HomeCat BehaviorscratchingTraining Your Cat To Use A Scratching Post And Where to Put It


Training Your Cat To Use A Scratching Post And Where to Put It — 11 Comments

  1. awesome article i will try to do all these for koal it was very amazing information i didn’t even think of doing so i am really gonna try my best to train koal to use his scratching post thank you for writing this article

  2. It was very trying to get Abby (Maine Coon) to accept Shadow (large grey tomcat). Abby joined our home after Sadie (Tortie) passed after 17 wonderful years. Abby was a return to our shelter because her human passed, so it was kismet. Shadow joined us as a stray who just waltzed into my unit when the porch door was opened and I was replenishing the feeding station out there. He just refused to leave, period. Since Shadow is FIV+ and Abby is FIV-, my vet was none too happy, but every year I have Abby tested and she’s still negative.

    She initially didn’t like Shadow, then tolerated him…now they’re fabulous friends who just chase each other around. It took a lot of time and patience, but if you’re up to it, it can happen. Good luck!

    • Nice story, Gail. It is interesting and good that they became friends before simply tolerating each other. I like that. There is a moral there for others.

  3. My 2 (Maine Coon & large tomcat) have never had an issue, thankfully! I have the large Ultimate Scratching Post; a 2-tier squared carpeted post with large platforms for them to sit on and a giant sisal rope hanging from the 2nd tier and a large support column on it in sisal; the Cat Scratch Sofa; a cone-shaped carpeted post and a round turbo scratcher (cardboard in the middle with the ball inside that the cat can bat around).

    The large Ultimate post sits next to the 2-tiered post so they can step from one scratcher to the other to sit and watch their world on high. Next to that is a cat bed (one of 4), then the cone-shaped scratcher.

    The Cat Scratch Sofa is on the other side of the room – they don’t scratch it, they take turns sleeping on it, LOL! The turbo-round keeps moving around the room as the tomcat keeps batting it around forcefully and the Maine Coon puts all of her toys in the middle on the cardboard part of the turbo-round and then walks away to run at it and jump at her toys, scattering them everywhere!

    When I got the Ultimate Scratcher (won a few years back in a contest, thank you Michael), the cats wouldn’t touch it. I got a very strong organic catnip and rubbed it all over the sisal column, then got on all 4s myself pretending to be a cat. When the cats responded by scratching, I praised them in a high, happy voice and they enjoyed that. Every time they scratched, more praise. I just took turns fussing them up, massaging their fur, lots of smooches and we took turns scratching the post. No treats involved.

    The room they love the best (besides my bedroom) is the adjacent living room, so that’s where all the scratchers are. If I’m up late watching TV in the bedroom, one or both will start talking to me as if to tell me to shut it off. If I don’t, they just go off in a huff to the living room where it’s dark, and if they’re not playing they will go into their respective (open) carriers to get away from the TV – or they settle in on the desk chair and/or chaise lounge in that room. In the morning, both jump up on the bed to remind me it’s time to eat. We’ve got our own kitty clocks!

    • Lovely comment. Thanks Gail for reminding me it was you who won the prize of that large cat scratching post. I like the way you got them to use it. I am sure it will help others.

      Fortunately my cat uses the cat scratching elements of a large cat condo in the spare bedroom. I sited the condo well, I believe: near a radiator and with good views over the garden where there is wildlife to look at. I am pleased he uses the scratcher and I never trained him to do it which makes the article redundant for me!

      • Michael, you and I have been fortunate with our fur kids. In my bedroom, my large-screen TV is in a corner on a table with the DVR in front of it and next to a window that I placed an old end table for the cats. In front of the window’s table, I put a set of carpeted kitty stairs and to the side, another larger “doggie” steps. It’s like a kitty carnival sometimes. They chase each other up and down the steps to the table down the other steps, plus the doggie steps are hollow so sometimes one of them will hide in the hollow part and when the other one is on the table, the one under the steps will reach up and bat the other, starting the chase again. I must say, it’s kept them both trim. The Maine Coon likes to sleep on the DVR sometimes (the warmth from the unit), while the other prefers the end of my bed, on the temporpedic mattress. What a life!

        • When I read your comment I want more than one cat. Your comment tells me that more than one cat is good for the cats provided they get along. The trouble is I don’t really live in a place at the moment where it is sensible to look after more than one cat. I have thought about moving to the country where it would be safer. My apartment is quite small as well. Just thinking aloud. I may move for the sake of my cat and cats to be!

  4. Just found this is Homeguides, SFGate:

    Fabrics with even textures and tight weaves effectively repel liquid, which also makes them easy to clean, a handy feature for cats who sometimes vomit up their last meal or the occasional hairball. Synthetic microfiber fabrics have tight weaves that keep cats’ claws from easily penetrating the fibers. These fabrics do not snag or scratch easily and are resistant to stains, bacteria and pet dander, as hair and dead skin cells can’t get through the weave. Hair and soil easily wipe away with a damp rag.

    This describes the chair and couch fabric that doesn’t show damage.

  5. I’ve always provided scratching items for my cat. Many I’ve gotten at thrift stores, and wasn’t sure if she’d be turned off by another cat’s scent. But it hasn’t been a problem.

    She uses all of them. One is tall, and carpeted with a large area on top for resting. She stretches, scratches, and naps on this one. Another one is cone shaped covered with sisal that encircles it from top to bottom. I was keeping this on the porch, but have brought it in because of heavy rains.
    It’s one of many cat items in my room, including litter pan, 2 beds, 2 water dishes, steps to litter pan (so I don’t have to bend so much) multiple toys and a toy storage bag.

    If I see that she hasn’t used the post in awhile, I will scratch it myself, and she always follows my example. I’ve also tied a sock with catnip around it. Any favorite thing can be attached to attract the cats. We just have to know what incentive might work. (Even a bit of tuna juice might get attention.)

    She still scratches on the upholstered dining chairs, but for some reason, this material doesn’t show any damage. I’ve been thinking of trying to find some in an upholstery store. It’s the same kind of weave that my previous sofa was made from, and had no damage from cat scratching.

    This seems like an opportunity in disguise for anyone who can manufacture scratching posts with this material. I’m going to see if I can snip a piece from underneath to see if I can find an identical piece somewhere.

    I don’t care for the cardboard scratchers because they shred, and leave messes.

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