Scratching is a natural need for all cats.When scratching, cats mark their territory. This territory marking is both visible (scratch marks) and invisible! Cats leave “territory messages” coming from their paws, that only other cats can perceive.
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When cats are unhappy or stressed, they often scratch more. This can become an issue if the scratching happens on your walls, doors or furniture!
In many cases, scratching in your home is your cat’s way of expressing discomfort.
Your cat's scratching might be a sign of discomfort if:
- your cat is scratching in many areas in the house
- your cat is scratching near windows and doors
- you have 2 or more cats
- there are stray or outdoor cats living in your neighbourhood
- you had recent changes in your home (like rearranging furniture or moving)
A FELIWAY Classic Diffuser can help stop unwanted cat scratching by sending "comforting messages" that reassure cats and tell them they don't need to scratch up your furniture.
You can also apply FELIWAY Classic Spray directly on each scratched area. Just be sure to never spray your cat's scratching post as it could prevent your cat from using it!
Using FELISCRATCH by FELIWAY will help prevent unwanted scratching by teaching your kitten or newly adopted cat to scratch on an appropriate location: a scratching post!
Reasons Cats Scratch
Cats can't help it: they need to scratch. But why do cats scratch?
First, there is nothing wrong with cat scratching. It's a normal cat behaviour, regardless of whether they scratch on a scratching post or where they are not supposed to. It is healthy and in their genes, so it's important not to prevent cats from scratching altogether.
Second, cats can be trained to scratch where you want them to, and you can help a cat that has been scratching in unwanted locations.
When training your cat to scratch in the right place, you'll need to provide all the necessities to make your cat understand there is a scratching post dedicated to their favourite activity. Sometimes one post is not enough or a scratching post may not be the answer to the situation. Cats like to be given options and to be in control of their territory, so pay particular attention to the location and to the objects they scratch on. It is important to give your cat time to learn a new habit. Plus, you will need patience on your side too.
Things To Try At Home To Stop Your Cat Ruining Your Furniture
Even if scratching is a healthy behaviour and necessary for all cats, it can be difficult to watch cats tearing your beloved furniture apart. However, simple solutions and home remedies to stop cats from scratching the furniture do exist.
Once a cat has started scratching in a particular location, it's not easy to stop them. It's very much like breaking a bad habit and we know how hard that can be.
For cats, the visible and invisible marks they leave on the places they scratch tell them this is where they scratch.
The first step in breaking an unwanted scratching habit is to remove the previous scratch marks and then to try to redirect your cat toward the new desired scratching location. That new location should offer another desirable option to scratch – not your sofa preferably – and remain visible in a location where your cat likes to spend time. This will maximize the chances of your cat using the new scratching location. Don't hide your cat's scratching post in a corner or behind the couch, as this won't encourage them to use it. After all... out of sight, out of mind!
Home remedies may be used to encourage or discourage cats from scratching, although their efficacy has not been clinically proven. Giving your cat time to get used to their new scratching location is also important since scratching might also be a sign of stress or discomfort. Cats are very attached to their environment and love their routine. A relaxed cat is more likely to be receptive to the scratching training or redirection than a stressed cat.
Using FELIWAY Classic to comfort your cat and FELISCRATCH by FELIWAY to teach your cat where to scratch are both proven to work for more than 80% of cats.
Cat Scratching On Carpet?
Read our article on How to stop your cat scratching the carpet for more tips and advice.