Last updated: August 7, 2021

Our method

25Products analysed

30Hours spent

20Evaluated articles

99User reviews

Welcome to our big cat tunnel test 2021. Here we present all the cat tunnels we have tested in detail. We have compiled detailed background information and added a summary of customer reviews on the web.

We would like to make your purchase decision easier and help you find the best cat tunnel for you. You will also find answers to frequently asked questions in our guide. Furthermore, you will also find some important information on this page that you should pay attention to if you want to buy a cat tunnel.




Summary

  • With a cat tunnel, you can offer your cat a place to sleep and play.
  • Basically, you should think about how much space there is for the cat tunnel.
  • When choosing a cat tunnel, make sure that it is made of a robust material.

The Best Cat Tunnel: Our Choices

Buying criteria: These are the factors you can use to compare and rate cat tunnels

In the following, we would like to show you which factors you can use to compare and evaluate cat tunnels. This will make it easier for you to decide whether a particular cat tunnel is suitable for you or not.

In summary, these are:

We go into these in more detail in the further sections.

Material

There are cheap versions made of thin nylon, but these are not suitable for long-term playing, as nylon can tear easily. The same applies to thin fabric.

You can try out a nylon cat tunnel first to see if your cat likes it.

As cats are not very careful when playing, the material must be all the more robust to prevent it from being damaged.

Your cat tunnel should ideally be made of polyester or cotton, so that it is more robust and stable for your cat. The inside material can also be made of soft plush to give your cat a soft and cosy place to sleep and play.

Size

When choosing the size of the cat tunnel, you must first consider the size of your cat. Cats like to have a place to retreat to, but they don't want to be crowded, so they won't play in a tunnel that's too narrow, or even go in there in the first place.

The diameter should be at least 250mm, but if your cat is larger, it is advisable to choose a larger diameter. Also note that a kitten is still growing and you should be prepared that your current cat tunnel may be too small for your cat in a few months.

Length

The length of the cat tunnel clearly depends on your available space. As a rule, however, most are 90cm to 2 metres long. However, it is recommended that you choose a length of at least 100cm.

If you want to get an outdoor cat tunnel, you can also choose a longer tunnel, as the space in the garden is usually larger. The longer the cat tunnel, the more space your cat or cats will have to play and run around in it.

Combination tunnel

Cat tunnels are available in a wide variety of versions and with many extras, such as scratching surfaces, plush balls or crackling foil that amplify the rattling sound.

These offer your cat a high degree of play possibilities and even more fun. You can buy the special accessories separately or buy a full set.

Guide: Questions you should ask yourself before buying a cat tunnel

In the following, we address the most common questions that arise during and after the purchase of cat tunnels.

Who is a cat tunnel suitable for?

A cat tunnel is a very popular toy for cats, as they can play in a cat tunnel, but also sleep. Cat tunnels have an almost magical attraction for cats.

katzentunnel-1

A cat tunnel provides the perfect retreat for your cat.
(Image source: unsplash / Max Kleinen)

Cats like to retreat into a den when they sleep, so a cat tunnel provides the perfect retreat. However, a cave, basket or cat tunnel is not only preferred for sleeping, but also for playing.

Besides the possibility to retreat, the cat tunnel has the effect that it rustles as soon as the cat enters. This awakens the hunting instinct in the cat and explains the magical attraction of a cat tunnel to your cat.

Even if your cat ignores its new toy at first, it doesn't mean it won't love it. Sometimes it just takes a little patience for your cat to get used to the cat tunnel.

Basically, a cat tunnel is suitable for any cat, as they naturally need a place to retreat to.

What should you consider before buying a cat tunnel?

Before you buy a cat tunnel for your cat, you should think about where you want to place it. There are many different types of cat tunnels, in different sizes, designs, materials and shapes.

You should also think about whether you would like to have a cat tunnel especially for the garden and whether not only one but several cats would like to play with it.

katzentunnel-2

Both the size and the number of cats play a decisive role when it comes to the size of the cat tunnel.
(Image source: 123rf / 83977957)

Cats not only like to play in the cat tunnel, but also on it, jumping on it and over it. Cats like to romp around when they play, and this can sometimes cause one or two things to break.

Find a sturdy and robust cat tunnel so that your cat can play with it for longer.

What types of cat tunnels are there and which is the right one for you?

In principle, there are three types of cat tunnels:

  • Cat tunnel with basket
  • Combination cat tunnel
  • Outdoor cat tunnel

Depending on what you want to offer your cat and how many cats should enjoy the cat tunnel, you should choose a certain type. In the following, we will go into more detail about the advantages and disadvantages of the three different types to help you make your purchase decision.

