In this post, we gathered up the nine best rugs for cats that will have you and your feline friend meowing with delight.
If you’re a cat lover, then you know that cats love being on or near rugs. Rugs are perfect for cats because they’re soft and comfortable to lounge on, and also act as a place of interest to them. Plus, rugs add an extra bit of style to any room.
When it comes to finding the best rugs for cats, we take our research seriously. We surveyed and researched hundreds of cat owner reviews to thoroughly vet and include only the foremost options. A buying guide is also provided to help you make the best decision for your needs.
So curl up on the couch with your favorite kitty and read on!
- Why do cats love to claw and scratch
- Considerations when choosing the best rugs for cats
- Best 9 Rugs
- Rugs to avoid
Why do cats love to claw and scratch?
Cats love to scratch and claw for a variety of reasons. First, it is healthy grooming behavior to help remove the outer layer of nails. Second, it provides them with a way to mark their territory. And finally, it feels good! Scratching is a great way for cats to release pent-up energy or stress. Rugs are a good fit as they offer certain properties to meet these needs.
Considerations when choosing the best rugs for cats
When choosing a rug for your pet friendly home, there are a few things you need to take into account. First, you need to decide what material you want the rug to be made out of. There are a variety of options available, including natural fibers such as wool, cotton, jute, and synthetic fibers such as propylene and polyester. Other factors include the durability and maintenance of the rug, pile height, size and style.
Best rug material for cats
Choose a material that is simple to clean, hard wearing, and stain and mold resistant.
Not only are natural fibers like wool and cotton soft and fluffy for Whiskers to lie on, they are also hypoallergenic and long lasting. A major downside to wool is its price tag and extra care (but hey look at it as a long term investment!)
Jute is another natural fiber that is durable, eco-friendly, and relatively inexpensive. Many cat owners are also impressed by its resiliency to clawing and scratches. Though it traps dirt and mud well, it is not as easy to clean as synthetic fabrics.
Synthetic fabrics like propylene, polyester, and nylon tick many boxes. They are non-toxic, simple to maintain, hypoallergenic and affordable. However, they don’t offer as much cushioning as natural materials due to their low pile. This can be resolved with rug pads or cushions.
The best rug pile height for cats is between low (½ inch and below ) to medium ( ½ to ¾ inch). A shorter or medium pile rug is best for homes with pets as they are less likely to scratch or claw at the fibers. Even if your pet does so, it will cause less damage. Choose rugs with cut piles or woven flat weaves. Rugs with a higher pile height, such as shag rugs, will provide more comfort at the expense of upkeeping.
The best size rug for cats is one that is large enough for them to stretch out on comfortably. A good rule of thumb is to consider the availability of space that will give them plenty of room to play and scratch without pinging on your furniture or walls.
Colors and patterns
The best style rug for cats is one that is simple and understated. Consider a rug with mixed colors or a simple patterned rug. This way, it will be less likely to show the wear and tear from your cat’s claws or stains.
Best 9 Rugs
These 9 cat-friendly rugs are the purr-fect addition to any home. We considered factors like material, pile height, durability, ease of cleaning, and sizing when making our recommendations.
- Best Overall
- Best Value
- Best Comfort:
- Best Washable
- Best Indoor/Outdoor
- Best Natural Fiber
- Best Bed Mat
- Best Cat Litter Mat
- Best Cat Scratcher Mat (aka Furniture Protector)
- Best Rug Pad (Bonus)
- Best Rug Cushion (Bonus)
Best Overall: The Safavieh Madison Collection Area Rug
The Safavieh Madison Collection Area Rug will add refreshing style and function to any room. This boho chic rug has personality and is exquisitely detailed thanks to its faded washed finish. Medium pile power loomed polypropylene fibers make it easy to clean and durable, while guaranteeing little to no shedding. The rug is suitable for homes with children and pets due to its hypoallergenic qualities..
