Love Of Paws is reader-supported. When you purchase through one of our links we may earn a commission.
The 6 Best Cat Shelves For An Apartment In 2023
One of our biggest annoyances is cats climbing all over our furniture. We’ve already written a post about different ways you can keep cats from climbing on your furniture, but the best solution we’ve found is giving them something better to use.
Cat shelves are perfect ways to give your feline friend the height they wanted with the adventure and climbing ability they so desperately crave. Plus, it’s actually a lot of fun to watch them climbing around your walls and flying through the air. You can get a real sense for just how nimble they really are.
It’s a challenging task to find proper cat shelves, there’a a lot of danger in choosing the wrong ones, but we’ve found some great ones available. Here’s our top picks for cat wall furniture, click each name to jump to the section about them to learn more details.
7 Ruby Road has combined all of our favorite elements into this design. It’s got a wood base, making it incredibly appealing as a centerpiece on your apartment walls. It comes with a hammock and two “steps” which mean you can customize the design and layout as you please. And most importantly, your cats are going to love having a wall mounted cat bed they climb up to..
7 Ruby Road Cat Shelf Pros
Outside of the ability to customize where each piece is placed (so you can ensure they are mounted to wall studs), this cat shelf is stylish and clean looking. It fits well in any apartment, you can remove the hammock bed to clean it, and it’s easy to mount to the wall. It’s also incredibly sturdy, if mounted correctly (two cats can hang out on the hammock at the same time).
7 Ruby Road Cat Shelf Cons
The biggest issue in the design here is the hammock bed can actually slide off the wood. To fix this, you can secure it by stapling or taping it, but it makes it more difficult to take off and clean when it gets dirty. Outside of that, this is a really solid choice that was well designed by 7 Ruby Road.
The Fukumaru cat wall shelf is one of the cleanest designs we have seen for a cat hammock yet. It effortlessly combines wood and white, with a minimalist feel that leaves us feeling like this will look good wherever you choose to place it. As a product of Fukumaru, we are also confident it will hold up the test of time.
Fukumaru Cat Shelf Pros
Fukumaru creates some of the best cat products we have seen. They are thoughtful in all of their designs, so purchasing any of their products is a safe bet. On this cat shelf in particular, the design is incredible, and don’t fear the thin fabric of the hammock, your cat can jump right in there no problem.
Fukumaru Cat Shelf Cons
The only negative thing we can say about this cat shelf is that it can be a bit of a pain to detach the hammock from the support for cleaning. We would prefer it to be a bit more difficult for us to remove than easy for a cat to remove though, so it’s a better issue than the alternatives.
Our top pick this year is coming from BQW, who have designed a stylish yet functional floating cat shelf ready for any apartment. We particularly love this design because it was created thoughtfully; this cat shelf will attach at 16” intervals, meaning you can line them up with studs and not fear it coming out of the wall when your cats jump on it.
BQW Floating Cat Shelf Pros
The best part about this shelf is that it’s thoughtfully engineered to fit wall studs. Just pick up a stud finder and set this up for long lasting fun for your cat. The next best part here is that not only is there a cool, modern shelf, but they provide two “steps” for your cat as well. The final huge pro here is the “carpet” they placed - it’s fully detachable from the base, so you can take it off and wash it when it gets dirty. Overally, the team at BQW was very thoughtful with this.
BQW Floating Cat Shelf Cons
The worst thing we’ve found on this particular cat shelf is the price. Yes, it’s on the more expensive end, but you get what you pay for. And in the case of your cats, it’s worth it to spend a few extra dollars to get a shelf that attaches directly to wall studs instead of using anchors. The other issue you may find is simply the design; not everyone likes such a modern look.
Another excellent option available on Amazon is made by Trixie. The most unique piece here is that this set contains multiple pieces, giving endless flexibility to your design. Cat wall shelves are meant to be decorative for your apartment, so making sure you have flexibility in how you space them out is quite important.
Trixie Cat Shelf Pros
Outside of the aforementioned flexibility on the design, these shelves also come in a few different colors, so you’re not locked into the gray seen on the photo, though we do feel like a few more colors would have been nice as well. Since these come with both a hammock and a condo, it gives your cats options on where they want to hang out as well.
