Sisal rope is the rope you usually see wrapped around scratching posts. Sometimes other types of rope may be used as well. A typical standalone sisal rope scratching post consist of three major parts.
- a base where the post sits
- this should be heavy enough so that the post doesn't easily tip when your cat scratches or jumps against it
- there is often some type of material placed over the base that your cat doesn't mind standing on and might actually want to scratch (e.g., carpet)
- the post that gets wrapped by the rope
- the post is often made of wood but could be any type of other suitable material
- it should be tall enough so that your cat can get a full stretch when scratching it
- the scratching material (sisal or other rope) that's wrapped around the post
- the end of the rope is simply attached to the top or bottom of the post to begin the wrapping process
- the rope may also be attached to the post at regularly intervals as it's wrapped
- the end of the rope is then firmly attached when finished wrapping
- the rope is typically attached to the post with nails, glue, or staples
If you already have a standalone scratching post or one that's part of something else (e.g., a cat tree) and the rope is worn badly then you can simply buy some new sisal rope, remove the existing rope, and re-wrap the post with the new rope.
Most of what you need for the projects you may already have on hand or be able to find at your local home improvement store. However, the sisal rope may not be available in-store. You may have to order that online.
Below are some videos showing different kinds of DIY scratching posts that should give you some ideas and get you started on making your own.
Build a simple cat scratching post using some sisal rope, a 4x4, some plywood, and a piece of horse stall mat (or carpet).
Sisal rope and carpet scratching post with carpeted perch on top.
A triangular post made of wood dowels with a large base.
A scratching post made from a traffic cone.
A scratching post made from an empty bottle of liquor.