The Best Cat Trees for Large Cats: For Play, Rest, and Sleep
The relentless need to play and have a comfortable place to rest is ingrained in the fabric of every animal (human beings included) and cats are no exceptions. As a cat owner, it is critical to provide such a space for your cat. Innovative minds have seen it possible to have cat trees for large cats so that they can be in their best element at home without costing your peace of mind.
Cat trees for large cats are supposed to be very sturdy, durable, and interactive throughout. There are many cat trees in the market. However, a lot of them are not worth your money and the time of your cat. It is needless to spend money on something that either won’t last or would be a bore to death for your beloved cat.
Cat owners know first hand how much cats love to scratch, claw, play, sleep, jump around, and sometimes just relax. For that very reason cat trees are made to try and create some space for your pet to do all these things. Before going further, it is important to know what things you should consider before buying this product.
Considerations When Buying Cat Trees for Large Cats
1. Quality of Materials
A good cat tree is built using materials that make it reliable, and that have no harmful effects to your cat. More so, cat towers require very high quality materials. For instance, the average tree for small to medium sized cats would be made from pressed wood covered with faux fur. However, large cats tend to need more solid wood, which means real wood. However, as a point of compromise between cost and quality, plywood has emerged as a better option in this case.
Additionally, they are held together by screws instead of the usual nails or glue. Scratching posts used to be made from carpets but due to their poor longevity, the shift went to sisal. Sisal is durable due to its longer life span and coarse enough for your cat to scratch as much as they want.
2. Build Quality
It is very obvious that if your big cat ran into their tree at full speed then the cat tree would struggle not to tip over. However, it is also very rare that a cat will run into the tree at full speed because cats are generally calmer, more cautious and very calculative in their steps.
Having said that, cat trees need the highest level of strength and stability. The reason being that one of the functions of a cat tree is to provide a playing space for your cat. A sturdy and well built tower allows your cat to play without worrying that it may tip over or break easily. This makes build quality one of the more important considerations for the pet owners in search of the perfect playground for their cat.
3. Cat Weight (Or Number of Cats)
A lot of times pet owners assume the weights of their cats and decide to buy something with the hopes that it will suffice. Now, buying cat towers is not a cheap investment. To be honest, there are cheap cat trees, however, the best ones for large cats come at a decent price.
That is why you do not want to buy a scratch post that is not ideal for your cat. Get your cat weighted and shop knowing what amount of weight you are shopping a cat tree for. They are sold with the weight they can sustain being a crucial aspect of the specifications.
Additionally, if you are buying a cat tree for multiple cats whether they are small or medium sized, it would be great to know their weights so that you do knowledgeable shopping.
Getting a post that does not handle the weight of your cat(s) is dangerous because it might fall off and injure your cat(s). Your cat’s safety should be paramount.
4. Available Space for Storage
How much space do you have in your home to store the cat tree? This also determines the size of the cat tree that you will buy. Furthermore, they are quite big in size and may need some quality space. While purchasing one, ensure that you shop while considering how much space you can designate for this in your house.
In case you are buying multiple towers, you will need even more storage space.
5. Size of Cat Tree
Aside from the size of the cat tree determining your storage space, smaller cat trees need smaller spaces while bigger ones need more space.
If you are chasing stability, shorter cat trees might be the best to buy. If you are looking for cat towers that are quite tall, then you would need to prepare for additional attachments to a wall or ceiling to get the cat tree to be stable enough for your cat to play on it. Otherwise, they may not be able to stay upright which endangers your cat’s safety.
In case you are wondering whether it is really beneficial to buy a cat tree for your cat, worry not. It is the right decision and here is why:
Benefits of Buying Cat Trees for Large Cats
A. Great Quality of Life
One of the most important reasons why these additions are so important is that they improve the overall quality of life of your pet in various ways. For starters, they are a safe place to play; and play is crucial for your cat.
Additionally, cat towers improve the quality of life for your cat by giving it a comfortable place to rest. As usual, every animal needs a good rest from time to time after play or for the sake of it; and it is healthy.
