Introduction: How to Make a Cage Hammock

Picture of How to Make a Cage Hammock

This is a good all purpose set of instructions to make any size cage hammock for cat, kitten or ferret. It is non specific because it is intended for recycled materials. Reuse whatever appropriate materials you have at hand. But the design is basically the same.
Hammocks can be made with clips attached or only tabs for detachable clips. Metal clips can chip the enamel inside a washer or dryer. I find I need several, one is always in the wash.

For these projects I used
Polyester fleece stadium blankets from the thrift store for $2.00 each
Polypropylene webbing from a belt strap cut into 4" pieces.
and 4 swivel clips from an old purse (they don't HAVE to match)
cheap shower curtain hooks

Step 1: Make a Template or Paper Pattern

Picture of Make a Template or Paper Pattern

If you have one you like, trace it on paper and cut it out.
Or you draw something freehand.
Or cut a template from cardboard, this is best for rectangular ones.
Keep reusing the cardboard template to trace new ones.

For this particular design I made half the pattern, so that I can cut the material folded.

These are both 15 inches long by 13 inches wide, though they can be made wider or even smaller to fit smaller cages. I find with this size i can actually get TWO into one cage on different levels.

If you are making the 'sling' style, be sure to make the corners taper to no less than 4 inches wide to allow for webbing AND the turn.

Step 2: Cut Out Material

Picture of Cut Out Material

Pin the pattern to the folded material.
Trace and cut out TWO sides.
leaving 1/2 to 3/4 inches for the seam allowance.

If the top and bottom don't match perfectly, they can be trimmed AFTER you sew,
but it won't matter because it will be inside the hammock.

Step 3: Sew Around Edge While Attaching Tabs

Picture of Sew Around Edge While Attaching Tabs

Start half way down one side and sew until you get within a few inches of the next corner.

insert the webbing tabs with or without swivel clips into the corners pointed inwards.

You are sewing around them and through the two layers of webbing.
Take 2 or 3 passes over the nylon webbing.

STOP sewing when you get within 4 inches of where you started.
You need this gap to turn it inside out.

Cats and small animals are not particular about fashion.
if the sides don't match perfectly don't fret.
The goal is to create something that will survive use and washing machine cycles.

Step 4: Turn the Hammock Inside Out

Picture of Turn the Hammock Inside Out

When you have finished sewing all the way around except for 4 inches in the middle of one side.
Pull the tabs and clips through this gap in the seam edge.
then finish by hand sewing the seam closed.
Use an invisible seam stitch if you can, otherwise just a secure overhand will do.

Step 5: Attach Clips

Picture of Attach Clips

If you are not permanently attaching clips
you can use simple shower curtain hooks.
Which should do nicely and can be removed for washing.


KathleenS62 (author)2016-04-22

Great pattern, I have a voluntary program of people that will be making hammock and toys for cats and this one will be fantastic to make. Thanks

jgodsey (author)2008-06-24

i recently made a dozen of them from leftover bathrobes and such. they were all sorts of odd shapes. but they all work just fine. I got the webbing for the loops off some $1 tote bags at the dollar store.

MaryS100 (author)jgodsey2016-03-19

Great tip about the webbing from cheap totebags, thanks.

CathlynnEMT (author)2015-08-24

My local humane society has these on their Amazon wish list, but since they're so simple to make this would be a good community service project for kids groups.

SparkySolar (author)2014-10-26

Thank you for this nice Instructable. I like it


purplekitty (author)2008-06-26

It's so cute! My cat would love this. Too bad I don't know how to use a sewing machine...

tucker317 (author)purplekitty2014-01-20

The hardest part is threading it - if you have one or access to one, see if your local county or rec dept has adult ed classes. Or the fabric store or sewing machine repair store. I can't believe I learned as a kid and used to make my own clothes! Now I only make simple stuff that requires mostly straight lines but I've made tons of things like curtains and comforters for my kids rooms when they change their "theme" every year, cloth napkins for Christmas presents one year, and lap blankets for the nursing home every couple years. You can do it!

tucker317 (author)2014-01-20

This is great - our adopted bunny came with a ratty one but he loves it. I found a small one but not a big one like his. I have a pile of stuff to repair and had planned to jerry rig his to make it better, but now I'll just make some new ones. I might try a one for one of my more adventurous guinea pigs too- she loves to go between cages. And great ideas on getting the cheap supplies like webbing- I always have tons of material but it's those odd parts that add up.

ginger20037 (author)2011-07-01

I made one of these a while back and my ferrets love it! Though I think it's about time to replace it....
I also made a tunnel out of the sleeves on an old sweater, that had been forgotten in my closet, at about the same time and that REALLY needs to be replaced. They went and made a third entrance on the bottom in the middle of it xD

The KNex Weasel (author)2008-08-24

I can't decide between whether I should make one for my ferret or my cat.

 BOTH! :)

Nikki213 (author)2010-02-14

Thank you for this 'ible. I will be using it in the future for my ferret! :)

Grrl (author)2008-12-03

What size would be appropriate for two guinea pigs?

jgodsey (author)Grrl2008-12-03

depends on the width of the cage, if you make it too wide it sags in the middle. do guinea pigs like this sort of thing? i thought they got uncomfortable when their feet left the ground?

Grrl (author)jgodsey2008-12-03

You're right about their feet... It's been suggested I hang it about a 1/2 inch from the floor so they can step into it but, no one said how wide to make it. Some people say they like to get in them, some say they like to hide under them... I knew someone who had two girls and they loved theirs. So, I guess it really depends on the pig. =)

I was thinking the size of a ferret hammock would be big enough but, I wasn't sure?

jgodsey (author)Grrl2008-12-03

In this situation perhaps a large sagging hammock would work. if you make it half again the width of the cage and then hang it less than halfway up, it should sag nicely. however if you are finding they are going underneath, lower it, so it becomes a TENT that is attached to the sides.

Hollandia (author)2008-11-13

Looks great and comfy for the cat ! Can you also make them for humans? :)

bookfreak53 (author)2008-08-01

So professional looking - need a side-career? Might make good sellers at a craft show. Good job!

austin (author)2008-06-08

man my kid really liked it when I put this in his cage.

lurwah (author)austin2008-06-09

You put your KID in a CAGE?! :/

uguy (author)lurwah2008-06-09

Doesn't everybody?

austin (author)uguy2008-06-09

well yes but only when I let him inside.

shyrell (author)austin2008-06-29

I have 4 inside cats. I adopted the mom who was a pregnant stray. At night when we try to sleep, I still put the 3 kittens in their carrier. These hammocks will be great for when they get a little older, a little bigger, and a little less rowdy at night! ; - )

shyrell (author)2008-06-29

How cute is that! Over the last several months I have acquired a mother cat and 4 of her 5 kittens. At least 4 of the cats will remain inside for now. This is a creative way to accommodate these precious little ones. Thank you so much for sharing. Shyrell

mooncake (author)2008-06-11

This looks great! I'm going to make one of these for my girls soon - thanks for posting! :-)

jgodsey (author)2008-06-08

At home we only use cages to segregate sick cats or kittens needing socialization. But we do use cages and hammocks at the shelters and adoption days when all the cats are caged. I made these for the kittens. they ADORE them..besides they are messy and keep spilling their water and sleeping in their litter boxes.

Weissensteinburg (author)2008-06-08

My old cat would have FREAKED if put on one of these! But still, I like it.

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