Cat tunnel with basket

If your cat is excited about his cat tunnel, you might want to upgrade it. As a cat tunnel has a magical attraction for cats, as they feel safe there, this place is of course also recommended as a sleeping place for your cat.

Advantages
  • Includes sleeping space
  • Cosy sleeping space
  • Feel good for your cat
Disadvantages
  • Expensive
  • Takes up a lot of space
  • Not so much choice

So that your cat doesn't have to sleep in the tunnel, even though it might like to, there are special cat tunnels that have an open basket at the end of a corridor. Your cat can lie down in this basket and have a cosy and soft place to sleep in its favourite toy.

Combination cat tunnel

Cats love to play and romp in the cat tunnel, but they also like to do this together. If you have more than one cat or if the neighbour's cat comes to visit you, it is advisable to have a cat tunnel with several openings and passages.

This way, several cats can romp around in the tunnel and none will feel a lack of space.

You can also equip your cat tunnel with plush balls for them to play with or use one with a scratching wall at one opening. This gives your cat the perfect play experience and leaves nothing to be desired.

Advantages
  • Different variations possible
  • More toys in one
  • Cat can let off steam completely
  • Suitable for several cats
Disadvantages
  • Expensive
  • Takes up a lot of space

You can of course build or hang this extra toy yourself, or get a Combi Cat Tunnel with the full fun package for your cat.

Outdoor Cat Tunnel

An outdoor cat tunnel is specially made for the garden. First and foremost it is weather resistant. As it is used outside, it needs to be waterproof and also windproof so that you don't wake up in the morning to find your cat's new favourite toy gone with the wind.

For this reason, outdoor cat tunnels are usually made of polyester or other waterproof material rather than fabric or plush. You can also attach your outdoor cat tunnel to the floor to make it even more stable.

Advantages
  • Waterproof
  • Can be larger
  • Windproof
Disadvantages
  • No plush possible
  • Not so soft
  • Takes up space in the garden

Since you are setting up the outdoor cat tunnel in the garden, it can be a bit bigger, as you have more space. But there are also outdoor cat tunnels for smaller gardens.

What does a cat tunnel cost?

Since there are many different types of cat tunnels, the price also varies accordingly.

Variant Price
Cat tunnel made of nylon 3-20€
Cat tunnel made of nylon with rustling foil 13-30€
Cat tunnel made of plush 20-40€
Cat tunnel with several entrances/openings 40-70€
Cat tunnel with basket or little house 70-100€

If you want to start with a cheap version to try out, you can buy a nylon cat tunnel for as little as 3€. If you want to offer your cat a more special model, with accessories and more comfort, the price of your cat tunnel can rise to over 100€.

What are the alternatives to a cat tunnel?

If your cat doesn't warm up to its new cat tunnel, you can also use alternatives to give your cat a place to retreat.

There are cuddle bags for cats that have a similar function to the cat tunnel. In the cuddle bag, your cat can retreat and feel safe.

The cuddle bag is usually made of plush to provide a cosy place for your cat and it has only one opening. Your cat lies down in the cuddle bag, comparable to a sleeping bag.

In addition to the cuddle bag, you can also use a more conventional variant, such as a cat basket. A cat basket, cat bed or cat cave gives your cat its own place in the house, where it can withdraw, sleep, but also play.

More unusual versions such as a cat hammock or a cat house also offer your cat a place of well-being.

How can you build a cat tunnel yourself?

If you are not completely satisfied with the look of the cat tunnels available for purchase, you can also build your own cat tunnel.

This way you can not only decide on the design, but also choose the size and length, the material and the accessories yourself and adapt them to your available space.

How do you care for your cat tunnel?

There are models that you can fold up and simply wash in the washing machine, just make sure you check the label or washing instructions on the packaging so you know how many degrees you can wash your cat tunnel at.

If you can't fold your cat tunnel and wash it in the washing machine, read the package insert carefully as it will tell you exactly how to wash the tunnel. Basically, if it is made of fabric, you can always carefully remove cat hair with a hoover or clean it with the right cleaning agent for the fabric.

Cat tunnels made of polyester can usually be washed with water. Just make sure, if you use a garden hose, that the jet is not too strong and does not tear your cat tunnel.

How does training in the cat tunnel work?

The cat tunnel does not only have to be a retreat for your cat, but you can also use it for training so that your cat listens to your commands.

Image source: 123rf / 108383416

Why you can trust me?

Reviews