How to Replace the Sisal Rope on a Cat Tree

Things You'll Need

  • Scissors or utility knife

  • Staple puller

  • Pliers

  • Damp cloth

  • Sisal rope

  • Craft glue

  • 2 cable staples

  • Hammer


Check with your local hardware store, craft store or online supplier for sisal rope and cable staples.

Allow time for the glue to dry before allowing your cat to use the scratching post.

Replace sisal rope to restore a damaged cat tree post.
Image Credit: GlobalP/iStock/Getty Images

The natural fiber rope that coils around the trunks of cat trees can become shredded from a cat sharpening its claws. You can save the cost of replacing the cat tree by replacing the sisal rope. Consider wearing old clothes for this project, because you might get a little dusty when removing the old rope.

Remove Damaged Sisal

Step 1

Find the most heavily damaged section of sisal, and cut apart the center of the damaged rope with the scissors or knife. This should leave two loose ends. If the original rope was glued, you might have to pull hard to loosen the old rope.

Step 2

Unwind the rope on the top half of the post first, to get the frayed ends out of the way. This makes it easier to see the center post. Unwind the rope from the lower half of the post.

Step 3

Dig the tip of the staple puller under the cable staple that fastened the ends of the original sisal rope to the cat tree. Use the pliers to pull the long staple the rest of the way out of the wood. Make sure to remove the old staples and dispose of them safely as they are sharp.

Step 4

Throw away the old rope and wipe off the post with the damp cloth to remove dust from the old rope so the glue can stick when putting on the new rope.

Attach and Wrap New Sisal

Step 1

Uncoil about 3 yards of the rope.

Step 2

Squirt a thin line of craft glue all the way around the post, right where it meets the cat tree's base.

Step 3

Press the rope's loose end as tightly as possible into the corner where the post and base meet; wrap the rope around the post one time.

Step 4

Push the sharp ends of the cable staple into the rope where the loose end meets the next layer of rope coming around the post; tap the long staple into the wood until it is completely flat.

Step 5

Spread a thin layer of glue over the rest of the cat tree's center post; coil the rope tightly around the post, so no gaps show between the layers of coiled sisal.

Step 6

Cut the rope off with the scissors or knife when the coiled sisal reaches the top of the post, where the old rope ended. Use the second cable staple to secure the rope at the top of the post.