Believe it or not every single time I meet a new cat owner I hear a new and unique story about their life with cats. You must see how they describe their life getting changed since their fur baby entered it. And yes this includes the story on how cats scratching their furniture just before that big family dinner or something big like that left them not knowing what to do with her.
Don’t think you are the only one. Lol 😀
Kitty County is full of cat stories like that across all our social media platforms.
But this post is not about stories, let’s create a story compilation some other time.
This post is about one very specific problem that cat owners across the world face.
Your Cat is Scratching The Hell Out Of Everything.
I know, I know.
It’s not something we like, but you gotta agree. It’s so satisfying to see a cat scratch isn’t it ?.
Yeah, easy for you to say Shubham !!. Your new sofa is not enshrining long scratch marks.
Nor is your door mat is ripped to pieces.
Well, truth be told it has been. By these three little devils.
Here they are.
And yeah that is the same door mat I am talking about.
And don’t go with their looks. Alright.
All three of them are messy devils. Especially, the one on the left. She is an embodiment of trouble.
Ohh. Can’t tell you how much I love them.
Anyways, back to the point.
I know how it may feel when your cat keeps scratching your furniture.
Don’t worry, I have a solution.
Cats Scratching Your Furniture Has A Reason.
And I can almost guarantee, that if you follow the steps correctly.
Within 10 days you are gonna see a change in your cat’s scratching behavior.
And no, we are neither going to suppress our kitty’s behavior neither are we allowing her to do whatever she wants.
Creating an alternative expression path is the key that we are going to explore.
And the added benefit that you are going to see apart from your cat not scratching your furniture anymore.
She is a much more happy and playful.
So sit tight grab a cup of coffee and read on.
I promise I am going to make your entire reading experience pleasant and purr-fect.
Before we go ahead and see what are the possible solutions that you can safely apply.
It is very important to first understand why do cats scratch.
So that we are not in a mental state where we just wanna get rid of the problem.
Without paying due attention to what our cat wants.
So Why Do Cats Scratch ?
There are a variety of reasons why cats scratch.
Scratching Relaxes A Cat
Know this first that, cat scratching is a very healthy and natural behavior that a cat exudes.
The very first time I paid attention to these three scratching, I don’t know why but I found it to be incredibly funny and very satisfying for some reason.
Probably because once these kittens took it all out on the door mat they went ahead and slept very peacefully.
I didn’t know whether both of these events were related or not at that time.
Because cats are strange creatures and you can’t always predict them but I knew in my heart the kitty felt better after doing it.
It felt like a YAWNjust before a nice nap.
5 bucks says you just yawned after reading the word yawn.
So this is what cat’s specialists say about scratching.
By the way I am going into details only because I don’t want you to have just a superficial quick fix.
I want you to have sufficient knowledge base and insight to know how to tackle the problem from the very root.
And you can use these insights to reduce other unnecessary behavioral patterns from your cat.
Yeah, so specialists say,
- Firstly, it stretches and relaxes cat’s body muscles so that the act keeps them agile. Scratching in one or the other way provides stimulation and essential exercise to muscles and tendons in a cat’s body from her toes to neck to her shoulders.
- Secondly, scratching relaxes your cats. I told you so, didn’t I.
This in a way strengthens my perception about the fact that cat scratching is a very relaxing exercise for cats.
So we don’t want them to get rid of it because it is a very natural cat behavior.
Sometimes I wander what is the point of being an expert. :P.
I am just being nasty. Don’t mind me.
By Scratching Cats Mark Their Territory
So it seems scratching is another way cats mark their territory.
A cat’s paw contain scent glands that release certain fragrance and odors that she or he uses to let other cats in the area know that this territory belongs to him or her.
By the way, I am going to use him or her in the whole post as I feel like.
Both ways I am referring to cats only.
So cats scratching is method of communication which is very essential in feline social structures.
Even if you don’t have more than one cat in your house you will see your cat is going to execute this tendency to mark her territory.
