Recycle Your Cat Food Cardboard Boxes Into a Durable Kitty Scratch Pad

June 19, 2018
Today I will share with you how I'm making my own cat scratch pads from used cat food boxes. 

It is a quick and cheap way to recycle the empty cardboard boxes and keep your cats happy and away from your beautiful furniture. 

As you all know, I have three beautiful cats.

Three and a half cats actually if you count my neighbour's cat, Moshe, who never misses breakfast at our place!

With so many little mouths to feed, I am buying the cat food in bulk from Amazon which comes in bigger and longer boxes. In a month, I go through 240 Felix cat food pouches and that leaves me with a lot of cardboard boxes to throw away.

But I chose a greener route and decided to recycle my boxes and what a better way to do that than reuse them as cat scratching pads. 

My cats are happy because they love sharpening their claws, I am happy because my furniture is left intact and the planet is happy as one less thing is hitting the landfill. Triple win!

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"And what if I don't have these particular cat boxes?" you might ask. No need to worry! Any cardboard will do, the thicker, the better. Corrugated cardboard is the best.

Before we start, please note that this post contains affiliate links, I will earn a small percentage should you choose to purchase something, but it will be at no cost to you. 

You can read the disclosure policy here.


- Cat food cardboard boxes or any cardboard you might have laying around, cut it in strips of 10 to 15 centimetres wide. 

Depending on your cat's size, you might need quite a few boxes, I used about 30 cat boxes made of single corrugated cardboard to make a 45cm in diameter scratch pad. 

- Packing tape - if you are using brown packing tape, you will only need one strip per piece of cardboard, if you're using the narrow scotch tape, then you will need to secure the cardboard with two pieces.

I like the unfinished look of this scratch pad, it's rustic and natural, but if the bare rough look is not your thing, you can glue some pretty fabric or wallpaper to the outside. 

Also, you can add some to the bottom. 

Making the Scratch Pad

Step 1:

Disassemble the boxes and cut them in strips. 

The Felix cat food boxes are perfect sized for this, but, as I mentioned before, if you don't have any, just cut strips of cardboard at lest 10cm wide.

It is very important to cut the cardboard so the corrugation runs horizontally across the strips, otherwise the cats won't use the pad.

Step 2:

Use the wooden roller to bend the cardboard at each corrugation point. 

It might seem a good idea to use your hands, but trust me, it's not. Rolling that amount of hard cardboard (corrugated cardboard is hard), will leave your fingers swollen and painful. 

Once rolled, the strips will start to curl naturally.

Step 3:

Wind tightly your first strip of cardboard and secure it with tape. 

What I do is cut a few strips of tape in advance, roughly 25cm long, and have them ready to be used as I attach the cardboard pieces.

Step 4:

Add the cardboard pieces one by one securing them with the strips of tape, making sure the coil is tight. 

Tape each piece right next to the end of the previous one. Keep adding until the scratch pad is the size you want.

Step 5:

Sprinkle cat nip all over the top of the scratch pad to encourage the cats to use it and your done.

It's that easy! And it lasts a lot longer that the stored bought one which is a plus in my book. 

You can personalise yours as you wish, add felt, funky fabrics, bold wallpaper patterns or even cork to the outside of the pad. 

As you can see in the pictures below, I chose mine to look rustic and rough to fit my garden. 

Kitty loved the pad right away, while PC was a bit reluctant to use it. 

Twinkle took a few hours to get near it, but they all took turns and now the pad gets used every day.

Happy crafting!

1 comment:

  1. This is genius. I want to try it. My cats don't have wet food very often, but it has made me want to see if I can get hold of some cardboard for this. Thanks for sharing! Also your cats are gorgeous. Love them ❤


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