STRATA TITLE CAT OWNERS
Pets in Strata has lots of great information to help you with your negotiations with your body corporate, including
Pet application and agreement forms
State by State summary of strata laws impacting on pet owners.
Their website is petnet.com.au
Before you contact your Body Corporate, you can download some of these forms and they may provide the information you need to put yourself in a much better position when negotiating with them.
This is another interesting article we copied from the Victorian Department of Primary Industries website.
Cats have a number of basic needs that must be met if they are to stay happy and healthy.
- Companionship. Cats require plenty of social contact with owners. This can be achieved by access to the house through a cat door (and tunnel if applicable). Set aside time each day to interact with your cat, for instance, patting, playing with, or grooming him/her.
- A well-informed owner. You should find out as much as you can about cat behaviour and care. There are many useful books and websites available. Talk to your vet about health and nutritional requirements for cats.
- Space. Cats prefer to have their own ‘personal space’, and this is particularly important to prevent aggression in group housing situations. Each cat requires his/her own area that provides all the essentials (food, water, bed, resting places, litter tray etc).
- Sleeping, resting and viewing areas. Cats like to spend a lot of time sleeping and resting in quiet areas where they feel safe and secure. Cat beds can be purchased, or blankets, towels, pillows etc can be provided. High sided cat beds and boxes are useful to give cats a sense of ‘privacy’.
- Cats use elevated areas as vantage points from which to observe their surroundings. These are essential, and can be provided by access to platforms, shelves, climbing posts or window ledges. Some cats love to watch birds (you can place a bird bath/feeder outside the window or enclosure), insects (try planting flowers to attract them), fish in aquariums and even nature footage on TV!
- Food and water. Ensure bowls are located away from the litter tray. Many cats like having their water bowl in a separate area to their food bowl. Cats can also be given grass to chew (non toxic varieties such as oats, wheat, rye-grass).
- Litter boxes. Each cat requires its own litter box, that is big enough for easy access and is located in a safe and private area (if a cat is startled while using the box, he/she may not use that box in future). You may have to experiment to find out your cat’s preferences for covered or uncovered boxes, type of litter and depth of litter.
- Cats are very clean animals that do not like using dirty litter boxes, so boxes will need to be scooped daily, and cleaned with water and non-scented soap once a week. A thin layer of baking soda placed on the bottom of the box will help absorb odours between scoopings.
- Scratching posts. Scratching is a natural behaviour for cats, that sharpens claws, stretches muscles and leaves scent marks. Your cat will need a scratching post, which can be horizontal or vertical, and can be made from sisal (a course natural fibre), carpet, cardboard or wood. You can encourage your cat to use the scratching post (rather than other things like the furniture!) by putting catnip on it. Cats have an excellent sense of smell, and many cats love catnip, which can be supplied as a dried herb or grown fresh in pots.
- Toys and exercise. Exercise your cat through play (or even by training your cat to walk outside on a harness and leash!). Cats enjoy toys that move or make noise, and remind them of prey such as mice, birds, and insects. They need a variety of toys they can roll, pounce on, capture and bite, and toys should be rotated regularly to prevent boredom.
Some examples of simple and cheap toys (that are safe for cats to play with) are crumpled paper balls, paper bags to explore, cardboard boxes, and toilet paper tubes. Try stuffing old cotton socks with cotton balls and some catnip, and tying a knot in the end. You can also buy furry toys (eg in the shape of a mouse) that make noises and can be rolled, balls (eg ping pong balls, or balls that can be filled with food or treats), sticks with toys dangling from the end of a string etc.
Indoor vs Outdoor Cats – Information
“Statistics indicate that the life span of an indoor cat is much longer than an outdoor cat. On average, an indoor cat lives twelve years but some cats can live for as many as twenty years. In comparison, an outdoor cat’s life expectancy is less than five years”.
The Welfare Implications of Confinement of Cats – by EC Jongman
“Although most cat owners perceive that cats have a need to roam outdoors and that this benefits the welfare of the cat, being allowed to roam also carries welfare risks for the cat. Cats are involved in fights with other cats and may get injured, they may contract diseases, or they may get lost”.
Welfare Implications of Confinement of Cats
The ACT government’s cat containment laws have fallen behind the release of new suburbs, leaving pet owners in many areas having to build enclosures in the future, or risk having their roaming cat locked up.
