This Is Why Your Cat Scratches Your Furniture

Cats are lovely mischievous pets. It is completely natural for cats to claw.

We can not stop scratching, but we can give our cats opportunities to scratch indoors so that they do not start scratching on objects we are afraid of, such as the expensive speakers or the favorite sofa. Here are some tips on what to do to prevent your cat from scratching “illegally.”

Why is the cat scratching?

Itching is a natural behavior of the cat. Both wild and domestic cats claw to mark in their immediate area / territory. They claw to show other cats in the area that this is their territory. It is not just the tear marks that signal to the other cats that a cat is holding a territory; the cat also leaves a scent trail as they scratch out their territory.

Cats communicate with scent pheromones, among other things. The traces of odor on the claw come from the itching of superficial glands in the skin of the cat’s paws. The scent pheromones are perceived by other cats and are often not felt by the ordinary human nose. The cat signals to other cats that the territory is already occupied.

In addition to showing other cats that a territory belongs to someone, clawing also has other purposes. It is believed that scratching also gives the cat some form of physical exercise for muscles. Loose claws are also trimmed during “clawing”.

Cats that go both outside and inside often get their claw needs satisfied outdoors, but sometimes they also want to have claw opportunities indoors. Cats that only stay indoors need the opportunity to get “clawed”.

If you do not offer a cat claw trees or the like, you should not be surprised if the cat starts clawing at furniture, the floor or the wallpaper. You can not prevent the cat from scratching, but you can with a little patience redirect the cat’s attention to unwanted claw points, such as a claw tree.

Tips to prevent your cat from scratching your furniture.

Here we give you several tips on how to prevent or get your cat to stop scratching your furniture.

Treat the root cause of the problem

Itching is an important behavior to maintain its territory. Territorial marking is almost always triggered by the cat feeling insecure due to something. Holding a territory can be stressful for a cat, this stress can trigger claw markings. It could be one of the neighbor’s cats entering the cat’s territory. Both cats with a low stress threshold and dominant cats can be stressed by surrounding cats entering their territory. It can also be cats in the same household that trigger the claw markings. These problems need to be solved to reduce stress and then reduce the claw markings. To minimize stress, always make sure that the cat’s basic needs are met;

  1. Access to food and water – these should be placed so that the cat, if it is shy, can drink and eat in several places in the household. The same applies if you have more cats, you should place bowls so all the cats can eat in peace, even the low-ranking cats.
  2. Access to hiding places – cats like to lie a little higher and look down at the surroundings. Climbing trees with several ledges are a good solution.
  3. Access to litter box – all cats must have a box is the rule. Some shy cats like to see their cat friends and even humans as they do their needs. If you do not know what need your cat has, make sure you have a cat box with a roof and one without a roof where the cat can see the surroundings and any threats. The location of the box is also important. You can have one in the toilet, but if you have a shy cat or a low-ranking cat, the cat may be unsure to walk on the drawer that becomes difficult to access in a room. It is better then to place it in a corner where the cat has a clear view in front of him but does not have to keep track behind his back.

Offer a good claw board or claw-opportunities

You can offer your cat good alternative claw options. There are some guidelines you can follow. The claw tree must be high enough so that the cat can extend its entire length without coming over the top of the claw board when it is to claw. You should always have an extra claw tree if you have problems with your cat clawing in the wrong places. That is, if you have 2 cats, make sure you have 3 claw options. If the cats do not use any of the claw trees, you can remove them gradually.

The claw tree must be stable. The cat will not want to use the claw board as much unless it is firmly / firmly attached. Hanging claw boards on commercially available are not the best option. The cat’s No1 specializes in cat trees with claw options.

It is important that you place the claw tree / board so that it appeals to the cat. Many people think that the claw board looks ugly and try to hide it behind a door or similar. It is best if you place the claw board near the place that the cat has chosen as its claw / marking place. Then, as the cat uses the new board, you can gradually reposition it further and further away.

Make the claw tree attractive

Make the claw place a place that is interesting, fun to be in. Cats love to climb and sit on shelves. Hang toys in ropes, place cardboard boxes on the shelves of the climbing tree. Cats love to lie and look, preferably at a slightly higher altitude. Position the climbing tree so that the cat can lie down and look out the window. If you have an indoor cat, why not place a “cat theater” (a bird table) outside the window! Then you are guaranteed the cat to use the climbing tree.

Some cats love catnip and it may work to spray catnip on the new claw board to get the cat to change the claw point. You can also rub the tree or board with a tuna spatula or give small candy rewards when the cat scratches. The cat’s soothing scent pheromones that are sprayed on the claw point cause the cat to associate the place with something positive.

Choose the right material for the claw tree

The material from which the claw board is made must be correct. It is important for the cat that the clawing leaves traces. Materials that the cat cannot tear into are not good to use here. Cats love corrugated cardboard. Corrugated cardboard, however, breaks easily, so it does not last that long. Often this material can work on cats that like to scratch on wallpaper. You can easily fix new material, so then you can make your own claw board. Keep in mind that cats are individuals and therefore have different likes and tastes. If the traditional claw mats do not appeal, try another material; such as wood or textiles.

You can physically protect your furniture by covering them with a wax cloth or similar material. When you change the structure of the furniture that the cat usually scratches on, they usually do not scratch as much anymore.

Treatment with soothing scent pheromones Feliway

It is important to reduce stress and while you are trying to make changes to get a safer, calmer cat use the cat’s soothing pheromones, Felliway. So what are scent pheromones? The cat communicates in part via scent pheromones with other cats and their environment. Feliway spray has extracted the cat’s anise pheromones. When the cat feels safe within its territory, it leaves scent markings by rubbing its face against furniture and other protruding objects in the home (the territory). If the scratching has been caused by stress, for example in households with several cats, it is important to minimize stress with environmental changes by ensuring that the cat’s basic needs are met (read above).

How do you use the scent pheromones?

The places that the cat has chosen to claw at are first washed with soap mixed with water to get rid of the “territory pheromones”. After the material has dried, spray the claws with Feliway’s soothing scent pheromones. In this way, you change the meaning of the place for the cat. The cat then no longer wants to scratch and mark territory as the scent pheromones convey security and well-being for the cat. You spray the claw point with feliway spray 6 times daily for 1 month or until the cat itself has stopped and scratched.

If the itching is triggered by stress, it can also be advantageous to insert a scent emitter in the socket that continuously sprays soothing pheromones into the house. One hander is enough for about 50-70 square meters (depends a bit on which floor plan you have in the accommodation. If you have 2 different floors, one hander is required on each floor

In very stressful situations at home or with very stressed cats, you combine feliway with soothing supplements, Zylkéne or soothing food, Royal Canin Calm.

Get the cat to avoid the forbidden claw point

You should never yell at the cat that is performing its unwanted behavior. Then the cat may be afraid of the pet owner and in addition, the cat will continue with the behavior when the pet owner is away. What you can do is get the cat to associate the itching in the illegal places with something unpleasant. Place a motion detector that sprays liquid that smells of lemon on the cat when it is about to itch.

The cat can also be placed outdoors but under a roof to scare away cats in the neighborhood such as urine or claw marks on your cat’s territory. Another way is to rattle something in the room next door when the cat scratches in places you do not want it to use

Claw clipping

The damage to your furniture will be less if the claws of the cat are cut at regular intervals.

Use easy-to-use ball pliers designed for cats when mowing.

Hope our tips can help you and your cat! Good luck!

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