If your new couch look a little torn since you adopted a Siamese cat, your furry friend might just have something to do with it! Scratching furniture is a way Siamese cats get some exercise, stretch out, and clip off old nails.
However, there are several ways to train your Siamese cats to steer clear of your furniture. Read on to learn more about them:
Why Do Siamese Cats Scratch Furniture?
Your Siamese cat can scratch and cause considerable damage to your furniture, carpeting, and curtains. Here are some of the main reasons behind your Siamese cat’s love for scratching furniture:
Cats have a natural instinct to sharpen their nails and get rid of old bits of the claw. Scratching is an opportunity for cats to dissipate all the kitty energies. According to research, cats spend approximately half of their life grooming themselves, which makes scratching an important part of their lifestyle.
Scratching is a fun activity for felines and a way for them to get some much-needed exercise. Young kittens tend to get carried away and don’t stop until they get exhausted. Scratching helps brain development in Siamese cats and hone their hunting instincts.
If your adult cat is scratching a lot, it could be a sign that they are in heat. Like most living beings, cats also long to be with a partner. When in heat, you may find your cat trying to claw at your drapes in an attempt to get out.
Cats are territorial animals. Scratching helps them mark territory as their own. The paw pads of cats have scent glands known as pheromones. Therefore, when your Siamese claws at something, she may not only leave claw marks on the furniture but also her scent in order to demarcate her territory.
Stretching and Exercising
Physical activity is essential for keeping a kitty fit. You must have observed your cat stretching during the day. Scratching also stretches their ligaments and helps them feel good.
How to Prevent Your Siamese Cat From Scratching Your Furniture?
Scratching is normal cat behavior important for grooming, exercising, and marking territory. As cats are animals, they naturally do not have a perception of right and wrong. All they think about is fulfilling their needs.
It is best to provide your feline friend with something to scratch at, so that they can be diverted from clawing at your expensive furniture. Here are some tips to keep in mind:
Buy a Scratching Post
A scratching post is a tried and tested way to safeguard your furniture. You can either buy one from a pet store or make your own at home.
Make sure the post you buy is tall enough, even if your pet is still a kitten. She is likely to grow fast, which is why you need a scratching post that is tall enough for an adult feline to properly reach up and stretch.
It is important that the post is robust enough so that a 10-15 pound cat can pull on it vigorously without the danger of toppling over. You can choose to buy more than one post and keep it in different places around the house.
Choose the Right Material
Scratching posts are available in various materials and designs, which can make it difficult to choose the right one. Make sure that the post you buy is covered with coarsely woven fabric that makes damage evident, such as sisal.
Siamese cats are naturally drawn to textured surfaces that make the scratching damage visible. Being able to see their scratch marks reinforces the territory marking habits of cats. Coarse material allows cats to get a sound grip as they have the right texture and resistance.
Place the Posts Strategically
Keep the scratching posts in places around the house where your furry friend prefers to hang out, such as close to windows or in the living room. Cats also tend to scratch when they wake up from a nap, so it is a good idea to keep the post near their sleeping area.
As Siamese cats scratch to mark their territory, place the scratching post where it is visible enough. If your cat has been clawing at your couch, make sure you position the post in front of the area she has scratched in order to help her switch easily.
Introduce Your Cat to the Post
It is possible for your Siamese cat to simply ignore the scratching post you got for her. The best way to introduce her to it is by playing around it. You can use laser light or a fishing rod toy to help her notice the post and use it.
Another good idea is to rub catnip on the scratching post for the first few days so that your cat gets tempted to examine it. Make sure you do not carry your cat to the post and try to rub their paws on it. This may result in stress response and cause them to avoid the post altogether.
Make Your Furniture Unattractive
In order to discourage your cat from scratching your furniture, it is vital to reduce its appeal. You can wrap a sheet around the scratched part of the couch to make it impossible for her to get under it to scratch.
For smaller areas, you can choose to stick a double-sided tape. Your Siamese cat is not likely to enjoy her paws sticking to the surface, effectively deterring her from scratching your furniture. Once your feline is used to the scratching post, you can get rid of the coverings on your furniture.
Train Your Cat
Using positive reinforcement is an effective method to train your cat to use the scratching posts. This simply implies that if you want your pet to repeat a behavior, reward her for it.
When you see your Siamese cat using the scratching post, dish out a few treats to let them know they are doing the right thing. Make sure that you reward immediately so that your cat knows what it’s for.
You can also use a wand toy to make your cat use a scratching post. Begin by playing with the toy at a short distance from the post. When your feline starts playing along, sweep the wand so that the end dangles over the post. Your cat is likely to come across the coarse scratching material and adapt to it quickly.
Getting a scratching post to discourage your cat from scratching your furniture can be a simple idea, but may require some training. While you are at it, make sure you do not:
Carry Your Cat to the Post
Do not make the mistake of carrying your cat to the scratching post and physically making her use her paws to claw at it. This can defeat the purpose by scaring your furry friend. As a result, she may refrain from using the scratching post completely and may even start avoiding you.
Throw Away an Old Post
Do not throw away your cat’s favorite scratching post when it gets worn down. In fact, cats like torn and shredded objects as it is easier for them to dig their claws into the surface. Used scratching posts are also more attractive to them because they look and smell familiar.
Declaw Your Cat
The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) is strictly against declawing cats. It must not be used as a behavioral remedy, no matter how stubborn your pet is.
Cats are naturally inclined to stretch out and sharpen their claws. Getting them taken out is akin to amputation. Declawing is not only painful for your cat, but can result in lifelong trouble while walking and balancing themselves.
An alternative is to buy cat socks or soft nail caps if you are unable to train your cat. These will limit the damage when your cat scratches your furniture.
Siamese cats like scratching just like most other breeds. They are playful creatures who love physical activity. The good news is that they are intelligent, and can be trained to refrain from scratching your furniture and using the scratching posts instead.
Siamese cats are friendly pets, making it easy to train them properly. Use a catnip on the scratching posts or play with your furry friend near the post to help them notice it. If your cat continues to claw at your furniture, use a sheet to wrap around it until she completely switches to the scratching posts.