- Material: Propylene
- Pile: Medium
- Refreshing designs and colors
- Stain-resistant and easy to clean
- Pet and child friendly
- Might feel thinner underfoot as compared to natural fibers
- Creases and edges take time to flatten out upon arrival
- “Shipped super fast, packaged well. Colors are vibrant just as pictured. Exceeded expectations. Added a rug cushion (1/8 inch) of same dimensions and love the softness, friends sometimes choose to sit on the rug instead of the couch! We are very happy with our purchase! (Also, kitten and puppy approved.)” Erin
- “I had a hard time deciding what pattern to get. This was my third safavieh rug purchase for my new condo. I am in love with this pattern and it’s a beautiful combination of cream and blues it works perfect in my waterfront condo with my navy blues tan and cream hues. I added a carpet pad underneath to make it softer on my feet.” Nmt
Best Value: Nuloom Moroccan Blythe Home Rug
The beautiful Nuloom Moroccan Blythe Home Rug effortlessly showcases the distinctive Moroccan fusion of patterns and colors, making them easy to integrate into any decorative theme. It also offers many sizes, shapes and colors at affordable prices. Made of synthetics fibers it is also hypoallergenic and straightforward to care for. It is no wonder this rug is one of the most sought after area rugs.
- Material: Propylene
- Pile: Low
- Versatile design
- Easy to clean
- Suitable for high traffic areas due to its durability and simple patterns
- Might feel stiff and thin under foot due to its low pile
- Creases take time to flatten out on unboxing
- “I saw this rug featured in a NY Times article and liked that it was stylish, large, and affordable. I ordered the light multi-colored 8’x10′ rug, and it’s great–cheerful and feminine without being overly girlish. It’s thick and soft, and the cat adores it.A bunch of reviewers have talked about the edges of the rug curling and issues with off-gassing. My rug was delivered on a Friday, so I set it up that evening, put a bunch of heavy books on the edges, and left the door closed for the weekend. By the time Monday morning came around, the odor had faded and the edges flattened.” OhEdith
- “I like the design— I’m looking for light color with minimal patterns but not too busy. I don’t want white bc I’m a clumsy person who will spill coffee everywhere. This is a perfect shade of grey. On the second day, my kitty knocked over some plants and dirt was everywhere on a corner of the carpet. I just used a vacuum cleaner and all the stuff are removed. It’s elegant and easy to clean.” The CabinCoder
Best Comfort: Ashler Faux Fur Fluffy Shaggy Rug
Ashler is dedicated to producing high-quality home textiles influenced by elegant and creative characteristics. The Ashler Faux Fur Shaggy Rug creates a cushy living space for kitty to laze on, whilst ensuring effortless maintenance. Though it is a high pile, its slick cut fibers will not catch your pet’s claws. Get ready for compliments with its aesthetic appeal all while being pocket (and pet) friendly.
- Faux Fur
- Pile: High
- Soft and fluffy to the touch
- Affordable alternative to wool
- Easy to clean and care for
- Visually attractive
- Recommended to get darker shades or frosted tips to mask dirt
- Some reported shedding of loose fibers which will reduce or stop over time.
- “I needed something soft for this window perch that I also bought through amazon. This was a great price and perfect size for what I needed. She immediately jumped in and started making biscuits, then snuggled in for a nap. Success!” Michele Roberts
- “I ordered like 5 of these and had to order one for my mil she loved it so much. The white is beautiful goes with anything and best of all I can just throw it in our washer and normal cycle and it’s like brand new again. Our pets love sleeping on it, nice and fluffy.” Eli
Best Washable: Ruggable Kamran Washable Rug
The Ruggable Kamran Washable Rug features classic Persian regality and vintage vibes. The geometric designs also hide dirt and stains better. Designed to be water and stain resistant, these rugs fit snugly into the washing machine to ease your worries over spills and accidents. It also comes with the choice of a normal or cushioned rug pad, easing the separate step of buying under mat protection.
- Material: Chenille
- Pile: Low
- Effortless maintenance and easy to clean
- Stain and water resistance
- Pet and child friendly: Made of non toxic recycled material
- Bonus: Comes with choice of pads
- “This rug is beautiful! It’s also been tested by my cat to see how easily it clean! Warm soapy water and viola the stain is gone. I love how easily you can pick it up and wash out any mishap. It’s beautiful great product and everything it claims to be.” Marion T. Messina
- “ Love❤️ love ❤️LOVE this rug!!!!! Good pattern and easy to layout. Really stays in place and doesn’t curl up! I’m even surprised with the quality 🤗 Best yet is that its easy to clean and for a big spill I can throw it in the wash!! I have 3 kids, so we wash everything!!! I’m a ruggable client for life!” BL
Best Indoor/Outdoor: Nourison Aloha Indoor/Outdoor Floral Green Area Rug
The Nourison Aloha Indoor/Outdoor Area Rug appeals with its cheerful and bright colors whilst providing a practical solution to those who want the best of both worlds. The flattened weaved carpets are ideal for high-traffic areas and a simple hose-down is all it takes to clean them. No more headaches over damp and dirty paws (and children)!
