The Best Cat Scratching Post – Cat Tree,Tower & Condo

Cats love to scratch. But did you know that they actually need to scratch? It's a cat's equivalent of a nail clipper. As their claws grow, they need to scratch not so much to sharpen them, as to remove the outer, dead layer of the claw. Imagine how you'd feel if you couldn't cut your nails for six months, and you'll understand how frustrated your cat feels when you won't let him scratch.

In nature, of course, there are plenty of trees with lovely rough bark for a cat to claw at. In your apartment, there are door frames, sofas, and curtains, which also look appealing to a cat, but which you'd probably rather keep safe from feline claws. Providing a good scratching post can help your cat keep his nails trim while preventing him from ripping up your upholstery.

We looked at a wide variety of cat scratchers, from simple cardboard wedges to beautifully designed large wooden towers, trees and sisal pieces. Cardboard has the advantage of being recyclable once your cats have finally trashed it, and some of the scratchers are made out of recycled materials, too. The best cat scratchers are large enough for a cat to stretch out fully, and have material that doesn't trap a cat's claws and doesn't fall out all over the floor. Many of the higher priced scratchers also double as cat perches, and some have cat toys included to make them into multi-use cat furniture.

There's a lot of choice out there. There are some great products, and there are also some rather poor ones. Design is often an issue, and some of the lower range cardboard products are overpriced and shed far too much cardboard over your floor. We had to evaluate quite a few products to find the right ones.

But succeed we did, as we’re about to showcase the five best cat scratching posts you can buy:

Our Top Recommendation

​​​​​PetFusion Ultimate Cat Scratcher Lounge

Pet Fusion's Ultimate Cat Scratcher Lounge is a huge figure-of-eight loop of recycled cardboard, with matte black sides, that provides both a scratcher and a place for cats to sleep. It uses recycled cardboard which is tougher than many competitors' products, and should last a year of active use, since it doesn't shred as easily as other cardboard scratchers.

  • ​Perfect for cats of all sizes
  • plus
    ​Comes with a bag of catnip
  • plus
    ​Very well made
  • plus
    ​Provides plenty of activities for your cat to engage in 
  • ​We're struggling to come up with any valid downsides

There's a huge scratching area, and the cat can choose between a lot of different scratching positions, too. The open design gives two 'tunnels' to intrigue your cats, and the curved top is a favourite lounging place for many fur babies. At 34 inches long, this is a big scratcher, and it's also reversible - in fact even if cats tip it over on its side, they can still use it. The hole in the middle also lets you attach it to a table leg with rope if you want to stop it moving about.

PetFusion Ultimate Cat Scratcher LoungeSource: walmart.com

OUR RATING

This is definitely the best for big and heavy cats, and at around $50 is not expensive for what you get. It also comes with a packet of catnip to get your cats interested.


​Runner Up

​​​Pioneer​ SmartCat Ultimate Scratching Post

This good looking and sturdy scratching post is another designer option. The SmartCat Ultimate Scratching Post is a square scratching post on a square wood base, made with sisal on all four sides. The post is wide, and 32" high, so even large cats like Rag Dolls can stretch their full length while having a scratch - good cat yoga! It's sturdy, and won't tip over even when used by the big guys, and some users have found it will last up to three years before the sisal gets scratched up.

  • plus
    ​Traditional cat scratching tower design  
  • plus
    ​Perfect for cats of all sizes
  • plus
    ​Very sturdy base to prevent it from being tipped over
  • ​Great value for money
  • Can be a little tough on the paws for sensitive cats

The design is classic, and will go with any kind of décor while looking elegant and in place, though the top and bottom panels could be in a nicer colour than the rather off-putting brown.

Pioneer SmartCat Ultimate Scratching Post

Source: ebay.com

OUR RATING

​The Ultimate Scratching Post costs $40-50 - not the absolute cheapest scratching post you can get, but still relatively inexpensive. The vendor also appears responsive to customer problems. It's fair to note that a few cats don't get on with it, and the sisal is quite hard and could catch a cat's claws in it, so this is not a good buy if your cat has sensitive paws.


