Feline Scratching

Is your cat scratching the furniture??

We can help!

The first part of stopping undesirable scratching by your cat is to understand that this is a normal activity for a cat.  Therefore, it is necessary to understand it rather than admonish the cat for the behavior. Scratching is your cat’s way to mark his territory and to tell other cats that he has been there.  It is your cat’s road map around the neighborhood. Unfortunately, when we bring a cat into our home, they want to continue this ingrained behavior. Luckily for us we can teach our cats to either scratch items that are acceptable to us or stop the behavior. The use of calming pheromones (naturally produced by all cats) when used with distraction may stop the scratching or get them to apply facial pheromone to the object instead of scratching it (i.e. rubbing their face on the object).  Better yet the use of feliscratch to train them to use an acceptable item can be done. It is also necessary to find what and where your cat prefers to scratch. Often carpet covered scratching posts encourage scratching on the rug on the floor – rather use the jute side of the carpet pieces to make a scratching post.  Do you have a fireplace?  Encourage your cat to scratch the wood in the rack waiting to be used.  Do you have a lot of cardboard boxes?  These make great toys for cats as well as replaceable items to scratch upon.  Remember where you put the item is also important – they are marking territory so put the object you want the cat to scratch on near the object that they are scratching on.  Once they are using the new item you can gradually move it to a more desirable location. 

Is your kitten scratching you or your child??

Once again using nails to play is a normal kitten behavior.  Normally as a kitten ages momma cat would teach them to use only their paws to play and claws for prey.  Since we often separate momma and kitten before this time, we need to teach our kittens not to scratch us.  Keep their nails short, that way your kitten won’t hook you with his nails by accident.  Stop play before it gets aggressive or rough and the nails come out. When the nails come out stop the play and distract the kitten to something else or ignore the kitten for a while.  Do not allow children to run away from the kitten as this encourages further chase playing by the kitten.

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