- Material: Propylene with latex backing
- Pile: Low
- Bold eye catching design
- Multi functional use
- Easy care and maintenance
- Many colors, shapes and sizes available
- Feels thin under foot due to low pile
- Some users reported the red fading in direct sun
- “I have 2 pitties and 1 cat. The rug is holding up with dirty paws, crumbs and water. I don’t have to buy another vacuum anymore because this rugs let’s me pick everything. Great product for heavy walking area’s and most of all PETs” Veronica Parker
- “I really like this rug. It has multiple colors and can fit with any patio collection. It also dries up after a rainstorm and its easy to clean. The only thing I noticed was that the color started fading on one of the flowers so I am concerned if this is going to last me for a few years.” Anjali Gamble
Best Natural Fiber: nuLOOM Rigo Hand Woven Farmhouse Jute Area Rug
Looking to give your place a rustic natural touch? The handcrafted nuLoom Rigo Handwoven Farmhouse Jute Area Rug features renewable natural fibers braided together. Each piece has subtle differences that give it a unique design. Jute is also easy to care for and highly durable at affordable prices, making it a top choice amongst households with heavy traffic.
- Material: Jute
- Pile: Low
- Natural and eco friendly designs
- Sophisticated look at affordable prices
- Tough and hard wearing
- Traps dust and dirt well
- More regular maintenance with low powered vacuuming
- Not stain resistant so quick action needed to clean spills
- Can expect sprouting or shedding of loose fibers which require snipping off
- “It’s a nice soft material. It looks great, but still needs to flatten out a bit (a few odd humps in the middle from being rolled up). I’m happy with it! Cat loves it. 😉 I haven’t tried to vacuum or clean it yet, but it seems like it’ll be a little tricky to vacuum without damaging it.” DenKag
- “I love how it looks, it’s exactly what I was looking for and also my cat loves it, the material is perfect for scratching without damaging it” Wuendy
Best Bed Mat: Furhaven ThermaNAP Cat Sleeping Pads
It is well known that cats are terrible at waking up with more than half of all cats sleeping 12 to 18 hours, and nearly 40% nap more than this amount! Pamper your pet with a snug and comfy nap with Furhaven ThermaNAP Cat Sleeping Pads. This highly popular slumber magnet is self warming and utilizes an insulated mylar fiber padding to build up natural heat. It is designed for smaller pets and machine washable, making it convenient to clean and port around.
- Material: Polyester, Mylar
- Pile: Nil
- Multifunctional and amazing for traveling
- Soft and comfortable pad
- Easy to clean and machine friendly
- Pet friendly design and saves cost without using a electricity heated pad
- Durable and chew proof
- Reviews indicate pad fits just nice for one cat and recommend buying more for those parenting multiple cats or pets
- “We raised 17 kittens along with their 3 mamas on it! (Literally!)We got a Large gray one, and the moms LOVED bringing their babies over to it. XD We originally had it outside the enclosure because the babies were newborns, but the two tabby mamas kept bringing their babies over and soon we had a cuddle puddle on it. Eventually, we just put it into the enclosure, and they were in heaven. It retained heat so well and was super soft, it didn’t catch the newborns umbilical cords at all, I was surprised!” Marty
- “It gets cold during the Winters where I live so I thought I’d try this out! Minion seems to really enjoy it and I think it actually does keep him warm! He sleeps on it all the time and it’s right next to the window, so it must work!” Jennifer
- Both of my senior cats love their ThermaNAPs! The true test was during a major power outage where the temp inside my house was in the 50s. I was freezing but the cats were both very toasty curled up on their self warming beds! They hold up great upon washing-just ensure you air dry. I’ve bought additional ones for their spots in my home office. My cats give two paws up!” Libbi C Carlson
Best Cat Litter Mat: Pieviev Cat Litter Mat-Super Size
As any cat owner knows, keeping the litter box (and house) clean can be a struggle. Pieviev’s Cat Litter Mat-Super Size aims to make this task a little easier. The large honeycomb design, along with its water and urine proof backing, effectively traps excess litter and debris without worrying about spillage. The mat also features grooves designed to catch litter from your feline’s paws as they leave the mat, but is soft on their paws. Pieviev is also a brand specializing in pet products, having been around since 1999 with their own production team.
