How to Stop Cats Scratching Leather Furniture: 8 Tips
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Cats scratch various items in their environment for different reasons. Some scratching is instinctual, but it may also be a learned behavior due to environmental factors. It’s important to understand the underlying reason for an individual cat’s scratching so that you can prevent it. Let’s look at how to stop cats scratching leather furniture.
Scratching is a natural behavior that all cats share because it allows them to mark territory with scent glands in their paws, stretch and tone their muscles, and relieve stress and anxiety.
If you’ve recently bought a leather suite, the last thing you want is for your pet to scratch it to bits.
In this article, we’ll discuss the main reasons cats scratch furniture and give you some tips on how to stop cats scratching leather furniture!
How to stop cats scratching leather furniture
It’s important to note that cats need to scratch as it’s a natural behavior and has many benefits. Don’t punish your cat for scratching; instead, encourage your pet to scratch in other areas, such as a scratching post.
Some people recommend spraying water at a cat that’s scratching furniture. This isn’t recommended as it will stress the cat and may lead to other behavior issues in the future.
Here are a few techniques that will deter your cat from scratching your furniture.
1. Get a scratch post
The first thing you must do is provide your cat with a designated scratching area, which ideally should be vertical. This could be a scratching post or any other structure that will allow your cat to stretch, scratch and groom itself.
Vertical structures are much better than horizontal ones because cats want to climb up rather than to stretch across the floor. Whatever you use should be high enough for your cat to stretch itself fully when standing on its hind legs.
It is also advisable to spray the scratching area with catnip as this will encourage your pet to use it. The same can be done with cat trees, your cat’s bed or any furniture you have that you want your cat to use.
2. Deter your cat with foil or sticky tape
If your cat continues to scratch furniture, you can try using a physical deterrent such as double-sided sticky tape or aluminum foil. This will make the surface uncomfortable for your cat to walk on and should deter him from scratching.
Laying a rubber mat or foil on the area where your cat usually stands when scratching your furniture will keep your pet away from that area.
After a few days, your cat will likely get the message and find somewhere else to scratch. You can then remove the mat, tape, or foil from your sofa.
3. Limit your cat's access to rooms with leather furniture
Expensive leather furniture may not be the best choice if you have a cat, as your pet may see it as a good surface for scratching. You may like to limit your cat’s access to a room with leather furniture or try using a spray or sofa shield to keep your cat away from your furniture.
4. Use citrus spray
Cats generally dislike the smell of citrus, so you could try using a lemon-scented spray on your sofa. Alternatively, place some lemon peels on your furniture for a few days. Be aware that this may not be suitable for all types of leather and may discolor the leather.
5. Cat deterrent spray
Cat deterrent sprays are also available to help you keep your cat away from your furniture. These sprays have been specifically formulated with essential oils that cats don’t like. They often contain citrus or menthol and can be sprayed on your furniture to deter your cat from scratching.
6. Shield the sides of your sofa
Cat scratching boards are available that cover the side of a sofa. These usually consist of a stand and upright board covered with rope or other rough material. This type of scratching post can be pushed against the side of a sofa.
If you’ve tried to teach your cat not to scratch the sofa and he continues to do so, covering the area with a scratching board may be the solution.
7. Invest in some cat toys
Another reason that cats scratch furniture may be due to boredom. If your pet is left at home alone during the day, try getting some toys to keep him entertained. This may reduce your pet’s need to scratch.
For best results, choose interactive and time-consuming toys, such as a puzzle feeder. Your cat will have to spend time trying to get the treats out.
8. Speak to your vet
If your pet is causing trouble in your home by excessively scratching flooring, furniture, and curtains, there may be an underlying health or behavioral condition. Consult with your vet to see if you can find a solution to the problem.
Why do cats scratch furniture?
The main reason cats scratch furniture is to mark their territory. Cats have scent glands in their paws, and when they scratch an object, they leave behind their scent. This is a way for them to claim their territory and make sure other cats know it’s theirs.
Scratching is an excellent way for cats to keep their claws healthy, clean and sharp. It also helps tone their muscles and relieve aches and pains or stress. Other reasons for scratching include stretching and sharpening claws.
Cats who are anxious, bored, or stressed may also scratch furniture as a way to release that tension. If your cat is scratching furniture more than usual, it could signify that something is bothering him.
Cats also scratch at things because they like the tactile sensation of scratching and are expressing their emotions.
How to stop cats scratching leather furniture: Final thoughts
If you have a cat that likes to scratch furniture, it’s crucial to provide your pet with an alternative such as a scratching post.
If you can’t deter your cat from scratching, the best thing to do is to provide a scratching post or another designated area where he can scratch to his heart’s content!
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