Cat’s love to climb which makes the Monkee Tree the purrfect fit.
Whether to simply explore new places, to extend their territory or get to where they need to go. The MonkeeTree® Scalable Cat Ladder allows your little Monkee to do it all, access an open window, reach an elevated door, climb up to a second storey balcony or entertain themselves inside.
Would your cat enjoy a climbing adventure? One that goes up and up either inside on your
Can’t see the video? Play it here!
I am excited to introduce cat lovers to the latest in cat climbing and engagement fun. Designed and made here in New Zealand it’s called the Monkee Tree, and it’s a versatile climbing frame has been designed with your cat in mind.
Dash Kitten received a Monkee Tree set for review. The opinions here are 100% our own and we are responsible for the content of this post. The blog only shares news and products we feel are relevant to our readers.
Once Upon a Time, There was a Window
One of my brightest rooms has a small window that is far too high for cats to reach. It is a wonderful sunny spot that I knew the cats would love to find for themselves and cats love the safety that height brings.
So, how could I give the cats access to a cat wall hammock in sun puddle central? The problem had been nibbling at me for a couple of years when I discovered the perfect solution.
The Monkee Tree Cat Ladder
This unique idea was inspired, of course, by a cat. When Smudge, the designer’s family cat could not access an elevated door on their property the family started thinking of ways to make life easier.
I discovered the Monkee Tree myself last year at Wellington’s first cat café Neko Ngeru. It is a key part of the café’s focus on indoor cat engagement. It also serves as an opportunity for cats to retreat from café life if things get a little busy.
Check the video below which we created for Neko Ngeru. At 40 seconds in you can see the Tree being used. When filming I felt that the cat shelves seemed almost to float on the pillar, but as you can see, the steps are sturdy and easily support a cat’s weight.
Can’t see the video? Play it here
What Makes the Monkee Tree Special?
The Monkee Tree is a modular cat ladder that can be configured in different ways. The trunk and branch elements allow you to create a feline jungle gym in your favourite cat climbing location and at the height you need.
- A small setup could create a set of senior cat stairs for climbing on to a bed, or
- a tall pillar can allow an active outdoor cat to reach a second story balcony.
Monkee Tree recommends a maximum height of 12ft (3.7m). More height can be achieved with an intermediate landing of some kind, for which you may need skilled help.
The Monkee Tree has been designed and made in New Zealand and one thing the images can’t tell you is how satisfyingly solid and durable everything is to the touch.
I handled the Monkee Tree parts during our own Tree’s construction and the finished Tree is something I know cats can use with confidence. They will feel safe and have plenty of room to climb as the steps are broad and cat-sized, not cramped and precarious.
What Makes This Cat Tree Different?
From the very beginning, every stage has been carefully thought out for maximum cat comfort and fun.
The Tree can be assembled by anyone with a little DIY experience. The instructions and tool requirements are clear, and the only time the designers recommend professional help is if you want to assemble a multi-story Monkee Tree.
Cats can also rest halfway up the Tree. Our cat Sienna discovered she could wait for Dad to come by with treats!
What Comes in a Monkee Tree Pack?
The Tree is made from tough UV resistant polypropylene that can be used inside and outside, and there are basic units (modules) which can be assembled in different ways:
- There is an adjustable base stump that can accommodate flat or sloping floors
- Trunk elements to make the Tree height adjustable.
- The safe and solid branches are designed for fully mobile adult cats weighing up to 22Ibs (10kg).
- The branches will collapse if overloaded with excess weight. This makes them secure for outside use.
- Individual branches are replaceable if someone does stand on a branch and break it.
- You will get a clear idea of the contents from our video and the illustrations in this post .
Mental and physical stimulation is vital for indoor cats. The Monkee Tree can be sited anywhere indoors to encourage the feline spirit of adventure providing access to a raised walkway or a high window for access to the best in bird TV.
For active outdoor cats, the modular system can be adjusted to reach:
- An elevated cat door.
- Higher level balcony access (see picture above).
- An open window, or cat flap set in a glass door, and
- safe escape areas above ground level.
Assembling the Modular Climbing System
The helpful Monkee Tree handbook pdf tells you everything you need to know, but I know you will appreciate hearing about our experience. I was helped by my partner Paul who has some DIY experience. The different elements I describe are clearly labelled in the tall picture below.
You can see the assembly procedure clearly in my video.
The Different Tree Modules
The Stump at the bottom forms a firm base to build on. Then, to ensure stability, your Tree stump is supported and stabilised with a plastic tube called the Pillar Pipe.
The Trunk sections slide on to the Pillar Pipe and small wedges ensure these sections remain in place. These wedges can be clearly seen in the video. The trunk sections are then screwed into the pillar pipe so that they do not move. For thin pipes (like ours) this can be done by hand. For stronger plastic, you may need power equipment.
Once you reach the height you need, you add the Top Cap.
The Branches (steps) are 8 inches (200mm) wide and 11 inches (280mm) long and designed to allow water to drain away. Our cat Sienna climbs from branch to branch with confidence thanks to their generous size.
We added the branches as we assembled the tree and branches can be placed in 12 different spots around the trunk, like a clock face. We had no trouble assembling the branch and trunk sections which are 4 inches (100mm) in diameter and height.
There are various step options. You can create a mini spiral staircase or simple cat stairs. You can also set the steps at various heights. The picture below shows there are plenty of placement options.
Plastic Pillar Information
Technical Note: Plastic and metal pillar pipes with outside diameters of between 1.59” – 1.69”(40.5mm – 43.0mm) and inside diameters of at least 1.4” (36mm) can be used. The base stump can be mounted on:
- wooden floors;
- and paving stones.
The pillar is the one item not included in the kits. This is because the type and length vary for each Monkee Tree family, and also depends on where your tree will be sited. Each setup and height is unique and the designers realised that you can select the best plastic pillar after assessing your own needs.
Helpful advice on the best kind of pipe for you can be found here.
The rigidity of the pipe you use and the distance between the attachments to the wall influences how much flex the trunk will have. The pipe you need can be easily purchased from a local hardware store.
How Was Our Assembly Experience?
Using the instructions Paul and I assembled the Tree without difficulty and are delighted with the result. We believe that some basic DIY knowledge is helpful and we recommend reading the handbook before you start.
The assembled Tree is stable, solid and will take a lot of wear from cat paws. If you place your Tree outside, the material is tough, durable and easy to clean. The custom designed steps also let rainwater drain away.
TIP:I advise you to check the installation instructions to make sure you have the correct tools, and you may need different bolts for the floor, or a drill a concrete surface.
Finally, for the cat who has everything
The Scratch Patch has been developed for use with the Monkee Tree. It is made from durable Autex carpet and fits easily around the pillar. As it zips on the Scratch Patch it can easily be removed for cleaning.
Where do I get my Cat paws on a Monkee Tree?
Price range from $57.00 to $317.00 NZD [$40.00 – $318.00 USD] depending on how tall you want your Monkee Tree to be. You can also supplement the basic sets at different times.
The company order page is here They ship worldwide and shipping is included in the price.
Do My Cats Crew Like The Monkee Tree?
To encourage my first visitors I used treats to tempt the cats to climb. It worked very well and Sienna the tortie was my first adventurer and when I add a sleeping perch sun puddle
This is the perfect addition to any fur family’s home don’t you agree?
Marjorie and the
Dash Kitten Crew