Cats are huge fans of vantage points because they want to stay on top of things in their surroundings as far as views and observations are concerned. They are keen, and barely anything misses their sharp eyes and sense of place. For this reason, you might see them in your house sleeping or resting at the top most point in the house. it could be on top of the cupboard, or on a seat that is quite high. If you have a house a few floors above and providing views around the neighborhood, you might notice your cat loving the areas next to the windows so they can watch around. For this reason, they come in quite handy as most of them are at a good high point giving the cats the vantage points they need.
B. Good Health
It is ingrained in cats to want to claw or scratch themselves on something. This is good for them because it helps them remove old material from their claws as well as marking their territory with scent glands from their paws. The scratching post in every cat tree therefore helps a lot in this.
Furthermore, cat trees allow your cats to get mental stimulation due to play. Playing definitely refreshes your cat’s mental abilities and improves their outlook.
To control your cat’s weight, scratchposts come in quite handy. By staying active and jumping up and down the cat tower, your cat is able to lose weight without your day to day involvement. Indeed this also depends on whether the diet of your cat enhances this objective as well. Be it dry food or wet food, it is possible to control your cat’s diet even when you don’t have much time by buying an automatic cat feeder. The addition of a cat feeder and cat tree to your pet arsenal will help you control your cat’s weight a lot.
C. Safety of Your Furniture
A lot of times your cat will play, rest, and scratch on your furniture. Of course, a couple of times you get the cats fur stuck on your seats which is can be quite stressful especially if you have several cats. Besides, as they scratch themselves on your furniture or carpet, they end up tearing those parts sometimes with their claws, or even wearing out the sofa’s fabric. To save yourself from such issues, get a cat tree for your cat so that it gets used to playing, resting, and scratching on the cat.
The Best Cat Trees for Large Cats
Best Value for Money:
Standing at a height of 67 inches (1.7 meters) this is the best multi-level cat tree that we have encountered. While the height might sound quite high, in reality the cat tower is very stable even at that height. Your cat will be perched up there and be able to play actively without the worry of safety or toppling over thanks to strengthening battens at the bottom which give the cat a lot of stability.
The best part is that when it comes to comfort, coziness is the most defining feature; and this cat tree has all that nice cozy feeling than any other product that we have seen. It is great for a nap because of its two roomy condos, excellent for a rest, and the ideal playground.
Talking of cats and vantage points, your cat will have 3 vantage points built as comfy perches at the very top. The edges of the perches are raised to allow your cat to rest on its head as it watches over the house.
The amazing interplay between the sisal -covered slopes and fur covered condos makes for an exciting home for your cat. There is a large scratch board for the cats that love scratching. To top it all, the warranty is for 30 months giving you a guaranteed purchase and value for money.
The product has received over 510 customer reviews on Amazon with an overall rating of 4.7 out of 5. Some customers have called it the best cat tree you can get, others have lauded the company for their great customer service. We definitely agree with them on all those fronts.
- It is affordable and offers great value in quality for your pet.
- Comes with fur balls for play.
- Has a scratch board for cats that are scratchers.
- 30-month warranty.
- Sisal-covered slopes makes for great rough and smooth interplay.
- One of the best in stability and safety.
- Can safely and adequately handle two large cats.
- Very responsive customer service.
- Very durable; will serve you for years.
- Might take a while to assemble but nothing too complex.
Coming at second out of all the items that we tested is this Go Pet Club Cat tree that stands at a height of 72 inches (1.8 meters). It has three perches at the top which have edges that are raised to provide good head rest for you cat as it watches over your home from these vantage points.
Two condos for sleep and rest as well as two toy mice for play enhance this cat tree to give it an upper hand among others. The cat has a lot of play room using this cat tower.
For scratchers, the cat tree has 10 posts that are covered in sisal ropes to help in scratching. While this will work most of the time, the difference between this cat tree and the first one in our list above is that this one does not have a scratch board. Instead, cats will have to rely on the sisal-covered slopes for scratching. The cat tree above provides a scratch board as well as scratch posts.
However, the covering material is quite comfortable in this model as well. It utilizes faux fur to create soft and comfy surfaces for your cats play and rest. Compressed wood, which has been used on the boards is quite stable and very high quality as well.
