Cats need to be able to climb and hang out in high places. Instead of having your feline climb furniture, supply a cat tree to meet her climbing needs. Here are creative ideas of DIY cat trees that you can make yourself.

Since indoor cats don’t have “real trees”, it’s important to give them “cat trees” to climb on and hang out on in your home. While up high on their cat tree, they can doze, play, eat treats, and hang out while safely watching everything around them.

Why do cats like cat trees?

Cats use cat trees for several reasons:


When up high in a cat tree, your kitty can view her surroundings from a safe place while also getting some freedom from any other cats in the household. 

Help Shy Kitties Feel Confident

Cats who are more reticent enjoy using cat trees because they can easily observe the environment around them to see what’s happening without any anxiety.

Provide More Territory

Cats don’t just live horizontally. Cats in the wild live vertically and giving your feline a cat tree provides them a needed vertical territory. 

Exercise and Enrichment

Cats love cat trees because climbing them is so fulfilling. No matter the age, they enjoy the challenges of balancing, getting to high places, and playing with dangling toys. All of these activities provide great exercise which is beneficial for indoor kitties.

Bottom line: your cat needs an environment where he can play, scratch, climb, hide and have some privacy. A good cat tree with multiple features is one of the best ways to provide these opportunities for your indoor cat.

All About DIY Cat Trees

Big cat trees are beautiful but very expensive and sometimes just not within the budget. With a little direction and time, you could probably make one yourself.

Related Post: Entertain your kitty with these DIY cat toys.

How Do You Make a Simple Cat Tree?

The number of ways you could design and build a cat tree is limited only by your imagination. You can go small with only a platform or two or to a tall multi-level cat tree, or even to something going up your wall and above your door frames. 

Depending on your cat’s personality, you may want to add cubbies for sleeping, hammocks for relaxing, and even hanging toys for playing.

What Is a Cat Tree Made of?

Consider the types of materials your cat likes best. Common cat tree building materials include sisal rope, carpet, screws, plywood, and 2x4s. You can use other materials, such as PVC pipe, too, but these basic materials should give you what you need for creating your cat tree.

DIY Cat House Examples to Inspire You

If you’re interested in trying to make your own cat tree, take a look at these DIY cat trees for some design inspiration (or use one of these designs and follow the directions provided).

Cat Adventure and Escape Wall | Instructables

This design is the perfect opportunity to utilize an empty wall while also marrying form and function to benefit every member of the household.

Great example of DIY cat trees

DIY Cat Tree | The Experimental Home

This cat tower plan includes several perches, dangling toys, a hammock and even a cave for hiding. You’ll also find a complete guide for building this structure which includes instructions, pictures and a list of needed materials.

Great example of DIY cat trees

DIY Cat Tower | Imgur

Here’s a great and free cat tower plan that stands 6 feet tall. It has 2 platforms: one is near to the top and the other platform is closer to the ground. It’s also hollow on the inside, allowing your cat to climb up and down on the carpeted surface.

Great example of DIY cat trees

DIY Cat Tree House | Instructables

With several perch stands, a hideout spot, and a ladder to help those kitties that can’t jump, this DIY cat tree is perfect for an active cat or multiple cats.

Great example of DIY cat trees

Cat Tree by Frosta X | Ikea Hackers

This wall-climbing cat tree is not only vertical but also has a long horizontal extension (on different walls!). This allows multiple cats to enjoy a birds-eye view at the same time. 

Great example of DIY cat trees

DIY Cat Tree Using a Real Tree | By Brittany Goldwyn

This gorgeous DIY cat tree will not only accommodate multiple cats, but it will also look beautiful in your home and spark conversation with guests.

Great example of DIY cat trees

Building a Cat Tree | Show Cats Online

This multi-tiered, carpeted cat tree would cost at least $100 to buy brand new. Instead, with these clear directions and materials list, building this cat tree is not only cheap but easy to do.

Two Platform Cat Tower | Instructables

This smaller, 2 platform cat tree is perfect for homes that have less space or only one kitty. It even has a scratching post to keep your kitty from scratching up the furniture.

Great example of DIY cat trees

DIY Cat Tree/Condo | Ana White

Here’s a cabin-type cat tree where cats can crawl in and feel safe, but still have a great view of the birds out of a window.

Great example of DIY cat trees

What Do You Do With Old Cat Trees?

You can reupholster a cat tree that has seen better days but is still usable, even if it looks challenging.

However, if you have a cat tree you no longer need, check to see if you have a neighbor or a friend who could use it. Otherwise, you can give cat trees that are in good condition to a donation center or tear it apart and recycle the pieces yourself by using them in other projects.

8 Cat Trees You Can Buy

If you don’t have the time to make a DIY cat tree, here are some terrific ones that you can purchase.

More From One Crazy House:

15 Easy Cat Toys You Can DIY Today

15 Purrfect Homemade Cat Treats To Spoil Your Kitty

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