How to Re-Sisal a Cat Scratching Post

Learn how to re sisal a cat scratching post! This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #IAMSCat #CollectiveBias

How to Re-Sisal and Fix a Cat Scratching Post

Who has an old cat scratching post which needs the sisal rope replaced? We all have one, a warn out cat post that either needs to be fixed or tossed away.

As you know, they’re expensive and after a while, the sisal rope wears out and becomes far too frayed for the cat to use. Ours has been that way for a month or two, and Turbo has lost interest in it.

I think it’s because it’s so frayed his claws don’t have much to bite into anymore. It’s time to remove and replace the sisal on the cat scratching post!

Re-Sisal a Cat Scratch Post

If you’re new to my blog, Turbo is our cat. He’s a 5-year-old Munchkin cat we adopted about 3 years ago. In his previous life, he was a show kitty who won all kinds of different ribbons for strutting his stuff on the catwalk….that is where the term came from, right?

I don’t know – I have never been to a cat show, do they walk the cats around – like at a dog show? Hmm!

Turbo the Munchkin Cat

Nevertheless, cats don’t come much cooler than Turbo. He’s a polydactyl munchkin cat, which means he has extra toes and short legs.

He has a total of 22 toes and claws, and his little muscly arms are only a few inches long. He’s the typical rug hugging munchkin who loves to play and screech around the house as all cats do.

He’s also a mama’s boy, when he sits on mums lap and looks at you with those big Turbo eyes you can’t help but want to give him a treat!

Spoiling Your Cat with IAMS Treats

Munchkin cats are just like every other cat in the world, they love to be spoiled and our Turbo just happens to be a big lap cat who loves his belly rubbed.

He’s a very “good boy”, and he knows it. In turn, he gets spoiled with treats, almost daily! But, we also want him to be in good health, so we’re spoiling him with the new IAMS cat treats!

We like to give him the IAMS Hairball Care because it targets Turbo’s specific needs, and well — because who likes cleaning up hairballs? haha. Not me, as I’ve recently found out…

IAMS Hairball Care Cat Treats

It’s kind of ironic that we’re talking about IAMS Hairball Care cat treats today on the blog.

We never thought about getting Turbo anything hairball related because he had never coughed up a hairball, at least since we got him. Well, last month he did.

We were not around when he hacked it up. We got home from dinner and I sat down on the couch, looked out the window and that’s when I saw it…Sitting right there on the window sill in front of Turbo’s cat perch.


I thought somehow a mouse got into the house and Turbo decided to chew it up and leave it mangled on the window sill… Nope, it would have had to have been a rat! It was huge! And gross!

It was his first hairball, in 3 years! Okay Turbo, time for some IAMS Hairball Care food and treats!

Turbo The Munchkin Cat with IAMS Cat Food

Some cats have extra great digestive systems that take care of the hairballs, some don’t, and apparently some store it up for years and hack it out while you’re gone so it looks like a mangled rat on your window sill when you come home. Crikey!

Either way, IAMS Hairball Care treats it is! And because he’s been extra good this winter, we’re going to give the IAMS Proactive Healthy Weight & Hairball Care Dry Cat Food a try, too.

The new reformulation allows us to customize his nutrition with treats, wet, and dry cat food too. Judging from his reaction to the bag, I think he may like it already, or maybe he thinks the IAMS kitty is his friend?


IAMS Proactive Health Cat Food and Turbo

I’ll spare you photos of the hairball. I’m kidding, I did not take photos of it!

Let’s move on to re-roping the cat scratch post, yes?

Stop by Walmart, grab some sisal rope for your project, and of course, some IAMS cat treats to spoil your furbaby; be on the lookout for the IAMSâ„¢ Mega Bag cat treats!

Iams Cat Treats and Food at Walmart

Re-Rope a Cat Scratching Post

We’ll begin with our old, frayed cat scratch post.

You know, these things are expensive! I know we paid quite a bit for ours, I think it was somewhere just south of $100.

It’s a 30″ scratch post and it’s held up very well, considering how much Turbo loves to use it.

Here’s a picture of it the first day we got it — and yep that’s Turbo, instantly digging his claws into it! 🙂

Turbo the Munchkin and Scratching Post

And here it is now. As you can see, the entire center section where the cat claws worked their magic is where it is in desperate need of attention.

We can re-rope the entire thing just as well.

Remove and Replace Sisal on Cat Scratch Post

Figure out how much sisal rope you’ll need to replace. Simply measure the height of the post, measure the width of the rope (probably 3/8″), and measure around the post once.

How to Measure Sisal for Cat Post

Take the height (ours is 30″) divided by the width of the rope (3/8th inches or .375 inches), which equals 80. This means our rope wraps around the post roughly 80 times. Measure around the post, ours is 12″. So, 80 multiplied by the circumference of the post (12 inches) equals 960 inches, or 80 feet. This works out great mathematically for us, since our scratch post is 12 inches (1 foot) in circumference. It may not be so neat for your if your post is a different size, but the math is the same.

