Cats scratch because they want to keep their claws sharp, and more importantly, they want to leave their scents to ‘socially important places’. Cats want to own all the things and they do it by marking things as their territory. In addition, grabbing things with paws and snatching them is good exercise for them. On the other hand, If your cat is suddenly attacking you or looks stressed that’s maybe because she has pent-up energy stored and showing destructive behavior.
But as I said, socially important places or territorially important places, like your bed, sofa, and chairs where you spend most of your time are crucial territories for your cat. That’s where most of your scent is present. So when she’s scratching those things, it means she wants to complement your scent with theirs. A simple yet important reason. But again, this is the price you pay for a beautiful relation between you and your kitty.
We know that cats need to scratch but we don’t want them to scratch valuable things in the house. An obvious looking solution is cat scratch posts. There are some different types of scratch posts available. But if your cat still scratches the furniture, sofa, and the bed or just ignore scratch posts, what should you do?
Around scent soakers; your sofa, bed, and the furniture items, where your scent is present are the best place to put a scratch post. That way your cat can scratch those posts and can leave their scent in that space and complement yours.
In addition, get a stout and steady one because your cat wouldn’t love to climb and scratch on the post that wobbles. And that warrants them to scratch your furniture! Even if you get one and placed in the right place, your cat needs to unlearn the old scratching habits.
One of the solutions is attaching cat sticky paws where your cat usually scratches. ‘Cat sticky paws’ is a tape that has both the sides sticky. So when your cats try to scratch on that area, they would feel all tacky and repulsive feeling in paws and just will refuse to scratch it the next time.
So the next best option for them is to use a scratch post placed nearby and your cat will eventually start using it.
Sometimes a cat’s scratching different things is attention-seeking behavior. For instance, you scold your kitty when they scratch at your door or the furniture items, they think they’re getting attention by doing that. In fact, cats also respond well with reward-based positive reinforcement training. Your response, even if it’s yelling at them is still a reward for them.
All in all, even after setting up the scratch post the right way as we discussed in the above sections, your cat might just be doing it to grab your attention. A similar issue is your cat scratching at the door. Try ignoring them and associate happy feelings with the scratch posts and also ensure that your cat is getting enough human-cat interaction.
This is a sort of last resort to save your furniture from being scratched. Vinyl nails are blunt and soft nail caps. Your cat would keep scratching wherever they want to but there won’t be any damage to your furniture. Well, I don’t recommend using this because it will suppress your cat’s behavior to leave scents, but if nothing works, you can give it a try to vinyl nails. Nail caps would pop out once your cat has grown nails. So trim them again and put vinyl nails on.
A cat’s scratching behavior is normal and there shouldn’t be any punitive methods to curb it. Consider their scratching behavior as the price you have to pay for this beautiful relation. The takeaway here is to learn how to stop your cat from scratching your furniture and lead them to use scratch posts.
"Clara is a co-founder and the marketing head at Petlovesbest.com. She happens to be an active animal activist in her town who has done a few notable works for the welfare of animals, especially pets. She loves to enjoy writing about pets and animals."