Cat wheelchairs are extremely helpful for cats needing physical therapy or living with permanent disabilities. However, they can be pretty expensive, especially if you don’t have pet insurance to help cover some costs. You may also have difficulty finding the right size for your cat or kitten if they’re really small.
Fortunately, there are some creative DIY plans that are much more affordable options. An added benefit to DIY cat wheelchairs is that you can create a custom size to make them more comfortable for your cat to use. Here are some DIY wheelchair plans you can try today.
The 8 DIY Cat Wheelchairs
1. PVC Pipe Cat Physical Therapy Walker by hoc31rescue
|Materials:||PVC pipes, PVC pipe joints, plastic wheels, fabric, Velcro|
|Tools:||Drill, plastic pipe saw, measuring tape, fabric scissors|
This cat physical therapy walker is one of the most straightforward DIY designs online. Once you figure out your cat’s measurements, you just have to connect the pieces together with PVC pipes and pipe joints.
You can buy a harness or make your own sling using durable fabric and Velcro strips to hold the sling in place. Just make sure to cut the Velcro strips a bit longer than your cat’s measurements so that you can make minor adjustments to the size of the sling. This is important if you’re working with a kitten that’s still growing.
2. Instructables Cat Wheelchair
|Materials:||PVC pipe, PVC pipe joints, PVC cement, bolt and washers, wheels, drill foam, sweatshirt string, cat harness|
|Tools:||PVC cutter, drill|
This DIY cat wheelchair plan provides clear instructions to create a custom wheelchair for your cat. It’s a great option if your cat needs extra rear support. Along with being held up with a harness, this design provides a back crossbar with a comfortable foam piece that your cat can rest against.
The harness is held up with a sweatshirt string. If you need something more substantial to hold up your cat’s weight, you can use nylon rope or bungee cords instead.
3. $30 DIY Pet Wheelchair by Little Things
|Materials:||PVC pipes, PVC pipe joints, duct tape, small wheels, Pet harness, nylon straps|
This DIY pet wheelchair works for small dogs and cats. It has a comfortable design with a back seat to support your cat’s rear completely. The seat is made with duct tape that you can replace with fabric or an abdominal sling if you’re looking for a more long-term solution.
One of the most important things to factor in is the size of the wheels. Since the seat height is the same as the height of the wheel hub, you’ll want to make sure that the position of the hub is tall enough so that when your cat stands, its body rests parallel to the floor.
4. Mark Lapid’s Small-sized Pet Wheelchair
|Materials:||PVC pipes, PVC pipe joints, lawn mower wheels, nuts and bolts, 2-inch Velcro pack, PVC adhesive, abdominal brace|
Although this DIY wheelchair plan is made for a French Bulldog, you can also use it on cats that are a similar size. If the wheelchair ends up being too big, you can always saw the PVC pipes to a shorter length.
When it’s time to insert the abdominal brace, let it hang loose slightly so that it comfortably cradles your cat’s body. Once you have all the pieces assembled, you can set them in place by using PVC adhesive.
5. Front Leg Wheelchair by Instructables
|Materials:||Wheels, axel, board, screws|
This DIY wheelchair is a good option for cats that need frontal support. While the design uses a 3D printer, you can find substitute parts if you don’t have access to one. For example, you can use a board or a comfortable flat surface that your cat can rest on and then attach it to the axel.
There’s also a wide variety of wheel sizes, and you can use any kind as long as the hubs match your cat’s standing height.
6. Sara Hill’s $20 Homemade Cat Walker
|Materials:||PVC pipes, PVC pipe joints, caster wheels, fabric|
|Tools:||Fabric scissors, sewing machine, measuring tape|
This homemade cat walker uses a custom sling to support cats. Before you assemble the PVC pipe frame, you’ll have to take your cat’s measurements. Along with getting the right height, you’ll want to measure the distance between your cat’s limbs.
Once you get these measurements, you can trace them out on fabric and cut holes so that your cat’s legs can fit through them comfortably. After you sew loops on the ends of the fabric, you can slide them through the PVC pipes to keep the sling securely in place.
7. DIY Pet Wheelchair with Wagon by Dicas para gateiros
|Materials:||Small wagon, pet harness, wire rope, wire rope clamps, cushion|
|Tools:||Jigsaw, wire rope cutters, drill, sandpaper|
This pet wheelchair creatively uses a small wagon to provide solid and sturdy support for cats. You can find a small toy wagon and saw it in half with a jigsaw or fine-toothed saw.
After you sand out the edges, you can attach wire rope clamps and weave wire ropes through a nylon pet harness. An optional cushion can be attached to the wagon for added comfort.
8. Cuteness Affordable Cat Wheelchair
|Materials:||CPVC piping, pipe joints, towel or pet sling, caster wheels|
|Tools:||pipe saw, sewing machine, fabric scissors, measuring tape|
This DIY cat wheelchair has a smaller and sleeker design than most other DIY cat wheelchair plans. Rather than surrounding the cat with a frame, this design eliminates a boxed frame by placing the PVC pipes along the side of your cat.
Keep in mind that while CPVC pipes are more durable than PVC pipes, they tend to be more expensive than PVC pipes. So, if you’re on a budget, PVC pipes are a sufficient replacement.
It may take a few tries to build a wheelchair with the correct measurements for your cat. However, DIY wheelchairs can help immensely with recovering from an injury and improving a cat’s quality of life. So, it’s definitely worth the effort, and your cat will surely appreciate the ability to move and walk around on its own.
Featured Image Credit: Ngo Thye Aun, Shutterstock
- The 8 DIY Cat Wheelchairs
- 1. PVC Pipe Cat Physical Therapy Walker by hoc31rescue
- 2. Instructables Cat Wheelchair
- 3. $30 DIY Pet Wheelchair by Little Things
- 4. Mark Lapid’s Small-sized Pet Wheelchair
- 5. Front Leg Wheelchair by Instructables
- 6. Sara Hill’s $20 Homemade Cat Walker
- 7. DIY Pet Wheelchair with Wagon by Dicas para gateiros
- 8. Cuteness Affordable Cat Wheelchair