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Trying to avoid declawing kitten

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
An acquaintance has a young (2 - 4 months old, she's not sure) kitten whom she adores, but who is scratching all of her new upholstery. I gave her some "Sticky Paws" to try, it had worked great for me, but the kitten reportedly "laughs" at it and it's not slowing down the destruction. To her credit, the woman says "it's just furniture and the kitten is more important" but her husband doesn't feel that way. She's told me that all of her past cats, including her current one, have been declawed. I'm afraid this kitten is headed for a declaw too, unless the scratching behavior gets under control, and quickly. The woman has provided a couple of scratching posts for the kitten, but the upholstery is still the main target. I've recommended that she start trimming the kitten's claws now to get her used to the procedure, and to hopefully cut down on the damage somewhat.

I know not all things work for all cats, but if you've had a similar problem and were able to correct it, please let me know!
post #2 of 15
trimming is a good idea. what about those sprays that stop scratching? if all else fails, I would kidnap the cat away from that lady rather than let it be mutilated.
post #3 of 15
nail caps, way better than declawing.
post #4 of 15
Maybe she could put a cover over the couch until the kitten finds another favorite place to scratch (hopefully a scratching post). Once the kitten is no longer used to scratching the couch the cover can be removed.
post #5 of 15
The reason that cats claw is to stretch their back, mark their territory and to shed their nails. What we ended up doing was going to the salvation army and buying an inexpensive sofa. We put it upstairs and made this the designated scratching sofa of the house. It works well, and we have only had problems with new arrivals who want to scratch the furniture downstairs, until we introduce them to Mr. Sofa upstairs. They scratch on the furniture because it does not move, and although I love scratching posts, most of them will wobble or sway when the cat jumps at them. Furniture, won't do that-
post #6 of 15
i saw on a programme a woman who rubbed lemon scented soap over her furniture to keep the cats away.
post #7 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by KTLynn
I gave her some "Sticky Paws" to try, it had worked great for me, but the kitten reportedly "laughs" at it and it's not slowing down the destruction.
I tried the "Sticky Paws" with our new kitten last year. Next thing I knew she was actually enjoying herself pulling the strips off and playing with them. She still loves to play with tape on boxes and sticky labels.

My only recourse was to keep the nails trimmed to decrease the damage and to spray her favorite spots with Feliway. So Soft Paws might be a very good option for this person to avoid the damage while the kitten is learning the preferred places to scratch.

Now we're working on her not rabbit-kicking one of the chairs. She wraps herself around one of the legs of the chair and kicks the bottom with glee. They are inventive little creatures.

I hope you're able to help this person find a good solution for the cat.
post #8 of 15
I have been lucky, that my cat isn't bad at scratching. She does attack the furniture once in a while, and I have been making sure there is an appropriate and attractive alternative in each room.

One thing I was very careful with, once the cat had scratched a spot, I went back and sprayed it with Nature's Miracle, several times over a few days. The thing is, once they scratch, they also scent mark, and then have incentive to go back to the same spot.
post #9 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by KTLynn
I know not all things work for all cats, but if you've had a similar problem and were able to correct it, please let me know!

My cat kept scratching the furniture until we got one of those corrugated cardboard cat scratchers. It's in what looks like a box top, and it's heavy cardboard. You can buy replacements when the cat destroys it. It really helped. You can put catnip in it too, although catnip tends to make my cat aggressive so I don't use it. I also have a big cat tree that my cat can scratch, but the cardboard works a lot better. The spray really smells bad. I tried it on my son's door because my other cat kept scratching at it when my son was sleeping. You have to air the house out after you use it. Tell your friend to keep trying though!!
post #10 of 15
I trim Zoeys nails, lot less damage I bet the caps would be great
post #11 of 15
I trim Zoeys nails, lot less damage I bet the caps would be great
post #12 of 15
we just let our cats shred the furniture, my mum wants new sofas and this way my dad has to agree!
post #13 of 15
NAIL CAPS, NAIL CAPS, NAIL CAPS! I can't promote them enough! Haha... I am highly against declawing, having assisted on many a declawing surgery and seeing how not-so-pretty it is . My little monster almost destroyed my bedroom door while he was staying at home with my parents... my mom bought him a scratching post and tried no-scratch spray and they didn't help. Oliver's been wearing claw caps now since April and they have saved our mommy/kitty relationship, not to mention my furniture! You (or your friend) may want to have another person on hand the first time she tries to apply them... my boyfriend had to help out because Oliver was being squirmy, but he's gotten used to the idea now and readily lets me replace any that fall off. The claw caps also highly reduce any rough-play related injuries that I used to get from rough-housing with my little boy, but he still has exposed back claws to kick at his toys. I definitely say nail caps are one of the best kitty inventions ever!
post #14 of 15
Thread Starter 
Thanks, guys, for all the suggestions. Looks like nail caps and some different scratching posts are the way to go. I'll be forwarding the info to the kitten's mom ASAP. I'm hoping these things will do the trick - I hate the thought of this little one being declawed.
post #15 of 15
I have had great success with scattering sisal door mats around the place. They don't move and the cats love them in preference to the furniture (well, most of hte time!)
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