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Building your own cat tree- materials?

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
I think this is the best forum for this.

I am planning on building a cat tree for my kitty Nico with the help of my very handy bf. Has anyone done this before, or had one custom made? I am wondering on what kind of materials to use. For example, plywood, sisal rope, and carpeting are a given. Any suggestions on:

•what type of glue? (a pet-safe glue obviously)

•can a staple gun be used, or is it best to keep sharp metal bits out of it entirely?

• is there a good kind of carpet to use- one that can be easily shaped around the wood pieces and glued down

ANy other suggestions/advice/ etc to share on this? I'd love to hear.

post #2 of 6
Oooh Sar (Sarah) was going to give me ideas as I'd be interested in trying the same thing.
post #3 of 6 --

try these links. my boyfriend STILL owes me a cat tree. says he's punishing maverick for running away, lol. was meant to be her xmas present
post #4 of 6
I've made and/or repaired a few cat trees in my time.

Carpet: don't use anything with loops in it or they will get their claws stuck it in and pull out long loops. If you buy something cheap, they will rip it apart but if you buy something really thick and plush, it is hard to manipulate. Test the carpet by bending it to see how flexible it is and buy the best quality that you can.

Glue: I have always used a hot glue gun cause it dries faster than anything else. Followed up by staples.

Staples: I use them but always hammer them deeply into tree.

I tack the sisal rope in with a broad head nail. Wrap the ends of the rope with masking tape to prevent fraying then nail into the tree.

Sisal rope: My preference is 3/8". Any thinner and you are using a lot of it. Any thicker and it is hard to wrap.

For the wood, I like to use 4X4's, but they are sometimes hard to find untreated. Don't use any treated wood in the post - if they get thru the carpet/sisal (as they eventually do), they are clawing poisoned wood. I'll screw 2 2x4's together before I use treated 4x4s.

Plywood: I like to use 1" thick for the base and cut it as large as possible. You don't want it tipping over. For the shelves you can use less thick, and in fact the overall tree will be lighter if you use less thick wood.

I once got ahold of round columns that hold up a porch and cut them in half to make a u-shaped perch (covered in carpet). Look for odd things like this as the cats really like them.

I've also seen some cat trees lately with multiple columns and hammocks hung between the columns. I'll probably do something like that my next tree.

Hope this helps!
post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 
Thanks! That is so helpful and exactly the kind of info I was looking for!
post #6 of 6
Originally Posted by iceover
Thanks! That is so helpful and exactly the kind of info I was looking for!
If you give up on the project, go to Wal-Mart, where you can find this in the pet section:

It's called a Cat Craft Cat Tree, it costs $35, and it accommodates up to 8'6" ceilings. You can also get extra pieces if your ceilings are over 8'6".
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