Buying a cat scratching tree may sound like a simple task but there are actually so many to choose from that you may not know where to start. The best scratching trees will incorporate lots of activities that cats enjoy doing on a daily basis. It will also look good enough to have on show in your home. Yes, it’s for the cat(s) but you’ve probably got to be able to live with it too. I’ve spent quite some time looking at all sorts of trees. I was looking for the following features:
- a neutral color scheme
- lots of surfaces to scratch and claw
- plenty of platforms to climb to
- places to perch
- places to hide and sleep
- things to play with
I’ve picked three that satisfy all of the above criteria plus a fourth one that’s a bit of a wild card and will appeal to those who just don’t find standard cat trees cool enough for their home!
My First Choice
After extensive research, my absolute favorite is the Go Pet Club Cat Tree (click the link to read reviews on Amazon).
First of all, it has a very sturdy base. The one pictured here is cream but it also comes in black, blue and brown so you should find one that will compliment your home decor scheme. It also has all the features I was looking for and I know my cats would just love it. This one is definitely my top pick.
I like the fact that it combines carpet, rope, and sisal and so provides different textures for a cat to scratch at. It also provides lots of lovely activities including ladder climbing, platforms to leap to and from, a hammock, a nest, a tunnel, a perch, and a hidey-hole. On this scratching tree, your cat can really use up lots of pent-up energy and then flop out and relax afterward. It is particularly good for keeping indoor cats entertained whilst providing them with plenty of exercise.
My Second Choice
My second favorite scratching tree is the Armakat Cat Tree (click the link to read reviews on Amazon).
Again, the neutral color means it will blend in with any color scheme you happen to have at home. There are 4 levels and other features such as ropes, holes to crawl through, a cozy den, balls, and ropes to swipe at and two perches to observe the ground from. The columns are wound with rope which will give your cat plenty to scratch at and shimmy up if it’s feeling particularly energetic. I like the compactness of this model which makes it ideal for smaller spaces and yet it still has plenty of areas to give a cat excellent exercise and keep it interested day in, day out.
My Third Choice
I just love this Armakat Condo (click the link to read reviews on Amazon), not least because the cat modeling it looks just like our white Maine Coon, Charlie.
This tree comes in several different sizes so you should be able to find one to suit your space exactly. I like the two ramps and I know my cats would really enjoy giving those a good scratch. Cats love to adopt the high ground and with three perches to choose from, they will be spoilt for choice with this tree. It is plenty big enough if you have two or more cats because it provides plenty of space to share.
The Wild Card
This one is a little different from the rest. If you just don’t think a cat tree is stylish enough for your home or don’t have enough space, you will find this really appealing. Let me introduce CatastrophiCreations Deluxe Playplace Hammocks for Cats (click the link to read reviews on Amazon).
These fabulous hand-crafted shelves and fabric runways will look amazing on any wall and can be arranged to suit your available wall space and your cat’s ability. The photo shows just one example of a layout – the possibilities are endless. You can also add to this a CatastrophiCreations Raceway and Hammock, a CatastrophiCreations Cat Dining Table plus extra shelves. If our cats were younger we would definitely invest in all of this.
What are scratching trees for?
Scratching trees are a fabulous invention to provide cats with a great place to sleep, exercise, stretch their muscles and sharpen their claws. They are aimed at indoor cats but there’s nothing to stop you buying one for outdoor cats because they will enjoy it just as much, especially when the weather is too cold or wet to venture outside. Invest in a good tree and, hopefully, your cat will prefer to scratch at it instead of your furniture!
What are scratching trees made of?
Most scratching trees are made of wood which is covered with carpet or fleece, sisal rope, and string. The base should be large and heavy to prevent it from toppling over.
What should a scratching tree incorporate?
A good scratching tree will be fairly tall and have different levels. It should incorporate plenty of areas to scratch at, ramps, steps, tunnels, hammocks and areas to perch and hide. Some have toys attached by string to provide extra amusement for your cat. The more features that are cleverly incorporated, the more it will occupy your cat.
There are lots of great looking scratching trees on the market and it may be tempting to just go for the cheapest one you can find. I would rather do a bit of research, read satisfied customer reviews and base my choice around these. That’s how I’ve chosen the three I’ve recommended above. If you think they are expensive, look at what you actually get for your money and consider how long this piece of kit may be in your house. Also, know just how much fun your cat will have using it and that it will really help to keep its body and mind healthy. I hope this makes the price seem worth it.