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The 6 Best Cat Tunnel Designs for Your Favorite Furry Friend

Last Updated - June 5, 2022

Cats love enclosed spaces, whether that be under the bed, behind the couch, or in a play tunnel. These small, dark spaces provide cats with a safe space to scurry around, play with toys, hide from other pets, or lounge between play sessions. Not only are they great exercise, but they also provide mental stimulation and banish boredom.

So to help you find the perfect cat tunnel for your feline friend, we've rounded up the best indoor and outdoor cat tunnels below, along with helpful tips on how to find the right pet product.

What to Look for in a Cat Tunnel

As a loving pet owner, you want to find your furry friend the best interactive cat toys possible. But with so many styles, sizes, and price points to choose from, it can be hard to narrow down your search to just one tunnel. Here are a few things to consider while you shop for a new cat tunnel:

Indoor Cat Tunnels vs. Outdoor Cat Tunnels

First and foremost, you'll need to determine if you're looking for an indoor cat tunnel or an outdoor cat tunnel. If you plan to set up the cat tunnel in your backyard, garden, or outdoor cat enclosure, you'll want to be sure the product's design and materials are designed to withstand outdoor use. Opt for products made with tear-resistant, waterproof nylon or polyester instead of faux fur.

Style

When most pet owners think of a cat tunnel, they think of a traditional single tunnel with a simple two-opening design. While these simple tunnels are still the most popular style on the market, cat tunnels come in all sorts of shapes and sizes, including:

  • Connected tunnels
  • 2-in-1 cat tunnel and bed
  • Peephole openings
  • Attached cat toys
  • Customizable design
  • Tent and/or cube attachments
  • Mesh entry covers

Material

Most cat tunnels are made with ripstop nylon, polyester, canvas, or faux fur. The crinkling sound of many tunnels can drive some pet owners crazy, so you'll need to determine if you want a cat tunnel made with crinkly fabric or something that won't make noise. Regardless, you'll want a product made with a durable fabric that can hold up against your kitty's claws.

Additionally, you'll want to look for a cat tunnel made with a metal frame instead of a plastic frame. A durable metal wireframe will hold up far better than cheap plastic alternatives, extending the product's life and giving you more bang for your buck.

Length

Cat tunnels come in a wide range of lengths, spanning from short, apartment-friendly styles to extra-long expandable tunnels that are best-suited for a spacious backyard. We recommend measuring the intended space to help determine what length works best for your home.

Remember, almost all cat tunnels are made with a collapsible spring frame and come equipped with velcro tabs or small straps so you can fold the tunnel down flat for easy storage.

Appearance

Let's face it. Most cat tunnels on the market aren't very aesthetically pleasing. If you plan to keep the cat toy out at all times, you may want to find one that complements your home decor instead of clashing with it. Alternatively, you can put the tunnel away between uses.

The Best Indoor And Outdoor Cat Tunnels

Kitty City Jungle Collapsible Cat Cube, Bed, and Tunnel Combo

Best Overall

overall 

4.8/5

Price

$

Durable

Easy to Assemble

Easy to Clean

Kitty City Jungle Collapsible Cat Cube, Bed, and Tunnel Combo

This Jungle Collapsible Cat Cube, Bed, and Tunnel Combo from Kitty City is the ultimate enclosed space for your kitty to hide, play, sleep, and rest. The three-piece set comes with one pop-up lion cube, one pop-up tiger house, and one collapsible jungle crinkle tunnel. Each can be used separately or combined into one jungle-themed play space.

The Kitty City Jungle Set is made with durable polyester fabric with mesh peephole openings. Its Flexi-frame pops open in seconds and folds down completely for easy storage between uses.

Material

Polyester/ mesh panel

Size

66.2 x 15.2 x 24 inches

What We Like

  • Four design available
  • Openings and mesh panel provides peek-boo playtime
  • Foldable for easy storage
  • Lightweight

What We Don't Like

  • May not last long depending on your cat

PAWZ Road Cat Toys Collapsible Indoor Cat Tunnel

Best Collapsible

overall 

4.8/5

Price

$

Durable

Easy to Assemble

Easy to Clean

PAWZ Road Cat Toys Collapsible Indoor Cat Tunnel

Looking for a traditional cat tunnel? This leopard-printed Collapsible Indoor Cat Tunnel from PAWZ Road Cat Toys is sure to please your felines! The 12-inch diameter tunnel offers big cats enough room to turn around mid-tunnel as they hunt and play. Plus, the crinkly faux fur fabric and mid-tunnel peephole bring added excitement to playtime. The tunnel is equipped with a strong steel frame that collapses flat for easy storage in a cabinet or coat closet.

