- Pets and Animals
The Top Cat Trees and Condos for under $100
What's All this Meowing About Cat Trees?
Known by many names such as cat trees, cat condos, cat towers, cat houses, or simply cat furniture, whichever you prefer to call them, they are a great investment for your cat. Cat trees are perfect for your favorite felines for a variety of reasons. I'm sure most cat owners, myself included, would agree the most important reason is that it gives your cat their own sanctuary they can scratch and climb to their hearts content without destroying your couch or favorite chair! Your cat is also likely to use the tree as a safe haven to climb up if they get scared by a sound, rather than climbing, and perhaps getting stuck, under your furniture. Many cats also love being in high up places, whether they use it as a status symbol or just so they can observe everything going on below. Especially if you happen to put the tree by a window, it is sure to be the cat hot spot of your home.
So what keeps a lot of people from investing in a cat condo? Simply put, they can be rather expensive if you want a cat tree with any sort of sizable height or features. It can also be a bit daunting to invest such a sum of money into a product when you aren't sure of the quality and such factors of if it's stable and won't fall over when your cat tries to climb up it, or if it will last more than a week if your cat really likes to scratch it, not to mention wondering if your cat will like it. That's why I've put together this list of highly rated cat trees for under $100 through Amazon. Why order from Amazon? You can get great deals, free shipping (which is a huge savings as shipping on cat trees can easily run $40 plus due to their weight), and no hassle returns if the product doesn't meet your expectations. These are sure to not break your budget, and have your cat rubbing against you with extra purrs!
Armarkat Cat Tree Model A6401, Blanched Almond
- Covering Material: Faux Fur
- Covering Color: Blanched Almond with Silver Grey Condo
- Features several sisal-covered posts with high platforms for your cat to rest on; hanging toys to keep them interested
- Board Material: Pressed Wood
- Overall Dimensions: 34"(L) X 24"(W) X 64"(H); weighing around 40 pounds
- Max Weight: 40 lbs, so great for multi-cat families
Sample Reviews for this Tree:
I purchased this cat condo directly from Amarkat and was pleased by its easy assembly. Even before I had all the pieces together, my cats were scratching on the sisal rope posts and rubbing up against the soft cloth platforms. Once I had it up they climbed up and promptly demolished the small hanging yarn balls that the condo came with. They really enjoyed the hanging down aspect of the toys so I took some thicker rope and strung up some catnip mice and balls. I've had this product for about a year now and it is holding up fabulously. I had some initial concern over the sturdiness of the base, but I stuck it in a corner where it is doing fine. My cats are older now and no longer play as much on it. They instead like to climb up to the two highest platforms and nap or curl up in the hidey hole. Overall, a great purchase which has saved my other furniture from my kitty's claws. - Nancy Kim, 5 star review
I have 11 cats and they love this cat tree. They love laying on the different levels, hiding in the cubbyhole, and with the many scratching posts it has kept them from scratching on anything else. They have had so much fun with this tree that I ordered two different ones so they can all have a place without having to compete for a spot. This same unit sells at my local pet store for well over $125. I would definitely recommend this to anyone with cats or kittens. - Deborah K. Vollmer, 5 star review
SmartCat Multi-Level Cat Climber
Have a small home or just don't want to sacrifice enough space for a cat tree? The SmartCat Multi-Level Cat Climber may just be the answer to your problem for only $47.25 with free shipping from Amazon as of 4/1/12.
- Hangs on door so very space efficient
- Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 82 inches ; 34.8 pounds
- Fits on virtually any door
- Natural sisal post is ideal for scratching
- Made with wood covered with sisal
I bought this despite the mediocre reviews, since it's really the only cat tree that would fit in my apartment. I've had it for about a year now, and I couldn't be happier. It fits perfectly on my closet door, allowing the cat to jump up on top of the closet, or to hang around on the shelves while I throw toys to her. It's just such a fun little addition to my apartment, and provides maximum fun per square inch of space for the cat. I also carried it home by myself and put it together totally alone (and I'm a little weakling) so that was very nice!
