Catify to Satisfy Didn’t Satisfy

Hi everyone! I finally got a copy of Catify to Satisfy: Simple Solutions For Creating a Cat-Friendly HomeΒ  from the library and I am glad I didn’t buy a copy. I really like Jackson Galaxy and all he does for cats, but I am disappointed in this book.

There were a lot of great ideas, but not for people like me with no carpentry skills. I loved the section about the autistic man who has made his home very cat friendly. You can see a short video of that on youtube:

There was an entire chapter on litter boxes in hidden places like cabinets. There was a note that some cats may not like covered boxes, but in reality, I think most cats don’t like to use covered litter boxes. I just couldn’t understand why he would waste a chapter on this when it is more for home aesthetics than a cat’s pleasure.

My biggest complaint was the lack of a resource list. Where the heck am I supposed to get the shelves, poles and sisal? One page listed that a ship’s porthole was purchased on Ebay. I wanted a step by step guide from start to finish which is what I was led to believe this book was being that the title says “Simple Solutions”.

As I wrote earlier, I think Jackson Galaxy is wonderful and I feel bad bashing his book, but is isn’t what I was hoping for. Penny did find one easy project that she wants her Dad to make.

PennyprojectSomeone with a cat named Penny, made a cat tree out of a step-ladder and even spelled out her name in wooden letters. Kiss your ladder good-bye Daddy.

Please keep Marg in your prayers today: Prayers for Marg



  1. Mom won the book at a fundraiser quite some time ago and was also very disappointed in it — I think for pretty much the same reasons. She said it was a picture/storybook when she was expecting a how-to book.

  2. Thank you for your honest review! I can imagine that it was not easy to post it, but I think it’s important to also post the “bad stuff”. I’ll have a look if they have it at our library – but even without reading it, I understand why you didn’t like it.

    About covered boxes: you told me that most cats don’t like covered boxes when I was preparing my home for my girls. Thank you for that – I bought a second (uncovered) box and decided to let them decide. Tessa hardly uses the uncovered box, but Kajsa does. She’s also using the other box, but she’d never poop in the uncovered box πŸ™‚

    1. I am glad you liked the review, I felt bad about it because Jackson Galaxy is a good person who does so much for cats. I just wish the book really had “simple” ideas. That is funny that she wont poop in the uncovered box. I think in houses with many cats the covered boxes are more of an issue because of a fear of being trapped by a bully.

  3. My human has no carpentry skills either – and even less time to be crafty with stuff! If we are going to get any new cat furniture or shelving, it’s gonna be bought pre-assembled.

  4. Thanks for posting such a pretty picture of Penny!! Too bad the book wasn’t what you wanted. Mom doesn’t have carpentry skills either and she won’t buy anything that isn’t already put together or very EASY to put together. I’ll get mom to check our library for it so we can look at the pictures. Thanks for the review!! Pawkisses to Penny

    1. Penny says thank you. I am sure you can get that book at the library. I am lucky that the main librarian in our town loves cats so they always have the latest cat books πŸ™‚

  5. We loved seeing the pictures in that book but while the ideas are great – sadly not many houses are of the type that you can DO many of these things. Also, there are a lot of things in the book that are FUN for younger cats but us older guys can’t leap from shelf to shelf or even climb……anyway, it’s a cool book for those who have the space to do those projects and the time to search out all the things needed to make them. We’re just not in that category!!!!

    Hugs, Sammy

    1. I know what you mean Sammy, they should have a section for older kitties with warm nap spots. XO

  6. It is a pity that the book wasn’t what you expected. I haven’t seen it but also thought it would give full instructions on how to make things. I definitely would need step by step instructions!

    1. I was disappointed. There were a couple things with instructions like the ladder Penny wants, but none for what I wanted to do.

  7. Every book isn’t going to please EVERY person.
    In my opinion, any “how to” book (just like a cookbook), is designed to give a person IDEAS….when I make a recipe I often use it as a road map and change it to suit me.

    As for covered litterboxes? I have a cabinet in my bathroom designed to look just like a cabinet and the litter box is inside. Cody LOVES it. Cats are individuals as we all are………nothing…not even books are “one size fits all”

    1. Very true and sadly, this one wasn’t for me. I was very disappointed because I would love a book with a resource list.
      I am glad Cody likes his box. In a multi-cat household, there is always the fear of a bully trapping them in the covered box.

