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6 Free DIY Cat Gate & Barrier Plans You Can Make Today

cat in blue gate_Chunli Ju_Unsplash
Image Credit: Chunli Ju, Unsplash
Last Updated on November 16, 2023 by Chantelle Fowler

Every cat owner knows that cats are curious and love to explore, but you want to protect your cat, too. Letting your cat explore freely can expose them to toxic plants and other animals or risk damage to parts of your home. Cats are more challenging to contain than other pets, making it tough to find a gate or barrier to rein them in!

If you have trouble containing your cat, you’ve come to the right place. There are several DIY options for cat gates and barriers. They’re easy to build, and most plans use items you probably already have. Read on for easy DIY cat gate and barrier plans that you can get started on today!

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The 6 DIY Cat Gate and Barrier Plans

1. DIY Free-Standing Pet Gate for Cats by Pet Helpful

DIY cat gate
Image Credit: Pethelpful
Materials:Three wire shelves, cable ties or zip ties, scissors
Escape Proof Rating:Moderately hard to escape
Difficulty Level:Easy

This easy and affordable DIY cat barrier is made from wire shelving and requires minimal skills. It enables you to block your cat from entering rooms in your house that aren’t safe.

Most home-improvement stores sell wire shelving that can be pre-cut to your desired length. You want the shelf to be at least 4 feet high to prevent your cat from jumping over the top, but they can be higher if desired. Shelves should be at least 16 inches wide, with an edge that hangs over to fit them together.

Tips and Tricks

While this cat barrier is relatively easy to make, the instructions will require alterations if you don’t have two adjacent walls to place the barrier between. It is possible to anchor the wire shelves to a single wall using drywall anchors to make it a permanent structure.

2. DIY Extra Large Pet Gate for Cats by Kitty Loaf

DIY cat gate
Image Credit: Kittyloaf
Materials:Three pieces of 4’x8’ vinyl lattice, 12 lattice caps, screws, zip ties
Escape Proof Rating:Moderate
Difficulty Level:Moderate to hard

This extra-large cat gate is best suited for cats that aren’t strong jumpers. The supplies list includes six 4’x4’ pieces, but you can buy extra lattice to make the gate taller or shorter.

This gate is a good option if you have a large opening that doesn’t accommodate traditional pet and baby gates. It can be made to block openings as wide as 20 feet and doesn’t let your cat climb under or around it, as long as there are walls at each end.

Tips and Tricks

This project requires multiple steps, technical knowledge, and power tools. At a minimum, you must use a saw, power drill, and clamps.

3. DIY PVC Pipe Cat Gate by eHow

DIY cat gate
Image Credit: Ehow
Materials:Four pieces of 1” PVC pipe, 4 T-connectors, zip ties, cat fencing, two tension rods
Escape Proof Rating:Moderate
Difficulty Level:Moderate

PVC pipe can be purchased at any hardware store and is an inexpensive option for a DIY cat gate. If you’re relatively handy, this gate can be built in less than an hour, and installation won’t cause any damage to your walls or door frames.

The height and width of this project can be adjusted to meet your needs. Tension rods enable you to secure it in oversized openings.

Tips and Tricks

To make the PVC Pipe Cat Gate more secure, you can glue the T-connectors onto the ends of the PVC pipe. Ensure the cat fencing is installed securely, as curious cats will find weak spots and slip out.

4. Wooden Cat Gate by Crafted Workshop

DIY cat gate
Image Credit: Craftedworkshop
Materials:4 x 4, 1 x 4, 1 x 2, gate hinges, gate latch, gate stop, screws, lacquer, wood glue, drywall anchors
Escape Proof Rating:Moderate
Difficulty Level:Moderate

This stylish-looking wooden barrier gate is made of several pieces of poplar wood, and although you need several power tools to bring this plan to fruition, it’s not much of a challenge. We love that you can make this gate as high as needed to keep your kitty contained.

This gate can add a lot to your space if you stain the wood to match your rooms’ other design elements.

Tips and Tricks

This gate is designed for use at the top or bottom of a staircase, but there’s no reason you couldn’t use the design in your doorways, too. Depending on your door design, you may need to get creative with different mounting block options.

5. Wood Stair Spindle Gate by 100 things 2 do

DIY cat gate
Image Credit: 100things2do
Materials:2 x 8 lumber, stain, poly, deck spindles, sandpaper, wood glue, wood screws, corbels
Escape Proof Rating:Moderate
Difficulty Level:Moderate

This freestanding gate is made of stair spindles and wood for an attractive farmhouse design. It can be stained a color to match your space, and because there are so many stair spindle options, the gate won’t be an eyesore in your home.

This moderately difficult plan requires patience and exact measuring to ensure the spindles fit properly into the holes. Still, the result is worth it for a beautiful farmhouse-esque addition to your home décor.

Tips and Tricks

Save money on this cat barrier by using spare wood and old stair spindles hiding in your garage. We also suggest searching on your community’s buy and sell pages to find cheap supplies if you want to save a few dollars on this project.

6. Barn Door Pet Gate by Factual Fairytale

DIY cat gate
Image Credit: Factualfairytale
Materials:Pine boards, screws, gate latch, gate hinges, zip ties, magnetic door stop, drywall anchors (optional), stain or paint, and painting supplies (optional)
Escape Proof Rating:Moderate
Difficulty Level:Moderate

This beautiful barn door pet gate is perfect for any farmhouse-styled home. It requires more materials and tools than some of the other barriers on our list, but the result is worth it if aesthetics is important to you.

This project comes together easily once all your wood is cut to size. Because you’ll be cutting each board by hand and not relying on already pre-cut boards like crib slats, you can control the height of the barrier to ensure it’ll be high enough to keep your kitty out.

Tips and Tricks

This project is meant to be a baby gate with an opening for pets to get through. If you use this DIY to keep your pets out of rooms, you’ll want to skip the step that adds the pet-sized opening.

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These easy-to-build cat gate and barrier plans are inexpensive options to keep your cat contained. Choose one that meets your skill level and is appropriate for your cat. Some cats can be kept out of a room with a visual barrier, while others will climb everything in sight. Most of the plans can be customized, so you can adjust the project to work for your specific needs.

Featured Image Credit: Chunli Ju, Unsplash

About the Author

Chantelle Fowler
Chantelle Fowler
Chantelle is passionate about two things in her life – writing and animals. She grew up on the prairies in Canada surrounded by animals. As an adult, she chooses to share her home with five cats, two guinea pigs, and a bearded dragon. Chantelle, her husband, and their child take great pride in being THOSE kind of animal parents - the ones who spend a thousand dollars on wall-mounted cat shelves so that their cats can have an indoor jungle gym all year round. When Chantelle isn’t snuggling her cats on the couch or taking pictures of them being hilarious, she’s outside exploring in the Rocky Mountains, binging the same shows on Netflix over and over, and reading about whatever random topic pops into her brain. 

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