Users who have owned it longer than we have reported very good results for durability and material quality. Some have owned this cat tree for several years and had no issues with breakages. However, for the top most perch in particular, a few users reported breakage after a year or so. The other two perches remained quite stable over time.
You can trust your cat to be very safe on this cat tower. Even if you had two large cats, this cat tree has proven to us that it can withstand a lot of weight without bulking. Your cats can play on this for years and it will still be safe and standing.
This cat tree comes with an instruction manual to help in assembling as do most of the other cat trees for large cats. It took us a few minutes to assemble everything together and get the cat tower working.
A big let down with this cat tree is that it comes with a warranty for 30 days only. This is quite a short period of guarantee. However, it appears that a lot of customers have not had a huge issue with that fact. This cat tree has 6,000 reviews with an overall rating of 4.6 out of 5 on Amazon. Some customers have termed it as the dream playground for their cat and others have praised it for the unexpected safety and durability. Which ever way you like it, this tower stacks up nicely as one of the very best for the money.
- Very affordable for the value it offers.
- Can comfortably and safely handle two large cats.
- Material is soft and comfortable for cats resting or playing.
- Durability and quality of material will serve you for years.
- Comes with two mice for play.
- Easy to set up.
- Only has 30-day warranty.
- Top perch is not as strong as it should be.
- No dedicated scratch board; cats have to scratch on slopes.
The Aeromark cat tree is a very high quality cat tower standing at 62 inches high (1.6 meters). It is covered by soft faux fur and the board material is pressed wood. Both materials are high quality and extremely durable.
At its height, its one of the safest trees. The base is quite stable as is the whole composition. Assembling it together will take you around 30 minutes as will most other feline towers.
The tower is quite balanced, and doesn’t wobble even when handling more than one large cat.
It has a perch at the top to act as a vantage point for your cat. The edges of he perch are slightly raised to ensure you cat’s head rests well while its at the top there. The two condos, one directly below the perch and another bigger one right below are quite comfortable. For a good rest, the cat has a nice swing rest below the bigger condo. It is quite cozy and your cat will absolutely love it.
The posts are covered with sisal ropes to act as scratching surfaces for cats. The interchange between the fur material and sisal also creates a very good interplay between soft and rough for your cats play. The warranty is for 6 months, however, after that, in case of any breakage, the company promises to fix at a very discounted fee. However, you will most likely not see any breakages for several months spanning to years because of how sturdy this build is.
It is important to mention that the cat tree has 5 screws at the bottom which if exposed to your home’s floor might do the floor some damage especially if you have a wooden floor. You will therefore need to get a base to put it on. We recommend getting a small layer of carpet to place the cat tree on. Alternatively, get some adhesive furniture pads and place them under the screws to avoid scratching your floor. The maximum holding weight for this cat tree according to the manufacturer is 40 pounds. This means two large cats each weighing about 20 pounds can comfortably be accommodated on the cat tree.
The cat tree has over 2,400 reviews on Amazon with an overall rating of 4.6 out of 5. Some customers have termed it as the very best tower that you can get, at its very considerable price. Definitely worth checking it out.
- Top notch durability with high quality materials.
- Very sturdy in build and safe for your large cats.
- Can comfortably handle more than one large cat.
- Takes a short time to assemble thanks to instructions manual.
- Has two hanging faux fur balls for play.
- Very affordable and offers great value.
- Bottom screws pose danger to floors.
- No dedicated scratch board.
- 6-month warranty is quite short a guarantee.
Other Great Cat Trees for Large Cats
If you are in the market for a cat tower that stands at a height of 58 inches (1.5 meters) or thereabouts, this Songmics multi-level cat tree will come in handy. Its materials are soft plush and sisal rope on the slopes/ropes. It is also very stable as well thanks to strong battens supporting the base.
Its round corners on the boards are very safe for cats and you as the pet owner as well. It is quite easy to assemble and screw together. The multi-level design is quite involving for cats to play on. The top perch is also very cozy and a proper resting point.
