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Another kitten question, this time about furniture

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
I've had my kitten for almost two weeks now.
She was kept in the bedroom while I'm at work, away from my leather furniture (with upholstery cushions), except for the one in my bedroom which was barricaded. Eventually she made it through the barricade, and I put tape facing outward on the cushion front and kept a close eye on her while she was in the living room with a water squirter in hand.

I've seen her put her paw on the leather, but she showed no real interest in wanting to scratch it. That's good so far. The upholstery though I was worried, so taped up. I also got her a couple of scratching option in a couple rooms including the Ultimate Cat Scratcher, which she is somewhat using. It's still new to her.

Anyways, I came home yesterday from an errand and left her in the bedroom with the one chair furniture (same style as in the living room) with tape in the front. She was on the cushion, sitting there. So she's able to jump up without the need to pull herself up or use her rear claws to dig in for support.

So right now I'm on the couch in the living with her on it. She is sitting here, just relaxing. But I'm wondering if I should get her into the habit of not being on the couches. Sure she seems fine now, and she has a post, but what's to say she'll continue to behave like this, especially when I'm at work (I'll still keep her in the bedroom while I'm at a work for a few more weeks).

My thoughts are.... keep her off completely and hope she learns to stay off it. Or accept she'll go on it, and let her go on as long as she doesn't scratch it. Honestly I don't think I would mind if she just rested on it. But scratching it up... that I would mind.
post #2 of 13
Have you considered getting throws for the leather furniture - you could always whip them off when you have company, and then you wouldn't be worried if kitten started making herself at home? BTW, do you know how to clip her nails? I understand if you start early, they don't mind it too much - and usually vets or vet techs will be happy to teach you.

A cat or dog is just like having a baby - IMO, it's best to make sure anything you'll really get upset about being broken or scratched is put away, otherwise you may be in heartache over furniture and your kitten will not really understand why you're mad. And, believe me, they do know when you're upset - but most of the time can't put the cause and effect relationship into play. And when you're stressed, they're stressed, and things can sometimes just get worse.
post #3 of 13
Cats will jump and climb. They like high places. I never met a cat who won't scratch. I mean it's not only to sharpen their claws, but it's also a communication thing.
For me, the only thing that works that will keep my cats off a particular furniture is to cover it with plastic which makes this popping noise when they jump on it. They don't seem to like it.
Hopefully other TCS members can give you more suggestions.
post #4 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Faridzadeh View Post
My thoughts are.... keep her off completely and hope she learns to stay off it.
She'll learn to say off.....if you are around The minute you leave she'll be up there.

More than likely she'll damage the leather by jumping off, not from actually scratching so I agree with darlili about putting throws on and clipping the nails. Leather does tend to scratch easier from rear claws than other fabrics.
post #5 of 13
I have to agree with the others - leather scratches most from rear claws as they jump off. You should see our leather chair from the dogs. We put blankets/throws down on everything to protect it.

As for scratching - keep her nails clipped. If you see her scratching somewhere she shouldn't - stop her & move her to the appropriate place to scratch (obviously you can't watch her 24/7). I have one piece of furniture everyone loves to scratch on - so I put a scratching post there.
post #6 of 13
Good Luck!!!
Giving her the most amount of options as possible of scratching surfaces will probably keeping her from scratching the furniture... But she will jump on it, and grip her nails to jump off of it, which will probably be where the damage will occur.
I personally cover my couch up, and if the visitors are worthy , the covers go down.
Another option is soft claws on all four... Soft claws will save your furniture... If you go that route, make sure to offer the scratching posts all the same, as scratching is instinctive and necessary for a cat.
post #7 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thanks everyone
It seems like covering them up is a popular answer. But it goes to ask, what's the point of getting something if you are just going to cover it up in order to protect it and never actually see it?

I clipped her front nails (with the help of a friend, I have no idea how I'll do that by myself), but didn't clip the back nails. I should probably do those as well. But the soft paws. Won't those come off when she goes for the scratch post? I like the idea of it, but if she goes for that post wouldn't all that scratching just rip them right off?

