Your Greenfield Veterinarian Offers Tips for Cat Scratching
Scratching furniture when they can't access a tree is the way indoor cats exercise, stretch their bodies and retract their claws. Scratching and "picking" at objects also assists cats in removing the outer sheath of their claws, a natural behavior necessary for maintaining healthy, sharp claws. In addition, cats have glands between paw pads that leave a personal scent behind when they scratch. This unique smell tells other cats to be "on the lookout" for a cat already claiming the territory or object as their own. Cat scratching should not be thought of as a cat practice warranting behavioral counseling or discipline. Instead, your Greenfield veterinarian provides suggestions to deter your cat from scratching objects and humans.
Get a Scratching Post
Purchase a sturdy scratching post and place it where your cat spends a lot of time resting or cleaning themselves. Cats like to scratch after waking up from a long, midday nap so having one near his favorite sleeping spot can help deter him from heading to your couch or chair for a picking session.
Keep Your Cats Claws Trimmed
Instead of declawing cats that won't stop scratching, your Greenfield veterinarian recommends trimming cat claws to remove their sharp points. Cats with trimmed claws still have their claws but can't pick and put holes in fabrics or deface wooden objects when they scratch.
Scruffing Cats That Scratch and Bite People
The next time your cat scratches you for no apparent reason, grasp the back (scruff) of his neck and firmly but gently and say "No!". Keep him scruffed for a few seconds before letting him go. Scruffing reminds cats of the many times their mother disciplined them for being unruly. It also has a calming effect on cats acting aggressively around other cats and people.
Call Greenfield Veterinary Clinic Today!
Your veterinarian serving the Oak Creek and Milwaukee areas also offers claw caps and declawing services to deter cats from scratching and picking. Call Greenfield Veterinary Clinic at 414-282-5230 to schedule an appointment. We look forward to meeting with you!