Getting a cat involved a whole host of decisions that you need to make prior to their arrival and one of these decisions is a cat tree. Not only do cat trees allow your cat to scratch, which keeps their nails healthy. It can also give them a high space that they can relax in and see their surroundings. Cats need a safe space away from humans in order to settle down and relax and a cat tree can be the perfect answer to this. Cat trees also promote good nail health, when cats scratch, it takes away the outer shell of the nail, leaving behind a healthy nail underneath, this will also save your furniture from being shredded! If you aren’t sure where to start when it comes to choosing a cat tree, we’re here to help, here are 10 facts to consider before you make a purchase. 

Cat Condos 

It may sound ridiculous but look for a tree that comes with a condo. These are typically boxes that are perched right on top of the cat tree with at least one entrance and exit. If you live in a busy house with a lot of people and other animals such as dogs, cat condos can be an awesome way for your cat to unwind away from everyone else. 

Size

Size doesn’t just mean the size of the cat tree; it also relates to the size of your cat! If you are getting a Maine-coon cat, they are big breed that require a lot of climbing space. There are special trees for large cats breeds such as this, but if you feel it will take up too much space, then the breed won’t be right for you. The general rule of thumb is that a cat needs somewhere high to perch, hide and view their surroundings. If you can’t provide that in a cat tree, then put a shelf above it so your cat can have all of these things without you have a 7ft jungle gym in your front room. 

Scratching

Cats need to scratch, its vital for their health. Before you settle on a cat tree, make sure that the scratching post is at least 3 feet high, that way most cats can reach the top if it when they are fully stretched out. 

Toys

A lot of cat scratchers now come with toys attached such as ropes and balls on strings. Make this cat tree their safe space and playhouse and get one that will keep your cat amused and off your furniture! 

Variety

Cats thrive on variety and their cat tree should be no different. You don’t want to purchase a single post with a platform on top, this won’t keep your cat amused and you could potentially be gearing them to scratch your sofa due to boredom. Look for cat trees that have features such as ramps and tunnels. Not only will they have different ways to get up the cat tree, it also gives them different scratching angels and places to hide. 

Design

If you are concerned that a cat tree will be an eyesore in your home, don’t worry. Design has come on a long way in the last 5 years as providers have realized that customers want their cat trees to fit in with the aesthetic of their home. You can get cat trees in a variety of colors and finishes, making sure that it matches your color scheme and finish. Some even go as far as including laminate to make sure your floor matches your cat’s activity center. 

Smaller Spaces

If you have a small apartment, fear not, there are an array of well-designed cat trees that utilize the small space you have whilst keeping your cat amused. You still need to give your cat at least 3 feet of scratching room, but some cat trees now have smaller footprints, so they can sit in the corner but then extend up as they get higher. This way, you won’t lose any precious floor space, but you are still giving your cat everything they need to be happy and healthy. 

Cleaning

You don’t want to be cleaning the cat tree too often as it is your cats’ home and their smell on it makes it so that they are comfortable and happy. That being said, at some point you will need to get rid of some of the excess hair and fluff, especially if you have people visiting with allergies. Look for fabrics that are easy to pull fur off, such as a heavy wearing velvet. Cord will be difficult to clean, but it will last longer. 

Durability

If you have chosen your cat tree correctly, your cat will never be out of it, unless it is for food and affection, so you want to make sure you are choosing one that will last. Look for products that are solidly made, that have wooden posts and rope for them to scratch on. These will last a lot longer than cheaper alternatives. 

Get inventive

If you don’t like any of the cat trees on offer or you have a very specific design that you want but can’t seem to find, why not create it yourself? Cat trees aren’t difficult to make, especially if you only need a small one. A few pieces of wood or high-quality compacted cardboard, some rope and some glue and you are away. This way you can be sure that you not only have a cat tree that matches your decor, it will also match the space that you have at home. Building your own cat tree also gives you the ability to add and take away design features depending on your cat! 

Final Thoughts

Cat trees are a must for all cat owners as they give them the safe space, they need to remain healthy. Cat trees need to allow for at least 3 feet worth of stretching and scratching, so your cat maintains their health. If you can’t find a design that you like, you can always consider building your own cat tree to make the most of the space you have. Cat trees now come in a variety of styles and finishes, so the chances of you finding one are actually incredibly high. Make sure that it has a cat condo, so your feline companion has a place to wind down and relax.