How I got my cats to use the cat scratch post was when they were watching, I went down on all 4s and put my hand/paw up against the sisal roap then I used my fingernails to scratch the post. All of them once in a while forget the rule and claw the dining room chairs and couch, but they usually use the sisal scratching items I have in the house.
Pepper is darling by the way, love his 'asleep' pic and the first pic. The big ears in first pic, reminds me of my Nala when she was that age. Fortunately, she kind of grew into her ears