Catification: Creative Table Leg Cat Scratcher

Lucio lives in a small apartment in Brooklyn, NY and he needed to add a scratching surface for his cat, America. He looked around for existing objects that could serve double duty and made a cat scratching post out of a table leg. This is a brilliant way to create an easy scratching surface for your cats, especially if you live in a small space where you don’t have a lot of room.

“I just wrapped a 1/2″ thick sisal rope around one of the legs of my dining table, and America, my cat, loved it right away. I didn’t want to add another vertical structure to my small apartment (to look like a cat tree) so the table leg seemed like a ready-made cat tree.”

Notes from Jackson: “Catification 101! Think first and foremost about what your cat needs in your home. Then, remember it doesn’t take shopping and spending sometimes, just imagination. Great work!”

Have your own Catification project that you want to share? Click here to submit your photos!

The Catification column on is written by Cat Style Expert, Kate Benjamin. Kate specializes in environmental enhancement for living with cats and is the founder and editor of, the premiere online magazine for design-conscious cat people. Kate’s design expertise and Jackson’s cat behavior know-how combine to create cat-friendly environments that are sure to please both human and feline family members alike.

  1. Susannah Ayres-Thomas   September 9, 2012 at 1:38 pm  

    THAT, sir, is simply brilliant, and quite attractive, to boot!

  2. Anne L.   September 10, 2012 at 10:14 am  

    What a great idea for a cat scratching post!! Imagination is a wonderful tool!!!

  3. maggi   September 23, 2012 at 3:23 pm  

    very nice!!

  4. Dianda   September 27, 2012 at 6:44 am  

    Haha, funny. It’s such a good idea, and so easy. Yet we never thought about it!

  5. Evie Cruz   October 1, 2012 at 6:35 pm  

    I bought a $20 curved scratching pad for my kitties from PetSmart….my kitties won’t touch it. I put cat nip all over it to try to lure them to it, their fav treats….no dice. I also placed a long rectangular fav scratching pad next to the new curved scratching pad….again…no dice. How can I make my 3 kitties (ages 10, 9 & 5 yrs old) to scratch the new curved scratching pad?

    1. JP   January 9, 2014 at 3:40 am  

      Try honeysuckle

  6. Vedrana   November 28, 2012 at 7:00 pm  

    A question to those who have made something like this.

    I’ve got a metal table leg which I’d love to wrap and make a scratcher, but how do you make the rope stay where it should? How do you secure the beginning and end of the rope, and wrap it all around so that the rope actually stays in place when the scratcher is used?
    Will google it, but I’d also appreciate any tips straight from the horses mouth, so to speak. 😀

    1. Mara   December 2, 2012 at 8:40 pm  

      Great idea! Perhaps you could try wrapping a cast-off towel around the leg to protect them, then duct-taping furring strips* (no pun intended!) around the leg to make a thicker wooden leg. Wrap the rope around that. You could use Gorilla Glue or something like that to make the rope really adhere to the wood, and use a couple of heavy-duty staples to the ends of the rope to prevent unravelling over time. It’s possible you’d also need to secure the furring strips to the underside of the table and/or the floor with some kind of flange, to keep them in place.

      * This is inexpensive 1″x2″ wood sold in varying lengths at most hardware stores. (You might even get them for free in the “sawed-off leftovers” bin. Can’t hurt to look there first.)

  7. Amber   December 2, 2012 at 8:05 pm  

    We cut a 36″ long piece of untreated pine 2″x12″ lumber and rounded the corners and edges on the top face so they are no longer sharp and pointy, then stapled a long piece of craft felt to the bottom face so it wouldn’t scratch the antique hardwood floor. Sprayed it with catnip oil, and left it out on the floor for our older (and more dignified) cat. He loved it! When the top face gets too scratched up, we just have to sand it down and it’s ready to go again!

  8. Mary   May 7, 2013 at 1:21 pm  

    We have lots of places for out two cats to scratch, but one insists on scratching the two sofas. Is there something I can put on the sofa (plastic, fabric, etc.) that will discourage her from scratching there? We want to buy new sofas, but don’t want the new ones ruined too. Thank you!

    1. Joanie   December 20, 2013 at 3:57 am  

      How about trying to put some scratching posts around the sofa and try click and treat them every time they scratch on the posts instead of the sofa, try both kinds of scratching posts maybe they need some vertical scratching posts and that is why they like to scratch the sofa.

