If you’ve ever had a cat (or know someone who does), you know that they can be destructive, especially when they are clawing at your furniture. Cats love to scratch things for several reasons: it’s natural behavior, it helps them stretch their muscles and sharpen their claws, and sometimes cats scratch people as an act of aggression or self-defense.
It doesn’t matter how much you try to avoid this problem by buying expensive scratching posts or other deterrents – nothing will stop your cat from scratching up your house if he really wants to! But there are some options available so don’t let the claws win. Here are three ways to help deter your feline friend from ruining all of your hard work…
1. Trim Each Claw One at a Time
Cats’ claws grow continually throughout their lifespan, and when they start to get sharp, your cat uses them to mark his territory in a process called “cat clawing,” or “kneading.” When cats knead, they use their front paws like hands and press them against household objects, like your furniture. To avoid this act of territorial marking, make sure every single claw is trimmed down to size.
Once you’ve got that covered, you’ll also need to consider the type of claws cats have and the benefits that come with declawing a cat, as well as other useful tips that will help you create a home free of scratches.
2. Get Claw Clippers and Cut Down the Nails One by One
You could also purchase a tool specifically for trimming your cat’s claws, like clippers or nail trimmers. But before you run out to the pet store, make sure you know what types of claws cats have and consider how much trimming your cat actually needs.
Cats have curved claws that are sharp and pointed, which can easily tear fabric and furniture. If you’re uncomfortable clipping your cat’s nails at home (or if your cat is resistant to the idea), you may want to take him or her to a professional groomer instead.
3. Apply a Cream or Gel to the Claws that Will Make Them Less Sharp
There are also creams and gels on the market that you can apply to your cat’s claws that will make them less sharp. This won’t stop your cat from scratching altogether, but it may help to dull the nails a bit so they’re not as harmful to furniture.
Make sure to do a patch test of whatever product you choose. Some cats are sensitive to the preservatives in certain products, which could potentially cause an allergic reaction or skin irritation.
You can also look into nail coverings or caps such as the Soft Paws kit.
4. Declaw Your Cat if Nothing Else Works
Though there are many ways to help deter your cat from scratching, some people may still find themselves in a situation where their cat is scratching furniture, carpet, or people. If all other methods have failed, the only remaining solution may be to declaw your cat.
This procedure involves surgically removing the claws and the associated bone on a cat’s paw. It is a major surgery that should only be considered as a last resort.
As always, speak with your vet prior to trying anything new to get thier opinion on the best solution. No matter what you do, remember that it’s important to be consistent. If you trim your cat’s claws one day and then let them go unchecked the next, they’ll only become more likely to scratch whatever they please. Keep up with the trimming (or clipping) and apply deterrents when necessary, and hopefully you and your feline friend can live in harmony without any scratches!
Thanks for reading! For more information on cats and their behavior, or for help with other pet-related issues, please visit our website or contact us today.