Feral Cat Shelters For Sale

Feral cats are domestic cats that have reverted to a wild state and live without human socialization or care. While exact numbers are uncertain, feral cat populations are estimated at over 70 million in the United States alone (https://www.tuckahoevet.com/post/feral-cats-in-america). This large and rapidly growing feral cat population leads to numerous issues for communities, including spread of disease, predation on wildlife, nuisance behaviors like spraying and fighting, and poor welfare for the cats themselves.

Providing shelters for feral cats can help address some of these concerns. Shelters allow groups and caregivers to contain and manage feral cat colonies, reducing roaming and fighting. They also protect the cats from weather extremes and provide a safe place for them to rest, which improves their health and welfare. Additionally, caregivers can monitor sheltered colonies more easily to facilitate spay/neuter and provide basic veterinary care.

With proper ongoing management by caretakers, feral cat shelters are a humane way to improve cats’ lives while also reducing their impacts on ecosystems and neighborhoods.

Benefits of Feral Cat Shelters

Feral cat shelters provide many benefits for both the cats and surrounding communities. Some key benefits include:

Protection from the elements – Having a sheltered place to sleep and get out of the weather is critical for feral cats’ health and wellbeing. Shelters protect cats from temperature extremes, wind, rain, and snow [1].

Provides food and water access – Shelters allow caretakers to provide food and water consistently in one place. This ensures cats have their basic needs met and don’t have to find new sources day to day [2].

Reduces disease transmission – When cats congregate in groups without shelter, diseases can spread more easily. Shelters give each cat individual space and resources to stay healthier.

Provides safety – Shelters keep cats safe from predators, traffic, territorial disputes with other cats, and potential cruelty from people. They have a secure place to rest and recover if injured.

Helps stabilize populations – Shelter access allows feral cats to be spayed/neutered and have a consistent food source. This helps control breeding and reduce fighting over resources.

Considerations When Buying

When purchasing a feral cat shelter, there are several important factors to keep in mind depending on your specific needs. Size is one of the most crucial considerations, as the shelter should be large enough to comfortably fit the number of cats you expect to use it. Experts recommend a space just big enough for three to five cats for smaller colonies, while multiple larger shelters may be needed for bigger populations (source).

Placement of the shelter is also key for attracting feral cats. It’s best to pick a quiet, secluded area that provides protection from the elements while allowing the cats to observe their surroundings before approaching. Easy access is important, so choosing a spot near where cats already gather or pass through regularly is ideal. The shelter should be elevated off the ground and placed in a covered, dry area (source).

Durability and weather resistance are other vital factors, as outdoor feral cat shelters must stand up to all seasons. Look for sturdy materials like plastic, wood, or insulated metal that won’t warp or degrade. The shelter should have a waterproof roof and seal tightly to keep drafts out. Easy cleaning is also a plus for maintaining sanitary conditions inside (source).

Finally, cost may determine which style and features you can afford. Simple basic shelters are cheaper, while those with extra insulation, heating, and other add-ons will be more expensive. Prioritize the most important features for your climate and cats within your budget.

Types of Feral Cat Shelters

There are several main types of feral cat shelters to consider:

Wooden Shelters

Wooden shelters like the Aivituvin Outdoor Cat House Weatherproof Wooden Kitty Condo Shelter https://www.alleycat.org/resources/feral-cat-shelter-options-gallery/ provide an attractive, durable option. The wood helps insulate against both hot and cold temperatures. Look for waterproof roofing and raised floors.

Plastic Shelters

Heavy duty plastic shelters like Rubbermaid Roughneck totes are inexpensive and easy to clean. Make sure any openings are lined with insulation for warmth. Attachments like plexiglass windows can help keep the rain out https://feralcatfocus.org/colony-management-shelters/.

Insulated Shelters

Insulated shelters with thick foam or straw bedding like The Kitty Tube Feral Option maintain comfortable temperatures year-round. The insulation provides protection from the elements.

Heated Shelters

Electrically heated shelters like the K&H Outdoor Heated Kitty House safely provide cozy warmth for cold weather. Make sure they are weatherproof and chew-resistant.

Multi-Cat Shelters

Large shelters like the PawHut 2-Tier Cat House can accommodate several cats at once. Make sure to provide multiple entry/exit points to prevent territorial disputes.

Essential Features

When selecting a feral cat shelter, there are some key features to look for:

  • Waterproof: The shelter should be made of waterproof materials to keep cats dry. Many options use a water-resistant roof and elevated floor for drainage.
  • Durable: Feral cat shelters need to withstand the elements, so look for tough, long-lasting materials like wood, hard plastic, and foam insulation. Avoid flimsy shelters.
  • Easy to disinfect: Pick a shelter that can be easily cleaned and disinfected between occupants to prevent the spread of illnesses. Smooth plastic surfaces are ideal.
  • Entrance/exit holes: Look for a shelter with at least two holes, allowing cats to enter and exit from different directions. The holes should be small to conserve warmth.
  • Hides scent: The ideal shelter will mask cats’ scents from predators. Avoid shelters that let odors escape easily.

