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10 Best Cat Trees For Small Apartments In 2021- Reviews & Top Picks

Nicole Cosgrove

cat in Go Pet Club 23-in Faux Fur Cat Tree

Living in a small apartment doesn’t mean that your cat has to do without a scratching. However, it does mean that the space you can dedicate to a play tower is limited. It’s unlikely you’ll be able to fit a giant 5-story tree with multiple platforms and additional features in your living room. Fortunately, pet companies also make a great variety of smaller cat trees, condos, and posts. They provide your cat with surfaces that they’re allowed to scratch, as well as somewhere to sit, sleep, play, and call their own.

To help you find the one that best fits your apartment, as well as your cat’s playful requirements, you can find reviews of ten of the best cat trees for small apartments, below.

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A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites

Image Product Details
Best Overall
Winner
Frisco 28-in Faux Fur Cat Tree Frisco 28-in Faux Fur Cat Tree
  • Includes multiple play features
  • Reasonably priced
  • Engineered wood base offers stability
  • Best Value
    Second place
    Frisco 20-in Faux Fur Cat Tree Frisco 20-in Faux Fur Cat Tree
  • Fits snugly into a corner
  • Rounded hammock lets your cat curl up
  • Cheap
  • Premium Choice
    Third place
    Yaheetech 51-in Plush Multi-Cat Tree & Condo Yaheetech 51-in Plush Multi-Cat Tree & Condo
  • Small footprint is suitable for apartments and small spaces
  • Multiple levels and play features
  • Engineered wood base
  • Best for Kittens
    Trixie Baza 27.6-in Senior Cat Scratching Post Trixie Baza 27.6-in Senior Cat Scratching Post
  • Spiral perches are easy to ascend
  • Short tree won’t dominate a room
  • Comfortable hammock in an elevated position
  • Frisco 38-in Cat Tree With Condo, Top Perch And Toy Frisco 38-in Cat Tree With Condo, Top Perch And Toy
  • Wobbly
  • The top perch is quite fragile
  • The 10 Best Cat Trees For Small Apartments – Reviews & Top Picks in 2021

    1. Frisco 28-in Faux Fur Cat Tree – Best Overall

    Frisco 28-in Faux Fur Cat Tree

     

    Materials: Engineered wood, Faux fur, Sisal
    Dimensions: 28” x 19” x 20”
    Perches: 1
    Posts: 2

    The Frisco 28-in Faux Fur Cat Tree is small in size but has a good range of features that make it suitable for smaller adult cats, as well as kittens.

    It has two vertical scratching posts that are wrapped in durable and appealing sisal. Sisal is the material of choice for scratching posts because it is tough enough that it offers decent resistance, without being so sharp as to cause injury or so difficult to scratch that it holds no appeal. The tree also includes a horizontal, sisal-covered pole, that spins when your cat scratches at it, giving a somewhat interactive appeal. There’s also a short perch, halfway up the tree, and a condo-style covered top layer, as well as a hanging toy on either side.

    The whole thing is covered in a comfortable, faux fur material, and it is reasonably priced and well-featured: a combination that makes this the best cat tree for small apartments.

    However, the Frisco 28-in Faux Fur Cat Tree is small. This means it only takes up a small amount of room, but it also renders it useless for large adult cats. Another problem with this tree, which is a problem for many of the items on this list and beyond, is that the hanging toys are easily removed if your cat enjoys grabbing at them.

    Pros
    • Includes multiple play features in a small tree
    • Reasonably priced
    • Engineered wood base offers stability

    Cons

    • Not suitable for large, adult cats
    • Hanging toys easily ripped off


    2. Frisco 20-in Faux Fur Cat Tree – Best Value

    Frisco 20-in Faux Fur Cat Tree

     

    Materials: Engineered wood, Faux fur, Sisal
    Dimensions: 22” x 22” x 20”
    Perches: 1
    Posts: 2

    The Frisco 20-in Faux Fur Cat Tree is another tree from Frisco that uses an engineered wood base combined with faux fur wrapping and sisal scratching posts. It has two vertical scratching posts that are covered in sisal rope, a round hammock on the top of the posts, and hanging ball toys that dangle from the hammock.

