Even outdoor cats, who normally spend hours exploring the village, prefer to stay at home in the current cold and wet winter weather. It can happen that furniture and wallpaper suddenly show scratches. It quickly becomes clear that the house tiger is responsible for this – but why does the otherwise lovely and easy-care four-legged friend do that? And how do you get used to it?
The Urge to Sharpen Its Claws Cannot be Stopped by Cats
“The sharpening of the claws has several indispensable functions for the cat,” explains Gerd Ludwig, zoologist, and author of numerous advice books on cats. “It ensures that dull and worn horn sleeves are removed and that the claws are always sharp and ready for use when hunting.” But sharpening claws also serve as a signal. Ludwig: “In this way, the cat informs its conspecifics that it has been here and that it is claiming ownership for this area. At the same time, fragrances are released via the pads of the paws. And last but not least, sharpening your claws serves to impress when another cat is watching. ”
The urge to sharpen and sharpen their claws is innate in cats and is part of their so-called comfort behavior. You can’t get used to it or withdraw it.
A Scratching Post Belongs in Every Cat Household
The kitty can only be prevented from trying her claws on furniture or wallpaper with a scratching post. That is why a scratching post – or at least one scratching board per cat – is compulsory in every apartment inhabited by velvet paws. This applies equally to domestic tigers as well as to cats with a run. “The scratching post should be ready when the cat moves in to prevent the new family member from choosing other, undesirable scratching areas. Once she has made friends with them, it takes a lot of effort to dissuade her again, ”explains the expert.
Direct the Scratching into the Desired Paths
In order to get the animals used to the scratching utensils, the choice of location is very important. “The scratching post has to be where the cat is often, so in no case somewhere in a secluded corner of the apartment or in a draughty hallway,” says the expert. But stability is also crucial: “A scratching post that wobbles will not be accepted. Ceiling clamps that are screwed to the ceiling are ideal for fastening. ”
To familiarize a cat with a scratching post, which is still strange, you can sit it next to it or on it and gently run the ball of its paw over the surface. Ludwig: “In the process, fragrances are transferred and the scratching post is practically taken over by the cat.” But small snacks that are distributed on the individual floors or games are helpful to get cats excited about their new scratching post. A pillow/doily / attached toy with catnip can do some extra persuasion.
Should the cat nevertheless abuse the home furnishings to sharpen its claws, the respective pieces of furniture can be temporarily wrapped with aluminum foil or thick plastic foil. Because from the cat’s point of view, these materials are not suitable for sharpening their claws.