Why Do Cats Scratch Furniture?

Why Do Cats Scratch Furniture? and How to stop a cat from scratching the carpet

The tendency to scratch furniture is one of the most annoying traits of cats, as it is a costly hobby for owners. Many do not want to get cats because they fear the pet will ruin their furnishings. Why do cats scratch furniture? and how to stop a cat from scratching the carpet. Let’s find out.

Through this ritual cat:

  • marks the territory with the secret of sweat glands located on the paws;
  • keeps the nails in good condition;
  • trains the leg muscles.

So, you purchased some new bohemian-style furnishings and placed them in your home with delight. But then, with horror, you saw how your new vintage armchair is “attacked” by the cat’s claws.

In addition, the cat just enjoys the scratching process, which is essential, given that home cats have little entertainment.

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How does the claw sharpening process work?

The cat needs to get its claws to sharpen. However, this process works more like molting the crustaceans than sharpening a knife.

Sharpening the claws consists of tearing off the damaged outer shell. This process exposes healthy, hard, and sharp inner layers; the nails can perform at 100% again.

However, in this way, cats only take care of the claws on their forelimbs. They use their teeth to groom the claws on their hind legs. Have you ever seen a pet tearing its claws with its teeth? It is his approach for sharpening claws on hind legs.

Cats mark their territory.

Wild felines are not such social species, and they prefer to communicate at a distance. For this, they tend to leave messages by the tree scratching. These marks have signature scents of the animal.

The fact is that there are aromatic glands called pheromones on the pads of their paws. When other animals see the claw marks and smell the cat, they realize the place is already “taken.” This behavior is also typical for domestic cats, even if no other animals live with them. They do it just instinctively. And it doesn’t depend on the cat breeds.

In addition, the furniture in the house absorbs different smells, including the smell of the street, guests who come and go, and even your scent. You may not feel them, but your cat feels them and tries to cover them up with her scent.

The claws should be sharp.

As we said, your furniture serves as an instrument for getting their nails in shape. He is trying to remove the dead claw shells, giving them an optimal shape.

They do it for the same reasons people love yoga- for stretching.

Scratching claws on furniture stretches the muscles, tendons, and joints of your cat’s fingers, paws, and back.

Your pet is bored

If your cat lacks mental stimulation, she may take out her boredom on your furniture or other items.

Can cats learn not to scratch furniture?

Clean the furniture cat uses for scratching.

Thoroughly clean the item to remove traces of odor. Use a mild, non-toxic solution that suits the material of the item. Keep the animal away until the treated area is dry.

Claw-sharpening accessories

Therefore, directing his attention from interior items to something similar is necessary.

Pet stores stock a wide range of claw-sharpening accessories, from simple boards covered with sisal thread to immense structures that reach the ceiling.

 In such a case, size is of secondary importance – placing the scratching post in the right place is the most important.

If you plan to use the scratching post as a “border post,” it should be placed in an open place, the most visible from the entrance to the room. Cats love a sisal-wrapped board that can be hung in the hall opposite the front door.

Sometimes the correct placement of the scratching post encourages the cat to use it. However, it would help if you showed your pet what it is for. Toys with feathers or fur placed at the top of the scratching post will attract the cat’s attention. Another option is to rub the scratching post with catnip, but this will only work if the pet reacts to the smell of this herb (not all cats are sensitive to its smell).

A scratching post is the only effective way to wean a cat from scratching furniture in the house. There is no point in yelling at or pouring water on a pet. In this way, you can quickly lose his trust.

It is also not recommended to use repellents. They can be effective, but how will a cat feel in an apartment filled with the smell of these substances?

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Trimming nails

Cutting your cat’s claws regularly is the best way to protect your furniture from damage. This must be done with the help of special clippers, which can be bought at the pet store. Ordinary scissors or even nail scissors will not work for this. The procedure is not complicated; you must be careful not to injure the pet.

How to distract a cat from scratching furniture out of boredom?

Buy toys for your pet and play with him often. The less he misses, the less often he sharpens furniture out of harm.

How to stop a cat from scratching the carpet?

Place scratching mats around the house and reward your cat when she pays attention to them. Another way is to spray the carpet with a citrus scent and clean it with ammonia or vinegar. These smells will scare the animal away from the carpet.


Never scold your pet for sharpening claws on your things – deal with the cause and help him cope with his instinct. In extreme cases, a veterinarian will help you.

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