I don't find it to be rickety as other reviewers have said. I actually prefer the design that doesn't have one long board, since it takes up less space and it will be less heavy and bulky when I eventually move. It also saves on shipping costs, I assume. Nevertheless, I think the reviewers are right that the design makes it a little noisier, since it is not one long board sitting against the door, but several that are all individually joined together. I do hear whenever the cat jumps up on the shelf. Actually, this might also be a function of the spring on the top that allows you to connect it to your door, so when the cat jumps up, it probably causes the whole thing to move a little. So anyway, that seems to be the only problem with the thing. It's really not so bad on mine though. Mine actually does lie perfectly flatly against the door, unlike some other reviewers, and it seems very sturdy, so maybe I got lucky. I imagine it will last for many many years, since it shows no signs of wear as of yet, aside from the carpet that the kitty scratched up.
Anyway, if you don't have space for a cat tree, or don't want to try to balance one of those tall ones precariously against the ceiling (talk about unsafe!) this is a great alternative. It takes up practically no space at all, and it looks seriously nice and clean. And of course, the kitty will love it!!! That is worth the cost for me alone!!! Have fun! - Hannah, 5 star review
I have 17 cats (that is not a typo) and 14 of the 17 love this. The three that don't are older and fat and just too lazy to climb on anything.
I have two of these units hanging on closet doors. They are easy to put together and are fairly easy to lift and slide onto the door. When the cats jump on it, it does make noise by bumping against the door but I found an easy solution. I simply took a very long self drilling screw and drilled right through the center post into the door. Now, if you have very expensive doors this might not be the solution for you but since I have this hanging on my closet doors and my cats use this constantly, it was well worth to me.
I added a photo of my cats using the climber. Click on the "customers images" link below the photo of the product. -Raemey, 4 star review
Armarkat B5301 53-Inch Cat Tree, Ivory
- Made from attractive pressed wood with faux fleece covering
- Product Dimensions: 24 x 22 x 53 inches ; 41 pounds
- Max holding weight of 40 pounds
- Easy assembly with ramp, instruction manual, and necessary tools all included
My cat & I both like this cat tree. It was very easy to put together. It is very stable & does not tip over when my cat jumps on it. The color is a neutral color that goes with most room colors. The price is very reasonable for the excellent quality of this product. - A. Long, 5 star review
It arrived 4 days early and I set it up in about 15 minutes. It comes with everything that you need to set it up; screws and tools too! The instructions are simple and easy to follow. Anyone can put it together. It looks just like the picture and the top level is high enough to where my cat can sit and look out the window. I no longer have to deal with all the DVD's that she used to knock over by jumping on my TV. While some cats may take to it right away, my cat tends to me more cautious than anything. Because it's something new and she's never seen one before, to get her to use it, I put her on the top level and pet her and praise her so that she knows that it's safe for her and introduce the different platforms that she can jump on. If you have a cat like mine, let them take their time and they will start using it in a couple of days or so. Once you see them marking it by brushing up against it, you will know that they have accepted it and are making it theirs. One note, if you place it on a carpet like most apartments or homes have, it may be a little shaky but it's still safe if they jump from the top platform.
Update...I have owned this for a few months now and my cat loves it. The trick that I wanted share if your cat won't sleep on it and still prefers your lap is that if you take one of your shirts that you have worn all day and has a really good amount of your scent on it, rub it or let it sit on the platforms and inside the box for a while. When your cat smells you in those areas they will spend the day there until you get home. I discovered this trick by watching a cat show that said that cats recognize each other by scent. It made scense when I would come home and she would be sleeping on my office chair. I rubbed my shirt on the top platform and now she, my cat, spends her day there until I get home. I know that she loves me because it's either there or on my lap. She won't go with anyone else now. -A. F. "World Traveler", 5 star review
Armarkat Cat Tree Model B3803, Ivory
- Board Material: Pressed Wood, Covering Material: Faux Fleece
- Overall Dimensions: 31-inch(L) by 20-inch(W) by 38-inch(H)
- Max holding weight: 30 pounds
- Multiple tiers for lounging, sisal posts for scratching, and hanging cat toy
This came so close to being my cat's ideal tree. She prefers to lounge on open levels instead of in cubby holes, and she prefers to scratch carpeted posts over sisal, wood or cardboard. In the picture, you can see that the sisal posts are at the front of the tree and the fleece ones are in the back, but since this is a tree you construct yourself, I was easily able to bring the fleece covered posts to the front to suit my cat's preferences. I was a little worried because of how soft the fleece material is compared to the carpeted scratching posts that my cat is used to, but she took to scratching it right away! The taller posts are the perfect height for her to stretch as she scratches.
