Posted 8th Mar 2018
If you're a cat lover who would love to create a feline-friendly garden, try these garden tips from Cats Protection
Cats Protection's Event Manager Emma Osborne said: "We often get asked by cat owners how to keep their cats closer to home and creating a feline-friendly garden is the perfect way to do this. Most cats love to be outdoors, whether it’s lounging in the sun or playing among the plants, so providing lots of resting and playing spaces will help ensure your pet does not wander far."
"While there’s no reason cats can’t enjoy the summer months just as much as their owners, it’s important to remember that they do need to be protected from the sun too. Sunburn is a particular danger, especially for white cats or those with pale ears, so precautions should be taken to ensure they’re protected from the sun’s rays on very hot days."
Tips for keeping your cat safe and amused are:
- Cats love to nibble grass, and it's believed it helps them to cough up hairballs. A popular variety is Cocksfoot, with the broad leaves easy to bite. Seeds are available from garden centres and pet shops, ensuring it can be easily grown in trays within the home for indoor cats. Outside, cats love their own grassy patch in their favourite spot.
- Catnip is the ultimate garden treat for your feline friend. It's a plant which is known for the excitable reaction it provokes in cats. Not all will be susceptible, but those that do will show a great interest in the plant, rubbing, licking and sniffing it in a state of delirium for around 10 minutes. Dried catnip can be found in pet shops, but the fresh plant also makes an attractive addition to the garden for both owner and cat. As a member of the mint family, it can be invasive, so it's worth confining it to a pot, rather growing it in the ground.
- Lavender is a great herb to plant in a cat-friendly garden, as it provides a bushy and attractive hiding place for cats.
- Cats love lounging in the sun, but they can be prone to sunburn. If you plant large shrubs, you provide your cat with the chance to seek shade while still enjoying the warm weather.
- Aside from planting, gardeners can look at the other ways to make their garden interesting. This can include log piles, which are excellent areas for scratching their claws, while low shrubs will offer an interesting hiding place for cats to snuggle up for an al-fresco sleep.
- Avoid plants which could be dangerous to your cat. For example, lilies can be lethal if a cat ingests pollen from its fur after brushing against them.
- Make sure your cat is fully vaccinated before you venture outside to protect them against disease and parasites. Neutering is vital to prevent unwanted kittens from being born and reduces roaming.
- Microchip your cat to make sure you can identify your feline friend should he become lost.
Cats Protection will be sharing their ideas at RHS Malvern Spring Festival in May, to make sure cats are both happy and safe when they're outside.
The charity will provide planting ideas and details for amusing our more playful cats, while there will also be tips offered showing visitors how to find out more on adopting a cat or volunteering to help cats in need.
Tips courtesy of Cats Protection