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Scratching post help!

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
Carl doesn't really scratch a lot. He doesn't ever touch the sisal post on his cat tree, and rarely really gets into the floor scratching box that is made out of cardboard (both have catnip, which he loves, in them). He will play on the tree a lot, and occasionally dig into the cardboard, but nothing truelly aerobic.

He does, however, LOVE to carpet surf! He will lay on his side, grab the carpet with his front claws and pull himself all the way accross the room. Thankfully, our carpet isn't the kind with loops, so it doesn't seem to be doing any real damage, but it's only been a week (we adopted him Sat), so I worry it will eventually rip up the carpet.

Since I rent, this worries me a bit. I have ordered Soft Claws, but I was wondering if anyone has any tips for promoting scratching in certain areas? He is 3 years old, can you teach an old cat new tricks?
post #2 of 11
you might try getting some of that catnip spray & treating his sisal posts. that's all i can think of.
different cats have different tastes. Chip, Cable & Java all scratch on the sisal. Chip also likes the cardboard scratcher. Pixel only likes soft furniture, which Cable & Java also like - they both now have softclaws, & i can consider getting new love seats . [Pixel & Chip are both declawed].
post #3 of 11
Well if they like scratching on carpet, I'd suggest buying (or making) a carpet scratching post. Or if they're preferring horizontal scratching (some cats do) maybe get a carpet remnant from a carpet store, attach it to something sturdy, spray it with catnip and teach them to use it.

In the meantime, trim their claws if you're not already or use Soft Claws.
post #4 of 11
I call what your cat does "the dracula routine" abi does it along the treads of carpeted stairs and it's a hoot. I keep her claws trimmed and so I just ignore it. haven't seen any damage from it yet. and in November she will be with us a year.
post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
Carl has his claws trimmed frequently, so I think the carpet is safe for now (when will those Soft Claws show up in my mailbox???), and I have sprayed the cardboard scratcher with cat nip and he is using it more, but I think I may try making a carpeted scratching area when I get the creative urge over the weekend.

In the meantime, it's quite entertaining to watch him glide accross the carpet on his side!
post #6 of 11
I bought one, a carpet scratching post, and they don't even look at it. Can i spray something or do something to make them scratch there? My sofas are like a colliander, all holes..
post #7 of 11
You can rub or spray catnip on the post. Also, use toys to encourage them to put their paws on the post and scratch. I play lots of games involving the scratching post. One of my kittens likes to fetch toys from the top of the post, while the other likes to chase string and feathers up it.

You can also put double-stick tape on the furniture that your cat is scratching. They don't like that sticky feeling on their paws.

Although many cats do not like the soft carpeted posts from pet stores, so you might need to try something else. Sisal is much more popular, as are the cardboard ones. They feel better on the paws and actually give some resistance, where their claws just slide through that super-soft carpet. Also, how tall is the post? If it's the standard teeny-weeny petstore post it's probably too small for them to get a good stretch and scratch in.

My hubby and I built a sisal scratching post for our kittens. I think it cost maybe $10 because the wood was scraps from his dad's farm. It's nearly shoulder height on me so it's tall enough to actually climb and the kittens adore it.
post #8 of 11
just a side note about scratching post. I have 2 already. Both about 7 ft ish tall. One is just steps and levels for them to climb to the top. The other has 2 beds and a house at the top. they like to lay on top of the house and not inside.

Since i got a new kitten (3 cats now) i have set out to build the biggest and tallest cat tree. I think it will be 10 ft tall. 3 beds at the top for all of them. should be interesting. Only about half way done. Tomorrow will be a long day, god i hope i am not scared of heights anymore
post #9 of 11
Wow.. your scratching post is great... Mine is I think small for a big cat. I never had one before, I bought it after the cats had destroyed my sofas They were in war with the sofa. I tried playing with them near the post, even tied a ball and a plastic bottle cap (cos they love plastic caps) in vain, they now search for biros ! i guess I have to tie a biro to the post then :P
post #10 of 11
I have one that was made for us, there is a small fur lined cubby in the bottom, the post is wound with thick twine and a small stage on the top, just big enough for cat treats. We've put things that they can play with from the top like string, bright shiny bits and cat nip treats, the base is covered with a fur like fabric that they stretch on. A great project for the OH if he has a shed!
post #11 of 11
One of our kitties carpet surfs - but we have that tight-weave carpet, and keeping their claws clipped works just fine. Everyone once in a long while there is a small carpet pull, but we just immediately trim it up and you can't see it.

We've got six cats - and apart from the carpet surfer, we've also got a horizontal scratcher. We have those cardboard scratching thingies out for her.

But we've got cat trees and posts. We have carpet, sisal, cardboard - and the sisal mat that has the black backing? We have one of those turned over. It's a kind of dense foamy material. They love scratching on it!

If you're still worried about the carpet surfing, this might be helpful. Cats scratch almost always right after waking up from a nap. So maybe consider a couple of kitty beds or a cat tree? If a tree, maybe kitty will start sleeping on one of the levels, and then use the tree to scratch on upon waking up. And if you try a cat bed(s), then put scratchers near or next to the cat bed(s). (And use the catnip spray or sprinkle enticement initially). No guarantees - but often just a simple rearrangement of where scratchers are available when familiar with kitty behavior can make all the difference.
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