How to Build Your Own Cat Tree

Building a cat tree is one piece of furniture your cat will love, and it's easy for you to build yourself. By building your own cat products you will save money and create something special for your furry friend.

How to Build Your Own Cat Tree
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Overview
At heart, a cat is just as wild as a tiger or a lion. A cat has the same natural instinct to claw at things, to run and jump, and to sleep for many hours during the day. Cats really enjoy climbing objects. Some researchers think that they like to be able to view an entire area at once. Pet stores realize the needs cats have and sell furniture in all shapes and sizes for cats to climb on. These "cat trees" are simple wooden structures that can be easily reproduced at home.
Step 1
Cut your materials to size. Cut the PVC pipe lengthwise, and then cut one of those halves into three equal pieces. These will be used as cat perches. Divide both of the 8-inch-long, 2-by-4-inch boards into 1 4-foot-6 piece, 1 2-foot-9 piece, and 1 9-inch piece. You should now have two of each of these pieces. Drill two holes into each piece on the bottom end. These will be the posts of the cat tree. Cut the 7-foot 1-by-2-inch piece into 3 19-inch lengths and 2 13-inch lengths. These will be used to attach the perches.
Step 2
Assemble the posts by connecting the 19-inch 1-by-2-inch piece to the matching post pieces. Place one piece of the 1-by-2-inch piece between each pair of posts and nail them together with the 1-by-2-inch piece between the posts, not on top.
Step 3
Glue one of the base pieces on top of the other. Once this base has dried, drill 12 holes into the underside of the board to be used in connecting the posts. One set of 6 holes will be on the left vertical side of the base, with the other 6 on the right vertical side. Make sure each set of holes is about 2 inches from the outer edge of the board. Once the holes are drilled, countersink them. This means that once screws are placed in the holes, the screw heads will be flush with the wood. Cover the top part of the base with the fabric. Staple this into place by wrapping the fabric around the top and stapling on the bottom of the base only.
Step 4
Line the holes on the posts up with the holes on the base and bolt them into place. Start with the smaller perch posts and work your way up until the largest posts have been secured.
Step 5
Set the tree up onto its base. Clamp the 13-inch 1-by-2-inch pieces onto the tree between the 2-foot-9 and 4-foot-6 side posts about 21 inches from the bottom of the tree. Place the 13-by-19-inch piece of plywood on top of these supports to check how level the 1-by-2-inch pieces are. Once the shelf is level, remove the 13-by-19-inch plywood and screw the 1-by-2-inch supports into place. Set the 13-by-19-inch plywood back onto the supports and screw it into place as well. Cover the shelf with carpet, stapling the carpet into place on the bottom of the piece.
Step 6
Place one piece of the divided PVC pipe onto the 9-inch support posts. Screw it into place by drilling two screws into each post through the PVC pipe. Repeat this step up the posts until all 3 PVC sections are in place. Cover the PVC sections with carpet and glue the carpet into place. It's best to apply the glue and then the carpet, clamping it in place while the glue dries.
Step 7
Finish the cat tree by wrapping each of the wooden posts in the rope. This will give the cat a place to sharpen his claws, along with providing a softer edge to the wood.
skill
3
ingredient
Drill and drill bits

Hammer

Clamps

Level

Tape measure

Glue

Saw

Staple gun with staples

Utility knife

Carpet

22-inch-long, 12-inch-diameter PVC pipe

2 8-inch-long, 2-by-4-inch boards

7-foot-long, 1-by-2-inch boards

19-by-13-inch piece of plywood

2 2-by-2 foot sheets of ¾-inch plywood

500 feet of 3/8-inch rope

Screws

Bolts and washers

Nails

ingredients
Drill and drill bits
ingredients
Hammer
ingredients
Clamps
ingredients
Level
ingredients
Tape measure
ingredients
Glue
ingredients
Saw
ingredients
Staple gun with staples
ingredients
Utility knife
ingredients
Carpet
ingredients
22-inch-long, 12-inch-diameter PVC pipe
ingredients
2 8-inch-long, 2-by-4-inch boards
ingredients
7-foot-long, 1-by-2-inch boards
ingredients
19-by-13-inch piece of plywood
ingredients
2 2-by-2 foot sheets of ¾-inch plywood
ingredients
500 feet of 3/8-inch rope
ingredients
Screws
ingredients
Bolts and washers
ingredients
Nails
tip
For some added enjoyment, try dangling cat toys that make noise or are filled with cat nip from various points of the cat tree.
tips
For some added enjoyment, try dangling cat toys that make noise or are filled with cat nip from various points of the cat tree.
warning
Failure to follow tool safety guidelines may cause bodily harm. Always wear proper protection when using tools.
warnings
Failure to follow tool safety guidelines may cause bodily harm. Always wear proper protection when using tools.
keyword
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keywords
cat
keywords
tree
keywords
toy
keywords
build
keywords
play

Resources
reference
How to Build a Cat Tree
reference
Cat Furniture Plans and Blueprints for Towers, Scratching Posts, and Condos
resource
How Cats Play