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- Not a substitute for professional veterinary help.
Cages (also called crates, kennels, pens, or playpens) can be a real life-saver if your cat is recovering from illness or injury, or when you’re introducing a new cat or kittens into your home. Cat cages can also be a short-term solution to protect your cat from household dangers during a home repair project.
I’ve used collapsible crates when adopting rescue cats that had been traumatized and needed a safe space while getting used to our household. Now we always keep one handy in case of a cat emergency. Fortunately, most cat cages can be taken apart or folded up so they can be stored in a closet, garage, or outdoor shed.
Cages are quite a bit more spacious than carriers and often include beds, boxes, and perches. According to the Association of Shelter Veterinarians, vertical space is even more important than horizontal space for cats, who tend to prefer raised perches to a spot on the ground. You’ll need room in there for food and water and (at a good distance from the feeding area) a litter box.
A cat enclosure should provide some alone space away from other kitties, with plenty of room for your cat to stand up, turn around, sit, and lie down. Unless your cat is on vet-ordered rest, their time in the cage should be limited—cats need time to explore.
With all that in mind, we’ve found some good cages for home use that check these boxes—read on for our picks.
The Best Cat Cages
Most of the cat cages in our list are steel or aluminum, with casters so they can be easily moved around (and locked in place). We’ve also included two “pop-up” cages, with the caution that really determined cats could escape from those.
At about $100, this mid-size cage has plenty of features, including three perches and easy-access latching doors. Made of coated steel, with a leak-proof plastic pan, it’s ideal for keeping new kittens safe or giving cats some outdoor time on a porch or sheltered yard. Installing the lockable rolling coasters is optional, and some buyers note that the coasters were difficult to attach.
- Dimensions: 35.25-inch by 23.375-inch base; 48 inches high
- Materials: coated steel with plastic plan
This top-rated three-tiered cat enclosure keeps your pet securely confined while giving them a 360-degree view of everything around them. Two large cabinet-style front doors on the top and bottom with secure latches make accessing plastic tray perches and your cat’s litter box easy, expediting the cleaning process. Put a litter box on the bottom level and a soft bed up top, and your cat will have everything they need to relax and enjoy.
- Dimensions: 31.5-inch by 22-inch base; 48.4 inches high
- Reviewers say this is a perfect cage for raising kittens
This cage has a more horizontal orientation than most and would work well for recovering cats that need to limit movement. Made of strong, lightweight, coated aluminum, it includes two spacious perches and one hammock for napping. Rubber casters make it easy to move.
- Dimensions: 43.25-inch by 25.25-inch base; 44.9 inches high
- Doors open easily with a two-finger locking mechanism
At 65 inches tall with four levels of play space for your kitty, this is a genuinely spacious cage. The strong, stable base helps it stand sturdy, while rubber casters on the bottom let you easily move it around your home. Best of all, the deluxe enclosure has a paw-friendly design with no gap or pinch points to harm fuzzy little feet. The aluminum cage is easy to assemble.
- Dimensions: 43.25-inch by 25.2-inch base; 65.75 inches high
- Materials: aluminum, with plastic plan
- Includes two extra-large lock-in platforms and two extra-large hammocks
- Three extra-large double doors make it easy to access and clean
- Easy to assemble, with sliding panels that lock into place with clips
This three-level cat cage is easy to set up and break down (no tools required), so it’s perfect for accommodating cats during a short stay. It has three shelves for relaxation and even comes with a chenille cat bed. The leak-proof bottom tray slides out for easy cleaning.
- Dimensions: 23.58-inch by 36-inch base; 50 inches high
- Four locking casters
- Entire cat pen folds down for storage when not in use
- Can customize with extra shelves (sold separately)
This three-level cat cage/cat condo is the only one on our list constructed of plastic. The plastic makes it easy to clean and sanitize and keeps kitty paws safe from pinching and scrapes. With three perches for your cat to explore, this cat pen is kind of like an enclosed cat tree, and several reviewers say they leave the doors open to use it as a cat tree during the day and only close the doors to confine their cats at night.
- Dimensions: 32.48-inch by 22.24-inch base; 68.98 inches high
- Hooks that prop the doors open if you want your cat to come and go as they please
- The top opens up for easy access to the top level
If you’re looking for a temporary but spacious cage for a domestic cat, inexpensive, soft-sided playpens may be an option. Just make sure there is plenty of room for a small litter box and for the cat to move about. This nylon EliteField playpen comes in several sizes (and colors) suitable for cats and has great reviews—though it’s probably not a good choice for anyone with a true escape artist.
- Dimensions: 42-inch by 42-inch base; 24 inches high
- Folds up for storage or travel
- The zip-off floor is washable
Here’s a pop-up portable cage if you’re looking for a temporary safe space for your cat. It’s ideal for containing your pet so they won’t get in the way of contractors or slip out the door during a party. It’s also useful if your cat needs a quiet place to recover from a trip to the vet—or in case of an emergency. It includes a waterproof fleece mat and foldable litter box specially sized to fit the cage. This popup cage gets rave reviews from buyers whose kitties are relatively low key; people with aggressive cats report that a determined cat can rip through the polyester fabric and escape. Note: You can also buy the pop-up cage without the litter box.
- Dimensions: 20-inch by 31.8-inch base; 20 inches high
- Roll-up mesh panels offer ventilation and visibility
- Locking zippers prevent escape
- Comes with a double-sided, removable, waterproof fleece mat and storage bag
Furnishing Your Cat Cage
Keep your cat comfortable and happy in their cage or playpen with these essentials:
- Food and water
- A soft bed or cushion to rest on
- Safe toys to keep them entertained
- A litter box—kept on the lowest level, far away from their food and bed
Finally, keep in mind that cat cages are temporary housing. Unless you’re advised to do so by your vet, you won’t be keeping your cat in a cage all day.
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Featured image via Chewy