VARC’s Catio Contest

VARC challenged people to see who could create the best, safe, outdoor Catio with a $1000.00 cash prize to the winner! The response was overwhelming with some incredible designs and creations, so much so, that in the end the prize was split between two people! (see photos below)

A Catio is a safe outdoor shelter for cats, that allows them to enjoy the outdoors without being able to roam freely injuring themselves or other wildlife. Cats should always be supervised while in their outdoor Catios and should always have access to food, water and shelter from the elements. We looked for Catios that met pet safety requirements, successfully prevent unwanted escape from the enclosure and displayed some creativity in design and function.

We have left the information on this page to encourage people to take action to safeguard cats and birds by building outdoor enclosures for cats.

Our friends at the Stewardship Centre for British Columbia (SCBC)  have worked collaboratively with partners from animal welfare, conservation, academia,  government and the public to provide free science-based tools and resource to improve cat welfare and protect people and wildlife from the impacts of free-roaming cats. 

The SCBC initiated two research projects to collect on-the-ground information about outdoor cats and birds: in Greater Vancouver (2020) and in Okanagan (2022). Researchers used standardized methodology and computer models to produce population estimates and inform management plans for keeping cats and birds safe in British Columbia.

Their catio and outdoor enclosures page provides detailed information on types of catios, considerations when buying or building a catio, which design to choose, ideas, guides, photos, videos, DIY instructions and much more!

Their Cats and Birds webpages provide everything you need to know to help make British Columbia a safer place for cats, birds and other wildlife.

Please help spread the word and best of luck with your catio!