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Cats are creatures that love to climb and scratch things by nature, which is why providing your indoor cat with a cat tree is important. There are a couple easy ways to make a cat tree yourself if you don't feel like buying one.
Wood and Carpet
You can build your own cat tree using pieces of scrap wood and carpet, but you will need to come up with a design first. If you aren't too skilled at building things, keep your design simple. You will need wood, carpet, a drill, a table saw, an electric stapler, and a hammer and nails. You will be cutting the wood to meet your design specifications and covering the platforms with carpet; you may also wish to use PVC pipe for verticle supports.
Converting a Ladder into a Cat Tree
If you have a spare ladder on hand, you can turn it into a cat tree. The ladder will need to be the kind that is shaped like an inverted "V" with steps on both sides. You will also need plywood, hammer and nails, some canvas or denim (to create a hammock that will hang between the two bottom rungs) hanging toys and rope. You will be covering the plywood boards with fabric and laying them flat between two level rungs, nailing them into place to create platforms for your cat to climb and rest on. Wrap the rope around the legs of the ladder to make it double as a scratching post.