Being created by nature as wild animals, cats love coddling under sun rays and feel the breeze running through their fur. However, felines that live in apartments don’t have access to a yard or an outdoor catio.
Cat window box is the best solution to this problem: it allows pets to enjoy the feeling of being outside while actually staying at home. Still don’t believe that feline solarium is a must-have in your household?
This guide will change your mind!
What is a cat solarium?
Cat solarium is an outdoor cat enclosure attached to the window. As a rule, it is made of metal or plastic carcass and has plexiglass windows. The construction is installed right within the window frame and stays exposed to sun rays. Each unit is hand-made with durable materials to meet the demands of picky feline clients.
A cat solarium will improve your cat’s life and wellbeing
Why install a cat window perch outside when your pet may simply sit on a windowsill? Better exposure to the sun and the street has multiple perks:
1. Good mood
Exposure to sun rays helps animals produce serotonin, ‘the hormone of happiness’. To be more exact, this is a neurotransmitter that causes the feeling of well-being in humans and animals. According to scientists, serotonin helps to regulate appetite, digestion, sleep, mood and social behavior, memory, sexual function, and even self-confidence. So if you don’t want to have a grumpy cat, let it get its portion of serotonin.
2. Pain relief
In senior cats, sun warmth can temporarily relieve the pain caused by arthritis, rheumatism, and other diseases. Besides, sunshine is an efficient germ-killer, so it can eliminate yeast and bacteria that grow in wounds. Thus, leaving your cat in sun has many health benefits.
3. Strong immune system
One research has shown that sunlight can increase resistance to viruses in humans, and scientists say that the same applies to dogs and cats. Although the lack of sunlight does not provoke diseases, it can lead to the development or relapse of chronic disorders. The deficiency of Vitamin D (which is generated after contact with UV rays) takes its toll over time.
4. Fresh air
Another reason for installing a window attachment for cats is giving your pet access to fresh air. That means your furry friend will get enough oxygen – the most vital chemical for any living being on Earth. In both humans and animals, fresh air regulates blood pressure and heart rate, cleanses lungs, provides energy, and sharpens the mind. And it’s cheaper than buying an air purifier.
5. Satisfaction of hunting instincts
While sitting in a cat window solarium, your feline friend will watch birds, butterflies, and other small creatures that catch her eye. This is great – your pet will satisfy its hunting instincts without actually exposing itself or anyone to threat. It’s a healthier addition to your cat’s toys or online games for cats.
Cat Solarium is a proprietary construction developed and produced by a similarly named company. This is an outdoor enclosure for pets that allows them to sit and rest in fresh air under sunlight. There are five different configurations, each has its own peculiarities. For example, a Conservatory set includes a back panel with a cat door, custom pillow, cat perch, and mesh screen weather enclosure.
- Materials: Maple wood, plexiglass, stainless steel screws, 3 coats of PPG Paint
- Capacity: Up to 50 lbs
- Variations: Sun Room, Veranda, Weather, Penthouse, Conservatory
- Comes in several variations
- Optimal pricing
- Can be installed without a master – there’s a step-by-step guide included
- The size of the frame is not customized
- No choice of color
Here is what an expert in cat behavior and veterinary doctor from Kansas thinks about a cat solarium:
“Have you ever noticed that cats are also dependent on the weather? They sleep all day when it’s rainy and they’re full of energy if the sun is up. Just like humans, cats need fresh air and sun – it has multiple benefits for their health. Although the UV rays don’t transform directly into vitamin D3, they help to generate sebaceous oil on the cat coat and then be ingested and turned into the vitamin.
Besides, sunlight helps to regulate the level of melatonin – sleep hormone in humans and animals. By spending time in a cat solarium, your pet can regulate sleep cycles and enjoy an elevated quality of sleep.
Another tangible effect of exposure to sunlight is the boost of the immune system. Animals that get moderate doses of UV rays are less prone to chronic diseases and their symptoms. Besides, I have noticed that senior cats with joint problems also love sunlight – apparently, it brings relief”,– Claudine Sievert, DVM
How to install a cat solarium?
All you need for cat solarium installation is an Allen wrench, so prepare the instrument and the box contents. Let’s start.
1.Attach the sides to the bottom
Align one of the sides with the bottom of the construction. The narrow groove on the side should align with the groove in the bottom of the solarium. Use your fingers to start and the Allen wrench to tighten the screws. Finish it with each corresponding side.
2. Attach the top
Insert two long screws into one side of the top and align them with the inserts on the top. Start with your fingers and tighten the screws with an Allen wrench. Insert all dowel rods.
3. Install the plexiglass
Remove the film on the plexiglass top and put it onto the box. Make sure the holes on the plexiglass and the top of the Solarium align and put screws into the corresponding inserts. Start putting long screws with your fingers and tighten them with the Allen wrench. Don’t let them go loose – you will prevent water from getting into holes and your cat from escaping the Solarium accidentally.
Alright, you are ready to install the window box for cat into the frame. Choose the window, remove a screw from the top safety bar, turn the bar vertical – it will serve as a brace when you install the box into the window.
4. Take measurements
Open the window to 14-15” (it’s the height of the box). Take the top bar and the side of the box and slide it into the window. Center the box. It will be caught on the stop bar on the bottom of the box. Make sure the box is lifted by approximately 1” and slide it over the edge of the window – the box should fall into place. A slight slope of 3-4% makes sure that the rain doesn’t collect on the top and won’t cause mildew and material deterioration. When you do it, lower the window.
Also, note that the safety bar you placed vertically should not touch the window when it’s lowered, and if it doesn’t, you need to lean the box back and close the window on the plexiglass. If your set includes a back panel with a cat door, remove another screw from the top safety bar and insert the back panel into the channels on the box sides. After that, you can reattach the top safety bar and have your Solarium ready.
5. Close the gaps
Measure the gaps left between the Solarium and your window frame – the set includes materials to close them. Measure the rectangle size of the area on each side of the box. Double-check your measurements!
Cut the plastic accurately. You can make it 1.5” wider than the actual gap – it allows ensuring you don’t cut an extra length.
6. Find the connection spots
Figure out where you’d like to connect the plastic to the window frame. Cut one of the velcro strips making sure it matches the dimensions. Cut both the loop (soft) and the hook (hard) to match the measurements. Clean the area of attachment with soap and water, ungrease it with rubbing alcohol (no fingernail polish remover!). Now, place the hook strips on the conneciton spots and firmly press down.
7. Place the plastic
You can make small marks for guidance, if needed, that will help you attach the loop tape. Do it all very accurately – once the loop tape is attached to the plastic, it will be hard to remove. If the plastic is placted correctly, trim the excessive part of the tape. Repeat on the other side. Note that plastic can be somewhat curved.
Are there any cheaper alternatives?
Sure! There’s a whole gamut of DIY cat window perches that will allow your cat to enjoy a great view and the sun. You are welcome to check out these top 10 coolest DIY cat window perches by Jimmie O’Chutt.
In a word
Cat solarium is more than just a beautiful decoration or a perch – this is the major sun access point for pets. By installing a box in the window, you let your feline friend enjoy the fresh air and sun heat which brings a lot of health benefits. This is a must-have if you want your pet to enjoy better sleep, reduced pain levels, boosted immune system, and a higher energy level. It goes without mentioning its immense entertainment value. So if you think the cost of this magic box is too high, just consider all the advantages – they outweigh everything!