  9. Peggy Lindenthaler   May 25, 2013 at 12:27 pm  

    We have two cat condos with multiple levels PLUS two of those cardboard scratchers. We have three cats. Two of them STILL insist on occasionally scratching on the rug. This really ticks me off. I mean, how many scratchers do I have to buy before they get the message; SCRATCH ON THE SCRATCHERS, NOT ON THE RUG!? What can I do to remedy this situation? I’ve even rubbed fresh catnip on the scratchers, and all they do is eat the catnip. Any suggestions would be helpful. Jackson, HELP!

  10. Peggy Lindenthaler   May 25, 2013 at 12:28 pm  

    Oh, by the way, I do love the table with the special legs with the carpet on them. I wonder if that would work on my cats?

  11. Amy Hanson   July 20, 2013 at 4:00 pm  

    We have a 11year old cat Abby.Since I adopted her as a small kitten I have tried through out the years to get her interested in cat scratchers with no luck.Cardboard ones that are flat,cardboard ones with the little hump,with catnip,without,the cloth type that hang on door handles ones that lay flat on the floor.I just can’t figure her out.Once in a while while stretching she will dig her claws into our carpet but doesnt use the carpet as her scratcher, doesnt use our couches either.We find her nails on the carpet now and then,like they had gotten so long they kind of split and shed off. We see her sometimes chewing her nails as well.Trying to trim her nails “REALLY” stresses her out so I dont trim them as often as they should be done.At times we can hear her walking through the house because as she walks she grabs the carpet as she walks.I have had her at the vet and have made sure she didnt have any problems that would cause her pain,so its more of a issue of just not finding the right type she likes. If anyone has any ideas or has dealt with this themselves any advise would be appreciated.Thank You,Amy

  12. natalie nate   July 31, 2013 at 11:13 pm  

    Wow, what a nice idea , i think my cat love that kind of scratching stuff it’s interesting.

  13. cat scratch post   August 1, 2013 at 5:25 pm  

    It’s very cool and it’s easy to build but i know my cat loves that anyway.

  14. Valerie   December 19, 2013 at 11:51 pm  

    This is a great idea, we let our cats scratch our sofa its used and we dont really mind it my daughter & i get such a kick out of watching our cats be happy i buy used furniture on purpose we do hve a cat free room in our house thats closed off to kitties that has our nicer more breakable stuff but most of the house is kitty approved im going to send pix soon so you can see what i mean :)

  15. Arlyn   January 8, 2014 at 9:13 pm  

    I live in a modified travel trailer, literally no room for cat furniture. I use desk chairs though, and they are under $100, already cheaper than most well built cat trees. My cats were taught to only use my chair, which has worked quite well, and has saved the sofa and wood work. Recently, my husband rebuilt his desk, and used naked, untreated 4x4s as legs, this is also acceptable to the furkids.

  16. DORI   January 9, 2014 at 7:19 am  

    my cat doesn’t use scratching posts, I have tried everything. He loves the couch, he doesn’t do cat nip, or any human food…his nails are really long, its no easy task to do, he is one mean kittie Gizmo. how do I cut his nails with out being scarred for life…hugs

  17. Cheri   February 19, 2014 at 8:39 am  

    I am new at this I am trying to find out if there is something out there to spray on all my furniture’s legs, because one of my cats does his stretching with his claws and he has shredded all the fabric furniture. I want to buy a new living room set and I don’t want him to do the same thing on the new furniture. HELP PLEASE :(

  18. Cheri   February 19, 2014 at 8:42 am  

    Cheri here again I forgot to say we have a big scratching post for them

  19. nikki   March 31, 2014 at 3:00 pm  

    my 1 year old kitten has scratch posts & toys but insists on scratching my walls down to the plaster, any suggestions please on how to change her mind.

  20. DORI   April 24, 2014 at 8:43 pm  

    DORI January 9, 2014 at 7:19 am
    my cat doesn’t use scratching posts, I have tried everything. He loves the couch, he doesn’t do cat nip, or any human food…his nails are really long, its no easy task to do, he is one mean kittie Gizmo. how do I cut his nails with out being scarred for life…hugs



We regret that Jackson does not answer questions posted in the comments. This is due to his demanding schedule and the high volume of requests he receives. But most importantly, since he has not met your cat, it would be contrary to his approach for him to give specific personalized advice for your specific situation. That being said, general questions and issues are addressed throughout this blog, in his book Cat Daddy and of course, the show My Cat From Hell.

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