Preventing cat scratching - specifically of the furniture, carpet and walls - is something many frustrated cat owners would like to know how to do.
Read on if your kitty seems determined to turn your home into a hovel...
All cats scratch. It's a natural, instinctive thing for them to do. You'll never stop your cat from scratching completely, but you can train her not to scratch inappropriately.
I would never recommend declawing as a solution to cat scratching - there are so many valid arguments against it.
Cats are intelligent creatures that need a lot of physical and mental stimulation.
Kitties that are able to go outside get a lot of this stimulation when they're out. They can scratch trees etc. outdoors, so they're usually less inclined to manicure their claws in the house.
However, because it's unsafe for a lot of cats to go out these days, many now spend the majority - if not all - of their time indoors.
There's nothing wrong with this in itself, but you'll generally find that house cats will get bored very quickly if they don't get enough stimulation. And they still needs to scratch.
If this was translated into a mathematical formula, it would be:
*Indoor Kitty + need for stimulation + need to scratch + boredom
= shredded wallpaper and destroyed furniture*
The key, therefore, to preventing cat scratching is relieving Kitty's boredom and encouraging her to play.
Click on the links below for more information on the essentials for successful kitty entertainment:
Once you've created a stimulating environment for Kitty, there are a couple of humane ways of preventing cat scratching at her old favorite areas:
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You don't have to keep any of the above things stuck to your furniture forever; once Kitty has found better places to play and scratch, she'll forget all about her old nail files.
may also find it helpful to clip your cat's claws occasionally, to get rid of
the really sharp tips - so if she does scratch things she's less likely
to cause damage.