Material

Plastic, metal wire, short plush

Size

51inch/130cm Diameters: 12"/ 30cm

What We Like

  • Strong and solid
  • Openings and mesh panel provides peek-boo playtime
  • Portable and fun
  • Made of short plush material is comfortable
  • Two vents on the top so that cats can freely get in and out of the tunnel

What We Don't Like

  • Fabric can be a little stiff
  • Tunnel can roll while the cat plays

LUCKITTY Large Cat Dog Tunnel Bed with Washable Cushion

Best For Kitten

overall 

4.6/5

Price

$

Durable

Easy to Assemble

Easy to Clean

Western Home 3-Way Cat Tunnel Bed

While basic cat tunnels don't offer much versatility, this LUCKITTY Large Cat Dog Tunnel Bed With Washable Cushion offers three ways for house cats to have fun! The 2-in-1 design comes with two straight tunnels and a removable round mat that can be used separately or combined to make a round bed with a surrounding tunnel. Plus, the collapsible parts can easily be tucked away while you workout, vacuum, or have guests over.

In addition to cats, the tunnel can be used for small dogs, ferrets, and other small pets under 20 lbs. Some pet owners even reuse the tunnels for dog ability training. The tunnel cat bed is lightweight, collapsible, and easy to set up, making it the perfect choice for traveling and entertaining cats on the go.

Material

Plush

Size

length 36", diameter 9.8"

What We Like

  • Soft and durable
  • Can nap, run, hide-and-seek, chase, hunt, and sleep
  • The tunnel can be turned into a round or S-shaped
  • The bed and tunnel is made out of soft lining that crinkles which will keep your cat entertained
  • Available in five colors

What We Don't Like

  • May not be durable depending on your pet

eenk Cat Toy Tunnel and Cubes Interactive Cat Toys

Best Interactive

overall 

4.6/5

Price

$

Durable

Easy to Assemble

Easy to Clean

eenk Cat Toy Tunnel and Cubes Interactive Cat Toys

This Cat Toy Tunnel and Cubes Bundle from eenk will be your cat's new favorite place to play. The three-piece set comes with a crinkle tube tunnel and two detachable cubes that can be used individually or combined into one large playhouse. The large space is perfect for multiple cats to chase each other, prey on toys, or relax in the safety of an enclosed space. Each piece is made with rip-resistant polyester on a sprung-steel frame with velcro fasteners for easy set-up and compact storage between uses.

Material

Nylon

Size

90 x 20 x 20 inches

What We Like

  • Provide your pet with entertainment
  • Comes with a handled bag for easy storage
  • Provide your pet with safe personal spaces around the house
  • Features crinkle crackle paper and bright vibrant colors
  • Made out of a tear-resistant strong polyester

What We Don't Like

  • May not be durable depending on your pet
  • Zipper may need repair over time

HIPIPET Indoor Cat Tunnel Bed

Best Plush

overall 

4.6/5

Price

$

Durable

Easy to Assemble

Easy to Clean

HIPIPET Indoor Cat Tunnel Bed

While most cat tunnels detract from your home decor, the stylish design of this Indoor Cat Tunnel Bed from HIPIPET blends right in with your other furniture and decorations. Plus, the durable, scratch-resistant canvas fabric comes in your choice of three versatile neutral shades: matcha green, medium coffee, or a brown and red-checkered deer-inspired design.

The 2-in-1 design features a detachable bed and a foldable tunnel, providing your cats with both a place to sleep and a place to play. The plush microfiber bed is equipped with a non-skid bottom that prevents the bed from sliding around as your cat plays. Two balls or toys hang at each tunnel entry for added fun.

Material

Microfiber

Size

50 x 22 x 11 inches

What We Like

  • Versatile cat tunnel to play, relax and rest
  • The toys at the entrance of the tunnel
  • A foldable design
  • Removeable & washable mat bed
  • Scratch-resistant
  • Sturdiness without sacrificing the softness for desired comfort

What We Don't Like

  • The tunnel may be short for some cats
  • Depending on your cat, it may not last long

Quirky Kitty Orange Goldfish Play Tunnel Cat Toy

Most Stylish

overall 

4.9/5

Price

$

Durable

Easy to Assemble

Easy to Clean

Quirky Kitty Orange Goldfish Play Tunnel Cat Toy

There's nothing cuter than this Orange Goldfish Play Tunnel Cat Toy from Quirky Kitty when it comes to cat tunnels. The whimsical goldfish design features crinkly fabric and two expandable fin tunnels for even more fun during playtime. It's made with durable polyester material that sharp claws can't snag or tear, so you and your kitty can play with the tunnel for years to come. Plus, the cat tunnel folds flat for easy storage after playtime.

Material

Polyester, Nylon

Size

24 x 10 x 10 inches

What We Like

  • 3 in 1 design
  • Provides interactive fun that encourages daily exercise and activity
  • Engaging crinkly sound while cats play and explore
  • Packs flat so it is easy to store when play time is done
  • Durable material for long lasting play

What We Don't Like

  • Depending on your cat, it may not last long
lara grisko the pet staff

About the Author

Lara Girsko

Doctor of veterinary medicine with extensive experience in animal welfare with a strong interest in feline medicine and plans to pursue ABVP-Feline specialty board certification. A key member of many local veterinary associations and avid reader of animal related science journals and studies.

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