Cats love to roam around outside, and often we see them walking the streets, darting into hedges, or lying in wait for a stroke. Despite loving a wander, cats often don’t travel far from their home and rarely stroll beyond 200m away.


For cat owners, this means that our gardens (if lucky enough to have one) are often the closest and most frequented area of green space for our felines. So how do we make them safe and enjoyable spaces for our cats? Cat-proofing.

This process clears our outdoor areas of hazards which might endanger our cats whilst also adding entertainment features to make it a more enjoyable space. To help you turn your garden into a cat paradise, we’ve drafted together the top 10 tips to help you cat-proof.

10 easy ways to make your garden cat-proof

Cute young tabby cat playing in a garden

Here are our top 10 ways to make your garden safer and more exciting for your cat:

1. Select cat-safe plants

Everyone loves a green and colourful garden, but when selecting the plants to make your garden stand out, prioritise cat-safe plants. These can help to keep your cat protected and also make the garden a more exciting place for your cat to play.

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You want to avoid common garden plants such as lilies and tulips, which are both toxic to felines if ingested. For a full list of toxic garden plants, see Cat Protection’s toxic plant guide. Instead of these toxic plants, opt for plants like catnip, aromatic catmint, and nutritious wheatgrass.

These are excellent options as they will keep your cat excited and playful whilst ensuring they stay out of harm's way. If you want to grow your own cat grass (wheatgrass), you can buy growing kits which can then be planted in your garden.

2. Create a designated play area

Designing a dedicated play zone in your garden is like setting up a private cat playground! Lay down soft ground coverings such as sand or soil to create a comfortable and safe space where your cat can mess around to their heart's content.

This designated area will not only keep your garden organised but also deter your cat from venturing into potentially hazardous spots. Try adding a portable cat tunnel to this designated space or even give your cat its own little playhouse so they have space to chill out in.

3. Install cat-proof fencing

Secure your garden with cat-proof fencing to create a safe and contained outdoor haven for your cat. This is especially useful if you don’t want your cat to venture further than the garden. You can create a barrier that will not only keep your cat from wandering outside but also protect them from potential dangers beyond your property.

By investing in quality cat-proof fencing, you're granting your furry friend the freedom to explore the great outdoors while ensuring they remain shielded from harm's way. The PiuPet Cat Net is a great option if you want a low-cost, reliable way to cat-proof your fencing.

4. Add cat-friendly furniture

Cat-friendly furniture gives our felines the luxury that they very much deserve. From putting scratching posts in the garden to climbing structures and cosy lounging spots, these additions will keep your cat entertained and mentally stimulated.

By providing designated spots for scratching and climbing, you're also diverting their attention from potentially hazardous objects. They will be less inclined to scratch your fence, climb the trees or attack the bird pond.

Here are some of the best cat-friendly furniture and toys to add to your garden:

  • Afufu Cat Hammocks, Amazon, £17.99: This hammock attaches to windows via four suction cups and can be set up either indoors or outdoors. It holds cats weighing up to 10kg, making a great spot for your cat to keep a watchful eye over the garden or take a nap in the sun.
  • Catit 2.0 Senses Cat Grass Planter, Pets at Home, £22: This grass planter is the perfect garden feature for your cat and provides both fun and nutrition. It comes with three sets of grass seeds and a special planting pot so can be used on a balcony or placed on decking if you have no green space. When grown, the grass can be eaten by your cat, aiding digestion, and be used to brush up against, helping stimulate and groom your feline friend.
Close-up of a kitten lying in the grass, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

5. Avoid harmful chemicals

Adopting an eco-friendly approach in your garden will not only benefit the environment but also safeguard your cat's well-being. Refrain from using toxic chemicals, pesticides, or fertilisers that might pose a risk to your furry friend.

Instead, opt for pet-safe alternatives to nurture a thriving garden while prioritising your cat's health. By keeping harmful chemicals at bay, you're creating a safe and sustainable haven where both your garden and your cat can flourish.

