Catios: Albuquerque man builds patios for cats

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Catios are pouncing into Albuquerque neighborhoods.

Catios are safe enclosures designed with your cat’s needs in mind – and building them has become Gopal Phil Sittnick’s passion.

“I was working as a handyman in 2017 when a friend asked me to build a ‘catio,'” Sittnick said. “She explained what it was, and I built her one.”

It soon caught on, and now Sittnick goes by the name the “Catio man.” He has built nearly 68 catios of all different shapes and sizes.

Cats can prowl around the enclosure without their paws ever touching the ground. Catios are not only about looks, they also keep cats safe.

“The Humane Society recommends people not let their cats outside just because it’s so dangerous, and indoor-only cats live longer, you know, they are healthier, but keeping your cat indoors all the time isn’t their natural environment – cats love to be outside,” Sittnick said.

Cats are not the only ones happy when they are in their element.

“I just think they are a lot happier being out in nature,” Oliva Burton, cat owner, said. “I see how happy it makes them and it makes me happy.”