Instructables
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. ;)

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

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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
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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

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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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It was quick and easy!! I added an old towel to the bottom inside to make it comfy... the 7 month old kitten is sound asleep inside and looking adorable!!

Here is a pic. She loves it.

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I'm working on a Granny Ripple Afghan for my cat Mr. Peaches so I think I am going to take this idea but instead of using a t-shirt, weave the wire hangers through the afghan to shape it into the tent. I'll have to post photos if it works like I hope it does.

purpleg made it!2 months ago

Thanks very much for the the instructions! Made one (a variation actually) a while ago. Now the cats are fighting over it :(

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Never would have thought of an old pizza box till I saw this picture, great for insulation in the box of cloth, foam, etc. for my outside cat.

Make another! :P

Little Eagle made it!1 month ago

Ok so I cheated and didn't really make it. I just put an old dress around a box and tied it in the back. But, your instructable inspired me so thanks!

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Get idea for outside cat, who sleeps on the porch. He does not like being indoors. Thought I would put a hooded-sweat shirt (hood for a door) on first then one of those emergency silver blankets on it then a t-shirt to hold the silver blanket in place. I am always worrying he will get cold.

Don't know why its upside down (it was fine on facebook and pinterest!). But you get the idea. It was fun and easy and we will do it again.

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My cats and small dogs love hammocks and this gave me an idea to staple it under the chair indoor and outdoor! Have not tried it but thanks!

This is fabulous! I love that the T-shirt is whole and you could change it out for another, seasonally? For cleaning, too! Drop in a plastic grocery bag and my cats will go anywhere. But it's enough like a box that they should try it anyway. I'll have to find some hangers and try this one this weekend! Wonderful directions, even I understood them! And a beautiful cat, who was polite enough to wait until the end to climb in and enjoy! Thank you so much!

louise.oh2 days ago

Great instructions, clear and consise steps! Thanks for sharing :)

My cat is always looking for a place to disappear. This will be great for her. With winter coming I think I will cover it with a sweatshirt, just cut the sleeves down a bit. Make a little fuzzy pillow to put inside and maybe she will quit trying to take over my heating pad.

kkay632 days ago

That is so clever and so cute! I have to try it! This is a perfect project to do with kids, too. Thanks so much!

SuzieBlue made it!3 days ago

Thanks! Maisie took some coaxing to get into the tent, but she has started to show more interest now. It really was easy to make, and a great way to upcycle a favourite T-Shirt (Asterix in Rome) that had got a bit grubby to wear. We used a shallow box lid (the lip is about 2" / 5 cm high) for the floor to give a bit more stability.

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thank you!! meow and purrrrrrrr.....my 3 cats will love this..........

tephramancy1 made it!10 days ago

My little Spider loves his play tent so much!

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só faltou como se coloca a camisa,não sei mesmo alguem mim mandem uma foto do tutorial e se precisa tirar ou costurar as mangas.


Très bonne idée mais je dois trouver une solution pour que la base soit plus lourde et donc plus stable

jhanson11 made it!19 days ago

Well I made this and gave it to the cats but I don't think it's really their thing. They would rather run around and hunt outside, but was still cool to make and pretty easy to do. I think it looks good.

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bonnie.chakravorty made it!20 days ago

We did it! We are going to try it without a pillow first since they sleep on just about any surface, I might do it again with a prettier t-shirt but this works for now.

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thanks,i have 5 cats,i will be a busy cat lady..lol

Thank you very much ! The instructions are clear and easy to follow ! :)

This is an awesome idea! My cat loves enclose spaces and is always trying to get inside of duffle bags and the like. Cat furniture is so expensive and this looks very easy and uses stuff I have at home so it costs nothing. Thanks for posting the instructions with pictures!

This is sooooo cute! I'm going to try it! Thanks for the really clear instructions..and thank Luna as well! She did an excellent job!

that is adorable and looks easy i am sooo making this

i made it!!! pheww, finally it's done! thanks for the inspiration :)

sirwirenut made it!26 days ago

Thanks for the Post, we made one , it looks Great!

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MicioGatta28 days ago

I should try this, maybe my rotten spoiled kitten would love it for more then 10 minutes ;D (The problem is that she saw my garden and my trees.... and loves them!)

Akin Yildiz28 days ago

i saw the post on facebook without the author name, and I knew instantly, before clicking it that it was you :)

napalmnacey28 days ago

Too much effort. The cat would sense the least bit of trouble you go to and fail to sit inside it. Well, that's what would happen with my cat. She only ever seems to want to sit on stuff I'm gonna throw out.

love this, my cat always crawls into super market bags and gets tangled at the handles. This should suit her constant need to be in something without me worrying

JamieJ11 month ago

I made it! Took a bit because my hangers were hard to bend, but it came out well in my opinion. Lucy seems to like it, but Puddy Cat is a bit suspicious of it. Great DIY, you should make another c:

shila.gaudes made it!2 months ago

So, I had to change a few things because I have a 1/2 bengal half coon cat. I used two hangers and a large cardboard box with the top flaps folded down inside for extra support. I did not cut the ends off the hangers but instead bent them inward and then stabbed one in each corner of the box and folded it up snugly. I also used craft wire to secure the hangers together in the middle. Then, I took a 5x shirt (from goodwill, they are good for a variety of crafts) and draped it over the box/hanger combo and it went really really smoothly! best of all, I stuffed the box. I put some old pants down as a filler and then used an extra fitted red sheet I had to cover the wires and sides of the box inside as well as the pants. I haven't pinned down the arms yet but he already loves it and barely let me put it down on the floor! His wifey, our little 7lb white cat loves it too but she has to jump to get inside. Usually we don't have enough things for the big guy. Now he has something he fits in comfortably! Although, he will tell you he fits in the tinest of boxes.. its not true.

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jessyratfink (author)  shila.gaudes2 months ago

What a good idea for bigger cats!!

thank you! they love it! he slept in it for a long long time today. he also has started peeking out with only one eye and waiting for someone to pass by so he can swipe at them. ill try to catch a photo. its cute to see him acting like a kitten when he is 5 years old and so very very large!

and because i am, in fact, one of the worst kind of crazy cat ladies... here is a bunch of photos of my cats. if you are interested in 1500+ more, they have an instagram http://instagram.com/barefootbeauregard

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love love love the cuddling pics! Crazy cat ladies rock!

jessyratfink (author)  shila.gaudes2 months ago

ugggghhhh they are so sweet!!! My ladies cuddle sometimes but never as full on as that, ha! I'm going to spend some time stalking them on instagram now :D

they cuddle with each other when not fighting, and she takes care of my hubby. the male (leroy) and i are both standoffish at best so we kind of just lay in the same general area. sometimes he puts his feet on me. or his butt. LOL!

do you have an insta ? feel free to lmk what it is! i love to see others cats as well!

Love the pics of the kitties.

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