Shelters & Straw

Community cats prefer living outside and, with proper care, typically thrive in their outdoor homes. During the winter months, outdoor shelters provide safe places where the cats can rest, warm up, and stay dry. Most cats use their outdoor shelters year round.

Building an outdoor shelter yourself is inexpensive and easy. Here are some ideas:

Bideawee's Winter Shelters for Community Cats

Neighborhood Cats Winter Shelters

Alley Cat Allies' Community Cat Shelter Options Gallery

Locally Made Outdoor Cat Shelters

Shelters available in Westchester! They come filled with straw (additional bag of straw = $5). Free pallets (to raise them off the ground) and pavers (to weigh them down).

Cost: Large shelters (31” x 15“ x 15”) are $30 

Small shelters (34” x 13” x 11”) are $25

Pickup: White Plains area

Baled Straw Resources

Rough-cut, baled straw is the best bedding as it does not retain moisture and allows the cats to burrow. Here are some local resources for baled straw:

Hilltop Nursery and Garden Center

2028 Albany Post Road, Croton-on-Hudson, NY 10520

Phone: (914) 468-6633

Agriventures Agway (Danbury)

92 Mill Plain Road, Danbury, CT 06811

Phone: (203) 743-7500


If you are unable to get baled straw, shredded newspaper is the next best choice. Do not use hay or shredded straw, and never put towels, blankets, or carpet inside outdoor cat shelters, as these materials retain moisture and get moldy, and will make the cats cold and sick