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Creating a cat-friendly home

If you love cats, you may already know Jackson Galaxy from Animal Planet’s TV show, ‘My Cat from Hell’, where he assesses the situation and finds ways to make the cat happy (and the family happy).  Jackson Galaxy has co-authored two books with Kate Benjamin, New York Times Bestseller ‘Catification: Designing a Happy and Stylish Home for Your Cat (and You)‘ and its sequel ‘Catify to Satisfy: Simple Solutions for Creating a Cat-Friendly Home‘.

Released in November 2015, Catify to Satisfy combines Jackson’s more than 20 years of experience working with challenging cats and Kate’s expertise with cat-friendly home design and DIY projects. This book is full of great practical ideas to catify your home in order to create a pleasant environment where everyone is comfortable and happy.   Jackson says in the book ‘In the end, I believe that your home will be a more harmonious one (not to mention cooler looking!). Catify to Satisfy will make even the most experienced cat guardians view their own living space with fresh eyes.

Catify to Satisy is a must read for all cat guardians! This book review of Catify to Satisfy covers the chapters in Jackson and Kate’s book – base camp: the heart of catification, scratching solutions, let’s talk about litter boxes and cat superhighways: navigating the vertical world. Each section of the book features a ‘Faces in the Nation’, which showcases a catification project.

Catify to Satisfy creating a cat-friendly home chapter summary

Creating a cat-friendly home

Creating a cat-friendly home. A must read for all cat guardians!

Chapter 1 is about creating a base camp for your cat in your home.  Base Camp is a defined in the book as an area of your home that is the heart of a cat’s territory. It’s a place of introduction and acclimation as well as a place of safety. For climbers on Mount Everest, base camp is where they acclimate before ascending to the summit. For a cat being introduced to a new home, setting up base camp is critical in making a smooth transition. This chapter makes you think carefully about where to set up base camp and what items you need that is a significant resource to a cat such as a litter box, water bowl/food dish, cat trees, scratching posts, beds, toys, cocoons and blankets etc. Basecamp is your cat’s comfort zone, a place to retreat.

Chapter 2 addresses the problem and solutions for kitties scratching in inappropriate places, like your favourite lounge chair. This section explains why your kitty does this and includes projects (with instructions) to create a variety of scratching posts and surfaces. The book covers details such as the location, material and angle preferences.

Chapter 3 is dedicated to litter boxes. This chapter covers everything you need to know about litter boxes – types, location, how many, the right size and recommendations for long-haired cats, obese cats, senior cats etc. Jackson speaks out against automatic self-cleaning litter boxes because you can’t monitor your cat’s waste. While the book does offer some creative solutions for hiding litter boxes, they always put the cats’ needs ahead of human sensibilities.  In an interview with The Cat on My Head, Jackson says:

[It’s] “not just about what features to have in your house and not just about design but the behavior behind the design. A litter box is not just a litter box. A litter box for a cat is a sign post. It says I live here. I own this territory. It gives me that Cat Mojo. It makes me secure .”

Chapter 4 is about creating cat superhighways, which is particularly essential in homes with multiple animals and/or children. Cats need escape routes off the ground to find peace.  A good superhighway is all about efficient traffic flow which means multiple lanes (to avoid traffic jams!) and levels, on/off ramps, rest stops, destinations etc.

So, why not get started with catifying your home, just putting up a few shelves constitutes Catification action.  Every little bit will help your cat (and you) live a life a more harmonious life.