6. Create shelters and hiding spots

Create some shelters and hiding spots for your cat to use. These will make your cat feel a sense of security. Consider providing cat houses or boxes where your cat can retreat during bad weather conditions or when they feel the need to unwind in peace.

These hiding spots not only offer refuge but also cater to your cat's desire for a cosy resting spot. If you don’t want to make a shelter yourself, then you can consider buying one instead.

Here are some of our favourites:

  • Petsfit Cat Waterproof Wooden House, Amazon, £129.99: This easy-to-assemble cat house provides the perfect place for your cat to stay warm in the winter or find shade in the summer heat. The house has a safe exit door on the side and a weatherproof bitumen roof designed especially to protect cats from light rain and wind.
  • Hagen Cat Condo, Wayfair, £143.99: This three-tiered house is made with waterproof paint and protective roofing to provide refuge and fun during all weather conditions. There are 2 escape doors and 2 jumping platforms which not only provide fun entrances for your cats but also allow you to observe them when they're inside.
  • PawHut Wooden Outdoor Cat House 3-Tier, B&Q, £114.99: This outdoor cat house is a three-tier model, featuring a bottom hideaway hole with three entrances. It is waterproofed with a durable roof and a raised base to keep it off the floor and away from the elements.

7. Monitor your water feature

If you don’t have a water feature, maybe skip this one. If you do, it's essential to be cautious. Ensure that ponds or water features have escape routes, such as ramps or shallow edges, to prevent accidental drowning. By thoughtfully planning your water features, you'll create a space for your cat to quench their curiosity (and thirst) without any lurking water-related dangers. Also, be sure not to add toxic chemicals to the water that your cat could ingest.

8. Check for escape routes

If you don’t want your cat leaving the property, make sure to maintain a cat-friendly and secure garden. Regularly inspect the premises for potential escape routes, as cats are skilled escape artists. Even the tiniest gap in the fence can be an open invitation to an unplanned adventure.

9. Supervise their time outdoors

Being a responsible parent, even for cats, sometimes includes supervision. It's crucial to be present and supervise your cat's outdoor activities if they are not confident outdoors or if they have a tendency to run away. Being there for your feline friend ensures they stay away from potential hazards and dangerous encounters with wildlife or neighbouring pets. This is especially useful if they are younger cats who are getting to grips with the outdoors.

10. Introduce toys and puzzles

Enriching your garden with interactive toys and puzzles helps spice up the life for your feline friends. Engage your cat's natural instincts with interactive playtime, climbing challenges, and stimulating toys. These activities will not only keep your cat mentally stimulated but also reduce the likelihood of them exploring hazardous areas in search of entertainment.

Here are our favourite outdoor entertainment choices for your cat:

  • The Pyramid, Cat Tree UK, £311: This outdoor cat tree is very easy to assemble and has been made to withstand all that British weather can throw at it. It is a pyramid shape with a hanging platform and four wooded areas for rest, sunbathing and play.
  • Qianly Cat Outdoor PlaypenIs, Amazon, £32.99: This collapsible outdoor enclosure is a perfect combination of a cat tunnel and hexagon tent house. It is made of a high-quality scratch-resistant net which is both breathable and lightweight. If the weather is bad it can also be used inside!
  • Kitty Pool with Floating Toys, Zooplus, £8.99: This small paddling pool is great for a curious cat and comes complete with three floating toys to keep your cat entertained. It is immediately ready to use and when not being paddled in can be folded up and stored away easily.

Want to read more expert-recommended pet product round-ups and guides? Check out our Pets page for a full list of recommendations, including our list of the best cat toys, the best cat food, and if catnip is safe for your cat.


Finn ByrneEcommerce Writer

Finn Byrne is a Digital Writer for Immediate Media. He works across several brands including The Recommended,, MadeforMums and BBC Gardeners’ World. Finn has previously written for publications including MyLondon, The Mirror, The Express, and The Star. When not writing Finn enjoys spending time on the football pitch and getting stuck into a book.