- Material: EVA , Phthalate free
- Traps litter well and minimizes hassle of cleaning up
- Trusted and pet focused brand
- Easy to wash and clean
- Durable and pet friendly material that is soft on paws but easy to release litter and scratch resistant
- Takes time to unfold evenly
- Reviews indicate getting larger sizes as cat urine may spillover (or miss the target) in smaller sizes.
- “I use pretty litter with my cat. This mat does a good job of catching all the litter she kicks over the edge of the litter box! I think that the construction makes this product easy to use – since the top isn’t connected on one side, you can easily pick it up and dump it out. The only difficulty I found is if there is any liquid matter. Sometimes it doesn’t fall through the holes of the mat like the litter does because of surface tension and then when it does, it creates that muddy litter scenario which you do have to reach inside the mat to clean. That said, it does wipe off easily and comes clean quickly! Saves me from having to vacuum every day.” Mikaila N. Adams
- “Our two kittens were tracking litter all around the house. Covered boxes, special mats, daily changes, daily sweeping, and it still seemed to be everywhere. But now I don’t find litter in my bedsheets or couch cushions, and my toddler doesn’t try to collect the ‘baby rocks.’ This mat works perfectly! 5 stars all around.” Sarah Rebecca Bergquist
Best Cat Scratcher Mat: SmartyKat Multi-Surface Scratcher
It’s no secret that cats love to scratch, but it can be frustrating when they choose your beloved furniture as the object of their affection. The SmartyKat Multi-Surface Scratcher is the perfect solution to keep both you and your furball happy. Made with durable sisal and carpet, the scratcher mat offers multiple surfaces and angles for clawing heaven. Comes with a detachable feather toy for added incentive.
- Material: Sisal, Polypropylene
- Furniture protection
- Promotes healthy cat behavior through stress relief and grooming
- Different angles and surfaces to draw engagement
- Sturdy and durable
- Reviews indicate having a stability bar screwed at bottom for bigger cats
- Hanging corrugated cat scratchers an alternative
- “We have four cats, so we have many different types of scratching posts throughout both our house and our RV. They really love this one. One of our cats spends most of the sitting or sleeping in the curve and when he wakes up, he does a fierce claw scratch on the woven part. They also love the little feather that come with it, but they usually manage to get that off within a few days. This scratcher is fairly compact, so you can put a few throughout the house. We’re very pleased with it.” Shopping Ninja
- “I have 3 cats who enjoy this scratcher. It’s the only one we have, so they all use it. I bought it a while ago and decided they had sufficiently wore it out and it was time for a new one. I checked my “Buy again” and discovered I’d purchased the one I had OVER A YEAR AGO! I shared a pic of the new one I just ordered beside the “well-loved” version. It held up well! Doing the math, that’s 3 cats × 10 claws each × about 400 days = WAY more than the $15 this thing costs. Couldn’t be happier.” A. Barnhart
Best Rug Pad: Veken Non Slip Rug Pad Gripper
Keep your rug in place and protect floors from scratches with the Veken Non Slip Rug Pad. The best selling signature grip will keep it where you want, while keeping curious claws bay! These affordable rug pads come in different sizes so they fit most carpets without trimming, though they can be easily shaped with a pair of scissors.
- Material: Polyvinyl Chloride
- Secure rugs to prevent slippage
- Extra protection and cushioning
- Can also be used for futons, seat cushions and mattresses
- Alternative to stick on tape or anchors
- Not for use on certain surfaces such as carpet, vinyl, lacquered, acrylic, natural stone, porous, concrete or heated floor.
- “I walked on my dogs beds and almost broke my neck as my foot slid across the floor making me do the splits. Immediately, I ordered this and it arrived at the speed of lightning saving my life. Never again will I have to risk my life this way again. The grip is exceptional!” Amazon Customer
- “I purchased this for a rug going on hardwood floors and it added the perfect amount of plushness and protectiveness to the area. The rug stays in place and I’m not worried about the furniture on top damaging the floors under the rug. It’s definitely the best price I’ve seen for a large rug pad so I’ll continue to buy this product for all rugs!” Liam & Taylor
Best Rug Cushion: RUGPADUSA Protective Cushioning Rug
The RUGPADUSA Protective Cushioning Rug Pad is the perfect solution for homes with hardwood floors or heavy furniture. The extra cushioning will help keep your surfaces safe, while providing extra comfort and insulation. The pad comes with different thicknesses and sizes so you can choose the level of cushioning you need. Do note that it is not for anti-slip purposes.