It is sturdy, very safe and secure, extremely durable. However, it has only one condo. It would be best suited for just one cat if the condo is a big deal to you so they don’t fight over the condo or the play ball. However, if it is just rest and play, more than one cat can use this. Additionally, warranty information is not specified and you have to contact the seller for more information about this; contrary to other items in this guide.
It has accumulated over 270 reviews on Amazon with an overall rating of 4.7 out of 5. Some customers have termed it as of good quality while most of them have said they were very pleased with the quality.
- Very affordable for a good quality.
- Soft plush material is very cozy.
- Durability and sturdiness has shown to be great.
- Very safe and won’t topple over.
- Easy to set up.
- No dedicated scratch board.
- Warranty information is upon request; very sketchy.
At a height of 62 inches (1.6 meters) this is one of the great cat trees for large cats out there. Its stability is really good even at that height. The sisal posts help the cats to scratch. It also has a climbing ladder at the bottom with horizontal posts covered in sisal rope creating a good scratcher post for your cats. The boards and condos are covered in soft faux fur making for comfortable rest for your cat. It has one perch at the top whose edges are raised to create a comfortable head rest for your cat. It has two condos, one smaller and another bigger one below it. Besides the climbing ladder is a swing rest where the cat can enjoy rest or play with the swing.
This cat tree has been praised for its durability and safety. However, we noticed that of all the cat trees for large cats that we have reviewed, this one is the only one that falls off very easily especially after a few months of use. So it can be a bit dangerous for your petif that were to happen. Also, the top perch is not as durable as those in other cat condos.
It has garnered over 5,300 reviews on Amazon with an overall rating of 4.3 out of 5. It is a good cat tree but the instability issue has made us put it at the bottom of our list. Nonetheless, it offers a lot for its price and is worthy of consideration.
- Has a climbing ladder that doubles up as a scratcher zone.
- Materials are good quality.
- Easy to set up.
- Can easily topple over.
- Warranty information is upon request; very sketchy.
Did you see a cat tower that you just know your cat would love? There are products for every age, shape, and activity level. It is always important to pick one that not only fits your lifestyle, but also the lifestyle of your cat’s. Getting a cat tree that will take up a ton of room when you only have a small space to put it in isn’t feasible. Likewise, getting a tree without a good scratching post proves just as ineffective for a cat who is clawing up your furniture. Think of these trees as your cat’s special spot. They will likely be spending a fair amount of time lounging and sunbathing there. Can you envision them there? They will love having it and love you even more for getting it. Does your cat crave height? Or does he crave lots of hiding places to sleep? Do you have a couple of over rambunctious pets? These are all valid questions to ask when you are picking the style of yours.
Taking a look at our list, I believe that we have a great compilation for every home. Every aspect of these five styles makes them not only dependable but also affordable. You really get what you pay for in quality and durability when it comes to these products. They are sure to last your feline for many years without falling apart or boring your little friend. They are easy to put together and require little to no maintenance. A happy kitty makes a great pet. We all want them to live their best lives and healthiest lives. Your pet will love to scratch, play, and rest on any of these top 5 cat trees.
FAQ: All You Need to Know About Cat Towers
1. What is a cat tree?
A cat tree is known by many names, including cat condo, cat tree house, kitty condo, cat box and cat stand. No matter what you call it, it can save your sanity by giving your cat a place to climb, scratch, play and even relax and sleep. Artificially created, cat trees vary in height, complexity and structure and have perches where the cat can climb.
2. Why is a cat tree necessary?
They give your feline friend a place to call its own, relax and reduce its stress. Vertical options are critical as they allow cats to climb with safety and perch with comfort giving them a place that is purely their own to enjoy, play and feel a sense of independence. Being up high will give your cats a feeling of safety and security from where to observe the world. When there are two cats, the cat tree can make the difference between a catfight and a settled cat-loving household as it will clarify the cat hierarchy in a structured way.
