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Give Your Cat a “D” in Scratching! (Ways to Prevent Annoying Scratching!)

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Party Marty here!  Have you missed me? I have been quite busy resting, napping, eating and scratching away….heavy emphasis on the scratching. It can be a full-time job for cats, you know. I realize you humans can find it to be an annoying habit, but please know that we do it instinctively for many reasons:  to mark our scent; to get attention;  to reduce the outer layers of our claws and to stretch and condition the muscles in our paws.

If it bothers you, then there are a few ways you can keep us from doing this. Just remember the 3Ds!

  • You can DETER us from this behavior through the use of unpleasant tape and sprays. Mark the areas you do not want your cat to scratch through the use of specifically formulated herbal sprays or double-sided tape that have an unpleasant scent to discourage your little rascal from scratching.
  • Displace where your cat scratches. If he or she has no spot to claim as his or her own, then consider your furniture and upholstery fair game. By providing more appealing alternatives, such as posts, furniture and boards, your cat will soon prefer to scratch elsewhere. For those problematic areas around doorframes and wooden desk legs, consider getting a piece of cat furniture or post made of cedar. If your cat is still eyeballing the soft sides of your couch or your favorite rug, opt for a carpeted cat tree or perch. To encourage your cat to seek out the new (and acceptable!) places to scratch, spray a bit of catnip on the items and they will soon be discovered!
  • DULL your cat’s claws in an effort to reduce damage to your belongings. Make this a part of your cat’s regular grooming routine. Be sure to use veterinary quality clippers and gently squeeze each paw to expose the retractable claws.

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