There is inherent memory memory structure inherent in her to transmit the information about herself in this manner.
Scratching Cats Are Sharpening Their Claws
The very essential nature of an animal that includes a cat, in general involves survival and procreation.
It doesn’t matter if it is cats or any other animal the most essential aspect that is ingrained in them is this urge to survive and procreate.
And the most essential tool for survival in animals especially when they are in wild are their claws and their teeth.
It will be very interesting you to know that when it comes to dental care in the wild, it is already taken care of.
Nobody is out there into the wild giving them cooked food or specialized food that is cooked at a certain degree for their health.
Consuming raw food doesn’t subject their teeth to a lot of dental problems.
It is also a scientific fact that if our daily diet includes a lot of raw foods, green veggies and fruits, you will find that you will have far less dental problems.
Anyways let’s not move away from the point under discussion.
So the point I am trying to make is cats feel the need to stretch to also strengthen their paws that they can use to protect themselves if the need may arise.
Scratching helps a cat remove the outside husk in its claws so that its claws remain sharp and healthy.
Cats Scratching Has A Feel Good Factor Associated With It
This is again an extension to the point that we discussed in the beginning that cats stretch and scratch prior to relaxing
Scratching is also a very playful activity that cats undergo to stimulate their body and express their playful nature.
And if you pay a little attention to when your cat is scratching you will see that it is a very freeing behavior on their part and gives sufficient expression to its wild nature.
Because the very way that cats have evolved from being in the wild to finding their place in our living room is by inculcating a variety of different things in their nature.
But in doing so they also need to express their wild nature in some way or the other.
Scratching is one of those ways that you can say in which your Kitty expresses itself and the feel free knowing that her tools of survival are intact in case she needs to use them on neighborhood dogs.
Or you if she wants to. Because its a cat you see.
Fine With The Wilderness But Don’t Scratch My Furniture for Pete’s Sake
Although this tendency of cats seemed relaxing and beautiful and natural for them, it causes a lot of problems for cat owners who are a sick of having their clothes, rugs and most importantly furniture shredded.
So is there a way in which we can train our cats to, if not completely stop, reduce their tendency to scratch our furniture by giving her an alternate expression.
Why, Yes there Is ?.
God, I sound too sales pitchy :P.
I am not trying to. Ain’t promoting any product here.
Just Some Good Old Advice.
What you also must know is that some cats don’t feel the urge to scratch that much.
On the other hand sometimes you will find cats that are so wild that they will scratch just about anything.
In other words, tendency to scratch varies from cat to cat.
So as a cat owner we want our cats to express herself but you also want them to express it where she is supposed to express.
So in the next segment we are going to go discuss STEP-By-STEP, how we can do just that.
I will explain you the steps and also how you can spread the steps out in 10 days.
So that on the 11th day you can give out a sigh of relief seeing your sofa is intact after you get up in the morning.
And don’t think that you need some special kind of cat behavior study or some kind of course to do this.
It is very easy if you apply the techniques that I am going to tell you.
And everything that we discussed till now you will see how it gets related to the steps that we are going to take.
It is very easy to to reduce cats scratching behavior and and it won’t take too much of your time.
It can be done in a very small time if you do it right.
Even in less than 10 days, if you follow everything up with attention.
STEP 1 : Day (1-2) – Giving Your Cats What They Need
This step is very important because one of the prime reasons why cats scratch your furniture is not because they want to get back at you.
But because they can’t find a better place to scratch. They are not getting what they need.
As I already told you all the cats have evolved into household domestication from wilderness.
But there are still latent tendencies in cats that are wild in nature and cats scratching is one such way of expressing that wild nature which is healthy and very normal.
So giving a good cat scratching post to your cat is crucial.
It is going to go a long way into to reducing claw marks on your furniture in the sense, here we are directing its nature to some place that is especially dedicated for her to express its nature.
