In a lot of your messages you ask me “how to stop my cat from scratching my furniture”. But what can we do humans? We cats have our needs as well! Such amazing nails need to be sharpened in order to perform their mission to the maximum of their capacities.
What? Do you want to preserve your furniture? The truth is that we should not even pay attention to you, but for the sake of the relationship we’ve been having for millennia we will do something for you as well!
I will make a whole guide for you! But let’s see first why cats scratch your furniture!
Why does my cat scratch the furniture?
1. To sharpen its nails
It is obvious that cats that respect themselves have to keep their nails sharp in order to be able to climb trees or make an attack on their prey anytime as true first-class predators that they are. A typical case of such cat with hunting habits is me (NOT)!
So cats choose your furniture to sharpen their nails! More specifically, scratching the furniture helps to get rid of the old nails, to remove the external casing in order for the new dangerous nails to appear!
2. To mark its area
Cats, as we have already said many times, are creatures that want their own territory (territorial). There are glands on the tips of their feet and by scratching various furniture they leave their mark (odor) there and in this way they mark the boundaries of their area!
3. To release tension and exercise
Through scratching, cats release their excess energy and at the same time exercise, strengthening and stretching their muscles! It is necessary for a cat that wants to adapt to today’s requirements!
4. To attract attention
If every time your kitten scratches a piece of furniture you run towards its place to yell at it, it may interpret it as a way to get your attention. That is another reason why cats scratch the furniture and the carpets.
How to stop your cat from scratching your furniture – 7 simple tips
Stop moaning, my dear reader, for crying out loud! I will tell you everything. Grap a pen and paper and take notes:
1. Use a scratching post
You will think that this is an obvious solution, but I have to mention it. The scratching post is used to give your cat the necessary (for its well-being) point where it can scratch its nails and leave your furniture and carpets alone. If it ignores it, try throwing catnip on it, making it more attractive to your cat!
2. Give your cat horizontal scratching surfaces
If your cat ignores the scratching post, you could try using a horizontal surface (pad) suitable for scratching! Again, a little catnip on top of it may help draw your kitten’s attention to it!
3. Choose scratching places with different textures
Choose scratching posts and horizontal surfaces that are covered with different materials and textures. Swapping these surfaces may make your cat lose its need to choose the textures of your rug or your armchair. What materials to use? Cardboard, sisal wood (a material made out of agave fibers)!
4. Choose scratching places of different slopes
Cats love scratching their nails at various inclines. So make sure you have options for scratching at different inclines. Ideally there must be a vertical option (a vertical scratching post for example), an inclined option and a horizontal one, in order to cover all of your kitten’s needs! Make sure the means you use do not move easily as your cat is scratching them!
5. Cover the places you want to protect with double sided adhesive tape
Locate the spots your kitten scratches and cover them up with double sided adhesive tape. Your cat will not like that sensation at all. In order to not discourage it completely, however, put an option for scratching at that place, so it can choose it!
6. Use pheromones on the surfaces you want to protect
Many cat breeders recommend spraying pheromones (like feliway) on the areas we want to protect. These can fool your cat since by smelling them it will think that a different cat has left its odor there and it will get discouraged from scratching that area.
7. Help your kitten relax
Check your cat’s stress levels. Frequent scratching is often an indicator of tension and stress for your little friend. Maybe the arrival of a baby, or some other factor that has stressed out your kitten has led it to destroy the surfaces of your house. If that’s the case, you should help your kitten relax!
8. Use cat scratch protectors for your sofa
To protect your sofa from your cat (from its nails), there are various covers that are quite durable and thick and can protect it against your cat’s violent attempt to scratch it. Some of them are even quite elegant so you can give a different decorative touch to the space!
I hope you find all the above useful. I left the best advice for last:
GET OVER YOURSELVES AND IGNORE THE FACT THAT YOUR FURNITURE IS ALL SCRATCHED UP!