- Material: Felt
- Extra plush cushioning and protection
- Additional sound absorption and insulation
- Eco friendly construction – no glue, pvc or latex
- Not anti slip
- Not for use on certain surfaces such as carpet, vinyl, lacquered, acrylic, natural stone, porous, concrete or heated floor.
- “Soft and thick. I got this to put in our hallway underneath a 9′ ledge from the upper floor. I have a cat who loves to sit on the ledge and want to ensure that any falling is met with a plush surface and this is perfect for it. It doesn’t have adhesion so make sure you get something on the bottom so it doesn’t slip.” Louise
- “This pad make a huge difference in the softness of the carpet. I will definitely buy another one for my other rug.” Tee
Rugs To Avoid
Here are some types of rugs and factors you should avoid when choosing a rug for your kitty.
1. Shag or high pile rugs
Sure, shag or high pile rugs may look cozy and chic, but their fluffy fibers can spell cat-astrophe. Those same fibers are like magnets for cat litter, making it difficult to keep the rug clean.
So unless you want your feline friend using your beautiful rug as a litter box, it’s best to steer clear of shag. The same goes for rugs with looped holes. Stick with low pile or flat weave options – your cat (and vacuum cleaner) will thank you.
2. Rugs with fringe or tassels
Let’s face it, cats love playing with string and tassels. Unfortunately, these playful little tidbits can lead to danger for our feline friends. The embellishments on rugs can become wrapped around a cat’s paws or even ingested, leading to injury and potentially requiring veterinary care.
3. Light coloured rugs
If you’ve ever had a light-colored rug in a house with cats or pets, chances are you understand the struggle. One misstep or accident, and you’re left with a stain that won’t come out. In addition, light fabrics tend to highlight shedding fur more. After all, they don’t call them “cat hair” rugs for nothing. If you love those Instagram-worthy light colored rugs, go for rugs with simple patterns or shapes for visual distraction.
4. Rugs with glued on backs
Thinking about sprucing up your floors with a new rug? Before you go for the cheapest option – rugs with glued on backs – consider this. Not only are they less durable and prone to peeling, they can also be a potential danger to any four-legged friend in the household. Glue is not only sticky and uncomfortable for pets, it can also be toxic if ingested. And let’s not even get started on the possibility of adhesives tangling in fur or getting stuck in paws. Opt for rugs with woven or non-slip backs instead.
What type of rug is best for cats?
Overall, there is no one “right” rug for every cat as pets have differing personalities and needs. It’s also important to consider your own personal preferences and style when choosing decorations for your home. But by taking your furry friend’s inclinations into account, you can choose the most appropriate fit for your home.
For example, for active cats, choosing a durable rug with a low pile may be the best option. This type of rug can withstand endless games of chase and pounce without looking disheveled. Low pile rugs are often a good choice as well since they make it easier for cats to scratch and groom themselves without getting caught in fibers
On the other hand, if your cat tends to lounge most of the time or is older with arthritis issues, going for a plusher rug or adding a rug pad underneath might add some extra support and insulation during long cat naps.
What kind of rug is cat proof?
No rug is completely ‘cat proof’, but these options will withstand the standard wear and tear of feline companionship.
Natural fiber rugs like jute and sisal are great because they provide texture for scratching while being durable enough to handle it. Wool rugs also lack the traction your tiger in disguise needs to get a proper scratch. Consequently, they typically give up and leave the rugs alone after a few attempts. You can also go for synthetic fibers such as polypropylene or nylon, which offer a high level of resilience similar to natural fibers with added softness underfoot.
And remember to provide ample scratching posts for your cat to satisfy their need to scratch – it’s better for both them and your furniture!
If you’re looking for the best rugs for cats, we hope our top nine recommendations have given you some ideas. As with anything else related to cats, there are a few considerations and tips to keep in mind when shopping for rugs that will make your home more feline-friendly. But with a little research, you’re sure to find the best rug for your pet and home.
Do you have any other tips for finding the best rug for cats? Let us know in the comments below!
And don’t forget to check out our other blog posts if you’re looking for other paw-sibilities to make your home claw-some!