Since its introduction in 2000, legislation has been refined to protect rare animals in the bush with 24 hours a day containment, but some residents are moving to new suburbs nearby, unaware of their obligations.
The ACT Conservation Council says residents should be told before buying into new suburbs that they will be subject to the containment laws, which are aimed at protecting native birds, lizards and frogs.
Territory and Municipal Services Minister Shane Rattenbury has declared Moncrieff and Jacka as the latest cat containment suburbs, and is about to write to Jacka residents to say they have until January 1, 2017, to act. Mr Rattenbury says between 100 and 200 homes in Jacka could be subject to the legislation, as well as new homes in the future.
“It would be unreasonable to declare cat containment with immediate effect for an existing suburb,” Mr Rattenbury said. “People should not suddenly be in a situation where their cat is illegally roaming because the government changed the law overnight.”
Mr Rattenbury said the entire Molonglo area had not been declared a cat containment area because some suburb boundaries were still being defined. But the Conservation Council says declarations can be made using strategic assessment maps.
ACT director Clare Henderson said suburbs should be declared earlier. “We have had to lobby case by case for a declaration of suburb, but it is policy; they should all be declared as early as possible before suburbs are named and land sold. In Forde and Bonner the declarations were used as a positive selling point.”
The council says former Greens MLA Caroline Le Couteur’s comments in 2011 made clear the Greens policy that new outer residential areas should be compulsory cat containment areas and there should be retro-fitting in areas where properties adjoin nature reserves. Making this government policy would give people clarity and certainty.
“New suburbs being planned and built right now which should be clear cat containment areas such as Lawson, the whole of Molonglo – not suburb by suburb – the future part of Holt, Kenny, Throsby and all other suburbs which are adjacent to natural areas,” Ms Le Couteur had said.
Mr Rattenbury said a breakdown in communication had been overcome between the Land Development Agency, which releases and markets new suburbs, and his department. But he could not specify a declaration date for Casey, a new, well established suburb near Kinlyside that harbours rare species.
Cat Containment suburbs
Being a cat owner is enjoyable and rewarding however brings with it responsibilities.
As a pet owner, it is your responsibility to ensure your cat is happy and healthy and is not negatively impacting the community in any way.
An ACT study revealed domestic cats are responsible for killing a total of 67 different species of birds and animals. You can reduce the risk to native wildlife by keeping your cat indoors, particularly between sunset and sunrise and by putting a bell on your cat’s collar to provide a warning to other animals.
Cat containment areas in the ACT
A cat containment area can be declared in a suburb, or area of a suburb, if there is a serious nature conservation threat as a result of cat activities. The ACT Government pursuant to Section 81 of the Domestic Animals Act 2000, has declared the following areas to be cat containment areas:
- Denman Prospect
- The Fair at Watson
A map showing cat containment areas is also available. Residents within cat containment areas are required to keep their cats confined to their premises at all times.
Having passed the 500 cat enclosure for outdoors sales milestone some time ago, and now well on our way to 550, we thought we’d put together a short history of how we’ve developed over the last six to seven years.
During that time we’ve moved from the Gold Coast to Carindale, then to Bribie Island for a short time, and finally up to Buderim, where we’ve bought a lovely house on the top right by Buderim Forest and the Falls. Of course these moves have necessitated time offline each time, which has slowed us down somewhat, but in spite of that we’re powering along quite nicely. As most of us know from experience, the telcoes are not always terribly efficient – in fact, mostly not!
However, we continued to send lots of enclosure kits all over Australia as – we are a national company, not local. Being able to quote from customers’ photos and measurements has enabled us to do this in a very cost effective way, and thus enable many cat lovers to install enclosures for their cats, whatever their location or budget.
The netting we use is UV treated 19mm square pre-stretched polyethylene. It is very strong and durable, and we offer a 10 year guarantee on our netting and 2 years on all fixings and zips. It comes in stone beige and black, and both colours are unobtrusive. We have used both colours in our half dozen enclosures in our homes and either colour works well.
Our enclosures are generally attached to an existing structure; e.g. a deck/patio or side of house (between the fence and the side of the house) and we ask prospective customers to send a couple of photos of the area to be enclosed, together with dimensions (height to eaves or deck/patio ceiling, length, width) and the number of entry zips they require.
