Learning how to make a cat tree does not have to be a difficult proposition if you have the tools, materials and some basic know-how. Commercially-available cat trees are offered at a markup, so you can save money by creating your own from home. Cat trees are carpeted and sisal rope-covered structures that provide climbing and scratching surfaces for pet felines. They are not difficult to design or build to suit your individual needs.
To make a cat tree, you will need:
- 2×4 posts
- 4×4 posts
- Sisal rope
- Staple gun
- Wood screws
- Design plans for your cat tree based on how much space you have available. The basic design for your cat tree will use rectangular and square platforms made from plywood and posts. Sketch out your design on paper, incorporating basic posts and platforms to create the ideal scratching post and tree for your cat.
- Cut your plywood into rectangles and squares to suit the design that you created. You can experiment with other shapes and platform ideas, but keep in mind that they will provide you with a greater challenge in terms of carpeting them later on. Cover each platform with scrap carpeting. Experiment with different types of carpeting to produce different effects, such as plush or low-pile styles. Thicker carpeting is ideal for hiding hardware like staples and screws. Fold the carpeting over each platform and secure on the bottom side with the staple gun.
Wrap each post with a length of sisal rope, beginning at the bottom and moving upward. Secure the sisal rope in place with your staple gun. Add staples throughout the length of each post to keep the rope secured in place, preventing it from coming undone with use.
Cut your base from plywood. Keep in mind that a larger base will provide greater stability, preventing the cat furniture from tipping. Position your posts on the plywood base and secure them in place with your screws and drill. Check your design occasionally to make sure the assembly is correct throughout the building process.
- Secure your platforms and posts together using wood glue. Once the glue has set, drill screws down from each platform into the posts to keep them in place. Use several screws to attach each platform to each post to permanently keep the platform in place.
Keep security in mind when you make a cat tree. The taller that you build your cat tree, the more easily it may wobble or fall when your cats are at play. Place your hands firmly on the tree at different stages of the building process and push or shake it to ensure its stability. A stable cat tree will be better able to withstand the rough nature of cats playing on the structure, allowing it to last for a long time. Your homemade cat tree needs to be a safe and stable piece of play equipment for your cats in order to get the best results.