Remember what we told you we are not suppressing her nature by going extreme like declawing a cat nor are we allowing her to do what she wants to do without any sense of control.
And it is also very important to choose the right kind of post.
This because cats have strong personalities and as such this strong personality translates to your cat having very specific likes and dislikes.
And if you get your kitty a scratching post that she doesn’t like the whole thing is not going to work.
So the way you can be sure that you are getting scratching post that is more likely to be liked by your cat is by choosing one that is study strong tall and covered with materials that invites your cat to scratch them.
How to choose the best sketching post for your particular kitty is a very detailed topic that I want to cover in a separate post.
So as soon as I have created that guide,I will post it here.
So that you can go ahead and marinate yourselves comprehensively as to what are the factors we need to look into to provide the best scratching post to our cat.
But in the meantime I want you to look into these factors that I just discussed to get an incredible scratching post for your cat.
For your convenience and to get you started on keeping your cats off your furniture project, here are my top recommendations.
- Durable and very stable
- Covered with scratch worthy sisal fabric
- 32 inch height offers sufficient vertical stretch
- Easy assembly
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- Appropriate for large cats. Dimensions 19L x 19W x 41H Inches
- Extremely durable, strong & thick and sturdy.
- Sisal rope covered post provides satisfying scratching experience for cats.
- Coupled with strong stable base
- 1-year MidWest Quality Guarantee
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Honorable Mentions :
This Cats Scratcher cum Activity Condo By Petpals is also one of my favorites.
Two very important reasons for that are,
- One is, it is a scratching post cum vantage resting point and a tiny playhouse
- The other is the very colors of this scratching post allows it to blend beautifully with your living room.
So if you are into home decor you can get this one. Also, scratching posts need to be placed smack on the middle of your rooms because they need to be visible to cats to attract them.
So it will fulfill that criteria too.
Overall a very good choice.
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Now once again guys this is a very important step.
Why I am telling you this is and I am going to include this point in how to choose a scratching post guide is, cats like to explore and find things.
Finding a nice scratch worthy cardboard cat scratchers beneath a bed or besides the closet will create rewarding cats scratching tendencies towards these scratch worthy options.
Guys, I don’t want you to skip this step whatsoever order one of these scratching posts now. Because this step is crucial to provide alternative scratching routes to scratching cats.
This is in line to what we discussed previously.
We aren’t going to suppress or deny any kinds of expression from our cat but provide an alternative route where she can redirect her expression.
And as such investing in one of these scratching post is crucial.
STEP 2 : Day (3-4) – Strategic Placement Of Cats Scratching Posts
It is very essential to not only pick up a great scratching post.
What is also important is it to subject your cat to the scratching post properly as soon as possible so that she starts using it for the purpose it is intended for.
One very easy way you can do this is by placing the cat scratching post strategically into places where your cat likes to visit.
For example, let’s say maybe your cat likes to hangout near the fireplace or maybe near the window.
And one other thing that you are going to observe is, as I did when I first paid attention to these cats.
Cats are more likely to scratch immediately after they wake up from cat nap.
So another strategy that you can use is, to place your scratching post strategically into places where your cat likes to sleep.
Also be cautious of the fact that cats are very territorial animals.
That means you can not just place a scratching post into an area that is not too frequently visited by your cat.
Do not place it into an unused corner just because you don’t like how the new scratching post looks in your living room.
That is why I suggested this scratching post.
Its and all in one cat activity center that will look good in your home.
Because you see they want your territory to be their territory. As you might have realized that by now in your time of owning a cat.
They want things smack right in the middle and thick of things where they can show off. So be aware of that.
It is also a wise idea to keep your scratching post in front of your furniture that is most affected by cats scratching.
Another thing that you need to do is when you introduce your cat to the scratching post is to reward her scratching post usage with cat treats or whatever your cat likes to strengthen that behavior.
STEP 3 : Day (4-5) – Using A Cat Deterrent Spray
In one of the blog posts that we just created and which was received incredibly well by our community, we taught you how to create a DIY homemade frugal spray that you can use for your cat to stay away from places that you don’t want.