One of the questions we’re often asked is if our enclosures can be taken down and put up again. They certainly can, and we did this on a number of weekends when we were selling on of our houses on the Gold Coast and we were having “open homes”.
However, if a customer is moving and wishes to take the netting, etc, with him or her we’re happy to help with a redesign to fit the new situation, and also to supply any extra netting and fixings required.
Another question we’re often asked by people who are renting is how the enclosures are attached to the house or fence, because, as we know, landlords aren’t happy to have drill holes, however small, all over their properties – understandable!
In this situation we ask people to send the usual couple of photographs and dimension (height, length, width) and Ken will suggest where they can best situate their enclosure, using downpipes and hooks into the guttering where possible. This, more often than not, suits all concerned, especially the cats when they can get out into the fresh air!
Regarding snakes – as set out above, our netting is 19mm square so only a very small snake (a tree snake) could get through, and certainly not a carpet snake. I’ve had personal experience with a large carpet snake a number of years ago when it grabbed my five month old kitten. I actually had to pick up the whole “bundle” (snake wrapped around my baby!) and grapple with it. It finally let go and I threw it away, putting my back out in doing so.
Sam, my kitten, needed to be taken to the vet for a check-over and anti-inflammatory injection, and I needed to go to the doctor for a tetanus injection as, unbeknown to me in my terror, the snake had bitten me all up the arm. It was a horrible experience, so carpet snakes are naturally my main concern.
If your cat is diagnosed with asthma, don’t despair. Asthma can be managed by giving your cat a daily dose of an asthma preventer, such as Flixotide, using a feline aerosal chamber.
The one shown in the photo is an Aerokat chamber manufactured in Canada. Your vet would be able to help you with this. Sam still enjoyed romping around with the other cats in their cat runs.
As a Rag Doll cat breeder Michelle needed to enclose her cats, particularly her breeding queens, so Michelle chose to enclose part of her verandah with a CatSafe cat enclosure.
Michelle also chose to install the entry on an angle which gives her a lot more room for a large entry zip.
Michelle now has the peace of mind of knowing her precious Rag Doll cats get plenty of fresh air and are also protected from danger.
Here is a wonderful example of a side of house cat enclosure, and although under two metres wide, it provides plenty of variety and space for their cats to explore while keeping them safe.
With a little effort or with the help of a friend, you too can install your own beautiful cat enclosure just like this one for less than $450.00.
Just send a couple of photos of the side of your house, together with the basic dimensions (length, width, height) to email@example.com and we will be happy to send you a quote.
Here is a great idea or your cat run entry. One of our customers chose to install two vertical entry zips with a dowel at the bottom and a clip on each side, it makes a very good job and can be rolled up to the top, leaving a full size opening for your mower or your wheelbarrow.
Several new customers have requested similar entries in varying widths to their own cat runs, so we have added this option for all our customers and provide them with double zip installation instructions.
We’ll help you with the design and installation of your patio cat enclosure or side of house cat run.
Just send us a couple of photos of your patio or the side of your house together with the basic dimensions (length, width & height) to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will send you a quote by return email.
Installation is simple with your own individual installation instructions compiled directly from your photos and with free email and phone support coupled with a 10 year guarantee on our Lo-Vis netting and a 2 year guarantee on our fixtures and fittings, you’ll have peace of mind knowing that your cat is always safe.
QUALITY NETTING (with CatSafe’s 10 Year Netting Guarantee):
- LOW VISIBILITY
- COLOUR – STONE BEIGE or BLACK
- SQUARE MESH
- 9 x 1 PLY KNOTTED POLYETHYLENE
- 21 kg BREAKING STRAIN PER STRAND
- 0.2% UV TREATED
- HEAT STRENGTHENED
- VERY TIGHT KNOTS
- MESH 19mm x 19mm
- KNOT TO KNOT 20mm
- CERTIFIED TO ISO 9001: 2008
This CatSafe patio cat enclosure (4.8 metres by 1.8 metres) costs approx $350 and is showing both panels and Robyn, with one of our cats Bob, he’s a big white Chinchilla .
You can see there’s lots of room for the cats to snooze and for us to have a meal and a drink at sundown!