3. What components does a typical cat tree include?
They can come with the following components:
- One perch or multiple perches, depending on the size of your tree (the most important thing is for cat trees to be high)
- A little hideaway for your cat to burrow and feel a sense of cosiness
- A scratching pole or poles to keep it from clawing at your furniture
- Play areas with dangling toys for fun
- A series of ramps and platforms to join the levels together
4. Where should I place my cat tower?
You can put your it practically anywhere, from the corner of a spacious bedroom where you can watch it play as you chill in bed to the living room if your cat is particularly social. But don’t banish it in the garage or the laundry if this is an isolated area of your home because your feline loves to be part of your family. Consider the following:
- Where are the places in your home where your cat likes to hang out?
- What are the dimensions of the cat tree and your home so that the cat tree can fit?
The placement of a cat tree can be personal according to the size of a home and the individual preferences of each cat.
5. What is a cat tree made of?
They are constructed in different materials depending on the manufacturer and the conventionality or modernity of the design. Different parts of the cat tree require different materials:
- Structure: made of wood, cardboard, medium-density fiberwood (MDF), plywood or presswood
- Scratching poles: these are covered with sisal which needs to be secured on the pole without any nails or screws which could come loose and cause harm to your cat
- Enclosures: cat houses include cat hammocks, cat baskets and cubby houses covered in faux fur and soft materials to offer luxury and comfort to your cat
- Carpet: the better quality carpets last longer, with beige or tan being the most common color.
- Fake leaves: usually made of silk, these leaves give the effect of your cat being in a tree
- Toys: These can be made of any materials and be tightly attached to the tree so as to not harm your cat
6. Why is a scratching pole important for my cat?
Cats scratch for two reasons: (1) to sharpen their claws and remove old claw sheaths. and (2) to mark their territory with scent from the glands in their paws. They like to repeatedly scratch in the same place, and that’s not good if the place they choose is your furniture. Though you can’t train a cat not to scratch, a scratch pole may save you valuable furniture. For this reason, most products include scratch poles in their design. Getting your cat to use the scratching pole you provide, choose wisely. You need to take the time to choose one to which your cat will have a natural affinity towards.
7. How old does my pet need to be before I get a cat tree?
You can encourage your kitten to use the cat tree as soon as you bring it to your home. When it is time to introduce your cat to the tree, some recommend spraying your cat tree with synthetic pheromones but you can also use your cat’s favorite treats to entice your cat to the tree. A good idea is to hide treats at different levels on the cat tree so that your cat can find its treats and be encouraged to climb. Other pets should be discouraged from using this place so that it is a safe cat-only domain.
8. How many cat trees do I need?
The number you need depends on the number of cats you have. A decent-sized cat tree is enough for one cat, but two cats can share a large-sized cat tree. Two cats, which are territorial by nature, may be better off with their separate trees. When cats share a tree, the cats which are higher in status will occupy the highest perch on the tree, and this would mean less confrontations between cats as they would know their position on the cat tree and hence have an established hierarchy. When selecting a cat tree for more than one cat, it is important to ensure that there are separate cat scratchers and perches for every tree as these will not be shared.
9. How much does a cat tree cost?
They vary in prices from cheap, affordable ones to top-of-the-range expensive models depending on the complexity of the design, quality of craftsmanship and durability of the design. Before deciding on the item you require, you should study reviews and product features and consider the needs and interests of your own cat. The prices can range from $50 all the way through to $250.
10. How often to replace a cat scratching post?
A scratch post can last from six months to two years and longer depending on the quality of the materials, water damage by cat pee and the number of cats you have. If you’re good when undertaking DIY projects then you can repair the scratching pole yourself using carpet or sisal rope or you can buy a new pole to avoid having your bored cat turn to furniture.
11. Which cat trees are the best?
There are many different types of cat trees and the best ones vary from cat to cat and person to person. You need to consider a number of factors when making your decision. Here are some factors to consider:
- Number of cats you own: Make sure your cat tree has multiple ways of entering and leaving the burrow so that they can escape when they are in a spat.
- Cats’ preferences: You can’t have a one-size-fits-all situation when it comes to cats. Some cats enjoy vertical scratchers, others prefer horizontal. To find out your cats’ preferences, test out regular scratchers and see how your cats react to them. Let your cats explore different options with the scratcher at different heights and angles to find your cat’s optimal scratching angles.
