20 Free Cat Tree Plans You Can DIY Today

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Cats are known for their love of climbing. Maybe your kitty enjoys dangling from a branch and pretending to be a tiger (like ours!) or likes to watch the world go by from an elevated position.

Cat trees are a great way to provide enrichment for your cat, allowing them to play and relax. Many cats prefer to sleep in an elevated position, which means cat trees provide the perfect place for them to feel safe and secure.

We’ve rounded up 20 of the very best DIY Cat Tree Plans we can find on the internet today. And the good news is they’re all free!

So, from an adorable small tree based on a cactus to an epic design using a real tree trunk as the central feature, choose your favorite and get building!

For each plan, we’ve included the approximate level of DIY skill required, along with the materials and tools you’ll need to get started.

1. Cactus Cat Tree from Nifty on BuzzFeed

Cactus Cat Tree from Nifty on BuzzFeed

Skill Level: Medium

There’s no need to worry about your cat picking up prickles from this super-cute Cactus Cat Tree plan from Tracy Raetz and Nifty on BuzzFeed.

Feel free to match the felt flowers to your house décor, and add a little catnip before watching your cat climb this super fun cactus.

Materials
  • Cement
  • ABS pipe and couplings
  • Foam balls
  • Wooden disk
  • Sisal rope
  • Felt flowers
  • Screws
  • Fabric dye
Tools
  • Hammer
  • Hot glue gun
  • Drill

2. Dadand.com’s Kitty Condo

Dadand.com’s Kitty Condo
Image: Dadand.com

Skill Level: Beginner – Medium

If your cat’s looking for a stylish place to hang out, build them this budget-friendly cat condo from Dadand.com. Featuring 4 platforms, this is a great choice if you have multiple cats.

Materials
  • Plywood
  • 2” screws
  • 2 x 4” wood
  • carpet
Tools
  • Saw
  • Drill
  • Screwdriver

3. Instructables 21 Step DIY Cat Tree

Instructables 21 Step DIY Cat Tree
Image: Instructables

Skill Level: Medium

Linda Rose on Instructables made this large cat tree using mostly recycled and reclaimed materials – what a winner! With multiple platforms and cozy spots for your cat to hide in, this is an excellent design if you have plenty of room to spare.

Materials
  • Variety of wood
  • Cardboard tubes
  • Curtain rods
  • Styrofoam
  • Fabric/carpet
  • Upholstery foam
  • Nails & screws
  • Twine
  • Paint
  • Glue
  • Velcro
Tools
  • Drill
  • Screwdriver
  • Hot glue gun
  • Craft knife
  • Sandpaper
  • Jigsaw
  • Sewing machine

4. Instructables 7 Step DIY Cat Tree

Instructables 7 Step DIY Cat Tree
Image: Instructables

Skill Level: Beginner

If you’re looking for a quick and simple DIY Cat Tree, check out this version from Instructables. With just 7 steps, you can have this ready in just a few hours.

Materials
  • Felt
  • Plywood
  • Spray glue
  • Sisal rope
Tools
  • Jigsaw
  • Circular saw
  • Drill
  • Screws

5. Real Cat Tree by Brittany Goldwyn

Real Cat Tree by Brittany Goldwyn
Image: Brittany Goldwyn

Skill Level: Medium – Advanced

If your indoor cat loves the feel of real branches beneath their paws, then treat them to this real cat tree by Brittany Goldwyn. This impressive cat tree features 3 platforms, faux vines, sisal scratching posts, and a rocky base.

Brittany does note to avoid using the faux vines if you think your cat might have a cheeky nibble!

Materials
  • Natural branches
  • Varnish or stain
  • Sisal rope
  • Faux vines
  • Dowel
  • Paint scraper
  • Plywood
  • Decorative rocks or stepping stones
  • Carpet or faux fur.
Tools
  • Miter saw
  • Sandpaper
  • Staple gun
  • Drill
  • Glue
  • Assorted nails, and screws

6. Epic Cat Tree Featuring Multiple Platforms and a Real Tree from Honest to Paws

Epic Cat Tree Featuring Multiple Platforms and a Real Tree from Honest to Paws
Image: Honest to Paws

Skill Level: Advanced

If you’ve just finished removing some trees from your backyard, you can use this post from Honest to Paws as inspiration for an epic real cat tree

Materials
  • Large tree trunk with branches
  • Plywood
  • Lag screws
  • Varnish
  • Carpet
  • Sisal rope
Tools
  • Circle jigsaw
  • Small saw
  • Laser level
  • Belt sander or sandpaper
  • Scissors
  • Glue

7. Cole and Marmalade 5 Step Cat Tree

Cole and Marmalade 5 Step Cat Tree
Image: Cole and Marmalade

Skill Level: Beginner

This easy cat tree from Cole and Marmalade uses a range of easy-to-find materials and of course, the plan can easily be adapted to suit what you have to hand.