Sigh... I'm starting to wonder if I made the right decision in getting this kitten. I'm spending more time wondering what she will destroy, that I thought I would. And I don't want my place to look like it's a cat apartment. Sorry, but some places just look like cat apartment, and I don't want my place to end up looking like that.

Maybe being a cat owner just isn't my thing.
post #8 of 13
Give it a chance. So far the kitten hasn't done anything to warrant wondering whether you should keep her. And in the end, you'll find that the benefits of having a kitty in your life are going to FAR FAR outweigh any possible drawbacks.

I understand not wanting your things destroyed, so try out a tasteful throw or two - as it has been said, you can always remove it when you have guests coming.
post #9 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Faridzadeh View Post
Thanks everyone
It seems like covering them up is a popular answer. But it goes to ask, what's the point of getting something if you are just going to cover it up in order to protect it and never actually see it?

I clipped her front nails (with the help of a friend, I have no idea how I'll do that by myself), but didn't clip the back nails. I should probably do those as well. But the soft paws. Won't those come off when she goes for the scratch post? I like the idea of it, but if she goes for that post wouldn't all that scratching just rip them right off?

Sigh... I'm starting to wonder if I made the right decision in getting this kitten. I'm spending more time wondering what she will destroy, that I thought I would. And I don't want my place to look like it's a cat apartment. Sorry, but some places just look like cat apartment, and I don't want my place to end up looking like that.

Maybe being a cat owner just isn't my thing.
Wow! Didn't see that coming!!
Why did you get a kitten? I mean, what was the reasoning behind? Not judging, but curious to know...
Cats are cats, and yes, they come with claws... Nothing in my house is damaged, and I have three of them. My house doesn't smell like a cat house either...
I think a nice throw over a couch isn't a big deal... but that's just me...
A cat is definitely not a peace of accessory, who will come perfect to what you need, but I guarantee you he will be WAY more rewarding than anything you have in your home. You will love this little guy and it will love you through thick and thin - can't really say the same about a couch, can you?
If you have a modern taste, take a look at this website: http://www.moderncat.net/ browse around it, and you will see many cool solutions for a modern apartment, where it will be totally visually appealing, and very cat friendly too!
I hope you change your attitude about the kitten and give it a chance - you have no idea of the amazing companionship you will get in return!
About soft claws: Nope - they don't come off that easily... Actually I had the opposite problem, of them not coming off at all .
They usually last around 6 weeks, and fall off as the kitty sheds the nails outer layers. A few might fall off due to out of schedule shedding, but you just replace it as you go...
It is comfortable for the kitten, and will spare your furniture completely - but you need to be diligent in applying them.
For me the application is VERY easy, takes me a few minutes....
Good luck!
post #10 of 13
Sounds like my sister.. "I'd like to get a kitten, but I just bought a new couch".

My apartment doesn't look like a 'typical cat house'. I do know what you mean with it, and I don't want this place to look like it either. I have three cats here, and most of the time they behave very well. I have taught them from the start that they are not allowed to scratch furniture or carpets, they have scratching post for that purpose and they use it. I'm not sure what material my couches are, something a bit velvet like, and if scratched, they'll look awful! I don't have to cover them and my kitties don't really want to spend any time on them because they have 'more interesting' places to be. During the night they are not allowed to the living room at the moment because I still have some unpacked stuff from moving, and cords that need to be protected from the youngest cat.
post #11 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by carolinalima View Post
Wow! Didn't see that coming!!
Why did you get a kitten? I mean, what was the reasoning behind? Not judging, but curious to know...
Cats are cats, and yes, they come with claws... Nothing in my house is damaged, and I have three of them. My house doesn't smell like a cat house either...
I think a nice throw over a couch isn't a big deal... but that's just me...
A cat is definitely not a peace of accessory, who will come perfect to what you need, but I guarantee you he will be WAY more rewarding than anything you have in your home. You will love this little guy and it will love you through thick and thin - can't really say the same about a couch, can you?
If you have a modern taste, take a look at this website: http://www.moderncat.net/ browse around it, and you will see many cool solutions for a modern apartment, where it will be totally visually appealing, and very cat friendly too!
I hope you change your attitude about the kitten and give it a chance - you have no idea of the amazing companionship you will get in return!
About soft claws: Nope - they don't come off that easily... Actually I had the opposite problem, of them not coming off at all .
They usually last around 6 weeks, and fall off as the kitty sheds the nails outer layers. A few might fall off due to out of schedule shedding, but you just replace it as you go...
It is comfortable for the kitten, and will spare your furniture completely - but you need to be diligent in applying them.
For me the application is VERY easy, takes me a few minutes....
Good luck!
I didn't get the cat because I thought it would be a cool piece of accessory (It's a cat not a tiny dog that can fit inside a purse). I got one because I've always wanted a cat. And I knew there was the potential for some damage, and for weeks I gave it some serious thought of taking the kitten at an early age in order to "train" it to know what to attack, and what to leave alone.

