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8 Best Outdoor Cat Houses & Shelters in 2023 – Reviews & Top Picks!

Petsfit 2-Story Weatherproof Outdoor Cat HouseWhether you have indoor/outdoor cats or you take care of the local feral colony, outdoor cat houses are a must for cats to survive harsh and snowy winters. Cat shelters not only offer warmth for cats braving the elements, but they provide some safety and protection from predators like owls, coyotes, wolves, and other cats.

You can find a cat house or shelter for virtually every outdoor setting, including patios, garages, farmland, and backyards. While we generally feel that cats should be indoors for their safety, we understand that’s not always an option for ferals, barn cats, and cats accustomed to outdoor environments.

Here are the eight best outdoor cat houses and shelters for your indoor/outdoor cats or adopted feral colony. Our list is based on reviews from pet owners.

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A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites in 2023

Image Product Details
Best Overall
Winner
K&H Kitty A-Frame House K&H Kitty A-Frame House
  • Houses multiple cats
  • Escape doors
  • Waterproof
  • Best Value
    Second place
    KatKabin Plastic Cat House KatKabin Plastic Cat House
  • High-grade plastic construction
  • Ventilation
  • Elevated off the ground
  • Premium Choice
    Third place
    K&H Wide Heated Kitty House K&H Wide Heated Kitty House
  • Wide for multiple cats
  • 20-watt heating
  • Safe for use indoors and outdoors
  • Best for Kittens
    Petsfit Outdoor Cat House Petsfit Outdoor Cat House
  • Multiple doors for escape
  • Durable construction
  • Scratching post and balcony
  • Petsfit Weatherproof Cat House Petsfit Weatherproof Cat House
  • Solid wood construction
  • Easy assembly
  • Accommodates multiple cats
  • The 8 Best Outdoor Cat Houses & Shelters

    1. K&H  Outdoor Multi-Kitty A-Frame House – Best Overall

    K&H Pet Products Outdoor Unheated Multi-Kitty A-Frame House

    Dimensions 35” x 20.5” x 20”
    Material Nylon
    Mount type Freestanding
    Tools and assembly No tools required, assembly required
    Features Removable bed

    K&H Pet Products Outdoor Unheated Multi-Kitty A-Frame House is the best overall outdoor cat house and shelter. The large shelter is designed to house up to four cats, so it’s perfect for a feral colony or a neighborhood mother with kittens. The 600-denier nylon cover is virtually indestructible and waterproof to keep cats warm and dry.

    The A-frame design has two door flaps along with hook and loop material, so cats can get in and out easily. Two exits give cats an escape route that keeps them from getting cornered by a predator. The shelter is unheated, but you can provide heat by using an outdoor heated pet bed. Some reviewers experienced issues in areas with heavy rain or snow. Despite this, we still believe this is the best outdoor cat house on the market this year.

    Pros
    • Houses multiple cats
    • Escape doors
    • Waterproof
    Cons
    • Not suitable for areas with heavy rain and snow

    2. KatKabin DezRez Plastic Cat House – Best Value

    KatKabin DezRez Plastic Cat House

    Dimensions 22” x 16” x 13”
    Material Plastic
    Mount type Freestanding
    Tools and assembly No tools required, assembly required
    Features Machine-washable cushion

    The KatKabin DezRez Plastic Cat House is the best outdoor cat house and shelter for the money. The house is constructed of high-grade fade-resistant plastic that shelters the cats from inclement weather and extreme temperatures. Elevated off the ground, the house keeps cats warm in winter and offers additional shade on sunny days.

    With its oval shape, the shelter promotes air circulation, and the clip-on cat flap can be attached or removed for more ventilation. It comes with a machine-washable cushion for comfort. Some reviewers complained of problems with durability and construction, however. According to reviewers, the plastic is thin and may be prone to cracking or splitting.

    Pros
    • High-grade plastic construction
    • Ventilation
    • Elevated off the ground
    Cons
    • Plastic may split or crack

    3. K&H Extra-Wide Outdoor Heated Kitty House – Premium Choice

    K&H Pet Products Extra-Wide Outdoor Heated Kitty House

    Dimensions 23” x 17.5” x 4.75”
    Material Nylon
    Mount type Freestanding
    Tools and assembly No tools required, assembly required
    Features Heated, removable bed

    The K&H Pet Products Extra-Wide Outdoor Heated Kitty House is the premium choice for a cat house. The wide design accommodates multiple cats and features two exits for an escape route from predators. The exterior has vinyl backing and 600-denier nylon for water resistance.

    The house requires no special tools to assemble – all you have to do is Velcro the cover on. In addition to the cover, the house has 20-watt heating for comfort in rain, wind, and snow. The house can be used in the outdoors, outdoor structure, or indoors. Some reviewers complained that the heating pad didn’t work or failed after a short period. The heat may not be sufficient for extremely cold climates.