- Height considerations: Many cats enjoy perching on the highest level of the tree but not all cats are the same. Once again you will need to explore your cat’s preferences. Some cats have a natural inclination to scale furniture whereas others like burrows and squeezing in under the bed.
- Energy levels. Not all felines are active so consider health, age and your cat’s energy levels when deciding the type of cat tree you would like. Older cats are less likely to climb and leap around, and may need the space between levels to be closer together. Ensure the the item suits the lifestyle of the cat it is intended for.
- Playfulness. Cats who play independently will delight at having toys, whereas others prefer engaging with humans in the household.
- Shyness. Cats who are not very social will enjoy little hideouts to escape to when they are frightened, whereas more social cats will prefer outdoor areas.
12. How tall are cat trees?
They all have different sizes depending on the size of your cat and its needs. Older felines don’t necessarily need tall posts. Usually, they are around 6 feet in height.
13. Why are cat trees carpeted?
Cat trees are carpeted mainly for two main reasons. Firstly, cats like to claw at trees to dull their nails, which is a natural instinct and healthy for the cats to do. Secondly, cats usually like to sit on warm, soft carpet and they enjoy relaxing on the carpet. Of course, there are cat trees without carpet for those who would rather not have carpeted cat trees.
14. What is the best carpet for a cat tree?
There are many considerations to take into account when choosing a cat tree. Color is a personal choice which is up to the personal preference of the owner and the cat, however the type of carpet should be one which is resilient. The least frustrating type of carpet to use during the construction process is the medium-pile carpet (8.3″ to 1/2″ long fibers). The carpet fibers should not be too long or looped as there is danger that the cat’s claws could get snagged. Nylon fiber carpet is also an alternative to wool.
15. How much carpet is needed?
The amount of carpet needed depends on the extravagance of the design of the cat tree. A reasonably sized tree would require 50 square metres of carpet.
16. How do I clean a cat tree?
There are as many ways to clean a cat tree as there are ways to skin a cat. It isn’t as hard as cleaning kitty litter, however many owners complain that it is fiddly as a result of the hairs getting stuck to the carpet areas. The amount of work needed depends on the breed of the cat and whether it sheds.
- Traditional cleaning: To use traditional methods to clean your cat tree all you need are a brush, comb and vacuum. Carefully brush the dirty tree, including the scratching posts and the sides of the tree. Use the comb to get the nasty hairs off the brush and then use a vacuum cleaner to clean the house.
- Complete Germ and Bacteria Killing: You need three per cent hydrogen peroxide, scraping sponges, paper towel, nature clean dish soap, nature clean pet stain and odor remover. Spray the surfaces of the cat tree thoroughly using the hydrogen peroxide. Ensure you also spray in the hiding spots. Use the paper towel to remove the dirt, fur and litter. Squirt some nature clean dish soap with a bowl of hot water. Moist the simple scraping sponge with liquid and start scraping surfaces of the tree. Respray with hydrogen peroxide one more time to kill germs as well as the bad smell from the house.
- Matted Cat Hair Cleaning: This cleaning method will help you remove matted hair from the surface of the tree. All you need are rubber cleaning gloves and a vacuum cleaner. Wet the gloves, brush the hair covering the surface of the tree with your palm and fingers. User force on the surface. After scrubbing the matted hair, vacuum loose hairs.
17. What are the benefits of a cat tree?
Having a cat tree is extremely beneficial for your feline, who will sniff, explore and use it to exercise. If your cat is a little lazy, it will motivate it to move around a little and exercise its natural instinct of climbing, foraging for treats and even pouncing on toys connected to the furniture. It draws the cat’s attention away from expensive items of furniture, but also gives your cat a safe space from which to explore, leap and climb.
Psychologically, the cat tree will help your cat relax and feel less stressed and therefore more well-behaved.
Those that have more than one cat will be able to keep their felines occupied in a structured way.
By having happy cats, you will also have more well-behaved cats and a more settled family.