Go ahead and visit this blog post and learn how you can do so pretty easily.
Once you have created a cat deterrent spray I want you to use this spray in places where you don’t want your cat to be.
The mechanics of using a cat deterrent spray is to divert our cats scratching urge from places that we don’t want to scratchb(using cat deterrent spray) to places we want her to scratch i.e., scratching post.
I hope everything is making sense to you.
We are going into elaborate details of our cats scratching behavior so that you are completely aware of what is it you need to do.
Your patience is needed.
Its very important for cat owners to understand that your cat is a bundle of energy that is expressing itself just like us.
They don’t understand our language they understand our energy and our presence.
And as a piece of nature our cats wants to express themselves just like nature.
Most cat behavior patterns are caused because somewhere something within them is suppressed.
Which in turn is expressed as unnecessary aggression etc etc.
Hope you are getting the point.
So it is very important to place your scratching post strategically so that finds and expresses herself freely with it.
Other ways in which you can stop your cat from scratching your furniture is by making the scratch prone areas herd to get.
Something like stuffing the underneath of your sofa by scratch resistant sheets.
STEP 4 : Day (6) Increasing Cats Interest In Scratching Post
You know about catnip right. Hmm.
How about seeing your cat go crazy over your scratching post.
You can get your get to be interested in her scratching post even more by applying little bit of catnip over it.
Or you can also use honeysuckle to spray your cats scratching post with and you will find that your cats are no more interested in being around your sketching post.
You can also use interactive cat toys that have catnip or honeysuckle in them that will keep them busy around the sketching post.
And when they have exhausted themselves by playing around, and they feel the need to relax.
They can go ahead and scratch into their new scratching post.
And what happens when they get up ?.
Guess what the first thing that they are going to see is a scratch worthy scratching post in front of them that they can just go ahead and scratch the hell out of.
And hopefully leave your furniture alone.
STEP 5 : Day (7-8) Training Your Cats Scratching Tendencies Around Scratching Post
if you are paying attention to how we are aligning everything towards the scratching post, you will realize we are not doing anything special.
We are just strengthening our cats behavior towards having a liking towards its scratching post.
Because you already know cats are very unique and have strong personalities.
And if these kinds of tendencies are inculcated into them with the methods we are just discussing what is going to happen is.
These tendencies will form root in them and then after a while you don’t have to do all of these things.
And they will automatically go ahead and use the scratching post.
Just the way we want them to use it.
So if you are a future cat owner and looking to have a kitten.
It is generally after 8 weeks a kitten starts to scratch.
And that is probably the best time that you can apply all of these methods to train your kitten to use the scratching post properly.
And the fun fact is if you have a kitten at your hands all of these things will be quite easy to inculcate in your cat.
Because your little kitty is yet to explore the world so let’s create a world around her that she needs rather than what you can give her.
So a happy cat home is the one that has a balance. That is not tilting one side or the other side only.
But if your cat is a little older than 8 weeks or if it has already developed some kinds of tendencies.
Do not worry it is very easy to overwrite their tendencies into something that you want with the help of the methods that we are discussing here.
When she finds scratching post in this sense coupled with an incredible scratch worthy surface that invites scratching, you will find that the tendencies and liking towards the sketching post start increasing.
So again this is a combination of understanding your cats instincts and tendencies and creating the right environment for her to express herself.
STEP 6 : Day (9) Using Feliway To Increase Calmness
By this time you will see a very clear reduction in your cats scratching tendencies towards your furniture.
Sometimes when your cats scratching tendencies are too fierce, it may be possible that your cats scratching behavior is triggered by stress.
So if that is the case and you find your cat is stretching the furniture intensely using feliway can be a very effective way to enable her to stop scratching your furniture.
So if you already don’t know.
Feliway is a spray or a solution that mimics the hormones that a cat’s head releases when it is very calm and relaxed.
