Picture of DIY cat tent

I kept seeing photos of cat tents on Pinterest and being shared on Facebook, but none of them had good instructions! I decided to make a cat tent for Luna and document it so you guys could make one too. :D

This cat tent is super easy to make - you really just need a t-shirt, some wire hangers and a piece of cardboard. As a bonus, it really only takes five minutes, so if your cat ignores it you didn't put too much effort in. ;)

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Step 1: What you'll need:

Picture of What you'll need:
  • a cat
  • a medium t-shirt
  • a 15 x 15 inch piece of cardboard (mine was 13x15 and a little wonky)
  • two wire hangers (like these)
  • tape
  • safety pins
  • something to cut the hangers with and help bend them - I used a large pair of pliers. :)

Step 2: Cut the hangers

Picture of Cut the hangers

Cut off both squiggly ends. I untwisted mine and then cut, but that's not really necessary. (though it was kinda fun!)

Step 3: Shape the hangers + reinforce the cardboard if needed

Picture of Shape the hangers + reinforce the cardboard if needed

Shape the hangers so they look like the above - try to make them smooth and pretty uniform. You want two graceful curves that will go from corner to corner of your piece of cardboard.

(Lu did an excellent job of this.)

I also took this time to tape on a couple supports to the cardboard and tape all around the edges for a little more stability. This is really only necessary if you're using a piece of cardboard with a crease in it.

Step 4: Poke a hole in each corner

Picture of Poke a hole in each corner

You should be able to use the end of the hanger to do this!

Make sure it's at least a half inch in from each edge and not too large.

Step 5: Tape the two hangers together

Picture of Tape the two hangers together

Cross the two hangers in the middle and make sure all the ends touch the surface you're working on. Tape them together really well so they don't shift.

Push the ends through the holes you just made in the corners.

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Loula1 made it!3 days ago

I made my cat tent today, took longer than 5 minutes to make. Putting tent frame took the 5 minutes, arranging t-shirt & pinning took longer. What a great idea. Have put catnip in it, Loula went straight to tent & loves it.

lbrewer429 days ago

Seriously great idea! I was thinking of making a cat tree and think these will be great for the platforms (reinforced on the bottoms of course). off to make one for my horse :))

RachelB4 made it!15 days ago

  • This is such a cool idea! I made one for my cat and she loves it. She has been in it for at least two hours now... Thanks for such a great tutorial!


ok then it took me more than 5 minutes and I used foam I found and I used duct tape ,I twisted the duct tape from inside and outside 2 reinforce the tent while I was trying 2 bend the hangers my cat decided 2 play with hanger so I took it in doesn't look good or like the picture but cloudy is now inside so I am good

susanrm made it!1 month ago

Instant occupation. My daughter and I each made one. I turned around to look for a cat to put inside the tent but couldn't find her -- she was already inside!


I love how your cat intently watched the entire process, too cute!

sarahcpeters made it!1 month ago

My cat went straight in and won't come out, I may never see her again...

cat tent.jpg

Cute....I made it and my cat went in right away! She figured out what it was before

my boyfriend did...LOL

handymandy81 month ago
I made one. I was so excited, it turned out great. Cats won't go near it. I even put catnip in it. They ignore it completely.

Try using a t-shirt with your odor,and try to keep the tent in your common areas, cats dont like to be apart


Im a vet student UNAM

Greetings from méxico

Also, try rubbing the cat down with the shirt so it has, it's scent.

I so want to make this for my crazy lil Senor Meow Meow Pussycat. he would love it. my dilemma, I have no wire hangers. :(

I bought wire hangers at get like 10 hangers for a couple of dollars.

Maybe try going to a dry cleaners and ask if they could spare a couple . . . ?


AlexaM marshain4 months ago

Just use a box!

scoop1236 AlexaM2 months ago

A box sounds like a great idea.....will try

I know what you mean!!!
Dry cleaners/laundramats have wire hangers

ok there, Joan Crawford. LOL. I was thinking the exact same thing when the first comment stated not having wire hangers...


tlmosier marshain4 months ago

I didn't have any wire hangers either, but I got ten of them from Walmart for under $2, we have three cats in a three story house so I figure I will use them all. This is really easy to do and it is a great idea!

Go to your local dry cleaner/laundramat, most have wire hangers

If u have a local dry cleaners around go there and offer to buy them from them chances are they will just give them to u cause dry cleaners have tons of wire hangers

I made this over the weekend for my Sphynx, George Hairlesson. I completely covered the cardboard (cut from a pizza box) with duct tape for added security. I also duct taped the t shirt (I was out of safety pins) on the bottom and everything turned out great. The part that took the longest was straightening out the wire hangers. Great instructable.

I admit I LOL'd at your Sphynx's name, "George Hairlesson". STILL laughing. That is such a clever name !!!! <3 :-)

just made this and my cat wont get in :( i guess i will try some catnip when i go to the store

It took me to actually put my cat in it and she got out and went back in and stayed
regina.bragg3 months ago

I love this idea and will be trying it out with some adjustments for it to be used outdoors. Any ideas on how to make it weather proof? My Feral cats aren't too picky but they do like their own "bed". Has anyone left the tail of the shirt open so the cats can crawl out the end?

Waterproofing spray ?
Inexpensive cat sleeping hutch

by Yard Sale Dale it's a plastic bin

you could use a tarp, either a plastic one or a canvas one

You could try making it with the material from an old umbrella.

barb Dahbou2 months ago

that is a good idea. I have a large patio umbrella that got caught in the wind and the wires got all messed up but I kept the material....think I will try it..

I saw an outdoor cat habitat made from cheap styrofoam coolers. Tape the lid on, turn it upside down, cut a cat-sized hole.

If it has to be waterproof, maybe use a poncho or raincoat after you use the Tshirt? The shirt for warmth, raincoat for water and snow-proofing.

taylor.stillwell.7 made it!1 month ago
My cats love it. They don't want to get out of it. ?
baloobook2 months ago
This is very cute. It seems like a nice gift to make for local animal shelters.
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