18. How do I get my cat to like the cat tree?
Your cat will love the furniture if you keep its own preferences in mind. Look at the age, size and energy levels of the cat before choosing a tree. Observe how your cat likes to play before adjusting scratching posts and different levels. Look at the colors and toys your cat is drawn to and create an environment that is uniquely created for your feline friend. Once you introduce your fur baby to the toy, be gentle and patient. You can place treats on the different perches and burrows of the post to encourage your cat to explore it. Sprinkle catnip around the tree. Reward your cat and show your pleasure so that it knows that the palyground is a ‘good’ place for it to go.
19. What cat tree size should I get?
Once again, look at the age, size and energy levels of the cat. Buy a larger cat tree for your boisterous bouncy pet, but keep a medium size for a senior cat which is too old to maneuver high spots. Also consider the space in your home and the number of pets you have.
20. How to make a cat tree?
If you are good with tools you may want to make a cat tree which specially caters to the needs of your cat and the design of your home. To create your own one, look around Pinterest and google different DIY projects to be inspired by the many different versions available and the amazing constructions people have come up with.
- Design your tree. Design a sketch of the type of cat condo you want depending on your cat’s personality and space. Keep your carpentry skills in mind when creating your design as you don’t want it to be overly elaborate only to find that you get stuck in the execution.
- Buy your materials. Consider the materials you will need. Plywood is good for horizontal materials, cement or tubes for the perches, carpet and rope and toys to hang from the post. Ensure you have the equipment you need (a drill, electric stapler, table saw and handsaw, hammer and nails, a utility knife, wood glue, etc.)
- Cut materials to size according to the design you have sketched and the measurements you have calculated. A handsaw will help cut through the wood. Make sure you sand edges to ensure a smooth finish.
- Create the base of your tree. Make sure that it is large and extend further out from the center to prevent tipping. An easier option would be to buy two squares of plywood and glue them together for extra thickness. The taller the tree the larger the plywood. 24″ would be sturdy enough for a 6-foot cat tree. If you are a novice, show your design to a more experienced handyman at the hardware store when buying your supplies or download a ready-made template from the web.
- Cover the base with carpet. It is best to do this before you attach vertical supports. Make sure you cut the carpet a few inches larger so as to wrap the edges around the plywood base. Staple the edges down with a staple gun.
- Attach vertical supports to hold up the platforms. Attach these with screws, nails, bolts or sturdy wood glue. Drill holes where you want the supports to be. You may want to cover these with carpet before you attach them.
- Attaches perches. Wrap carpet around the perches and staple it in place as you had done with the base. Add ladders to the perches and create an interesting design. You may even want to add a hammock for your cat to rock.
- Peruse your construction and make sure that it is sturdy and safe. Ensure that there are no nails hanging out and make any corrections you need before letting your cat use it.
NOTE: You don’t need to create your cat furniture from scratch. You may be able to upcycle it from a ladder you already have lying around, old shelves or other furniture you already have. Let your imagination run free and your love for your kitten be your guide.
21. How can I make my cat tree more stable?
To maintain stability, look for a base that is wide, long and heavily weighted. As a rule of thumb, make the base wider in proportion to the height. The taller the tree, the wider the base so that it is larger than the other parts of the cat tree. Use two squares of plywood joined together with glue. If necessary hinge the cat furniture to the wall for extra sturdiness.
22. What should I look for when buying a cat tree?
To buy a cat tree which you will not later regret, it is a good idea to ask yourself the size of your space, the age, breed and general activity levels of cats you have and the price range you can afford. You need to consider size, construction, appearance, accessories and other compartments and the number of cats it will be used to. Before buying a cat tree, take a good look at your cat’s traits. Is it large or small? What type of personality does it have? How does it play? What are its habits? Once you’ve decided on one, read a few reviews about the model you are considering and see what other people say about its quality and sturdiness. Make sure theone you buy is from a reputable company and comes with a safety guarantee.
23. How many cat trees do I need for two cats?
Look at the number of cats you have overall and the general space in your home. One large tree may be sufficient for two cats as long as these are not territorial and likely to fight over the top perch. If your cats are prone to cat spats, it is better to get a tree for each cat. If you have more than two cats, there are products available for multiple cats, but it would develop on the temperament of your cat when it comes to sharing.
