How to Control Your Cat’s Scratching

Is your feline friend using your sofa as a manicure station? If so, you’re in good company! Scratching is a very common complaint from cat owners. Kitties certainly have many wonderful attributes and some super cute habits, but their nail-care routines aren’t always a hit with their owners. Below, a Live Oak, FL veterinarian offers advice on managing your cat’s scratching habits.

Understanding Fluffy’s Scratching

Your furball isn’t deliberately trying to ruin your things. Cats have a strong instinctual urge to take good care of their claws. In the wild, those little nails help kitties defend themselves against other animals, hunt their dinners, and climb trees to reach shelter or safety. It’s no wonder they’re so dedicated to their manicure regimens!

Offering Suitable Options

If you want Fluffy to stop shredding the carpet, you’ll need to offer her some suitable alternatives. A kitty tower is a great bet. Just be sure to choose a sturdy one, as your pet may become wary of her tower if it wobbles too much. You can also try a scratching post or board. Tip: Your pet will be more likely to use something that’s tall enough for her to stretch her muscles on.

Discouraging Bad Petiquette

Never punish Fluffy for scratching, even if she’s using your favorite footstool for her manicures. Cats don’t understand punishment, so you could end up making your pet feel frightened, scared, or anxious. When your feline pal scratches inappropriately, do something to startle her: make a loud noise, clap your hands, or snap your fingers at her.

Bribing The Furball

If your furball isn’t using her scratching post, try sprinkling catnip around it. You can also set kitty toys there, to sweeten the deal. Whenever you see Fluffy using her tower or post, pet her, praise her, and tell her she’s the best cat in the world. Cats love being complimented!

Other Options

Clipping your kitty’s nails is another thing to consider. Nail trims are painless and temporary, and will keep Fluffy from destroying your things. We only recommend this for indoor kitties, however: outdoor cats need their claws for defense. You can also try claw caps, which you can glue on over your kitty’s real claws.

Do you have any questions or concerns about your kitty’s health? Call us, your local Live Oak, FL animal clinic, today. We are here to help!

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