to make your cat scratch
the scratching post
Cats scratch to smooth out the
rings of their claws, which have gradually frayed. Scratching
is also an instinctive method of marking a territory. Each scratch
leaves secretion from theglands of the cat's feet - a scent that
gets other cats attention. See Why
Cats naturally claw trees and prominent
objects in their territory. If they are not provided with an
adequate surface in the house, they will choose their own. Therefore
it is important to provide your cat with a cat scratching post,
which she can use for playing and scratching.
What cat scratching post
to choose for your cat?
The ideal scratching surface can
vary between cats - from a simply carpet covered to the more
exotic sisal rope or artificial surface coverings. The cat scratching
post may be tall, short, round, with horizontal or vertical surfaces.
But if you want to your cat to scratch the cat scratching post
you should consider the next rules:
- For best results, the cat scratching post should be tall enough for your
cat to stretch to her full height when scratching. A post should be as high
as your cat is when she is fully stretched out, plus a few inches more.
- The good cat scratching post
must have a sturdy base, which will ensure stability. Sturdiness
is an important quality since the cat often presses its bodyweight
onto the post to get a good scratch. If the cat feels insecure
or unsteady on the cat scratching post, she simply won't use
- Take a cat scratching post that
provides combination of different covered surfaces. Carpeting
is not always a feline's favorite scratching material, and it
may not be such a great idea to train your cat to scratch on
the carpet, since she may have trouble telling acceptable carpet
from the carpet covering your floors. On the other side is the
sisal rope, which is durable, inexpensive, attractive to cats,
and lasts longer than carpet.
- The post should also be wide
enough for your cat to sit on top and look at her surroundings.
- Natural bark and stripped tree
trunks are also good choices. Just be sure the bark is bug-free
and the trunks are not chemically treated.
How to make your cat to
scratch her scratching post?
If your cat is unaccustomed to
her cat scratching post you may need to help train your cat to
choose the post rather than your furniture. There are four key
aspects that will help achieve a positive result with scratching
- Whether a new kitten or an older
cat that is new to your home starting a scratch-post training
before a problem arises makes sense. It is easier to establish
good habits rather than try to correct the problems later.
- Help show your cat how to scratch.
Actually go through the scratching motion yourself while your
cat is watching. Don't try to physically force your cat to scratch
by holding her paws. She will resist and even dislike the post.
The most effective method of teaching your cat to use her post
is through lures and rewards. Once your cat understands that
scratching and climbing her post is fun, reward her and gain
your enthusiastic approval.
- Make the post a fun place to
be by placing toys on or around it, or rubbing it with catnip.
If your cat likes catnip, rub some into the rope so that the
cat can smell that wonderful smell. Once your cat has smelled
the catnip scratch your nails, gently, along the surface of the
rope. This will help teach your cat where to scratch.
- Most cats scratch immediately
after waking while stretching themselves. Keep the scratching
post nearby to where your cat likes to sleep, and as soon as
your cat wakes up from a nap, call her to her post.
- Put it where it will be used.Place
the cat scratching post near a sunny window or a draft-free corner
where your cat likes to spend time, or in front of a frequently
scratched piece of furniture.
- Spray your cat with water every
time your cat scratches the wrong place. See 13
ways to save your furniture from cat scratching
- Don't replace the surface just
because it's badly shredded that's the effect the cat is trying
to achieve and after all it is her scratching post.