24. What is the difference between a cat tree and a cat condo?
Cat trees and cat condos are similar and are sometimes used interchangeable, but the main difference is that condos are like miniature hiding spots for your cat to hide and relax. They are sturdy structures with large and small perches for cats to play, scratch, hide, relax and sleep. New cat condos are especially suitable to cats who like little burrows and safe, hiding spots under your bed. They are ideal places for shy cats to hide when you have visitors.
25. Are cat trees dangerous?
If you’re a loving cat parent, you’re going to want to know if your product is safe for your little fur babies. You don’t want the cat tree to topple over and crush your cat or have accessories that may be choking hazards. Scratchposts covered in carpet may appear to be an ideal material for climbing and scratching, however claws can get caught in the loop and unraveling fibres may be dangerous, especially for cats with serrated tongues which can’t spit long, tangled fibers out.
Some scratchposts have toxic materials such as phthalates (found in PVC products) causing damage to the liver; PVC with toxic chemicals; BPA which can disrupt endocrines; lead which may affect the gastrointestinal tract; and formaldehyde which may cause respiratory problems.
Trees made from NAUF (no added urea formaldehyde) are safe, as are non-toxic materials to look for include wood, sisal, braided rope and corrugated cardboard.
Make sure there are no loose parts on the tree. Furthermore, ensure that the base is large enough to prevent it from toppling over.
26. How do you reupholster a cat tree?
The carpet will inevitable wear down in time, and you may need to decide whether you prefer to buy a new product or reupholster one which has seen better days. Re-carpeting isn’t easy, however may be worthwhile to consider if the rest of the tree is fine.
- Remove the old carpet. This may be a hard undertaking if it is still tightly glued to the base, but easy if the carpet is loose. You may wish to invest in a carpet-cutting knife and start removing the carpet in swaths, but don’t cut too deeply so as not to damage the base underneath the carpet.
- Select new carpet. Choose a high-quality carpet which is not too thick or have looped fibres which the cat’s claws may be snagged into. The carpet will need to be durable.
- Cut carpet to size. Get out your measuring tape and carpet knife and start cutting the carpet down to size, however this may be a herculean task in cases where the modern cat tree is complex. Measure twice and cut once, and leave an inch or two extra just in case. It’s better to have a little bit extra rather than a piece too small.
- Attaching the carpet. You can either use a heavy-duty staple gun or a hammer with some fine nails.
- Test for safety. Make sure that there are no hazards, eg staples or nails sticking out.
27. How long do car trees last and when should I replace it?
They will last longer when they are of higher quality materials and will last for less time in cases where they are used to a maximum. The life expectancy will depend on the material it is made of as well as the cat’s use of it. The life expectancy essentially depends on two things: the quality of your tree; and the activity level of your cat.
28. Do kittens need cat trees?
Yes, they need a place to unleash their unbridled energy and satisfy their curiosity and a way to excite their senses. It can keep a kitten busy and out of trouble as well as develop its climbing instincts. Larger cats will also need cat houses to play on, stretch and keep occupied.
29. Are cat trees worth it?
They say you only realise the true value of something when you lose it, and that’s the case with cat condos. When you have one, you may not realise its true value. The truth is, it can save you the money of having to buy a new couch as it keeps kittens off the furniture and away from scratching other items in your home. Furthermore, it will keep your pet busy and give you a bit of peace. Best of all, it can ensure you’ll have a happy pet, and there’s nothing more important than that.
30. What are my considerations before buying a cat tree?
- Stability and safety: Look at the sturdiness of the design you are thinking of buying. Ensure it doesn’t tremble or shake so that the cat can safely jump from perch to perch. Also look for loose ropes or toys which could potentially harm your cat. Avoid flimsy cheap designs that may not be made of the safest materials. Make sure the scraper pins have a large diameter and that the sisal rope is of high quality.
- Cost: What is your budget? How much can you afford? Being a pet owner is an expensive business, and it is a good idea to keep your budget in mind.
- Cat: It is good to look at the individual requirements
- Reputation: Ask other pet owners how satisfied they are with theirs, and read online reviews where customers share their experiences.