When is sprayed on items at nose level this can help your cat feel much more calm and reduce territorial behavior.
Feliway can also be used if your cat is urinating at inappropriate places and aiding cats in handling vet and grooming visits calmly.
If you have done all the six steps properly and in the very way I described them.
There are very good chances that by the time you have deployed these 6 steps over a course of 8-9 days, you will see remarkable changes in your cat’s behavior.
You can expect your cat loosing interest in scratching your furniture and is interested more in her new scratching post.
So now is the time to be happy but now is also the time to be a little more conscious and cautious.
STEP 7 : (Day 10+) Being A Little Conscious Of Your Surroundings.
Why I am saying this is.
Let’s say you just bought a new furniture or a new sofa.
For a few days, what is more important for you is to make this sofa an unattractive destination to your cats.
We are doing this because cats like to explore new stuff and if the sofa seems scratch worthy.
The latent tendencies to scratch may return back and leave long and saddening claw marks on your new sofa.
And there she will be sitting right there on the sofa apparently proud of what she just did. And knowing full well you couldn’t do anything about it.
Cats, Right !!.
Only bravehearts can handle cats. That’s a fact.
As time will pass on you will see that you have successfully created an attractive scratching station for your cats.
A place where, she is now sleeping, relaxing and scratching and having a good time overall.
And doing simple things like playing your with your cat near the scratching post and using our cat deterrent spray on places you don’t want your cat to be is going to help ease and fasten the process.
See I told you how easy it is. You don’t need expensive courses for such a simple thing.
I consciously made this post long and loaded with information so that you don’t have to go anywhere on the planet to help resolve your problem.
It’s just that it may require a little bit more patience and care from your side.
Care is something I know you have in plenty amounts because of the very fact that you decided to own a cat.
It’s now time to improve your patience as well and see this opportunity to help grow yourself also.
What About Declawing ?
Declawing cats is not an intelligent solution to the problem.
More often than not what happens is pet owners fail to understand the mechanics of the situation.
And this is true with dog owners too.
This may come as a surprise but most of the times its the failure of pet owners to not understand what our PETS NEED and their urge to give them WHAT THEY THINK IS RIGHT leads to a majority of pet problems.
Guys !!, I know you love them and they are a part of your family. But you also need to understand they are pets and they are animals.
Their needs are RAW and SIMPLE. And not as complex as humans.
As long as their simple needs are fulfilled and their life expressed properly you will have a happy pet.
See them as your kid yes most definitely, but not a HUMAN KID.
That is why in this post we suggested our technique of ALTERNATE EXPRESSION rather than SUPPRESSION.
Proper perception about animals and ofcourse cats is very crucial.
Declawing a cat can leave it completely defenseless if it gets outside or in a situation where it needs to defend itself.
As I already told you cats have evolved into a situation where they can be domesticated which doesn’t mean that they have completely dropped their wild tendencies.
And here and there they need to express their wild tendencies like scratching with the help of a post to keep them completely free in expressing themselves.
And when such tendencies are suppressed through methods such as declawing, it can result in some other problem some other behavioral problems in your cat.
She may even become more aggressive.
It may result in your cat not being able to climb higher places properly.
It may even result in your cat having problems with playing with other cats in the house.
So instead of forming the conclusion that you need to declaw your cat I want you to have a little patience and apply the techniques that I just told you.
With time, little patience and with a lot of care you will find that your fur baby now follows what you want and keeps her scratches to a minimum and only in the places she is allowed to do it.
I know you may have certain other queries about the whole process or maybe you want to give your inputs as to how you overcame this tendency of your cat.
If you have any such query or if you want to share something I request you to to put all the comments that you have in the comments section below.
And nothing would make me happy to go through them and reply as needed.
I hope every single second of you reading this post was worth it.
Share this with every cat owner you know so that they are aware of what they need to do if they are in te same situation.
I love you all and I will see you in the next one.