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Managing Destructive Scratching Behavior in Cats

Destructive scratching is a fact of life if you live with cats. Fortunately, there are ways to keep your cat's behavior from destroying your house while still allowing your fur baby the satisfaction of indulging in this natural instinct. 


Why Do Cats Scratch?

Cats have a lot of reasons to scratch. Here are the top three most common reasons why your kitty scratches. 


  • Cats scratch because they need to remove the dead outer layer of their claws.
  • Cats also scratch as a form of marking territory and communicating with other cats since cat paws have scent glands that release pheromones when scratched on certain surfaces.
  • Scratching also helps cats stretch their back and shoulders after sleeping curled up in tight balls.


How Can You Stop your Cat's Destructive Scratching Behavior?


Here's what you can do to nip bad habits in the bud and teach your cat acceptable scratching behaviors:

  • Provide your cat with appropriate scratching surfaces. 


This will help them satisfy their natural urges while keeping them away from the furniture and other items you want to stay intact. 

  • Redirect your cat's attention to other things, like toys or posts,


Cats need to scratch but also play, hunt, and hide. Provide a variety of toys and scratch posts to give your cat many ways to satisfy her instincts acceptably.

  • Clip the claws.


You can prevent damage to furniture and clothing by clipping your cat's claws regularly. This is an easy process that doesn't hurt your pet and will also help you bond with them.

  • Discourage scratching with a gentle water spray.


The idea is that the sound and sensation of being sprayed will cause your cat to stop scratching. If your kitty is using carpeting as an alternative surface for scratching, try mixing several drops of cinnamon essential oil into your spray bottle's contents; this may deter your fur baby from continuing this habit while adding another dimension of sensory stimulation into their routine

  • Reward positive behavior when encouraging actions.


Rewarding good behavior is essential. Whether rewarding a cat for scratching on a scratching post or discouraging her from scratching furniture, the reward can be as simple as a treat or petting. The key is to make sure your pet sees what she did as good—so if she scratches on the scratching post, you want her to associate that with something that will be rewarded with a treat.


While you may be unable to make your cat stop scratching things, you can redirect its energy toward more appropriate behavior. 


Atlanta Pet Resort will provide your pet with the best care.

Here at Atlanta Pet Resort, we take pride in providing a safe and comfortable place for your dog or cat to stay while you're away. We understand that it can be stressful for pets to leave their home environment, and we are committed to ensuring they have a happy stay with us. We offer services such as dog boarding, bathing, and grooming, as well as dog daycare. Contact us today to book a service for your furry companion.


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