    Pros
    • Wide for multiple cats
    • 20-watt heating
    • Safe for use indoors and outdoors
    Cons
    • Heating pad may not work
    • Not suitable for extremely cold climates

    4. Petsfit Outdoor Cat House w/ Scratching Pad – Best for Kittens

    Petsfit Outdoor Cat House with Scratching Pad

    Dimensions 30.31” x 22.24” x 28.74”
    Material Wood, steel
    Mount type Freestanding
    Tools and assembly Tools included, assembly required
    Features Scratching post

    The Petsfit Outdoor Cat House with Scratching Pad is a spacious cat condo that can hold up to three cats up to 18 pounds. The house features an asphalt roof and raised design to stay dry and warm, and kittens have plenty of opportunities for play with the balcony, ladder, doorways, and scratching post.

    Cats can avoid being cornered in the shelter with a front door and escape door. Constructed of durable wood and steel, the house has pre-drilled holes and includes a screwdriver for quick and easy assembly. Though the house is designed to weather the outdoors, it can be used as an indoor condo as well. The only con with this house is that it’s expensive.

    Pros
    • Multiple doors for escape
    • Durable construction
    • Scratching post and balcony
    Cons
    • Expensive

    5. Petsfit 2-Story Weatherproof Outdoor Cat House

    Petsfit 2-Story Weatherproof Outdoor Cat House

    Dimensions 22.6” x 21.46” x 32.13”
    Material Wood
    Mount type Freestanding
    Tools and assembly Tools included, assembly required
    Features Opening top

    The Petsfit 2-Story Weatherproof Outdoor Cat House is a two-story condo with an asphalt roof to keep out the wind, snow, and rain. The house has two doors to allow your cat to go in and out as it pleases, as well as to provide an escape route in the case of predators. Depending on the size of the cats, the condo can accommodate two or three cats under 15 pounds.

    One of the best features of the cat house is the opening roof, which makes cleaning the interior easy and convenient. The house must be assembled, but instructions and a screwdriver are included and the wood has pre-drilled holes. Note that the solid-wood construction is a fire hazard, so this house is not suitable for environments prone to wildfires.

    Pros
    • Solid wood construction
    • Easy assembly
    • Accommodates multiple cats
    Cons
    • Fire hazard

    6. Kitty City Outdoor Cat House

    Kitty City Outdoor and Outdoor Stackable Cat House

    Dimensions 19.5” x 22.5” x 21.25”
    Material Engineered wood and polyester
    Mount type Freestanding
    Tools and assembly Tools not included, assembly required
    Features Insulated

    The Kitty City Outdoor Cat House is a luxurious home that has plenty of insulation for cold weather. The house has four walls and a tented roof, as well as removable flaps to cover both exits. If cats are uncomfortable entering through the flap, they can be taken off. The second door keeps cats from becoming cornered by predators in the shelter.

    The walls are constructed of water-resistant fabric that protects against the elements. The downside with this bed is that it needs to be assembled and doesn’t include any tools. It’s also a bit small, compared to other outdoor cat houses, and only fits one cat.

    Pros
    • Durable wood and fabric construction
    • Insulated
    • Removable door flaps
    Cons
    • Assembly required
    • No tools included
    • Small

    7. Trixie 3-Story Wooden Outdoor Cat Home

    TRIXIE 3-Story Outdoor Wooden Cat House

    Dimensions 22” x 23.5” x 37”
    Material Solid wood
    Mount type Freestanding
    Tools and assembly Tools included, assembly required
    Features Hinged shutters, flaps

    The Trixie 3-Story Wooden Outdoor Cat Home gives your cat an adorable and secure environment. The house is made of solid wood with a waterproof finish for severe weather conditions. The windows have hinged shutters for pleasing aesthetics, and cats can get in and out through multiple doors with flaps that keep wind and rain out.

    The bottom floor is raised to allow air circulation, keeping the floor dry on rainy days. Cats have three floors to play or lounge on. If you prefer, you can use the cat house inside as well. Though the house is cute, it may be too confined for large breeds. Reviewers also had issues with quality control, such as broken panels or missing parts.

    Pros
    • Multiple levels
    • Solid, waterproof wood construction
    • Hinged shutters and door flaps
    Cons
    • Tight spaces
    • Quality control issues

    8. Petmate Kitty Kat Condo Outdoor Cat House

    Petmate Kitty Kat Condo Outdoor Cat House

    Dimensions 26” x 25.25” x 18.5”
    Material Plastic
    Mount type Freestanding
    Tools and assembly No tools required, assembly required
    Features Carpeted floor

    The Petmate Kitty Kat Condo Outdoor Cat House is an igloo-shaped cat house that provides warmth and shelter in bad weather. The floor has a cushy carpet for insulation to keep your cat warm in cold weather and cool on hot summer days. The carpet also doubles as a scratch mat to keep your cat’s nails in good condition. The interior has soft foam, while the exterior has a hard shell that keeps pests away.

    The shell and dome shape will keep out rain, but it may be best to raise the shelter to prevent flooding. In addition, the shelter only has one door, so your cat could be cornered by predators without an escape.