​Go Pet Club Cat Tree - The Best Cat Tower & Condo

The Go Pet Club Cat Tree is a shining example of how to make cat furniture properly. Go Pet Club have produced a multi purpose cat tree that provides the perfect opportunity for your cat to engage in all of the activities that are so important for growth and healthy development.

  • plus
    ​A very well designed cat condo  
  • plus
    ​Perfect for cats of all sizes
  • plus
    ​Very sturdy base to prevent it from being tipped over
  • ​Great value for money
  • ​We're struggling to think of any negative points

​Available in a variety of great colors, this cat tree features several well constructed platforms, each with their own unique feature set which are sure to keep your cat entertained. 

Furthermore, this cat tree features a variety of different materials including a luxurious fur lined hide hole and several places for your cat to exercise their claws.

Go Pet Club Cat Tree

OUR RATING

​Go Pet Club's Cat Tree offers exceptional value for money and is just the right size for most homes. It might not be the most fancy cat condo on the market but it makes for a fantastic choice for many cat owners.


​​​​​FrontPet Modern Cat Tree Tower

The problem with many commonly available cat scratching posts is that they're, frankly, years behind in interior design concepts. They may look great to your cat, but will they fit with your Alvar Aalto furniture or your collection of Andy Warhol prints? Lurid turquoise and purple is not everyone's idea of a great colour scheme!

  • ​Could easily double up as a work of art
  • plus
    ​Very high quality in both design and construction
  • plus
    ​Individual pieces of carpet can be removed for cleaning
  • ​Comes with two water bowls
  • ​Not cheap

​Frontpet's futuristic design comes to your rescue. It's a sophisticated looking design with clean lines and elegant balance, providing multiple perches and scratching areas. Unlike most scratchers, this one will keep going for ever - it uses carpet squares which are attached with Velcro and can be removed for cleaning, or replaced. The big platforms let cats stretch out to their full length, and the tree is robust enough for cats that like to play rough. It includes two water bowls at the bottom as well.

FrontPet Modern Cat Tree Tower

Source: walmart.com

OUR RATING

The 'tree' comes in raw, unfinished wood, so you can oil it or paint it to suit your décor. Although it might not look like an easy-build product, it's actually quite easy to put together, though it does need two people - one to hold pieces while the other fastens them.

Customer reviews are almost all positive - cats love to sleep on the shelves as well as scratch. Just a few users have found it can be a little wobbly, because of its height; putting it in a corner helps support this scratching post. And this is an expensive option, at well over $200. Worth it, perhaps, if you want to protect your collection of Eames lounge chairs.


​​​​​​Pawaboo Cat Scratcher Lounge

The Pawaboo Cat Scratcher Lounge is a cat scratcher that doubles as a 'cat house' - an open-sided box with scratching fabric inside as well as outside. It can be used horizontally or vertically, and it's great for multiple cat families as one cat can scratch inside while the other has a good claw at the outside of the box. It's a neat design with two little portholes, one each side, and rounded corners, and it could fit under a desk or table. It actually looks a little bit 1960s retro, which is fun.

  • ​Lovely design
  • plus
    Doubles as an activity center
  • plus
    ​Catnip provided
  • plus
    ​It is made from recycled cardboard
  • ​Prone to sliding across the floor

It's made out of corrugated cardboard, but the cardboard is quite thick and durable. (That also means postage is a lot cheaper than with a solid scratcher.) It will slide about a bit when the cats are having fun, though. And the 'flame' accent on the side is a bit tasteless, at least according to one customer's cats who decided to rip it off and chew it up.

Pawaboo Cat Scratcher Lounge

Source: ebay.com

OUR RATING

The package also includes catnip, which is a nice touch. At under $50 this isn't a snip, but it's a good scratcher that's versatile and fun for your cats.