Materials
  • Sisal rope
  • Plywood
  • Nails
  • Screws
  • Plastic tubing (adapt to suit what you have around the house)
  • Carpet or faux fur
  • Cat toys
Tools
  • Saw
  • Glue
  • Nails & screws

8. The Experimental Home Large Cat Tree

The Experimental Home Large Cat Tree
Image: The Experimental Home

Skill Level: Advanced

Set aside a day and your cat can be the proud owner of this large cat tree designed by The Experimental Home. This DIY cat tree will provide plenty of space for your cat to eat, sleep, hide, and play.

Materials
  • Concrete form
  • Plywood
  • PVC pipes
  • Carpet
  • Lag bolts
  • Sisal rope
  • Cat hammock
  • Glue
  • Staples
Tools
  • Saw
  • Drill
  • Protractor
  • Screwdriver

9. Cat Tower Tree from Imgur

Cat Tower Tree from Imgur
Image: Imgur

Skill Level: Medium

If your cat loves to climb, then this Cat Tower Tree from Imgur will keep them occupied for hours. Featuring a hollow interior, our cat can climb both inside and outside this tree!

Materials
  • Wooden board
  • Carpet
  • Wood glue
  • Wooden circle for base
  • Varnish
Tools
  • Saw
  • Clamps
  • Nails or screws

10. Ana White’s Cat Tree With Walkways

Ana White’s Cat Tree With Walkways
Image: Ana White

Skill Level: Beginner

If your cat loves looking down on life from up high, this cat tree from Ana White features long walkways for them to enjoy. What’s more, Ana suggests even a beginner DIY’er can complete this with her easy step-by-step plan.

Materials
  • 7 pieces of wood 2 x 2 x 8”
  • Plywood
  • Carpet
  • Glue
Tools
  • Kreg jig
  • Drill

11. HGTV Cat Tree With Basket Beds

HGTV Cat Tree With Basket Beds
Image: HGTV

Skill Level: Beginner

This Cat Tree With Basket Beds from HGTV features a simple plan that uses a PVC pipe to create a tall tree. There are cute baskets for your cat to take a nap at various heights too.

Materials
  • PVC pipe
  • Baskets
  • Brackets
  • Screws
  • Sisal rope
  • Glue
Tools
  • Screwdriver
  • Saw

12. WikiHow Ladder Cat Tree

Skill Level: Beginner

If you’ve got an old wooden ladder waiting to be thrown in the trash, WikiHow has an excellent tutorial with full instructions for how to convert it into a stunning multi-level cat tree for your lucky furry friend.

Materials
  • Old wooden ladder
  • Sisal rope
  • Glue
  • Plywood
  • Paint
  • Carpet
  • Nails
  • Cat hammock or piece of fabric
  • Cat toy
Tools
  • Hammer
  • Staple gun

13. WikiHow Wood And Carpet Cat Tree

Skill Level: Medium

If you’d prefer to make your cat tree from scratch, WikiHow also has you covered with their detailed instructions for a DIY cat tree made from a combination of wood and carpet. With a cute little ladder and multiple platforms, there’s plenty for your cat to enjoy here.

Materials
  • Carpet
  • Plywood
  • PVC pipe or wood dowels
Tools
  • Drill
  • Table saw
  • Handsaw
  • Hammer
  • Craft knife
  • Staple gun

14. DIY Network Carpet And Sisal Cat Tree

DIY Network Carpet And Sisal Cat Tree
Image: DIY Network

Skill Level: Medium

Give your cat plenty of room to scratch, sleep, and climb with this Carpet And Sisal Cat Tree from the DIY Network. With 3 platforms, there’s plenty of space for multiple cats. You should be able to build this in an afternoon too.