    Pros
    • Hard outer shell
    • Insulated interior
    • Carpeted floor
    Cons
    • May flood
    • Only one entryway

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    Buyer’s Guide: Selecting The Best Outdoor Cat House & Shelter

    Outdoor cat houses are great for indoor/outdoor cats and feral colonies. They can provide a warm, dry spot for cats to retreat from bad weather and stay protected from predators. Cat houses come in a wide variety, and choosing the best one for your needs depends on your circumstances.

    Insulation

    For most people, insulation is an important consideration with cat houses. In cold climates, insulation keeps your cat warm during cold weather. In hot climates, insulation ensures that the shelter doesn’t get too hot and humid for your cat.

    Keep in mind that insulation is useless without water-resistant materials. If the inside of the shelter gets wet, the insulation won’t work as intended. If you live in a place with heavy rainfall, it may be best to elevate the shelter to prevent flooding.

    cat going out of heated house
    Image Credit: Chewy

    Waterproofing

    Most outdoor cat houses have some type of waterproofing, whether it’s treated wood or a water-resistant nylon or plastic shell. Keep in mind that waterproofing only goes so far – if you’re keeping the shelter in rainy or snowy conditions, it should be in a sheltered spot like a garage, porch, shed, or under a deck.

    Plastic is the most waterproof material on the market and blocks wind and rain, but can age quickly in direct sunlight and provides little insulation. Wood materials are durable but may rot over time if they’re exposed to moisture. Fortunately, you can help with this by maintaining the wood and waterproofing as needed.

    Fabric houses, such as nylon, are easy to assemble and may be water-resistant. They’re not capable of the same level of waterproofing as plastic or wood, however. Fabric houses are also easy to damage, whether from your own cat or an animal that tries to access the shelter. If you’re planning the house for an indoor space that’s colder than the rest of the house, such as a covered porch or garage, fabric is fine.

    Petmate Kitty Kat Condo Outdoor Cat House
    Image Credit: Petmate, Chewy

    Construction

    All cat houses are going to need to be assembled after buying, but the level of work and complexity varies. Fabric houses typically use clips, Velcro, or zippers and assemble and disassemble easily. Wood or mixed materials may snap or screw together, and many companies provide a screwdriver and pre-drilled holes for easy construction.

    Assembly matters, but so does disassembly. You may need to take your shelter apart to move or to clean the inside. Fabric cat houses are easy to take apart for cleaning, but absorb moisture and may require more cleaning. Wood and plastic cat houses are harder to disassemble, but they may only need a power wash once a year to stay clean.

    cat in a cat house at the garden
    Image Credit: Chewy

    Size

    The size of your cat house depends on how many cats you’re planning to shelter. If you only have one indoor/outdoor cat, a smaller house provides better warmth, insulation, and comfort. Multiple cats will need a larger house, especially if you’re housing feral cats. Keep in mind that cats can be territorial, so if you’re planning to create shelters for a colony, it may be best to offer several smaller shelters than one large one. Large breeds also need more space than standard breeds.

    Use your judgment when determining the best option. If your own cats sleep together inside and get along, they’ll likely get along well outdoors. If the colony spends time together and individuals don’t appear territorial, they’ll be fine in one shelter. If your neighborhood has a bunch of loner ferals, however, they may not use a space that has other cats.

    wooden cat houses
    Image Credit: Yodgi, Shutterstock

    Multiple Entryways

    This is one of the most important aspects of getting a cat house in areas with predators. Whether your neighborhood has a lot of feral cats or wildlife like raccoons, skunks, and coyotes, a shelter with only one doorway leaves your cat vulnerable to being cornered. If this happens, your cat may not be able to get away and stay safe.

    Choose a cat shelter that has an additional exit for your cat to escape. If an animal enters the shelter, your cat can just use the escape route to get away. Use your judgment about the risks to your cats in the area.

    TRIXIE 3-Story Outdoor Wooden Cat House
    Image Credit: TRIXIE, Chewy

    Heating

    Some shelters offer insulating materials, but that may not be enough in extreme climates. Areas prone to heavy rain and snow or extreme cold may need additional features, such as heated pads, to keep cats warm.

    If heated pads aren’t an option, always use straw for bedding. Blankets don’t hold heat and can make your cats colder, but straw provides warmth for your cat in severe temperatures and allows them to burrow. Straw also repels moisture and stays dry, which goes a long way in holding heat. If straw isn’t available, shredded (not folded!) paper allows cats to burrow to stay warm.

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    Conclusion

    Outdoor cat shelters are wonderful for outdoor cats or feral colonies that need a warm, safe space in bad weather. K&H Pet Products Outdoor Unheated Multi-Kitty A-Frame House is the best overall outdoor cat house and provides plenty of space for a colony. If you want value, the KatKabin DezRez Plastic Cat House has a strong plastic exterior that protects from rain, wind, and snow. The premium choice is the K&H Pet Products Extra-Wide Outdoor Heated Kitty House, which has its own heating pad.


    Featured Image Credit: Petsfit, Chewy

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