​​​​​​​​GoPets Multi-Activity Premium Cat Scratcher

​GoPet's scratcher is our budget option at around $20. It's a recycled cardboard wedge, with two available scratching sides, so it can be turned over to spread the damage. The design includes two holes to stimulate your cat's curiosity and encourage it to play as well as scratch.

  • ​Very cost effective
  • plus
    Provides several activities for your cat to engage in
  • plus
    ​Catnip is included
  • ​Gentle on a cat's paws
  • ​Isn't as well built as some of the other products here on review

​​Because it's wedge-shaped, the scratching surface is slanted, giving your cat a more natural and easier stretch than with flat scratchers. Cardboard also has the advantage that unlike sisal, it can't catch your cat's claws. The package includes catnip as well as a bell ball that can be put in the little recesses in the scratcher to turn it into a cat toy, making it a really versatile little object.

GoPets Cat Scratcher

Source: ebay.com

OUR RATING

​The drawback is that the bits of cardboard get ripped off, so this isn't a great buy for people who like their houses clean and tidy at all times. The cardboard this scratcher is made of doesn't seem to be as robust as with the higher priced products, so it gets ripped up more easily - this scratcher will last a good few months, but it won't last years. It's light, and tends to move around a bit when the cat is using it (it could be worth fixing it to a surface with double sided tape), and it's a bit small for larger cats - though kittens will go mad over it.


​​Our Verdict

And the winner is .... ​the Pet Fusion Ultimate Scratcher Lounge. ​​We loved all the others, but this one is brilliant. The design would fit anywhere, while the different scratching areas and curvy cat lounging make it a really flexible product that your cats can use in many different ways.

Price-wise, it's around average for a cat scratcher but seems nicer than many, and the cardboard is heavy duty, tending to get chewed up less than some of the cheaper cardboard scratchers. Plus, it's made from recycled cardboard, so you're doing your bit for sustainability and the environment when you buy it.

Cat Sharpening Its Claws

If you're in the market for a cat condo, we wholeheartedly recommend taking a look at Go Pet Club's Cat Tree for a cost-effective place for your cat to hang out.

Whichever cat scratcher you decide to buy, whether a traditional cat tower, tree or otherwise, your cat may ignore it at first. It's very easy to attract a recalcitrant cat, though - try catnip, sprinkled or sprayed on to the scratcher, or use a feather teaser to get your cat in the right mood to use the scratcher.

What do you do when it’s that time of year again and you have to take your kitty to the vet? You probably put them in a box and pray that they will stay inside, right? Maybe it’s time you upgrade that shabby old box and get your kitty the best cat carrier they deserve!

Here are five cat carrier reviews that we think will help you choose the best cat carrier for your feline friend.

Our Pick

Winner: Petyella Expandable Cat Carrier

URL: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B075SY583P/

The Petyella Expandable Cat Carrier was designed to meet your cat’s needs for safety but for comfort as well. The carrier features a reinforced steel frame that will prevent the carrier from collapsing in on the kitty. The 600D polyester material mesh is going to encourage air circulation so that your cat has plenty of fresh air. With that said, the carrier is capable of folding up nice and compact when you aren’t using it.

This pet carrier is airline approved, so you can take your pet with you on your flight. There is a fleece bed that your cat can lay on while flying, but the carrier also includes a paw print blanket for a little extra comfort. Along with the blanket, there is a collapsible water dish included so you don’t have to worry about your kitty getting dehydrated while traveling.

Notable features of the Petyella Expandable Cat Carrier include:

Strong straps and seams, durable zippers, enhanced stability, soft mat and a light weight

Expanding sides that zip out to give adult dogs and cats plenty of room.

Easy to carry by shoulder strap or integrated handles.

Folds flat for storage under a bed or in a drawer.

Carries cats up to 11 lbs and measures 11 x 11 x 18 inches and 31 x 11 x 18 inch in expanded mode.

Durable metal swivel clips prevent twisting of shoulder strap

Leash clip prevents your animal from dashing out.