Materials
  • Wood
  • Carpet
  • Sisal rope
  • Glue
  • Screws
Tools
  • Table saw
  • Screwdriver
  • Staple gun
  • Pocket hole jig

15. Southern Revivals Cat Tree Play Tower

Southern Revivals Cat Tree Play Tower
Image: Southern Revivals

Skill Level: Medium – Advanced

This beautiful, minimalistic cat tree play tower from Southern Revivals incorporates real branches alongside plenty of space for your cat to play and chill out.

Materials
  • Jute
  • Plywood
  • Concrete
  • Wood in various sizes
  • Real tree trunks
  • Faux fur
  • Sisal rope
  • Glue
  • Wood stain
  • Screws
Tools
  • Jigsaw
  • Miter saw
  • Nail gun
  • Hot glue gun
  • Table saw
  • Craft knife

16. Kristen’s DIY Cat Tree

Kristen’s DIY Cat Tree
Image: Kristen

Skill Level: Beginner

This cat tree plan cleverly upcycles an A-frame bookshelf to create a stylish cat tree with multiple platforms as well as cozy spots for your cat to sleep in. Because the majority of the construction is already made for you, you can concentrate on painting and adding cute accessories.

Materials
  • A-frame bookshelf
  • Faux fur
  • Batting
  • Velcro
  • Sisal rope
  • Glue
  • Carpet
  • Paint
  • Fabric
  • Cat toys
Tools
  • Hot glue gun
  • Needle
  • Thread

17. Instructables Cheap And Cheerful Cat Tree

Instructables Cheap And Cheerful Cat Tree
Image: Instructables

Skill Level: Beginner

If you’re looking to make a cat tree on a budget, this cheap and cheerful version from Instructables uses a range of reclaimed materials including an old kitchen unit. Feel free to substitute any of the materials with something else you have in your garage.

Materials
  • Reclaimed wood
  • Cardboard tubes
  • Glue
  • Cable ties
  • Wooden batons
  • Coir mats or sisal rope
  • Faux turf
  • Carpet
Tools
  • Saw
  • Hot glue gun

18. Hallmark Channel Wood Ladder Cat Tree

Hallmark Channel Wood Ladder Cat Tree
Image: Hallmark

Skill Level: Beginner

By combining 2 wood ladders, this clever cat tree plan from Paige Hemsis on the Hallmark Channel means you can easily build this cat tree in an afternoon or less.

Materials
  • 2 wooden ladders
  • Faux sheepskin
  • Scrap wood
  • Sisal rope
  • Glue
  • Brackets
  • Paint
Tools
  • Hot glue gun
  • Scissors

19. Instructables Wall-Mounted Cat Tree

Instructables Wall-Mounted Cat Tree
Image: Instructables

Skill Level: Medium

This Wall-Mounted Cat Tree on the Instructables site is an excellent choice if you have an energetic cat and need a tree that is going to stand up to some serious climbing! By fixing the platforms of this tree to the wall, it’s made stronger and sturdier than your average cat tree.

Materials
  • Square edge timber
  • Plywood
  • Sisal rope
  • Angle brackets
  • Screws
  • Wall plugs
  • Carpet
  • Glue
Tools
  • Saw
  • Drill
  • Staple gun
  • Spirit level
  • Measuring tape
  • Hammer
  • Craft knife
  • Screwdriver

20. Luxury Cat Tree from Show Cats Online

Skill Level: Advanced

Show Cats Online sure know a thing or two about cats. Their plan for a Luxury Cat Tree includes a carpeted tube, an adorable house and plenty of spots for your cat to climb and scratch.

Materials
  • 2 x 4” wood
  • Carpet
  • Plastic tube
  • Sisal rope
  • Plywood
  • Nails
  • Brackets
  • Screws
  • Nails
Tools
  • Hammer
  • Saw
  • Utility knife
  • Tape measure
  • Hot glue gun
  • Miter box
  • Drill
  • Glue

Conclusion

So, there you have it! We hope you enjoyed our round-up of the very best free DIY cat tree plans available for you to try.

No matter what your level of DIY skill, there’s a cat tree plan to suit you – from a PVC cat tree plan to one using real branches for a touch of the outdoors.

And the good news is we can almost guarantee that your cat will be happy with whichever you choose!


Featured Image:Eva Kubíčková, Pexels