  8. I haven’t read “Catify to Satisfy,” so I can’t comment much on it. However, I did look it over briefly in the bookstore, and I was a little disappointed that it was much more information based than project based like the first book was. I think information is fantastic and really important for cat owners – I just expected something else from the book. I do plan to get it someday and read through it nevertheless. I believe Jackson Galaxy has a lot of great info to offer cat lovers.

    1. Jackson Galaxy is great and I felt bad dishing his book, but that is how I felt. I am sure you can get it from the library to check it out.

  9. It was more of a picture book than a ‘how-to’ book…I agree, Ellen! I’ve also unsubscribed to his emails, because they are just trying to sell stuff. I will continue to watch his show, and I want him to be successful because he brings needed media attention, but there is a level of disappointment. However, The Hubby is the son of a carpenter, and he’ll build anything I ask. If I tried it myself, it would be a disaster, pure and simple.

    1. I am glad you felt the same way. You are lucky that your husband can build what you want him to. My hubby is pretty handy, but getting him to do something inside is another thing. I agree about those emails too, they are always selling something.

  10. I really appreciate that you gave an honest review. I haven’t read it, but it sounds like the book is indeed lacking some pertinent, important information on the topics discussed. Thank you for sharing this! Purrs to you, and to Marg!

  11. I can see your point, Ellen. I’m probably inclined to love it because there are two of my photographs from the work my husband did at PAWS in the book. I think Catify to Satisfy is more for inspiration – but maybe there should be ideas like the Ikea hacks and the other easier DYI I see on line. If you have an older sturdy table and a glue gun, wrapping the legs in rope from the hardware store – that sort of thing. You are right, there are artists and carpenters’ work in there that most of us couldn’t duplicate, but the concepts are still valuable.
    We were inspired by Jackson’s show to increase the vertical space at PAWS. In a crowded small room, the cats get along so much better and can be more active.

    1. That is great that your husbands work is in the book. There were a lot of wonderful things in the book, but I was frustrated that I can’t make them or know where to buy them. Vertical space is so important and Jackson really did get the word out on that. I am hoping to do more of that in our home of 13 cats.

  12. guys….yur mom iz up front & thatz whatz important; an honest ree view iz total lee way better ….than one written in a “good way” ….just coz oh who rited de book….ya noe….thanx for sharin yur views……we apurreciate em ! πŸ™‚ β™₯β™₯β™₯

    1. I am hoping the hubby will let us use his, he can borrow it whenever he wants πŸ™‚ Thanks for the prayers for Marg.

  13. Hmmm, meowmy seems better at breaking things than making them, Bwahahahah!

    She can do teeny projects and is good at improvising, but those projects in the book are way out of her league and her budget too. Pawppy is a carpentry klutz, MOL! Well, he can do porch floors but things like in that book…nope!

    We have the book as we won it in a giveaway, and it was interesting to look at like you said, but well, we can’t have our den like in that book…..nope, won’t be happening here, we need premade things from the store! We don’t have a wooden step ladder to catify either, MOL!!

    (and we like our covered litter boxes…go figure!)

    We hope you get your ladder Penny!

    1. We are hoping Penny’s Daddy will give her his ladder- she said he can borrow it when he needs to πŸ™‚ That is funny you like covered boxes- do you have a choice? I wonder if you have a covered and an uncovered which one you would choose? I am just curious.

      1. In our den we have never seen an uncovered box…but we don’t bully each other over them…at least meowmy has not noticed that.
        We have to have covered ones on account of dog-guy helping himself to them…UGH! He learned how to open the one gate…and gain access, and he can jump over the other gate…what a rascal.
        And Pipo is a shooter of piddles…right ovfur the sides cause sometimes it leaks out from under the cover…that is so annoying. Now if the box was open…unthinkable!

        1. I remember when we had a dog ( Katie went to the Bridge in 2011)-keeping her out of the litter was impossible. ICK! It sounds like a cover is a necessity at your house.

  14. Dat’s very innerestin’ awnty Ellen. Mommy had tried to get da book to review and then entered several give aways tryin’ to win it. We got da furst book and altho’ we luv da book it wasn’t zactly what we had spected it to be eever. Mostly it calls fur buyin’ stuff to enrich yous kitty life or buyin’ stuff to make stuff. And well, ou know how we are ’bout da buyin’ of stuff. Sounds like this book is just more of da same. Oh Well, guess not everypawdy shuld write a book. Have a gweat day.