Free fleece blanket and collapsible bowl

Storage pocket on the side of the crate keep accessories at your fingertips.

1 Year Money Back Guarantee - 100% refund of your purchase price. No questions asked.

When looking at what people had to say about the Petyella Expandable Cat Carrier, they had great things to say. Customers appreciated that this pet carrier included a comfortable fleece bed, a blanket, and a water dish. They went on to say that they were impressed by how lightweight the carrier was and that the comfortable shoulder strap didn’t dig into their shoulder while carrying it. Several customers commented that the case felt pretty sturdy and they were confident that their cat’s wouldn’t be able to break free.

Though there were many positive reviews, there were some people who were disappointed with their purchase. Of these critical reviews, customers were most disappointed that the zippers on the case were defective. Some people said the zipper on their case was missing the pull tab, while others said that the zipper on their carrier would get stuck from time to time in certain areas. Other customers reported that they received the wrong colored case, but also the accessories that were included didn’t match the colors they received.

Best Soft Sided Cat Carrier

Winner: Bergan Comfort Carrier

URL: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00XHFUB9U/

The Bergan Cat Carrier is designed to be stylish and functional! This is the best cat carrier for those who have heavier cats and you don’t (or can’t) carry the weight on your shoulder. This is because the carrier is outfitted with removable wheels and a pull strap that allows you to pull the bag as if it were a piece of luggage. However, if you have to go up steps or you don’t want to drag your cat behind you, the pull strap does convert to a padded shoulder strap. The bag is so lightweight, you will just be carrying the weight of your pet and an extra pound or so for the bag.

The carrier also features strong mesh on all four sides and on the top. This allows for excellent airflow, allowing your kitty to get plenty fresh air, but also so you can look in and check on them without having to open the case. The bag also features several pockets on the sides so that you can tuck away treats and toys to make the trip a little more pleasant for your cat. The case is airline friendly, so you can rest assured that you’ll be able to fly with your cat right at your feet in this cat carrier.

Notable features of the Bergan Comfort Carrier include:

Comfort Carrier has a practical design, which creates stress free traveling.

Its generous mesh panels ensure maximum breath-ability.

Includes a washable fleece travel bed and light tan interior for a cushioned and cool ride

Multiple mesh panels for maximum ventilation for your cat

Internal Dimensions: 18" L x 11" H x 9" W

Typically for pets up to 20lbs; however, varies per pet, refer to dimensions

We ensure every product comes with a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee.

When looking at what people had to say about the Bergan Comfort Carrier, they had great things to say. Customers liked that the case was large enough for two cats (one person said she had two 8-pound cats in the carrier) and they had plenty of room to get up and move around. Other customers reported that they appreciated that the carrier gave you the option to carry it on your shoulder, or pull behind you. Other people said they liked that this case was airline compatible and they can take their cat with them on trips instead of trying to find care arrangements.

There were some people who left critical reviews of the carrier and the most common complaint people had was that the carrying case wasn’t as large as they had anticipated. Some people reported that their cat didn’t have very much room to move or lounge. Other customers reported that the mesh isn’t indestructible and their cats put a hole in the mesh. A few people also mentioned that the zippers on their bag needed repairing only after a few uses.

Runner Up: Airline Approved OxGord Pet Carrier

URL: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00EW2WKZU/

The OxGord Pet Carrier is one of the most respected name in the pet supply and accessory industry. Their airline approved, soft sided carrying case features a Sherpa bed inside, which is  going to make your kitty comfortable while traveling. The pet carrier is quite sturdy, even though there are numerous mesh panels to promote air circulation and breathability. When you’re traveling in the car with the carrier, there are safety belt straps that allows you to buckle the carrier securely to the seat.

This pet carrier is FAA Airline Approved, which means that you can fly with your cat without any hassle. If you do have a cat who gets anxious while flying, the unwind and bind feature is designed to keep your kitty calm in-flight. If there is a favorite treat or toy your cat likes, you can tuck it away in the storage compartments that are designed in the bag.

