hold up against potential predators.

A good outdoor cat house for feral cats will have an escape door at the back, while houses that are taller, off the ground and structurally solid can prevent curious animals from snooping in.

Weatherproofing

How does the cat house perform against the elements? Considering where to place your outdoor cat house is a key consideration that informs this.

For instance, if you're looking to place it inside a barn or garage, then an outdoor cat house that sits on the ground and is made from Oxford material or polyester is a good choice. However, if it will be fully exposed to the wind and rain, opt for sturdy wooden structure instead.

Insulation

Consider if you're looking to keep the cat inside extra cozy. If you live somewhere that's particularly cold or are buying during winter seasons, then you may opt for a heated cat house.

If your outdoor cat house of choice does not have this, you could look to buy a heated pad or extra bedding instead.

Size

Are you looking to house several stray cats in the neighborhood? Some outdoor cat houses are best suited for one cat, such as a pet, and are not the roomiest for multiple felines.

Consider outdoor cat houses that have multiple storeys if your looking to buy for feral cats.


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