    Engineered wood is a good choice of material for a cat tree base because it is strong but also because it doesn’t bend or give so it helps provide the stability that prevents toppling. The square design of the tree means that it is conveniently shaped to fit in, or near, a corner of the room. Your cat can still enjoy your company, but the room doesn’t have to be half-filled with a cat tree.

    The 20-inch faux fur cat tree is small and is likely only suitable for smaller cats, but because it doesn’t cram too many features in, medium-sized cats may also enjoy curling up in the hammock and using the scratching posts. As well as being a good size for small apartments, the low cost and decent quality of this post make it the best cat tree for small spaces for the money, but it is limited in its features and still too small for large cats. The balls are also easily ripped off.

    Pros
    • Fits snugly into a corner
    • Rounded hammock lets your cat curl up
    • Cheap

    Cons

    • Balls are easily torn off
    • Limited play features
    • Too small for large cats


    3. Yaheetech 51-in Plush Multi-Cat Tree & Condo – Premium Choice

    Yaheetech 51-in Plush Multi-Cat Tree & Condo

    Materials: Engineered wood, Plush, Sisal
    Dimensions: 19.3” x 19.3” x 51”
    Perches: 4
    Posts: 5

    The Yaheetech 51-in Plush Multi-Cat Tree & Condo is 51 inches tall, which means that we’re pushing the boundaries of what might be considered suitable for a small apartment. However, the base measures 19.3 x 19 inches, which means that it actually has a smaller footprint than the top two options in the list. Most apartments are lacking in horizontal space but may still have generous vertical space, and this cat tree is ideal for those spaces.

    The extra height means that Yaheetech has been able to incorporate a host of features and play areas, and the 51-inch tree has a central condo, a hollow cylinder, a top perch, hammock, and stairs, as well as multiple vertical scratching posts.

    Because there are a lot of layers to this tree, it means that space is limited, preventing larger cats from being able to enjoy the tower. It also means that this is the most expensive tree on the list, but it is especially ideal for apartment dwellers that have two or three kittens or small cats. The smaller footprint and taller design of the tree mean that it doesn’t feel as steady as the shorter models, while the hanging toys will likely be torn off in no time.

    Pros
    • Small footprint is suitable for apartments and small spaces
    • Multiple levels and play features
    • Engineered wood base

    Cons

    • Not as stable as shorter, wider trees
    • Not suitable for large cats
    • Toys are easily torn off


    4. Trixie Baza 27.6-in Senior Cat Scratching Post – Best for Kittens

    TRIXIE Baza 27.6-in Senior Cat Scratching Post

    Materials: Engineered wood, Plush, Sisal
    Dimensions: 20.47” x 20.28” x 6.69”
    Perches: 2
    Posts: 3

    The Trixie Baza 27.6-in Senior Cat Scratching Post is billed as being suitable for seniors, but the features that make it ideal for older cats also make it a great post for kittens.

    It is a short post, more than suitable for apartments because it won’t take over the room or get in the way of your eye line. It has a hammock that is raised several inches off the ground, but because seniors and kittens may not be able to reach this height, the post includes two perches, and these, as well as the hammock, are laid out in a spiral staircase design so that your cat, no matter their mobility level, can climb and hop into the hammock at the top.

    Cats like perches and sleeping positions that are high up because it enables them to eye their surroundings and, evolutionary speaking, watch out for predators. While your apartment is likely to be free from predators, your cat’s basal instincts mean that it will still appreciate the elevated sleeping spot. The post is quite expensive, but it does have an engineered wood base for stability, plush covering for comfort, and a sisal scratching post for claw maintenance.

    The problem with this, or any post that is specifically for kittens, is that you may need to replace it as they age because they will appreciate a greater challenge and more features.

    Pros
    • Spiral perches are easy to ascend
    • Short tree won’t dominate a room
    • Comfortable hammock in an elevated position

    Cons

    • Expensive
    • Not much to do


    5. Frisco 38-in Cat Tree With Condo, Top Perch And Toy

    Frisco 38-in Cat Tree with Condo, Top Perch and Toy

    Materials: Engineered wood, Faux fleece, Sisal
    Dimensions: 23.5” x 14” x 38”
    Perches: 1
    Posts: 2

    The Frisco 38-in Cat Tree With Condo, Top Perch And Toy is just over 3 feet tall, which means that it doesn’t take up too much height in an apartment but still has a reasonable amount of room for a perch, a top hammock, and a ground-level condo. It also has two scratching posts and a single hanging ball toy.