  • 30″ divided by .375″ = 80″
  • 80″ multiplied by 12″ = 960″ or 80 feet

A 100 foot roll of 3/8th inch sisal rope will work great for our cat scratching post.

How to Measure Sisal for Cat Scratch Post

Begin by removing the sisal rope from the cat tree.

Use scissors or a utility blade to get one row of rope clipped. From there you should be able to unwind the rope.

The rope for most quality scratching posts will not be glued on, they’ll only be tightly strung, which is how we’re going to string ours too.

Pro Tip: Remove any staples or fasteners with needle-nose pliers.

Removing Sisal Rope on Cat Scratch Post

Once you’ve unwound the rope from the scratching post, you may have to remove some staples or small brads, maybe a bit of glue where the rope began or ended. Once the post is clear we’ll get our sisal rope ready.

Pro Tip: Keep the vacuum handy! Sisal is quite messy when it’s all frayed up from the cats. If you have sensitivities, you may also want to wear a dust mask.

At one end of the sisal, wrap a little bit of tape, about 1 to 2 inches high around the rope.

This will prevent any fraying from the starting point and help us secure the beginning point of the rope to the post. I used a 1.25″ screw, going through the tape to secure the beginning point to the base.

On your first wrap around the post, you can wrap over the screw so you’ll never see it.

Secure the sisal to the lowest point on the scratch post. Depending on the post material, you could secure it with a screw, staples, or a combination of fasteners and glue.

Restringing a Sisal Cat Scratcher

Once your rope is secured near the base of the cat scratcher, wrap it very tightly around the post. You can add a dab of glue every few rows if you find it necessary. But it really won’t be of much help once your cat begins scratching at it.

So, it’s important to wrap the sisal very tight around the post. You’ll also want to use your hands, standing above the cat scratcher, and press down to help tighten downward against the previous row of rope.

Tight around and tight down – both are key to a successful re-rope of your sisal rope cat scratcher.

Note: I have my cat scratcher on the table for pictures, but I moved it to the ground to get a better angle to tighten the rope.

Really press downward every couple of rows to tighten the rope as much as possible.

Replacing Sisal Rope on Cat Scratch Post

When you get to the top, secure the sisal just as you did with the bottom, a screw, staples or a combination of fasteners and glue. It all depends on the materials you’re working with.

Pro Tip: If you’re working with cardboard, insert a small block of wood inside the cardboard tube, carefully screw through the rope, into the tube, and secure it to the wood block.

All said and done, removing and replacing the sisal on our cat scratching post only took about 20-30 minutes time.

I would rate this as an easy DIY project. Look at Turbo just sitting in his cat perch catching some rays. See, I told you he was a good boy!

Replacing Sisal on Scratching Post

I hope now instead of tossing your scratch post, you’ll consider replacing the sisal on yours (it’s only a few bucks) and keeps your furball happy for many years to come!

Having a good cat post in the house is essential to helping Turbo stay happy and healthy.

He needs the post not only to scratch, but also to stretch his little legs and puffy chest. Aside from his newly roped cat scratch post, he’s loving his new IAMSâ„¢ cat treats!

Repair and Re-Sisal a Cat Scratching Post

How do you treat your cat?

Join the Conversation

  1. Wow! You’ve got a houseful of furbabies!! <3 Thank you for stopping by, I'm glad you loved reading about Mr. Turbo! 🙂

  2. Turbo sounds like a real lovebug! He would fit right in w/my household I have a 5yr old tortie, Calli, and 2 males, both 3yrs old, a ginger tabby named Bailey and a Siamese mix named Bing. They use their sisal as well as those wretched cardboard things that require vacuuming. Oh, well, better than the furniture.
    As for hairballs, they are quite the thing, aren’t they? My Bing gets them most, even though Calli has longer hair. I noticed that he will go out and eat some grass and the next thing I know he is indoors and bringing up a hairball, along w/the undigested blades of grass. I’m not too concerned about it, although they are no fun. If I could just train him to go straight to the linoleum and stay off the carpet! LOL. Thanks for your blog!

  3. Hi Sharlene! You can get it on Amazon: Good luck with your project! 🙂

  4. Sharlene M Stulce says:

    Where do you buy sisal? No one seems to want to advertise.

  5. Stephanie says:

    My kitties are not fond of the sisal, they prefer the carpeted posts. I have re-covered several of them using carpet scraps I bought at the carpet center. They usually have roll ends, or remnants left over from jobs they did that they’ll sell you at a discount. I bought two different kinds, and have re-covered several times, and have enough to do many more. I use a staple gun, or tack nails and a hammer.

  6. Cathie Leahy says:

    What a great tip. My cats scratching post is really starting to come apart. I will have to get some sisal and try this as he really uses it.

  7. What a great and useful tutorial! I loved learning about your cat too and it sounds like the new treats are perfect for him! #client

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