Shelters with these essential features will provide feral cats with protection from the elements and a safe place to rest (Source 1).

Optional Add-Ons

There are several optional add-ons you can purchase to make feral cat shelters more comfortable and functional for the cats. Some popular options include:

Heating pads – These provide extra warmth for cats in cold climates. They are often designed for outdoor use and have chew-resistant cords. Sources like Undercover Pet Houses recommend weather-resistant heating pads.

Lining – Shelter floors can be lined with straw or special mats to provide insulation and make them softer. Straw needs to be replaced regularly while mats are more durable. Feral Cat Focus advises using straw as an affordable option.

Removable floors – Some shelters allow you to remove the floor for easy cleaning. This keeps the interior hygienic for cats.

Feeding bowls or ports – Bowls that attach to shelter entrances let you provide food and water access. Feeding ports allow bowls to be placed inside shelters.

Placement Tips

When placing feral cat shelters, it’s important to choose a location that will help keep cats safe, comfortable, and healthy. According to How to TNR | Feral Cat Winter Shelter, some key factors to consider include:

  • Hidden area – Place the shelter in a secluded spot like under a bush, deck, or tree to provide privacy and security.
  • Facing away from wind/rain – Position the opening opposite prevailing winds, rains, and storms.
  • Near a feeding station – Shelters should be near where cats are fed so they can easily access food and water.
  • Away from loud noises – Avoid areas with heavy foot traffic, machinery, or other disruptive sounds.

Properly placing shelters can encourage use and give cats a safe refuge from the elements.

Building Your Own Feral Cat Shelter

With some simple and inexpensive materials, you can build your own feral cat shelter. Here are some tips for DIY feral cat shelters:

The basic materials you will need include plastic storage bins, straw (not hay), a utility knife, and a permanent marker. Make sure to use sturdy plastic bins that will withstand the elements. Look for bins approximately 20-30 gallons in size. The larger bin will be the main enclosure and the smaller bin will serve as the entrance.

Cut a hole in the side of each bin to connect them. The hole should be large enough for a cat to comfortably pass through, about 6-8 inches in diameter. Be sure to cut rounded edges on the plastic with the utility knife to avoid sharp points. Place the bins together snugly and use the permanent marker to outline where they match up.

Fill the bottom of the main enclosure a few inches deep with straw to provide warmth and insulation. Do not use fabric like blankets or towels, as they will hold moisture. The straw should be replaced as needed when it becomes dirty or packed down.

Elevate the shelter a few inches off the ground and ensure it is in a protected area away from harsh winds. Place a weighted object on top to prevent the lid from blowing away. Face the opening away from the prevailing winds.

The total cost to build a basic feral cat shelter is around $30-$40. With some handy skills and simple plastic bins, you can create an effective enclosed shelter customized to your needs and budget.

Alternatives to Purchasing

If you are unable to purchase a pre-made feral cat shelter, there are some creative alternatives you can try using items you already have or can get for free. One option is repurposing large plastic storage containers. According to Alley Cat Allies, storage totes make excellent shelters if you cut a hole in one end and add some straw for bedding. The plastic provides protection from the elements.

You can also use rigid insulation foam boards from home improvement stores to construct makeshift shelters, as recommended by Feral Cat Focus. These boards are inexpensive, waterproof, and insulating. You’ll need to join multiple boards together and cutout an entrance. Make sure to weigh down any lightweight shelters so they don’t blow away.

While DIY shelters may not be as durable as commercial options, they allow you to provide much-needed respite for free-roaming cats on a budget. Get creative with materials you have access to. Just be sure to make the shelter dry, insulated, and draft-free for the cats’ comfort.


Providing shelters for feral cats is an important way to care for these outdoor communities. Feral cats face many challenges in their lives outdoors, including exposure to harsh weather conditions and a lack of dedicated safe spaces. By setting up shelters in your area, you are giving these cats a respite and helping to improve their health and wellbeing.

When looking to purchase or build feral cat shelters, key considerations include weather resistance, insulation, ease of cleaning, and accessibility for the cats. Hard plastic or wood shelters with insulation, straw bedding, and a weather-proof entrance are ideal. Be sure to place the shelters in discreet areas and monitor them regularly.

With some planning, you can create effective DIY shelters at low cost. But purchasing a ready-made shelter offers durability and time savings. Several reputable companies sell sturdy shelters designed specifically for feral cat colonies.

By reviewing the different shelter options and features covered here, you can make the best decision for the feral cats in your area. Providing them with a warm, dry refuge and a place to call their own demonstrates compassion and makes a real difference in their lives.

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