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How to clean a cat tree?

Discussion in 'Off The Beaten Track' started by snoopy, Oct 13, 2011.

  1. snoopy

    snoopy Team St. Petersburg

    I googled this and got conflicting advice. Some said don’t use water as the underlying wood might not dry out, some said use water and bleach. Some said NO to carpet cleaners, some said use carpet cleaners. Some said just vacuum it and go (er, but it is kinda dirty). Anybody have any tips on this?
  2. Satellitegirl

    Satellitegirl New Member

    "Cat Tree" conjures some funny images in my mind.
  3. Jenny

    Jenny From the Bloc

    If it's dirtier than a vacuum can take care of, then I'd throw it out and get a new one.
    AxelAnnie and (deleted member) like this.
  4. Angelskates

    Angelskates Well-Known Member

    ITA. Is you're a 100% carpet on, or does it have scratching posts that are kind of rope like?
  5. taf2002

    taf2002 zexy demon

    I would clean it with a stiff brush & soap & water, maybe cat shampoo to be sure it won't be irritating to the cat, & set it outside to air out & dry. If the wood eventually rots, you can throw it out then. I wouldn't throw it out with at least trying to clean it.
  6. overedge

    overedge Janny uber

    It depends on what the cat has done to it, and what it is covered with.

    At the shelter where I volunteer, most of the cat trees are wood covered with carpet. If the cats have just shredded it with their claws, it gets cleaned with water and bleach. If the cats have shredded it down to the wood, then it usually gets tossed. I suppose they could be rehabbed with some new carpet stapled or nailed on top, but this isn't always feasible time-wise.

    Some of the cat trees also have boxes and enclosed spaces for the cats to hide in. These are always lined with blankets or towels, which are washed and changed regularly. But sometimes the hiding cats are too scared to come out to use the litter boxes. So if the cat tree smells bad because of cats messing in/onr it, then it gets tossed too. Even water and bleach won't get that smell out permanently.
    skipaway and (deleted member) like this.
  7. danceronice

    danceronice Corgi Wrangler

    I use a cat comb or wire brush to get the excess hair off, and a vacuum for the small stuff. For major issues (vomit), I usually just use the same carpet cleaner I'd use when they throw up on the carpet. If it's urine, forget it, get rid of it.
  8. Silver Lining

    Silver Lining New Member

  9. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

    Just wanted to say :respec: and :cheer2: for this!
  10. GarrAarghHrumph

    GarrAarghHrumph I can kill you with my brain

    I thought you were talking about trees of the outdoor type, which got me wondering what made one tree a "cat tree" versus another which was not. ;)
  11. Jenny

    Jenny From the Bloc

    Ditto what Artemis said - bless you. :)
  12. snoopy

    snoopy Team St. Petersburg

    There are no bodily fluids but there is actual dirt on the tree (the cat was out with me while I was planting fall bulbs). The tree itself is in good shape still so I will try the shampoo/water route. Then I will line his laying space with a towel or blanket so I can wash that more frequently. Thanks everyone!
  13. DarrellH

    DarrellH New Member

    It's that special time of year when the kittens are in bloom!
  14. overedge

    overedge Janny uber

    Aw, thanks. It's really as much fun for me as I think it is for the cats. It's a no-kill shelter (I couldn't handle one that wasn't) and the unionized staff do all the really hard work. So basically I go for a hour once or twice a week and have cats sit in my lap and climb all over me :)