Notable features of the Airline Approved OxGord Pet Carrier include:

19"x10"x13" inches - Can hold up to 15 pounds.

Compliant with most airlines (please check with your airline before flying).

The unwind and bind feature allow owners access to their pets without the risk of escape.

Includes:

Removable fleece travel bed

Padded shoulder strap

Lost and found tag

Storage compartments for medicine, toys and treats.

Made from durable and comfortable breathable materials for maximum airflow.

Ventilated security screens are easy to clean and 100 percent washable.

Money Back Guarantee

When looking at what people had to say about the Airline Approved OxGord Pet Carrier, they had great things to say. Many customers commented that the design of this carrying case is well thought out and they like that the case is easy to use. People also appreciated that the bed can be removed to be washed and the water-resistant underside will protect the rest of the carrier from getting damaged if the cat has an accident. Customers also liked that there is a zipper that makes it easy for you to check on your cat without worrying about the cat escaping.

Some people were not as impressed with this case and left critical reviews. Of these critical reviews, the most common problem people had was that the seam on their bag popped. They went on to say the cat wasn’t doing anything vicious to the bag – they just leaned on it. Some people said the zippers were difficult to use with one hand without it getting stuck. A few other people commented that the bag was too small and their cats would not fit into it.

Best Hard Sided Cat Carrier

Winner: Petmate Two Door Top Load Kennel

URL: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0062JFGM0/

Unlike other pet carriers you may come across, the Petmate Two Door Top Load Kennel features a door on top of the crate that enables you to lower your kitty inside if they are hesitant to going in through the front door. Not only will the top loading door make it easier to put your cat inside, but you can check in on your cat without having to jostle the crate to peer in through the side. The handle on the crate is designed to be ergonomic and it’ll fit comfortably in the hand.

This crate doesn’t rely on a latch system to hold the components together, instead it requires hardware that is going to be far better at holding everything together. When it is all assembled, you’ll be able to take this cat carrier on an airplane, as it meets all airline travel requirements. You’ll want to put a small pet bed or a comfortable blanket inside so that your cat is nice and comfortable for the journey.

Notable features of the Petmate Two Door Top Load Kennel include:

Steel and plastic construction for enhanced strength, safety and visibility

2-door carrier design allows for easy access to pets

Durable ergonomic carry handle for safer pet transport

Water cup NOT included. Inner Dimensions: 21" x 14.75" x 13.25"

Ideal for small pets no more than 7 inches tall and 15 inches in length

Product Dimensions : 24.05" X 16.75" X 14.5"

 

When looking at what people had to say about the Petmate Two Door Top Load Kennel, they had great things to say. Many customers reported that the crate was easy to assemble and they appreciated that the necessary hardware was included with the crate. People also appreciated that the crate was large enough to accommodate small dogs, cats (of course) and other pets like rabbits and guinea pigs. When it comes to loading their pets inside the crate, many customers appreciated the option to put them in through the front, but also using the top door.

On the other hand, not everyone was satisfied with their purchase and they left some critical comments about the carrier. The most common complaint people had was that the crate wasn’t as large as they had hoped. People commented that their pet barely had any room to move around. Others commented that the crate didn’t feel very sturdy, even though it was made from a thick plastic. Some went on to say that the top door needs to be held open, which is impossible if you’re struggling to get your cat in the crate to begin with.

Runner Up: AmazonBasics Two-Door Top-Load Pet Kennel

URL: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00OP6SVJW/

The AmazonBasics Two-Door Top-Load Pet Kennel is an affordable two door pet carrier that allows you to safely carry your cat from one place to another. This unit has a steel wire front door, but it also has a door on the top where you can lower your kitty down into the carrier if they are reluctant to go in by themselves. The top door can be opened either on the right or the left. This convenience lends itself to being a functional carrier for right handed pet owners and left handed pet owners alike.

