A cat is a precious member of our families. As an owner it is quite upsetting when they start scratching your furniture. Scratching is normal behaviour,but we need to get them to scratch what we allow, and not what they feel comfortable with.
Why do cats scratch?
- To mark territory
- Maintains healthy joints and tendons.
- Scratching forms part of their grooming ritual.
- Relieves anxiety
- To show their excitement
What can I do to save my furniture?
Expect when your cat is going to scratch. This will usually be after a nap, when they want to mark their territory or when they are excited eg after you come home from work. Cats will have a different preference in what they want to scratch. Some cats prefer vertical surfaces and other cats like horizontal flat surfaces where they can stretch and scratch.
- When you get your new resident have a variety of scratch posts, made from different material, shapes and sizes.
- Place the scratch post next to the area, where you do not want them to scratch. Eg next to a couch, curtain etc.
- Wrap double sided sticky tape, glad wrap, or plastic around the area you want your cat to avoid. Cats find the feeling of these substrates unpleasant.
- Reward your cat when they do scratch at the required place/ post. This can be done with a small cat approved treat, or via the guidance of a registered clicker trainer.
If your cat continues to scratch, seek the help of a veterinary behaviorist.