“Argh! Not the couch again!” Sound familiar? Indeed, paw-rents to felines encounter this problem more often than we’d like to.

Cats usually scratch to clean the exterior sheath of their nails, remove cuticles, and to sharpen their claws, much like a getting a kitty manicure. This means that scratching is healthy and necessary for Puss, so don’t try to stop it! You can, however, stop the scratching from being on your prized furniture. Here’s how.

Scratching Posts
The next time you catch kitty giving himself a manicure on your bedpost, stop him and carry him to the scratching post where he can continue. Yelling and getting angry will only confuse and rile him up!

Scratching posts are a great investment. It satisfies cat's need to scratch and doesn’t compromise your furniture. Most felines prefer posts made out of rough material – something that they can shred.

Finding a scratching post made out of sisal (a coarse natural fibre) is most ideal because they’re satisfying to scratch and durable enough to withstand repeated use.

However, do not limit yourself. Go ahead and try a variety of scratching posts made of hemp, cedar, cardboard or rope to see which ones your furkid prefers!

Sprays & Other Deterrents
If you’ve got a fussy cat that’s unable to adapt to a scratching post, you can consider purchasing a deterrent spray instead.

The scent and taste of these are off-putting and will keep the claws at bay. Alternatively, if the spot is concealed and you need a quick fix, you can also try pasting some strips of double-sided tape on the surface. Felines’ paws are extremely sensitive, and this sensitivity makes sticky surfaces annoying to scratch.  

*This article was updated on 6 Oct 2020. It first appeared in PetsMagazine.com.sg on 5 Jul 2016.