Trixie Cat Shelf Cons
The biggest issue we see here is the colors honestly. Not huge fans of the gray to be hung on your walls, and there’s not a real “natural” color, which would be our preference. If everything is plush, it’s easy to stain and get worn down. Some have said this lasts at least two years, but we’re not sure how much longer they will go and still look good as a decoration in your apartment.
The Liorce cat shelf has one of the best designs we’ve seen. It’s got a solid wood base with a dark blue cushion, making it one of the most stylish on our list. Not to mention the curved design, so it’s a bit comfier for your cat and gives it a bit more unique of a look than most standard wall mounted cat shelves, which you could probably just repurpose a standard shelf for.
Liorce Cat Shelf Pros
Okay this padding is actually memory foam, so your cats are going to love sleeping in it all day. In terms of comfort for cats, this one wins. You can also remove the cushion for easy cleaning as it gets worn out by them sleeping in it all day. It’s designed to handle up to 30 pounds, so it should have no trouble supporting your precious kittens.
Liorce Cat Shelf Cons
Unfortunately, the shelf doesn’t mount to studs, meaning there’s a lot of margin for error in hanging them. Be sure to try to get at least one screw into a stud, or else you will be relying on the anchors which can be unreliable, especially over time. If this shelf was made just a little bit larger it would have been perfect.
The last on our list is the Purife cat hammock. There’s not as much to say about this hammock as the others, but it’s a perfectly suitable option for a cat hammock in a bit different of a color. While most of the options on our list contained a bit more muted colors, this one comes in pink if you have a bit more lively of an apartment.
Purife Cat Shelf Pros
Outside of providing options between flannel or linen as the hammock material, we love that Purife fixed the issue of a hammock slipping off the rods. Outside of this fix, it’s your standard cat hammock - easy to mount, just be sure to get at least one stud for support.
Purife Cat Shelf Cons
It’s not quite perfect in design - you won’t get both studs with the screws. This means there’s a higher chance it comes off the wall or at least gets less sturdy for your cats. Overall, it’s a good option, but we found the others on the list to be of higher quality, at least in durability.
Yes, cats really love cat wall shelves. There's something about being elevated that is instinctual for a cat to seek out. By adding cat furniture to your walls, you encourage them to seek out vertical space, which speaks to your cat's ability to climb up to high place. A cat wall perch allows them to look down on their prey, or in this case, your empty floor space.
How Do I Get My Cat To Use A Wall Shelf?
It probably won't be difficult for your cat to begin climbing on the wall shelf unless the shelf is not mounted properly. If the shelf feels unstable or loose, your cat may avoid it. Additionally, if you are living in a multi cat household there may be some territory issues related to a cat shelf.
Just like with a cat scratching post, the best way to encourage them to use it is to sprinkle some catnip on it and allow them space and time to explore.
Are Standard Floating Shelves Strong Enough For Cats?
Yes and no. Depending on the type of shelf, the material, and the intended supported weight, it could be enough. Just remember that a standard floating shelf should carry a few books or photos, not a 12 pound cat.
Do Cat Shelves Need To Be In Studs?
At least one of your screws should be in a stud if you are installing cat wall shelves. This is to securely fasten the shelf to the wall and ensure it doesn't fall out. Mounting to a stud ensures they remain stable. The best cat shelf will be designed with this in mind, and be the proper length so that you can mount the shelf in two studs for maximum security.
If you’ve ever been concerned that your commercial air freshener is releasing toxins into the air you are absolutely correct, and it’s critical that your cats avoid these noxious smells. You may not know this, but your cat's body is already working hard to detoxify numerous pollutants in the air. We love keeping our cats […]
If you’re anything like us, you swoon a little bit whenever your little tiger heads off to sleep. Doubly so if they take a human form while sleeping. Hats off to them if they get on the bed and bonus points if they start using the pillow. But what about when your cat actually just […]
The “blep” may be one of the cutest poses you can find your cat in, and that’s saying a lot. If you’re unfamiliar, a blep is when your cat sleeps with their tongue out, and they look completely unaware of this, almost like someone wrote on their forehead with permanent marker. But what is the […]