I was sitting out in the sunshine and thinking how nice it would be for the cats to have more of a run outside. At the moment they have a bit of a run but it is all undercover so they don’t really benefit from the sun and they don’t get to feel fresh grass under their feet and I felt sorry for them. When I looked at ideas I could only really see aviary panels which look ugly! On my facebook feed I came across a sponsored ad for Omlet cat enclosure and it looked smart and an awful lot better than aviary panels.
Omlet originally started out having designed a chicken house (which looks fab and easy to clean) and a metal run to go with it. They since developed their runs and now are able to sell one for cats. What I liked about them was that they just blend in to the environment and don’t stick out like a sore thumb like aviary panels do. It also sounded good as they are marketed as being easy to assemble and not needing any tools, I am not the best DIYer in the world and hubby works a lot so if it's easy to erect then that is ideal for us.
I started off by ordering the run that 3 panels long by 2 wide, the beauty of it is that you can order any size you like to fit your garden. They do a low rise and high rise version but for cats I would say you always need the high rise walk in version as they are natural jumpers and you don’t want to restrict that. When the run arrived and we finished putting it together I realised that it wasn’t big enough so I ordered two extension packs to increase the length to 5 panels long. Again, if ever you want to extend in the future it is really easy to do. If you need to save up a bit more for instance, you can add to it at a later date.
Erecting the Enclosure
With the high rise version I would say it is a two person job because it is difficult to hold the panels in the air and clip them in place. However it is really easy to put it all together and you don't need tools (apart from for the door lock). Some reviews have said they found the clips tough and yes some of them are fairly tough but they aren't too bad, they have to be fairly tough to make sure they don't come undone. The instructions don't make it obvious that the poles go on the inside of the mesh, also the roof panels are a different size to the top panels and we hadn't noticed this till we had put a few up! Oops. It probably took us a couple of hours to erect.
|Clip holding the mesh panels to the upright poles|
|Clips hold the top and bottom panels together|
|Clips holding the roof panels to the roof bar|
What I did find was that the panels didn't always line up perfectly and that is probably to do with our garden not being completely level (if put on a patio for instance am sure this wouldn't happen).
|Corner mesh doesn't line up properly|
|Corner mesh lined up perfectly|
This however is only cosmetic as it doesn't affect the use and realistically nobody is going to notice it. The extension pack was easy to add in as it was literally just a matter of unclipping the clips and clipping the extra panels in.
On my enclosure I left the one bottom panel out so I could attach the run to the indoor heated beds and they can access this via a cat flap. Some people I know have left the top panels off and attached the run to a house and it can then be accessed via a window. It is quite versatile and you can really tailor it to how you want it.
|It is strong enough to take climbing bengals!!|
One downside to this enclosure is that I don't feel like it would be strong enough to attach walkways for the cats to the sides high up like some enclosures I have seen. They would need to be freestanding, I have a kiddies play cube in there at the moment and that is providing them with entertainment. There are also people that make outdoor cat climbing trees.
|Solace - seal lynx bengal boy|
I have two entire bengal boys and they spray so unfortunately they do have to be kept outside, they have heated beds, indoor runs and now an outdoor run. My girls live in the house but now on a sunny day I can put them in the run for a bit to enjoy the fresh air as I feel sorry for them cooped up indoors on a nice day. People may say these enclosurers are cruel but other people say letting cats out to terrorise the local wildlife is cruel too! One of my girls is blind so I could never let her out locally as it is just too dangerous, we also recently had a case where a local cat had to have it's leg amputated after getting it stuck in a trap :(
|Shady - seal mink (double apb) bengal boy|
|Spice - brown bengal girl, blind|
|Spec - seal lynx (charcoal) bengal girl|
|Tweed - brown F4 bengal girl|
So in summary I would recommend the Omlet enclosures as they do blend in to their environment, when you have the run in your garden you don't want it to stick out like a sore thumb and these don't.
- Low maintenance - they can just be washed off
- Door locks from the inside and outside
- Easy to put together
- Options to extend in future as well as buy roof coverings etc too
- Visit Omlet's website, they currently have a sale on!!!!
I have not been paid for this post, however I received the run at a discounted price in order to review. I have editorial control and retain full editorial integrity.