Cat problem - ideas wanted

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We have a male cat that lives in my garage/workshop. He comes and stays all day on the porch and we feed him several times a day. He is quite friendly and will allow us to pet him. Really a good looking cat but we don't want him inside since we already have a (used to be) male cat. So i put an old cat bed in the garage which he sleeps on. What i would like to do is make some sort of enclosure that would help to keep him warm in the winter months. I would like to rig some sort of device that would turn on a low wattage light or something that would provide warmth as long as he is in the enclosure. What kind of material would be the best insulator in this case? Is a heat source really necessary if i make a well insulated enclosure? This will be his second winter in the garage but i would like to make this one a little easier on him. Ken, making dust in NS
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On Sun, 19 Oct 2003 13:14:03 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@usenet.ca wrote:

I use a half barrel on its side with a lid and small access hole. Double layer plastic (like corrugated cardboard) inside gives some floor insulation, and some old polyester fleece. But then I'm not in Canada's winters. If I was, I'd probably make a cube with a raised floor, and walls of 2" insulation board.
Cats are largely nocturnal (and furry !) so they don't sleep much at night because they're out hunting. Your cat bed might see most of its use either during the day, or in bad weather.

Buy a low-wattage anti-condensation heater and leave it on, either continuously or on a timer. These are self-regulating for temperature and a lot easier than trying to assemble your own and waterproof it. if you rig it to a PIR cat-detector, it won;t be warm to attract him and he might never realise to use it.
-- Die Gotterspammerung - Junkmail of the Gods
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If he hangs out in the garage He is already partially protected. If he has a cat bed he is partially warm. If you create a small "cat house" (snicker) with insulation, that is in your garage, and that covers the cat bed, his body heat should keep him warm.
--
Young Carpenter

"Violin playing and Woodworking are similar, it takes plenty of money,
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On Sun, 19 Oct 2003 13:14:03 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@usenet.ca wrote:

Wood is an excellent insulator by itself. Dead air spaces or styrofoam-sandwiched ply insulate well too. Put some feet on the cat house to raise it up off the floor and keep it dry, and add some straw for bedding. Where's NS?
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In Nova Scotia. Tnx for the suggestion about off the floor. Will certainly do that. Ken, makin dust in NS
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snipped-for-privacy@usenet.ca wrote:

I don't know about insulation (fibreglass, or air might do it) , but if you want to provide heat, then you can put a pop can (cut in half) over a light bulb to block out the light. The pop can just fits over the bulb, and will efficiently (its made of aluminum) radiate heat but also block the light.
I read about this "pop-can oven" in "Practical Robotics" by a UofT robotics expert, W.E.R. Davies.

Nova Scotia eh.? Minus 15 centigrade at times?
Hasan
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I'd stay away from fiberglass unless you seal it. For our cat, I used scrap foam for insulation. It's a closed cell foam that was used to wrap stuff. I had lots and just layered it. If you make a double wall, pour in old "peanuts" type foam packing material. You can get lots of that in a retail area on the night they put out garbage (or ask inside for them to save you some).

It won't take much wattage to provide a lot of heat. You could make a false floor hinged on one side with a momentary-contact switch opposite the hinge. If the switch is soft enough, the weight of the cat will turn on the switch. You could also put the bulb _under_ the floor - cats love to sleep on a warm surface. This will avoid the need for a pop can.
Mike
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http://myweb.cableone.net/andya/00brewbox.jpg
Here's another idea. To build this beer brewing cabinet I took a $4 jelly jar porch light, put a 40watt bulb inside and used engine spray flat black on the glass. I wired this to a $12 line voltage thermostat (I also have a fan in the base of this box, for a a cat shelter you could leave out the fan) and it keeps 5 gallons of brew at 75 degrees without a problem.
The box gets cool, the thermostat clicks on, the light goes on, light gets converted to heat by the paint and glass, the box warms and the thermostat clicks off. What could be simpler?
Andy
wrote:

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snipped-for-privacy@usenet.ca wrote in message

A friend uses a heating pad set on very low for a cat bed on her porch.
For your, er ahum, cathouse, I suggest the extruded polystyrene insulation you find at home centers with the sheet goods. I'd sandwich it between 1/4" ply inside and out, and put a nice towel that can be easily washed in the bottom.
Fact is, a corrugated cardboard box with a hole in the side would provide warm shelter too. The cat won't know the difference.
No, I don't think you need a heat source in an enclosed shelter though the cat would surely appreciate one.
--

FF

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Had a friend who kept his old Siamese out in the garage. He had a simple cardboard box with a small blanket and some sort of low watage heat lamp inside. That provided adequate heat for a Northern Ca winter.
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I am about to build a small cathouse (similiar to doghouse) for my old cat. GFigured he deserved something for all the mice he has caught. A lightbulb would work but I would be a little cautious of the fire hazard. Maybe if temps were in teens or below. A good soft blanket worksds well. Just out of curosity, have you ever seen a dog or cat die of the cold?
On Sun, 19 Oct 2003 13:14:03 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@usenet.ca wrote:

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Iron Skillet. Turn heat to low and simmer for a while

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Seriously though. How about a reptile heater.

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Never heard of it, so I DAGS. These sound like the perfect solution. No water caused short circuits or other problems, regulators available etc. Not too expensive either.
Mike
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first make sue he likes enclosures - not all cats do. csj
snipped-for-privacy@usenet.ca wrote in message

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I had a couple of cats that we left out side in North Dakota winters. To help them out a bit I built a small house out of some scrap plywood, double walls, with some fiberglass insulation. I put a piece of canvas for a flap door, and a twenty five watt light bulb for heat. They would use it only when it was quit cold as I think it got to hot for them. Greg
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On Sun, 19 Oct 2003 13:14:03 +0000, ke wrote:

[snip]
When I lived in cold country, the cat always found the top of the HW heater in the gar^H^H^Hshop when it got cold. We just put an old towel up there to make it a little more comfy.
-Doug
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http://myweb.cableone.net/andya/cathouse.jpg
The inside is lined with used carpeting and there is a shelf over the entrance tunnel (the tunnel blocks the wind) that the cat cat sleep on above the floor of the box.
The carpeting on the walls, floors and ceiling of the box keep the insides warm enough that no other heat source is required. This house sits on the back porch and we get snow and below freezing nights here in Idaho.
The owner of the house (We built it as a gift from his wife) reports that up to three cats have been found spending the night inside. The top is outdoor carpet and the cat snoozes there on warm afternoons.
Andy

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Look into a "Hotrock" for snake cages. Basically it's a brick with a heater cast in. It never gets too hot, just warm and if you put it in the cats box it should be plenty of wattage.
-- Bill Pounds http://www.bill.pounds.net/woodshop

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Hey, in case that cat doesn't work out, there was a free one on here a few weeks ago. DAGS :-)
-- Bill Pounds http://www.bill.pounds.net/woodshop

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