    Made with an engineered wood base, the tree is covered in a faux fleece that is soft, comfortable, and warm, while the scratching posts are covered in natural sisal that will withstand heavy scratching. The perch cover can be removed and is safe to put in the washing machine, making it easy to get rid of the cat hair and any other debris that has become attached and keeping the tree looking nearly as good as new.

    The construction of the tree means that it is wobblier than one might hope, and the top perch is especially wobbly because of the long pole that it sits on top of.

    Pros
    • Posts, perch, and hammock to play in
    • Engineered wood base is hardy
    • The removable perch cover is machine washable

    Cons

    • Wobbly
    • The top perch is quite fragile


    6. Go Pet Club 23-in Faux Fur Cat Tree

    Go Pet Club 23-in Faux Fur Cat Tree

    Materials: Engineered wood, Faux fur, Sisal
    Dimensions: 19.25” x 19.25” x 23”
    Perches: 2
    Posts: 1

    The small dimensions of this cat tree mean that there isn’t a lot of room to play with, but the Go Pet Club 23-in Faux Fur Cat Tree does a good job of fitting a reasonable number of activities into that space.

    The tree has a short perch and a top bed area. It also has one sisal-covered scratching post, and the whole thing benefits from an engineered wood base. Combined with its diminutive size, the base ensures that the tree does not wobble and is stable. The tree is also covered in faux fur, and it is easy to put together, thanks in part to the fact that it includes everything you need, even the tools.

    However, the Go Pet Club tree is one of the most expensive on our list, despite also being one of the smallest and while the company has done well to include perch, bed, and post, there still aren’t many activities to keep a cat happy. If your cat is happier laying around than running around, but you want to provide a scratching post as well as a bed, this could be a good alternative to some of the more feature-packed models.

    Pros
    • Very small size fits in most spaces
    • Stability provided by an engineered wood base
    • Easy to construct

    Cons

    • Expensive for its size
    • Not much to do


    7. Frisco 24.8-in Heavy Duty Faux Fur Cat Tree

    Frisco 24.8-in Heavy Duty Faux Fur Cat Tree

    Materials: Engineered wood, Faux fur, Sisal
    Dimensions: 19.29” x 19.29” x 24.8”
    Perches: 1
    Posts: 1

    Not everybody that lives in an apartment has small cats and kittens, but most small cat trees are seemingly designed for the smaller feline. The Frisco 24.8-in Heavy Duty Faux Fur Cat Tree attempts to combine small size with the stability required for a larger cat. It is a basic tree with just one scratching post and a bed on the top, and because the base is the same size as the top and constructed from durable engineered wood, it will withstand larger cats without falling apart. Without buying a substantially larger cat tree, there aren’t many options out there for big breeds.

    As well as the extra thick scratching post, there is a hanging toy, but this will likely go the way of other cat tree hanging toys. The simplicity of its design also means that the Frisco heavy duty post is quick and easy to put together.

    Pros
    • Suitable for larger cats
    • Extra stable thanks to engineered wood base

    Cons

    • Not much for your cat to do other than sleep
    • Hanging toy won’t last


    8. Tiger Tough Scratching Post 22.5-in Faux Fur Cat Tree

    Tiger Tough Scratching Post 22.5-in Faux Fur Cat Tree

    Materials: Engineered wood, Faux fur, Sisal
    Dimensions: 16” x 16” x 22.5”
    Perches: 1
    Posts: 1

    The Tiger Tough Scratching Post 22.5-in Faux Fur Cat Tree has an engineered wood base, is covered in faux fur material, and has a sisal scratching post column in the center. There is also a hanging toy. Unusually, there is a Busy Box that surrounds the bottom of the base. The base contains two spring-loaded balls that are encased behind a barrier so that your cat can reach in and knock them around but won’t be able to pull them out or eat them. It does offer an extra activity if your cat enjoys playing with them and doesn’t get frustrated at never quite being able to catch them.

