Pet parents know the benefits of having a cat tree at home:
First, it’s a perfect place for exercising. Since indoor cats often lack activity, a tree can become their gym for scratching, jumping, and chasing. Second, it’s a great place for sleeping: Considering it a personal territory, felines are happy to use it for observation and lounge, especially if you place a cat tree in a sunny spot.
But the best part about a cat tree is that you can easily do it yourself! With so many DIY cat tree plans available online, why not save some money and build your own one?
In this article, we’ve gathered 20 free cat tree plans with ideas on how to build a cat tree for your furry friend. So, here we go!
20 Best DIY Cat Tree Plans to Try
1) Using Parts from Old Cat Trees
Two cats, Rocket and Sammy, are lucky owners of this stylish DIY cat tree. Their parent Elisa used parts from other condos, tree trunks, and a planter to build a cat condo her felines love exploring today.
So, here’s how to make a cat condo like this at home: Fill a planter with cement, place a tree trunk (a log, a branch, whatever you have at hand), and then add beds, cat shelves, condos, scratch points, and other parts you want to see on your tree. Remember to fix the construction to the wall for security.
2) A Tree for Minimalism Devotees
This simple yet stylish DIY cat tower comes from Amina and Julian, Instagram bloggers from Germany, writing about cat life and interior. They’ve designed this cat tree for two felines, Heisenberg and Idgie, while working from home, to play with their four-legged friends and provide them with a comfortable place to relax.
Here we have two wooden logs with natural ropes serving as scratching points. Two shelves on different levels serve for two cats to sit on and play with each other. And one tiny detail – a thin white rope – provides an extra point for activity and exciting pastime.
3) A Cat Tree from Ledges
Here goes a tree trunk again but, thanks to big ledges and condos, it looks like a perfect nook for your feline. Place a trunk into a stable bucket, add shelves and other sleeping points, and remember to fix it to a wall so your cats could use it safely.
This DIY cat tower will take about six hours to build. Add ropes to provide a feline with scratching points, and use soft cloth for ledges to make it more comfortable for cats to relax. Also, think of a quiet corner of your home to place the cat tree there.
4) A Rustic-Style Cat Tower Plan
For those willing to build a cat condo that looks unusual and fits the needs of felines who love the outdoors, this cat tower plan comes in handy. You’ll need a tree log or trunk to use as a base (feel free to use branches), some bamboo, wood, and rope.
Build a base for your trunk (it can be a big wooden box or a planter), use bamboo and ropes to fix branches, and add some fabric or pillows for a cat to sit on.
5) A Cat Tree for Physical Exercises
This easy cat tree can increase exercise motivation for kitties on wet food for weight loss. Doesn’t it remind you of a ribbon dancer gym, entertaining and encouraging felines to play? The plan comes from Megan and Sean from Charleston Crafted, and you’re welcome to try it at home.
All you’ll need is wood, two dowels, a drill bit, a rope, ribbons of your choice, and scissors. The trick is to adjust the texture and the length of those ribbons so they would keep a cat’s attention. Besides ribbons, feel free to use different ropes, tie strings, or any other corresponding elements you have at hand.
6) A Patio-Style Cat Tree (aka Catio)
If you want to build cat trees for a few felines and let them safely enjoy the outside, this plan may work. It’s a kind of built-in patio where your cats can access different points, enjoy the sun, and listen to outside sounds to satisfy their curiosity and instinct for hunting.
What you’ll need:
- Fencing wire (consider the size to make it safe for a cat).
- Decking material for the floor (you can use existing grass or bricks, depending on where you’re going to place a patio).
- A wire mesh for a roof.
Free cat tree plans pdf of this patio are shared by Cynthia Chomos.
And here goes the video from Jani Voutilainen:
7) A Multi-Platform Cat Tree
Everything you’ll need for this DIY kitty condo is some trees (trunks or branches) from your backyard, a rope, and soft cloth to wrap up the platforms. Doesn’t it look epic?
Easy to build, such cat trees find their place in many households. They are comfortable and beneficial for felines: Even with a few cats at home, one tree like this can serve for sleeping, scratching, relaxing, and playing for all of them.
8) A Wood and Carpet Tree Plan
Our felines are natural climbers, and that is why such cat tower plans are worth trying.
With a few wooden sticks and carpet cloth in the pocket, you’ll create a stylish-looking and functional cat furniture element for your interior.
Feel free to add multiple platforms, use ropes so your cat could crawl all over tall structures, and decorate it the way you like it.
9) A PVC Pipe Cat Tower Plan
This free cat tree comes from Sophie, an artist sharing her works on Instagram. Willing her new kitten Trufa to have a place to climb, scratch, play, and relax, she’s created it out of things she had at home, with a PVC pipe as a base.
So, take a dip-bucket, place a pipe there, and cover it with ropes so your cat could scratch and climb. Feel free to add decorations like Sophie did to make a tree look aesthetically pleasing. It’s a great spot for cat exercising, specifically useful for felines on the food for weight loss diet.
10) A Tree Plan for Cat Walkers
This DIY cat tree plan with walkways comes from Ana White, and it won’t take a long time and effort to build it. You’ll need plywood, carpet, glue, Kreg jig, and drill. Decide on the height and length of your cat tree – and take it away!
