Cats are funny, curious and playful. But every cat owner had the “pleasure” of catching his cat scratching his nice and sometimes expensive furniture and carpets. In fact, the main reason for not adopting or surrounding cats back to shelters is just that.
The declawing debate
Declawing, is not allowed anymore in many states and countries. The reason against are that it is cruel and inhuman. That starching and scratching (usually done together) is enjoyable to cats and declawing eliminates this instinct. To my humble opinion it is totally not true. We declawed my 20 years old cat when she was a tiny kitty. She never stopped starching and scratching as if she had her claws. The recovery took only two days. BUT, she could never go out. Declawed cats can not be safe outside, can not climb a tree if they are afraid, and can not fend if needed. Maybe I don’t know all the facts to object this surgery. If we need a law against pet cruelty I would suggest not allowing to cut the vocal cord to dogs who participate in contests, or removing tails and cutting ears because it looks nicer.
Why do cats scratch
Scratching is an instinctive need. It sharpen the nails. It feels good. It loosen the muscles as they starch while scratching.
Stop kitty from scratching
Impossible!!! As i mentioned above, it is natural and normal behavior for cats to scratch. But you can teach her to use alternative objects for her pleasure.
First – cut your cats nails regularly to reduce damage from scratching. Be-careful not to cut to deep, you can read on how to clip cats nails here
Second - Provide your cat an alternative he’ll like and so do you. There is a big variety of cheap or more expansive scratching surfaces, with deferent shapes, materials and colors, depends on your space and budget. You may choose the one that blends with the home décor or a cats tree to combine playing, napping and scratching. Usually they are covered with carpet or sisal that are attractive to cats.
Make her love the new scratcher
If she has a favorite place to scratch, cover it (if possible) with double-sided carpet tape or thick plastic and place the new post near that place in the room where she spends most time. The best way to attract her is to rub catnip on the post. Sometime the catnip come with the scratcher or you cab buy the organic catnip separately and use it on toys and her bed too. Cats just LOVE it.
Each time I saw my cats using my carpet, I would bring them to the pod and gently rub their paws against it. It Worked for me!
Have more suggestions, let me know.