    Luv ya’

    Dezi and Lexi

    1. This was similar to the first book, but the word “simple” in the title fooled me into thinking it would be different. You are loved and that is more important than fancy stuff. XO

  15. Thanks for the honest review. We agree…if there are no step-by-step instructions or other resources, the book wouldn’t be real helpful for the average person.

    Regarding the ladder, we have a ladder cat tree that we won in a contest long ago. We don’t use it much anymore, but we can see how easy it would be to create a cat tree out of a ladder. Good luck to your daddy on this project!

    1. We are hoping our cat Daddy will give us his ladder- he can always borrow it πŸ™‚

    1. I try to get everything from the library first and then if I really like it, I will buy it on Amazon or

  16. Thanks for the honest review. We don’t understand the people who say the book is about ideas and should be appreciated as such … but what are ideas if you can’t put them into (step by step) practice? Those kind of ideas might be better deemed neat cat creations found in a picture book. Just saying πŸ™‚

    the critters in the cottage xo

    1. Thank you- I agree. It is basically a picture book which is beautiful, but shouldn’t have the word ” simple ” in the title πŸ™‚

  17. Sendin POTP to Lad Marg fur a suck-sessfull eye surgery!!!
    An LadyMum sayss shee iss not fond of Mistur Jackson so shee not bother buyin anyfing hee ritess….
    Penny yur ladde idea looks furabuluss.
    Mee doess send all mee <3 LUV <3 an ***paw kissesss*** to mee sweet Purrincess Phoebe

    1. We are praying for Marg. I think Jackson Galaxy has some good ideas and he does help a lot of rescues, but I was disappointed in this.
      Phoebe sends her love and kisses to her sweet purrince XOXOXO

  18. Hey, don’t feel bad. We didn’t buy it for the same reason. Dad is not “handy” and most things he hangs on the wall fall down MOL!

  19. Mom felt left out not winning or reading , “Catify to Satisfy.” So she feels better about not getting it. The ladder idea sounds pretty dang nice, Penny. Go for it.


    1. If she really wants to see it, I am sure the library would have it. Penny is still begging her Dad for his ladder.

  20. Sadly people who do the same thing day in and day out often forget that they are bringing new people into the fold and they don’t have the background and experience that the others in the circle already have. They forget to go over the basics and start from scratch each time, and it is a sign that things are about to fail and fail in a big way..

    Hopefully, Jackson can avoid this. I like what he does, and some of the deeper messages, but I’ve never been a fan of how he promotes… like the name ‘my cat from hell’ designed to bring in non-cat lovers, but so very very grating to me.. and I’m sure others. I didn’t watch the show for two seasons because of it.

    1. I agree that is a bad name for the show. He does do a lot for rescues and helping kitties with behavioral issues. I was really expecting a lot with his book.

  21. Our Mom-person doesn’t have carpentry skills either and she won’t buy anything that isn’t already put together or very EASY to put together πŸ˜€
    I have a litterbox with a roof and I like it , because I can sit on the roof and watch the mom-person sitting on the human toilet *mol*

  22. I never got my review copy of the book (long story) and won’t be reviewing it. Your review might be useful to others on Amazon. This reminds me, I think I’ll repost my easy catification tips post that don’t cost a dime πŸ™‚

    1. That is too bad you didn’t get your review copy, I would have liked to read your review. I look forward to your post about easy and free catification. πŸ™‚

  23. Thanks for the honest review. I have no carpentry skills either but I really would love to catify my house. I shall check out the link to the youtube video.

    Purrs xx
    Athena and Marie

    1. I have no carpentry skills either and my husband only likes to do outside projects.

  24. We appreciate your very honest review, Ellen. We are a little biased about the book because it shows some of the rooms at PAWS, as catified by our pals Maggie and Rick. But we agree with you — it’s not so much a “how to” book, as an inspirational/idea one.

    1. I thought the photos and ideas were great, but the book should not have “simple” in the title because this simple person can’t do anything πŸ™‚

  25. Wow! I am surprised! In my three-plus decades of rescue, most of our cats have preferred covered litter boxes. To our experience, cats prefer the privacy. I use little uncovered pans when training babies. But, even the tiny orphans jump right in the big covered ones from the very beginning.
    I like Jackson Galaxy, though I don’t always agree, either. Cesar Millan and I see more eye-to-eye about dogs.

    1. I am sure you keep your boxes very clean so the kitties like it. I have some kitties that could be bullies and wouldn’t want them to corner the others in a box.

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