My cat also enjoys hanging out at the very bottom of the tree--the positioning of the poles help her feel concealed without feeling claustrophobic. The top three levels were a bit of a disappointment, however. Each open layer is about 1 square foot, and the width of the cubby part is only six inches. The combined length would be the perfect size for my cat to stretch out on, but since there's a sizable ridge separating the cubby from the open area, all she can do is curl up on the open part without touching the cubbies at all. Each level is a single slab of wood, so I really don't know why they cut off the length of each level like that.
Other than the ridges on each level, I'm perfectly happy with this tree. It was easy to put together, and since each level is supported by two poles, it doesn't wobble. It also has two places to hang cat toys, and my cat has loved playing with the ones that came stock. Overall, I feel good about this purchase. -A Customer, 4 star review
The cats are very happy with this product, especially the older ones that have a little more trouble climbing. It has more room, and they even like the bottom of it, since they feel like they are "hidden" by the poles. It was very easy to assemble. - T. Robison "crazy cat lady", 5 star review
Armarkat Cat Tree Model A5801, Beige
- Board Material: Pressed Wood; Covering Material: Faux Fur
- Overall Dimensions: 38-inch(L) by 28-inch(W) by 58-inch(H)
- Max Holding Weight: 40-pound
- Includes hanging cat toys, ramp, cubby hole, dangling rope, and sisal posts
Just like all the Armarkat trees we've bought, this was easy to assemble with tools included. The faux fur is tougher than it looks and easily cleaned with any small brush. Needless to say, the cats love it.
Be aware that this stable piece of cat furniture is somewhat long...about 40 inches when looking for a location. (You can always turn the flabellate perch around if need be.) We banked it against a wall but it's quite stable to be freestanding. What you can't see in the picture is that it's got a thick rope hanging from the top perch thru a circular hole
in the highest shelf. Be ready for cat swashbuckling.
The kittys give a big five paws-up =^..^= - Queen of the Rodeo, 5 star review
Great Value! I have two 8-week old kittens, and they took to it like ducks to water. One of them figured out how to get to the top in the first couple days, the second one figured it out a week later. They romp and play on it, and sleep on the top perch quite often. I have it set against the wall for extra stability but the whole thing is pretty solid and, I think, well made. The faux fur is easy for the cats to get a grip on when climbing and they love the sisal rope wrapped supports for scratching and climbing. It's also very easy to clean. The only thing that didn't hold up was the dangly-balls on the elastic cord, a toy that came with it; the kittens went after that straight away and reduced it to bits of yarn scattered across the room within 3 days! Not a big deal, and really, that's what cats do with cheap cat toys. They loved playing with it so much, however, that I'm going to have to make them another one :)
The bottom line is that this cat tree works very well, and I might buy a second one for a different room. It's not too big so it doesn't dominate the room, it looks great, and the cats absolutely love it. What more can you ask for? - Old Dominion, 5 star review
A Time-Lapse Video Showcasing Just How Much Cats Love Cat Trees
Tips for Getting Your Cat to Use Their New Cat Tree
- If your cat reacts to catnip, sprinkle some on the tree
- Place your cat on the tree gently, but don't force him or her to stay there; calmly praise and pet your cat so they associate the condo as a good thing
- Cats associate things by scent, so putting a t-shirt you've worn on the cat tree, especially for when you're not home, will naturally draw your cat there
- Play with your cat on and around the tree with items like laser pointers and teasers; interact with toys that may be included on the tree itself by tossing it around and inviting your cat to participate
- If possible, place the cat tree by a window; this is sure to be irresistible to your cat as a lounger while watching all the birds outside
Do your cats love cat trees? Have any stories or cool cat condos to tell us about? Share with us here!