Anyone with a cat knows how they love to climb to high perches and survey their kingdom below. But felines often need some help from us, and we happily oblige. Switzerland-based designer and writer Brigitte Schuster documented the ways in which we aid our furry friends in their quest for climbing. Her new book called Swiss Cat Ladders focuses on outdoor cat stairways in the city of Bern. It highlights the different approaches people take to create complex scaffolding networks so that the creatures can traverse from the ground to stories-high windows.
Homemade cat ladders, as Schuster has found, can take many forms. Sometimes, a vertical pathway is made from a preexisting architectural element like treads attached to a drain pipe. In other instances, the ladders are affixed long after the buildings were constructed. They are slats zig-zagged along an exterior wall; or, in more precarious forms, the ladders are a thin walkway between a tree and a balcony. No matter how they are built, each offers a way for a feline to exercise its love of climbing.
In addition to photos of cat ladders, Schuster’s book includes diagrams as well as an essay exploring “sociological, architectural and aesthetic perspectives” of the structures. Swiss Cat Ladders is now available for pre-order through Schuster’s website. (Make sure you scroll all the way down to fill out the order form.)
Designer and writer Brigitte Schuster documents different cat ladders in the city of Bern, Switzerland.
The photos are part of her new book called Swiss Cat Ladders.
Brigitte Schuster: Website