Cats make for adorable pets, until they start scratching at your furniture. If your lovely ball of fur likes nothing better than to attack and march on your expensive sofa or other pieces of furniture, it is not only frustrating, but can be expensive. Their scratching could cause damages that may cost a lot of money to sort. However, there are ways you can prevent this problem getting to this stage.
In the following post we will outline 5 great tips to prevent your cats from scratching your furniture that you can put into action today.
Trim Their Nails
Do you ever trim your cat’s nails or take them to a professional to do it for you? If not, now is the time to start. Although you need to be careful not to trim them too short, by trimming them you can reduce the damage your cat can make if he or she does actually try to scratch at your furniture.
Get into the good practice of trimming them every few days, to stay on top of them. Once you get into the routine of doing it, you will find it is not as hard and your cat may even get more used to it.
On the subject of their nails and trimming them, you could also place plastic caps on their nails, but this should only be done if you have sought out the advice of your vet. When you use these plastic cups they last for around 3 to 6 weeks, so you will need to replace them, if you intend on using over a longer period of time. When trying this method, make sure you watch your cat closely and see how they get on with them, as it could feel very uncomfortable at first.
Make Sure They Have the Right Necessities
Cats often scratch because they are bored and because they instinctively need to do it. Therefore, by making sure your cat is thoroughly entertained, you may be able to curtail this frustrating practice. You should also invest in the right necessities for your cat, such as a scratching post or cat tree (which normally features scratching post elements in the design). Not only will this help because you are providing an alternative to your furniture, but the addition of the extra platforms and levels on a cat tree will help keep your cat busy and give him plenty to do instead of attacking that nice leather sofa.
It is best to place your cat’s scratching post or cat tree close by the areas they normally scratch that you don’t want them to, if possible.
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Use Double-Sided Tape, Sandpaper or Plastic
You can help put them off the idea of scratching by using double-sided tape, sandpaper or even plastic on the parts of furniture and your home that they like to scratch. By doing this, your cat will find it less comfortable to scratch and may in time look elsewhere to scratch. It may also be a good idea to install safety gates or shut the doors to rooms where there is new or very expensive furniture.
Spraying Water at Your Cat and Correcting Them
You can make use of your voice and its tone to correct their behaviour. So, if you catch him or her in the act, a simple, direct and authoritative ‘NO’, will indicate that they are not doing a good thing and could reduce their interest in continuing to scratch. It is also wise to keep a plastic spray bottle with cold water that you can use to spritz your cat when they are scratching on a piece of furniture or part of your home they are not supposed to be. If you are consistent with this, it should eventually discourage him or her from scratching at your furniture and home.
However, it is important that you don’t spray them with more water than necessary, as cats don’t really like water much. Simple, spray enough that indicates what they did was wrong.
Keep Them Outside or Give Them Time Outside
Cats are generally outdoor pets, and unless you have good reason to keep them outside, you need to give them time to explore the outside world. This allows them the opportunity to scratch at tree trunks and play in the garden. Once they get into a good habit of using natural elements as scratching posts they will find it more enjoyable than using your furniture and home.
Being outside will also give them entertainment and excitement that will tire them out so that when they come home they will just want to rest and sleep and not a lot else.
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