Cat Clawing Furniture

A cat clawing furniture needs to be taught to cease the behavior, or she won't stop. There are many methods a cat owner can employ in order to teach the cat not to claw furniture which don't involve declawing the cat, which is often a contentious subject.

Provide a Scratching Area

The owner's first instruction is to make sure that the cat has places where she can sharpen her claws. Purchase a scratching post or a scratching pad. Even a cat condo will work and can double as a playset for the cat. Owners should observe the cat's preferred method of scratching when choosing a scratching product. If the owners observe the cat clawing furniture vertically, they should purchase a vertical scratching post or condo. If the cat prefers to claw the carpet or jump atop the furniture and claw it horizontally, a scratching pad is a better idea.

Placing the Scratching Area

Put the scratching post, pad or condo near the furniture that the cat is currently clawing. This will help the cat associate the scratching product with the act of clawing. If possible, move the furniture slightly away from its original area and put the scratching product there instead. Once the cat is used to using the scratching product, the owner can move it into an area that's more out-of-the way if desired.

Deterring the Cat from the Furniture

Simply placing the scratching product near the furniture the cat is clawing may not be enough to deter the behavior. The first step the owner can take to deter the cat from the furniture is to spray the furniture with a specially formulated product that discourages cats from going to the areas in which they smell the scent. However, make sure the formula will not damage or stain the furniture.

Owners can also stop a cat clawing furniture by covering it with a layer of aluminum foil, particularly in the areas the cat likes to claw. Most cats do not like the sound of foil crinkling and may be deterred from scratching furniture covered in foil. Double-sided tape can work as well, because the cat won't like getting her paws stuck.

Changing Behavior with Instruction

Another important tip for stopping a cat clawing furniture is behavioral modification. When the owner witnesses the cat clawing furniture, they should firmly state, "No!" Don't yell or scream, but use a deep, commanding voice. If this is not enough to deter the cat, the owner can spray a small mist of water in the cat's direction, as most cats do not like this and will associate the water with a behavior they should not repeat. Owners can also try crinkling some aluminum foil in their hands until the cat stops the behavior.

On the other hand, when the owner sees the cat clawing the designated scratching area, they should reward the cat with praise. Stating a sweet, higher-pitched, "Good kitty" and petting the cat after she's finished clawing is a good way to show the owner approves of the behavior. This system of deterring and rewarding bad and good behavior may take some time, so owners should approach the situation with patience and not give up.