Friday, February 04, 2005

Dog Crate, Cat Playpen -- Any Difference?

I've been thinking about getting a cage for my boys for a couple of weeks now. As I said in a previous post, we need some kind of cage to keep the boys in while we are doing something that could harm them if they get in the way -- building a bookshelf, organizing a closet, vacuuming, etc.

It seems that there are two kinds of cages in the world -- cat "playpens" and dog "crates." Nobody wants to call them cages, because I guess the word "cage" has negative connotations. My fiancee Liz doesn't particularly like the idea of a cage either, but she understands why we probably need one. "Putting the boys in a cage means that we're treating them like animals and we want to treat them like family members," she says. I understand how she feels, but I think a cage is a more humane place to put the boys for a few hours than packing them into their carrier and putting it on the couch while we struggle to build an Ikea bookcase. The cage can hold water,food, and a litterbox at least.

The problem with the cat playpens I see online is that they are both very large and fairly expensive. It's also unclear how much they would fold down.

Today, I was at the local Petco and I went to look at their selection of cages. They had a wide variety of shapes and sizes and most of the cages were cheaper than the cat playpens I'd seen online. Unfortunately, they were all called "dog crates," but I started to think. Does it really matter whether it's meant for dogs? I walked over to look at the cats they have in the store for adoption. I looked at their cages. They were all "dog crates." Does it matter?


Anonymous said...

No, it doesn't matter. The ultimate idea is to have a place to put them so they are out of the way so you can get some stuff done without their "help". Dog crates are bigger than cat ones for the use you have in mind. Just do it.

majorghn said...

I am currently looking for a cat cage for my two cats, mainly for one cat that has medical problems, the other cat may be able to use the cage I am not sure because of his size, which brings me to another problem...cage size!!

Unless you have kittens, none of these so-called "playpens" are not really that at all, their way too small for any type of "play" unless your adult cat(s) are runts or small kittens.

The other problem is the sturdiness of the shelves, the cage description says nothing about their weight cats weigh 10 lbs & 18 lbs respectively.

Marvin, the bigger cat, would be too long for the shelves I think (you can't tell with one provided photo of the cage)and definitely too heavy I would think.

There seems to only be two cat cage manufacturers here in the USA so if you have a large cat you're pretty either much SOL or doing a lot of cage modifications to strengthen parts of it and possibly having cramped conditions in the cage....a jumbo litter box would take up 3/4 of the floor space of one of these cat cages.

These cat manufacturers as far as I am concerned are not being realistic about the actual size of the average indoor cat...cats can grow to over 2 feet long, not counting there tails and weigh in excess of 22 lbs.

I don't think it's cruel to keep cats in a cage for short periods of time for bonified reasons i.e. medical conditions, safety, or unruly cat in training.

Bottom line is, expect to be doing modifications to the cage once you get it and "think small"!!