Destructive Scratching Behavior
Cats don’t realize that scratching causes
damage to your possessions – they’re just doing
what comes naturally. Cats scratch for many different reasons.
The most important is to leave both visual and scent marks
around their environment. Claw maintenance, stretching,
and to play are other reasons.
The most effective way to stop your cat from scratching
your furniture and other belongings is to give her something
to scratch that meets her behavioral needs for scratching
in the same way the ‘off-limit’ items do.
It’s pretty much a losing battle trying to scold
or punish your cat for the behavior. After all, scratching
is normal and necessary behavior for cats. They can’t
stop scratching anymore than they can stop breathing.
The trick is not to stop your cat from scratching, but
to get her to scratch where you want. There are also things
you can do to discourage her from using your household
furnishings by making them less attractive to scratch.
For some great ideas on how to provide these scratching
surfaces and prevent destructiveness problems, see our
program Helping Kitty
Be Good, available in a DVD
or audio CD format.
Declawing cats is a very controversial topic, with strong
feelings by both proponents and opponents. You can talk
with your veterinarian about the procedure. We believe
scratching problems can most often be taken care of with
the right behavioral measures.
PRODUCTS THAT WILL HELP YOU UNDERSTAND, PREVENT AND RESOLVE CAT DESTRUCTIVENESS PROBLEMS
To learn how to prevent elimination and destructive
scratching problems with your cat, get our DVD
Helping Kitty Be Good. Here you’ll
learn what cats want and need to be healthy and happy in