    The post is inexpensive, as you would expect from a basic tree, but the small base combined with the top perch means that it is liable to wobble and potentially fall over when your cat jumps on top.

    Pros
    • Cheap
    • Small
    • Busy box provides additional entertainment

    Cons

    • Busy box can be frustrating
    • Wobbly
    • Not much entertainment


    9. Pet Adobe 3-Tier 27.5-in Cat Tree & Condo

    Pet Adobe 3-Tier 27.5-in Cat Tree & Condo

    Materials: Engineered wood, Plush, Sisal
    Dimensions: 19.5” x 19.5” x 27.5”
    Perches: 3
    Posts: 1

    If your cat does like the cheese wheel style toy, then the Pet Adobe 3-Tier 27.5-in Cat Tree & Condo could also be a good choice of cat tree for you. As well as a short-walled lower perch and upper perch, this tree has a single scratching post, one hanging toy, and a cheese wheel. The cheese wheel toy has a slot around it and jingle balls inside. Your cat can push the balls around but won’t be able to remove them.

    The small size of the perches means that this tree is only suitable for small cats. This problem is further exacerbated by the small base and the tall perch column: if your large cat trues jumping up, it is likely to make the post wobble, and many cats dislike the unstable feeling of a wobbly cat post.

    Pros
    • Three perches for your cat to sit on
    • The cheese wheel toy will entertain some cats

    Cons

    • The cheese wheel toy will infuriate some cats
    • Expensive for its size
    • Not suitable for large cats


    10. Cat Craft Floor-to-Ceiling Carpet Cat Tree

    Cat Craft Floor-to-Ceiling Carpet Cat Tree

    Materials: Cardboard, Carpet
    Dimensions: 16.9” x 10.61” x 90”
    Perches: 3
    Posts: 4

    The Cat Craft Floor-to-Ceiling Carpet Cat Tree attempts to make the most of the height in your apartment, regardless of the amount of floor space you have. As such, it actually takes up very little horizontal space because it has such a small footprint. It also uses the ceiling as support, which means that it should offer a stable environment for your cat. It uses a tension rod so that it fits most standard ceiling heights and doesn’t require any special tools to construct this unique model.

    While the principle is good, the Cat Craft Floor-to-Ceiling Carpet Cat Tree has a few problems. The platforms are somewhat flimsy, which means that they can break if too much weight or pressure is applied. They are also small and laid out in such a way that makes it difficult for cats of any size to climb up. Despite the promise of stability from the ceiling support, it is surprisingly unstable, and there are some reports of it falling.

    Pros
    • Utilizes the whole height of your room
    • Takes up minimal floor space

    Cons

    • Uses carpet as a scratching surface
    • Small platforms
    • Unstable


    Buyer’s Guide

    Cats are active, playful, and inquisitive animals and they need space to run around and play. Even outdoor cats can benefit from having a cat tree or activity center that allows them to burn off energy and fulfill some of their primal instincts. Even if you live in an apartment, as long as you can spare a few square feet of floor space, you can find a cat tree to suit your feline friend’s needs.

    Benefits Of a Cat Tree

    A cat tree is more than a scratching post. It usually includes a perch or bed on top of the post, and some of the more complex designs may have multiple layers that incorporate condos or caves, hanging toys, and other “branches”. The primary benefits of a cat tree are:

    • Exercise – Cats need daily exercise and whether they’re indoor cats or have the benefit of running off steam in the great outdoors, a cat tree provides somewhere to meet their daily requirements, especially if it has multiple layers and a scratch post.
    • Stress Relief – There is a reason that cats can aggressively attack their scratch posts – they use the action to help relieve stress and to vent their frustration. By providing them with a post that it is acceptable to attack, you are offering them a viable means of stress relief.
    • Visibility – The cat post may well become your cat’s domain, and one of the reasons that posts often include a bed or hammock near the top, is because our feline friends enjoy surveying the area. In the wild, they would climb to a high spot to see predators and to spot prey. While the average house cat doesn’t have to hunt its own food or protect itself from predators, it still enjoys the visibility that a high perch offers.
    • Safety – Your cat may not have any indoor predators that are looking to hunt them, but other cats, dogs, and toddlers may still pose a degree of threat. The high perch and the cavelike condo provide somewhere safe to hide.
    • Claw Maintenance – All good cat trees include at least one scratch post section, typically covered in natural sisal. Cats scratch for several reasons. It relieves stress, and it enables them to sharpen their claws and get rid of dead claws. Because cats have scent glands in their paws, it also enables them to mark their territory.
    • Save Furniture – Scratching is a natural action for cats, and if they don’t have somewhere they are allowed to safely scratch, they will often make their own scratching surfaces. This can include furniture, carpet, and even walls. A cat tree with a scratching post could save your furniture from the wraith of the cat.