I decided I wanted the cat because I live alone, and thought it would offer some form of companionship, plus the person giving me the kitten said if after a while I couldn't handle it, she would help find it another home. I don't know if switching environment and owners on a kitten so many times at an early age would confuse it, but I decided to just do it.

Sometimes I come home and she's great. And a couple of times I come home and I just wonder what have I done. I knew it wouldn't all be rosy, and easy. It is after all a living creature, and a baby creature at that.
post #12 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by NorthernGlow View Post
Sounds like my sister.. "I'd like to get a kitten, but I just bought a new couch".

My apartment doesn't look like a 'typical cat house'. I do know what you mean with it, and I don't want this place to look like it either. I have three cats here, and most of the time they behave very well. I have taught them from the start that they are not allowed to scratch furniture or carpets, they have scratching post for that purpose and they use it. I'm not sure what material my couches are, something a bit velvet like, and if scratched, they'll look awful! I don't have to cover them and my kitties don't really want to spend any time on them because they have 'more interesting' places to be. During the night they are not allowed to the living room at the moment because I still have some unpacked stuff from moving, and cords that need to be protected from the youngest cat.
Heh. Well I'm a bachelor, but I can still want my place to look like it doesn't belong in a frat house.

I'm keeping her in the bedroom while I'm at work and at night. She is allowed in the rest of the apartment while I'm there. She seems to behave, and I every day I come home and check the couch in the bedroom and there are no scratches which is good. I came home and saw what appear to be "slip marks" on the leather arm rest.

So I'm thinking I need to apply some tape onto the arm rest until she learns that going on those are "BAD", and will stick to her.

Eventually when I'm confident she understands (or if I get soft paws), then I will allow her to run around the rest of the apartment while at work.
post #13 of 13
Keeping the kitten in your bedroom while you're not there is a good idea anyway, even if you weren't worried about scratching. There's too many thinks in a big house or apartment for a kitten to get into w/out supervision.

One thing you have to remember about kittens is 1st, they are very excitable and will explore everything! LOL, I'm sure you already know that. 2nd, is if she is fairly young, she can't retract her claws yet. Her little paws are too small for the claws to fit into. So if you do find any marks, most likely she didn't do it on purpose. I don't think they are able to completely sheath them until about 6 months, but don't quote me on that. So, as she gets older the chance of damage is going to get less as long as she has a place she likes to scratch like the scratching post.

I've heard great things about soft paws, but I don't know if they will fit on a small kitten. I have never used them so I'm not sure. Maybe they come in different sizes?

I use throws on my furniture but it's more to keep the hair and mud from the dogs off. Much easer to wash a throw than vaccuum and wash a sofa (7 cats, 4 dogs...LOTS of hair!) Another thing I've used which does work on some cats (not all) is aluminum foil. You may try that on your chair in the bedroom. Some cats can't stand the feel of it under their claws, others aren't fazed a bit.

Good luck, and it will get better! Kittens are an experience but they are worth it!
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