How do I keep my cat from scratching the furniture?
Feline behaviorist Pam Johnson-Bennett says:
Cover the areas she's scratching with a product called Sticky Paws. This clear, double-sided tape is made for just this purpose. Once you have it in place, put a couple of great scratching posts nearby. You may need more than one scratching area for your cat. You can use sisal-covered posts or even corrugated cardboard scratching pads. They're inexpensive, and cats love them. In a few weeks, you'll be able to remove the Sticky Paws. The point of this type of training is to deter your cat from the furniture but then let her see immediately that she has a much better option for scratching right there.
It's easy to train your cat to scratch in appropriate places. The key is to use the right textured surfaces and place them where the cat wants to scratch (as opposed to where you'd rather locate the post). The texture on the scratching surface needs to be rough. Plain old carpeted posts are a waste of money.
Observe your cat and see what type of scratcher she is. For example, some cats are vertical scratchers and some are horizontal scratchers. If she scratches on the carpet or on the tops of couches, then she's probably a horizontal scratcher and would benefit from a scratching pad as opposed to a post. Some cats do both horizontal and vertical scratching.
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