This pet carrier is made from a heavy duty plastic material that will your cat contained, regardless of how much they may struggle. There is plenty of ventilation in this carrying case so that your cat has access to fresh air, but so that you can look in a check on your kitty, but also for your cat to look out and be aware of their surroundings.

Notable features of the AmazonBasics Two-Door Top-Load Pet Kennel include:

Two-door, top-load model allows for easy loading of your cat or dog

Measures 23x15x13 inches (LxWxH)

Top door can open to the left or right for easy access and convenience

Included screws can be used to further secure the top and bottom of kennel for reinforcement

Made of durable plastic with a steel-wire front door

 

When looking at what people had to say about the AmazonBasics Two-Door Top-Load Pet Kennel, they had great things to say. Customers who left positive reviews of these carriers commented on how nicely the carrier was constructed. People felt that the plastic was sturdy and they could rely on the steel wire door to stay latched. Customers appreciated that there was a door on top of the carrier because their cats were apprehensive about going into the carrier on their own.

There were some people who were less impressed with their purchase and they had some concerns about the quality. The most concerning complaint was that the top door was not very sturdy and when you used the handle to carry the case, the top door would open. Many were upset that this is quite dangerous, as their cats could have ran away and gotten hurt when the door opened and the case fell in a busy parking lot. Others were upset that the holes for the screws didn’t line up properly, making it very difficult (or impossible) to get all the screws in.

What To Look For When Choosing the Best Cat Carrier?

Choosing a pet carrier for your pet is incredibly important because you want to make sure they are safe, secure, and comfortable. If you travel a lot and you want to bring your cat, instead of finding a house sitter or lodging solution, you may want to consider finding the best cat carrier for air travel, as these are going to be airline approved.

Here are the main factors you will want to take into consideration when looking for your new cat carrier:

Type: There are several different types of carriers that you can choose from:

 

Cardboard Carrier: A cardboard carrier is usually given to new cat-parents who are bringing home a newly adopted cat or kitten from a shelter. These carriers are not suited for long term or air travel.

 

Soft Carrier: A soft carrier is generally made from a soft nylon material and will have a sturdy, removable bottom. They often look like a large gym bag with mesh windows so the cat can get plenty of fresh air. They will have zipper openings on the side of the bag and on the top.

 

Hard Carrier: These carriers are often made from plastic or polypropylene and they are going to have ventilation on each side of the crate. These crates will have one or two doors (one on the side and one on the top) and they are going to be the easiest to clean.

 

Size: The size of your carrier should be large enough so that your cat has enough room to stand, stretch, and turn around. Size is especially important if you are going on longer trips because you want to make sure there is enough room in the carrier for food and water dishes. To figure out the size, you will want to know the size and weight of your cat and choose a carrier that way.

 

Ventilation: It’s important that the cat carrier you opt for has plenty of ventilation while you are traveling. Not only is it important for your cat to have fresh air, but the best cat carrier for nervous cats will have ways for you to look in, and them to look out, also.

 

Easiness to Clean: Cleaning your cat carrier is going to be par for the course while traveling, so you’re going to want a case that is easy to clean. There are some soft cases that have removable bottoms, but if you just want something super simple, a hard carrier is the way to go.

 

Airline Approved: Traveling with your pets can be tricky, especially if you are flying. However, look for an airline approved carrier to make sure your pet is going to be safe. Each airline has their own regulations, although most of the best cat carriers for airplane travel will be safe to use on all airlines. To be safe, you should always check with your preferred airline for these regulations.

Our Recommendation

There are many cat carriers on the market and choosing the best cat carrier for your furry friend doesn’t have to be a hassle. Of the ones we’ve discussed in these buying guide, the Petyella Expandable Cat Carrier is by far our top choice. It’s affordable, it’s a soft carrier that your cat will be able to breathe and move in, and when it isn’t being used, it folds up nice and compact for storing! What more could you ask for? Oh, that’s right! A soft fleece bed and a collapsible water dish. How perfect is that?

Resources:

PetMD

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