Controlling Clawing Behavior with a Cat Tree

Cat clawing can be a major concern for pet owners, but adding a cat tree to your home is one solution to this common problem.

What Causes Poor Clawing Behavior

Cats that claw at your furniture or rugs are marking their territory with sweat glands located on their paws. By scratching at items around the house the cats can create boundaries and claim areas for their own. They may also be looking for an outlet for their energy or are experiencing stress or anxiety due to a new location, unfamiliar visitors, or a pestering toddler or animal. By introducing one or more cat trees or scratching posts to your home your cat will have a place to stay active, keep his claws healthy, and mark his own territory.

Why Choose Cat Trees to Control Clawing Problems?

The advantage of a cat tree or play house is the variety they offer for your cat. Some cats prefer to scratch horizontal surfaces while others like diagonal or vertical areas for clawing. By having a mix of all these surfaces, and also multiple textures to scratch at, your cat will be far less likely to use your stereo speakers, carpets or curtains for clawing. Cat trees with multiple levels to jump and climb will give your cat a place to release some energy and turn from any aggressive behavior to more playful behavior. This will also prevent painful declawing procedures by allowing your cat to maintain a healthy claw length by scratching at his tree or post.

Choosing the Right Product for Your Cat

If your cat prefers to scratch up the front rug, buy a cat tree or play house with multiple levels for flat, horizontal scratching surfaces. These levels will also allow your cat to jump, climb and stretch as he stays active and healthy. Vertical scratchers may prefer a scratching post that is tall enough for your cat to stretch out fully against before reaching the top.

Texture is also important when choosing a cat tree or post. Scratching trees can be made of materials like fabric, carpet, wood, cardboard or sisal rope, so choose a texture that you cat will prefer or try multiple fabrics.

Encouraging Your Cat to Use A Cat Tree

Purchasing a cat tree is only one step to solving clawing behavior. Your cat may need some training to start using his new scratching spot. Some trees and play houses come with toys to attract animals. Cat nip can also encourage your pet to use a scratching post or tree. On the other hand, using a bitter spray on items you don't want your cat to scratch can push your cat to use the tree instead.