Got an old washing machine? Use it as a cat shelter.
A veterinarian in Portugal, supported by the local council has started an imaginative program of providing individual shelters for stray and feral cats using old washing machines. I am referring to the ones that you load horizontally of course. I realise that in the US there are some enormous vertical loading machines.
It sounds a bit farfetched but it works. We know that domestic cats like to jump into washing machines, which incidentally is dangerous if the machine is in use. The machines are a nice size and have a natural insulation. The drum inside the machine is nicely placed off the ground.
The top of the machine can act as a platform for a cat to observe the surrounding terrain. You can paint the machine an interesting color so that it fits in with the urban environment more successfully. The top of the machine could be painted a matt black to absorb heat. Old blankets are placed inside the appliance for bedding.
The photos on this page show how it works. The veterinarian who dreamt up the idea is Ana Silva who you see in one of the photos. The scheme is deployed in the town of Monchique.
Silva has got the community behind her despite the fact that there will always be some people who dislike cats and therefore dislike this sort of idea.
I have an old washing machine I may try this in my garden
Great idea as long as the electrical connection is permanently disabled. You know why I say this…?