New Cat Parents
You love your cat, but maybe you wish they wouldn’t scratch the furniture.
Scratching is a natural behavior for cats, but you can guide your kitty to use scratching posts and other options rather than the leg of your favorite chair.
Scratching is a behavior that cats absolutely MUST do.
There’s no way around it—scratching is instinctual, and beneficial. Here are some of the purposes scratching serves…
Since cats must scratch, finding safe scratching alternatives is the best solution.
Scratching posts (or other scratching surfaces) are crucial. They are designed to be scratched, and therefore healthy for your cat and a better alternative to your furniture: a win-win.
However, individual cats have different tastes when it comes to scratching. Here are some factors to consider:
Whether you’ve purchased a cat tower, a freestanding scratching post, a horizontal cardboard scratcher you place on the floor, or any other option, your kitty may need some training to use it.
Try these tips:
Now you know how to train your cat to use a scratching post—but the other side of the coin is preventing them from using your furniture, curtains, carpet, etc.
Gentle discouragement is best. Here are some ways to do that:
If you see claw damage but didn’t witness your cat scratching, reacting after the fact won’t help your cat learn because they won’t understand why you’re upset.
You need to give your cat signals while they’re scratching, because that’s how cats learn best—they learn in the moment.
You can trim your cat’s nails at home, or bring your kitty to a veterinary practice or groomer to get the job done.
When trimming nails at home, start slow. Get your kitty used to having their paws handled first.
Maybe you’ve heard of declawing. While common in the past, this surgical procedure—which removes not only your cat’s claws, but also part of their toes including the bone—is falling out of favor. The procedure can result in chronic pain (and a painful surgical recovery), and may lead to other behavioral problems. It’s even illegal in some countries, and some parts of the U.S.
A better alternative is Soft Paws. This product—a set of plastic covers for your kitty’s nails that come in fun colors and are attached with a special glue—can work for some cats.
However, Soft Paws need to be replaced every few weeks. And some cats will remove them earlier than that.
For all these reasons, many experts recommend nail trimming as the simplest, most humane option to keep nails trimmed, healthy, and not overly sharp.
Altogether, nail trimming, furniture deterrents, and—most importantly—a proper scratching surface can lead to scratching habits that work for both you and your cat.
Your kitty will appreciate your attention to their needs—and once you’re free of worry over the furniture and curtains, you’ll be able to focus all your attention on the wonderful bond with your cat.
From our family to yours,
Fromm Family Pet Food
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