Does your cat sometimes use your couch or sofa to sharpen her claws? We suspect that for many of you, the answer to that question is yes. Kitties’ scratching habits don’t always go over very well with their human friends. Fortunately, there are some ways to teach your furry little diva better manners. A Bloomfield Township vet discusses Fluffy’s nail-care regimen below.

Provide Proper Scratching Posts

First and foremost, you’ll need to get your kitty a proper scratching post. This should be tall enough to allow Fluffy to stretch as she is doing her nails. This is something to think about if your furball is a kitten. Your pet will soon outgrow a small scratching post! Also, be sure to choose something sturdy. Cats are often wary of wobbly scratching posts.

Sweeten The Deal

Is Fluffy ignoring her cat tower or scratching post? Make it more appealing by giving her toys and treats near it. You can also sprinkle catnip around it. When you see your furry friend using her scratching post, pet her and praise her. It also won’t hurt to tell her she’s the best kitty ever. Cats love compliments!

Block Access

Another thing you can do is block your pet’s access to areas you don’t want her scratching in. If your feline pal is using the corner of your couch or sofa, put a potted plant or end table there. If she’s shredding your carpet, put an area rug or mat down in that spot. If Fluffy is using the corner of a wall or sofa, you can try applying two-sided tape there. It won’t show, but your pet will hate the sticky feeling. Taste deterrents may also help.

Training

You should never punish Fluffy for scratching, as it is an instinctive behavior. However, kitties are smart enough to learn what is and is not proper petiquette. (We know, cats usually train their humans, but that’s beside the point.) When you see your furball scratching improperly, do something that will startle and/or annoy her. Clap your hands, sound a bike alarm, or squirt her with water. This may be enough to make her form a bad association with improper scratching, which is exactly what you want.

Please contact us, your Bloomfield Township vet clinic, for all of your cat’s veterinary care needs. We’re dedicated to helping you keep your pet happy, healthy, and purring.