    TRIXIE Baza 27.6-in Senior Cat Scratching Post inside the house

    What Makes the Best Cat Trees For Small Spaces?

    The best cat trees for small spaces need to meet certain criteria, but they primarily need to be small enough to fit comfortably in the apartment while still offering some benefit to their feline users.

    Important features to check include:

    • Dimensions – Measure the floor space you have and check this against the length and width of any scratching post. You might have plenty of height in your room but remember that a tall cat tree will dominate your vision and take over the aesthetic of the room, too.
    • Space Utilization – Just because a cat tree is small doesn’t mean it has to be boring. Look for those that best utilize the space on offer with features like multiple scratch post sections and the addition of perches, hammocks, and even condos. Hanging toys can provide a means of play but they tend to be very easily torn off.
    • Stability – There are cat trees available with very small bases. They take up minimal floor space, but if they are too tall and top-heavy, the small base does little to keep the tree steady. Try to find a compromise between saving space and providing a stable environment for climbing and playing.
    • Durable Materials – An engineered wood base can help ensure this stability, while materials like faux fur or plush are comfortable and soft for your cat to sit on. Sisal is the scratching post material of choice for most manufacturers. Some posts do use carpet as a scratcher, but this may teach your cat that it is OK to scratch carpets.

    Other Features

    Other features that are included in most cat trees include:

    • Platforms – A platform is just a solid piece of wood other material, covered in fabric. Good for sitting on and, if large enough, good for laying on. They can also provide a stepping stone to a higher level. To us, they might look boring, but your cat will appreciate at least one.
    • Beds – Cats are notorious for sleeping on beds, dry clothing, and even tea towels. For some owners, it is difficult to believe, but some cats will sleep in a cat bed. If yours enjoys having its own space, look for a tree with a bed.
    • Hammocks – A hammock is a piece of material that is slung between two surfaces and hangs loosely but securely. Cats do sleep on hammocks, but they also use them as part of their games.
    • Condos – A condo is a small box-shaped enclosure, which usually has an opening as a door and may also have an additional window opening. They provide privacy and a sense of security.
    • Scratch Posts – As previously discussed, cats don’t just love to scratch, they need to. Any good cat tree should have at least one scratching post section, while many have multiple vertical and even a horizontal post or other surface covered in sisal scratching fabric.
    • Hanging Toys – Hanging toys are appealing to cats because they can bat the toy around and mimic hunting prey. However, they tend to be easily torn off and won’t always last long.

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    Conclusion

    Cat trees are an essential tool in the cat owner’s arsenal. They provide cats with privacy, a sense of safety, exercise, and somewhere they are allowed to scratch their claws. They may also incorporate beds and elevated viewing platforms.

    Even if you have a small apartment, there are suitable cat trees and we hope that, with our guide and reviews above, we have helped you find the one that best suits your cat’s requirements.

    We found that the Frisco 28 Inch Faux Fur Cat Tree offered a good compromise between space and appealing features, without being too expensive, while the slightly smaller Frisco 20 Inch Faux Fur Cat Tree offered almost as enjoyable an experience in a smaller package and with a smaller price tag.

    Nicole Cosgrove

    Nicole is the proud mom of Baby, a Burmese cat and Rosa, a New Zealand Huntaway. A Canadian expat, Nicole now lives on a lush forest property with her Kiwi husband in New Zealand. She has a strong love for all animals of all shapes and sizes (and particularly loves a good interspecies friendship) and wants to share her animal knowledge and other experts' knowledge with pet lovers across the globe.