Your four-legged friend will enjoy long walkways through the tree. Make sure to cover its tall sides with carpet cloth for comfortable scratching and easy climbing.
11) A Labyrinth Tree
Okay, this free cat tree will hardly become 100% free because you’ll need a range of components to build it. But your felines will thank you for sure! This cat tree plan is perfect for households with multiple cats or large territory.
Take pinewood, metal shelf brackets, wooden crates, ropes, screws, and a mason jar. Make sure you choose a strong base for this labyrinth, as it’s gonna be quite massive. Feel free to add decorations like flowers, pillows, exercise wheels, artwork, etc.
And here goes the easier labyrinth plan from ClayZone:
12) A Cat Tree from Garden Branches
This homemade cat tree can be your choice to try building if you live in a private house with a garden or have relatives living in such households. That’s exactly what Marcel Rink has done: He’s found a large branch in his father’s garden and decided it would be a perfect cat stand for Neo, his Bengal Brown Tabby.
With a few garden branches as a baseline, all you’ll need to buy is a sisal rope that will serve as a scratching point for your feline. Feel free to use any decorations your creativity allows. (Marcel seems to be a fan of minimalism.)
13) A Cactus-Style Cat Tree
We bet your cat will love this super-stylish DIY cat tree! The plan comes from Nifty Pets. It looks more like a scratching post than an ultimate cat condo, but maybe that’s exactly what your furry friend needs, huh?
So, that’s what you’ll need to build it: ABS pipes, cement, wooden disk, screws, foam balls, fabric dye, and sisal rope. Follow the video instructions to put them all together, and remember to decorate with felt flowers for a more stylish look.
14) A Tree from Cat Furniture You Have at Hand
Building a cat tree is not that challenging if you have different cat furniture at home and want to combine it in one place for it to look both practical and stylish. This one in our list competes for the title of the best cat tree ever as it looks more like a cat recreation center than a simple cat stand.
Created by two students while in college, this DIY cat tree includes beds, walking labyrinths, scratching pads, toys, and ropes for playing. You are welcome to add different parts and decorations, so far as your territory and imagination allow.
15) A Cat Tree Plan for Nature Lovers
This DIY cat tree looks like… well, a real tree, which makes it a perfect choice for nature lovers, both cats and their human parents. To build this cat tower, you’ll need plywood, glue, wood filler, drywall screws, and fake leaves to decorate the final version.
Use a tree trunk and limbs as a base, crafting and decorating them. Place a few spots for sleeping, paint the tree if you want, and attach fake leaves, grass, and scratching pads. Or, you can leave it unfinished for a rustic look.
16) A Tree for Multicat Households
While this DIY cat tree looks like a jumbo, it’s not so. Among all the cat tower plans from the list, this one is a great way to save money, especially if you have several cats at home. The plan comes from Dianne Sands, a mother of five cats, who didn’t want to spend a fortune on an expensive store-bought tree as she believed her cats would simply destroy it.
You’ll need a log, a few boxes, and old cat combos and scratching points. Feel free to “steal” Dianne’s idea on decorating this cat stand: Artificial leaves are safe for cats as they won’t eat them for sure. But we can’t say the same about lights, so please go by your felines’ habits here.
17) A Hollow Tree for Active Cats
This one is a real DIY climbing cat tower, perfect for both active cats and felines struggling with being overweight. You’ll need plywood, carpet, and some power tools to polish and cover up the hollow. Wrap the rug around each piece of the tree so it would be more comfortable for a cat to climb.
As you see, this structure doesn’t have any ropes, but you can use some instead of carpets to make the cat tree plan less expensive. Also, it’s quite tall; feel free to make yours shorter, depending on your interior and your cat’s agility.
18) A Tree for Chic Cats
This stylish DIY cat condo plan comes from Brittany Goldwyn. It’s multi-purpose: You can use it as a side table or a plant shelf too. Feel free to “steal” Brittany’s idea here and adjust it to your budget and available elements.
In a few words, you’ll need plywood, glue, and cloth. When ready, decorate it with plants or any other personal goods and place it in a cozy corner for a cat to feel safe and comfortable when she’s in.
19) Wall-Mounted Tree for Cats
It’s a great plan to build your own cat tree if your feline is super energetic and needs a platform for serious climbing. Take plywood, wall plugs, rope, carpet, and glue; fix this DIY cat tree’s platforms to the wall, and presto – the free cat tree is ready!
The detailed plan on how to build this cat tree comes from Instructables.
20) A Basic Free Cat Tree
This DIY cat tree is probably the easiest one to build. All you need is a few pieces of plywood, a stick to nail up or glue them together, and a rope to wrap that frame for a cat to have a scratching point. The detailed instructions are here to follow.
Feel free to use some soft cloth to cover this tree’s upper ledge for a feline to sit or sleep there with more comfort. Place it near a window so your feline could relax, observing the outside or feeling the warmth.
In a Word
And now that you have 20 DIY cat tree plans to suit any taste and pocket, which one would you try for your furry friend? Or, maybe you’ve already built a stylish cat condo for your feline?
If you are a fan of DIY cat furniture – you are welcome to check this guide with 10 DIY cat hammocks as well.
Please feel free to share your DIY cat tree ideas in the comments!