Cats and slideouts

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Well-known member
Mar 11, 2005
wherever we are parked
I am midway through a program to adjust my cat to motorhome life. No problem at all with my Chesapeake retriever, he took to MH life faster than I did. But you can imagine the attitude adjustment required for a 12 year old male neutered cat who has had his way with life for more than a decade.

The good news is that he has been living in the motorhome for three days now and actually enjoys many aspects such as the big front window complete with a level area for him to gaze at the world from.

I worry though about the slideouts. Fine while they are extended, for there are no dangerous cubby holes that he has access to. But when the slides are closed, there are several exposed "cavities". I worry he will pop into one of them and then be trapped or even crushed when I later go to open the slides again.

Anyone have any experience in dealing with this?
Our cat sleeps under the sofa in the main slide while we travel. No danger, because there is no mechanism there - he is on the slide out floor and the mechanism is below the floor. Even opening the sofa to the sleep position is no risk to him.

The bedroom slide is another story.  We have an underbed storage area and the cat likes to jump in there to snoop around when we open it.  Have to make sure he is out when we close it up again.  And the mechanism is somewhat exposed under the bed and he could possibly be injured if he were under there when opening or closing.  Fortunately, there is no access to the area except when the bed is raised.
Strange you should comment on that..... Our first time out with the new MH about 2 days into the trip I noticed the indicator on the black tank getting ... Well,,, Full.  so we closed up and moved to the dump-a-torium... Upon our return my wife put the slides out w/o checking for cat... Suddenly one of our cats was gone. could not find him..... Eventually I had to return home for a few minutes, but then it was back to the campground,  While I'm at home my wife called to ask where the compartment keys were (Basement storage bays) and I told her they were unlocked,,, She had heard a MEOW... Well , after I got back from my meeting and went to bed we again heard MEOW, and my ears, tinnatitus and all, being sharper than hers ever were, I nailed the altitude, cat was under the bed.... caught in the slide (Seems there was enough room for him there w/o damage)  I had wife bring me the key for the power switch, brought the slides in and the cat made a sudden appearance... Under the OTHER bed (We had a guest that night) the one that folds up into a couch.

Now.. Remember the wife is the one who trapped the cat.... I'm the one who figured it out and rescued the cat,  So who does the cat run to... You guessed it,, the wife.

Now we have a new plan... Double plan in fact.

Part 1 is CLOSE THE STUPID DOOR and put a baby gate in front of it as well... This keeps the cat out of the bedroom (though it won't stop the other cat when we are putting out the slides, but she is not an under-bed cat)

Part two is a "Cat House"  Now, 1: This thing set me back over 200 dollars (way more expensive than I anticipated) 2 It's nice

I made it out of plastic "Tuff Built" lattice fence from Home Depot, The smaller lattace (the larger one I suspected the cats can get through) and hinges and one 1x1 board (Center support rib for the lid) there are five sides

The assembled cage is 4'high, 3'deep and about 5'long, fits over the dining table and chairs (We choose table, not booth) This is, itself, a slide out, but the cats are contained entierly on top of the floor of the slide so there is no chance of them getting caught

Each mating edge has 2 2" hinges, removable pins, and I replaced the hinge pins with clutch pins (easier to remove, these are smaller versions of the pins which lock the big pin in the towing receiver/hitch combination) the top also has four angle brackets for additional support,  The unit is all plastic save for the wood rib along the top which adds stability.

To take it down you start pulling pins, six of them and the front can be put under the MH, 2 more and the lid (upside down) goes on top of it, 2 more for one, and 2 more for the other, side and then the back on top of everything, under the MH out of the way

Future plans call for a pet door in the MH leading to an elclosed ramp leading to a matching pet door in this cage so the cats can go outside w/o going outside.

Part of this is the neighborhood where I currently live... There are two kinds of cats here, Indoor and "soon to be dead"  A couple of very nasty cat diseases are present in the neighborhood and if your cat wanders outside unsupervised, gets in a fight with an infected cat, they quickly sicken and die... Indoors 15-20 years outdoors 15 to 20 months  Thus I am paraniod about letting them run free
Hi Smoky
nothing to do with cats ,but what was the result of the ironing board.Have you got it on board or not.
Howdy, John.

Part two is a "Cat House"  Now, 1: This thing set me back over 200 dollars (way more expensive than I anticipated) 2 It's nice

Hmmmm. Will you please upload a photo of this Cat House?

John In Detroit said:
Part two is a "Cat House"?

Future plans call for a pet door in the MH leading to an enclosed ramp leading to a matching pet door in this cage so the cats can go outside w/o going outside

We have two friends who are full timers that have similar situations. The cat person made up a cage that he hangs from the coach over the bathroom window. After he gets rig setup, he simply takes cage and hangs it over window, then goes inside to open window and he has a sort of hanging split drape that cat can walk through and he doesn't lose heat or cool to outside. The cat loves it. I'll often look out window at night and see the cat lying contently in the cage watching the world.  The dog person put a door in side of motorhome and a ramp as you describe plus the cage on ground. The dog has freedom to come and go as he pleases. He has been prevented from using this arrangement in several campgrounds that have rules against uses of cages on site.
Jackliz said:
Howdy, John.

Part two is a "Cat House"  Now, 1: This thing set me back over 200 dollars (way more expensive than I anticipated) 2 It's nice

Hmmmm. Will you please upload a photo of this Cat House?

Sure, it's not much to look at but I'll get a few views of it next time we hit the road, which may not be till July 8

Assembled INSIDE,  Assembled OUTSIDE ,  Broken down, Hinge detail,  All nice and low-rez so the system will take them

Though it's not much to look at, and I think my textual description of it does it justice  I mean all you have to do to "See" it is visit Home Depot, or any home builder supply that carries the plastic lattace fence, and visualise a box made out of the stuff, re-size to fit your space and you got it.

The Admiral opted to put one of those midget ironing board into the basement.

Re the cat window cages.  I saw one this week on a Mandalay, and those cages are pretty cool.  I walked by several times and every time there was at least one of the cats visible in the cage watching the outdoor scenery.

Smoky - Currently parked in Cherry Hill RV Park College Park MD
We used to have a "cat porch" on a fifth wheel but in the motorhome the cat just sits on the dashboard day or night and surveys his world... or just catnaps. He sometimes sits in the stairwell and looks out the screen door, but the windshield seems more to his liking most of the time.

Headed nowhere for the time being.  Just testing out things at Cherry Hill.  Going to test the washer dryer tomorrow.  Last two days have been testing out the granddaughter, but tomorrow we turn her back over to her dad so we can get some rest and recup.  ;D

House settles again  :D on Tuesday for the third time lol.  Hopefully this time will be the charm.  Because our settlement has been delayed a month, we are at least 3 weeks behind our original schedule for hitting the road.  I might just put all our belongings in a pile and light a match to them after the house settles.
We have a chihuahua, Koda, who likes going everywhere with us.  We have not yet gone out in the camper with him because of house stuff, but soon.  We bought a crate, folds up flat and has a handle.  Sounds similar to the one described made of Lattice, but this is all powder coated wire.  Has a lide out bottom for easy cleaning.  Even came with an inside partition to make it smaller. I think you might use it to seperate 2 cats/dogs?  Maybe not, still only one door. 

Anyway, Koda is already crate trained, so for keeping him confined, this works great.  Cost all of $30.  We have a bigger one we initially got him, but too big for the camper unit we have now. 

I am considering getting him one of those expandable 'playpens, it opens into a large circle so he can run around outside and stay in a confined area. 

Wonder if they make a portable 'invisible fence'? 


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