29-POUND CAT RAVAGING OAKLEY HOME AND FURNISHINGS

Source: The Mercury News (Extract)
Posted: June 21, 2021

Cats have a need to scratch in order to keep their claws trim and healthy. We just have to find ways to steer them to a better spot for nail maintenance.

Catnip can work great to direct them if used to its best advantage and if the cat is, let us say, moved by the herbal muses. Some cats just aren’t interested in it. If your cat has a passion for it, try rubbing some fresh catnip onto the scratching post as encouragement to use it instead of the couch.

You also should make sure the post is large enough for that super-sized kitty. When flexing his claws, a cat likes to be able to stretch its spine and extend its body. If the post is too short or wobbly, its appeal is reduced.

Adding scratching posts or pads throughout your home also will ensure the cat has close and immediate access to something appropriate when that scratching urge hits.

Make sure your cat also has a lot of interactive toys, and that you engage regularly in play with him. It could be that part or most of that destructive scratching is because he’s bored and looking for something to do.

He might also have noticed that when he starts shredding your favorite easy chair, he gets a reaction. Cats, like some kids and people, don’t mind that it’s a negative reaction — they’re just looking for any response.

You can safeguard your items by covering them with double-sided tape. You should be able to find large sheets of it at pet food stores, where it’s marketed for just this use. Cats don’t care for sticky surfaces, so once they put their paws on the tape, they are stopped mid claw.

It makes for a strange and unsightly home, and obviously you can’t cover everything in tape, but after realizing the sticky stuff is there, they seldom try that spot again, even after the tape has been removed. So covering your furniture and wood trim in tape isn’t a forever thing.

You can combine the tape deterrents with some aroma therapy. There are scents that cats don’t care for, although like catnip, that can vary from feline to feline.

Some folks have had luck with nail covers, rubber caps that fit over the cat’s claws and reduce their destructive potential.

Lastly, you can try something more aggressive. When the cat starts to scratch where he shouldn’t, give him a squirt from a water gun or spray bottle and sternly say “no.” If you don’t fancy the water deterrent, you can drop a few pennies or rocks into an empty soda can and shake it vigorously when the cat starts scratching in all the wrong places. Again, say “no” when you do it so he begins to recognize the word with the annoying sound.

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