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Cat scratching the walls...

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
...which is driving my partner up the wall!

We have knock down walls, which is just the perfect texture for Tigger to sharpen her claws on. I know it's a natural thing for cats to do, but she is starting to take big chunks out of the plaster. My partner is getting upset by it. Any suggestions to get her to do this elsewhere? She will barely look at the scratching post we got for her....
post #2 of 13
I don't have any suggestions for ya, but just wanted to add my cats does the same thing.... but with door jambs I gave up trying to get her to scratch elsewhere, but if anyone has any suggestions?
post #3 of 13
What is the scratchign post covered with? If its carpet then it won't be of any interest. Cats like to use scratching posts wrapped with sisal wrope or bark. They also have to be at least as tall as their full length of the body so they can get a good stretch. Otherwise they won't be interested. As a quick fix, try gettign some corrugated cardboard from petsmart or other pet store which also goes over really well (my cats particularly like the ball track with the cardboard in the middle). Each place the cat likes to scratch place one of these objects. Sprinkle it with catnip to encourage the use of the object instead of the wall.

If your scratching post dosen't have sisal you can easily fix that. You can get it at Home Depot and wrap the post yourself using a staple gun to keep it in place.
post #4 of 13
Thread Starter 
I'll try that. It is carpeted. I wonder why they sell them that way?
post #5 of 13
I think its cheaper. Unfortunately its the reason most cat owners end up with scratching problems whether it be your walls or the sofa and unused scratching posts. Those kinds of materials are very nice for the cats claws. We never see the cat scratching on the carpeted floor however, because its just not a good surface for shedding the claw layers they need to shed (big purpose of scratching). Often we will see the cats scratch on door mats because they are usually a low grade material that provides more resistance to the claws.

If you go to cat shows they will usually have the *good* cat trees/posts made with great materials (bark, sisal, etc). We have one that is sisal wrapped and then have various corrugated cardboard in the house and no scratching problems on the furniture. The cat will learn that that is *his* place to scratch, and ultimately he knows you are frustrated, but he needs to scratch.

I hope the transition works for you but it could take a while to break the habit (just to warn you). I would spray something unappetizing in that area as you are retraining them to use the right spot. I find my cats dont' like the scent of lime, lemon or vinegar. This could deter them. THen use catnip on the new surfaces and do play sessions around the new objects since when cats get excited they like to scratch more (hence the ball track with carboard center i nice as they play with the ball they can scratch like crazy).

One of the most useful self-play toys in our household:
post #6 of 13
You could get some dried catnip to put on the scratching post. And put a little of the Bitter Apple spray on the wall where she is scratching - that might stop her.
post #7 of 13
My scratching post is sisal, which she likes, and I have one of those cardboard things will the ball track around it. But she loves to scratch this one spot on the carpet! I think another cat may have messed there before we moved in... Anyway, I agree, you just need more and better scratching posts. I don't know why they sell those just-carpet ones. Maybe there is a cat somewhere who likes it, but I've never met one. They are cheaper, but they don't work! The catnip really helps!
I also saw someone who had a just-carpet one and wrapped it in extra window screening that they folded all the edges in on. And do cats ever love window screening! although, then they would start attacking the windows when you had them open...
post #8 of 13
SolarityBengals is right, you might try one that is cardboard with catnip on it. Cats (from what I've seen) take right to it. Not to mention, the ones that are just flat on the floor are cheap (they go for about $7 here in California, where everything is outrageously expensive). You should be able to find one in any pet store.

Let us know how it goes, ok?

P.S. Another idea...I just put a product called Soft Paws on my babes. They're GREAT!! I totally recommend them! Check out their website, which is basically www plus the name dot com.
post #9 of 13
where besides shows can you purchase a tall scratching cats are pretty large? thanks
post #10 of 13
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by GoldenKitty45
You could get some dried catnip to put on the scratching post. And put a little of the Bitter Apple spray on the wall where she is scratching - that might stop her.
Where do I get Bitter Apple spray?
post #11 of 13
Originally Posted by MiamiSpartan
Where do I get Bitter Apple spray?
I did a search at, and found it pretty quickly, so I would assume it's at the store, too. Maybe check your local pet stores?

Also, I found a LOT of online stores that have it. Try googling "bitter apple spray" and see what you find.
post #12 of 13
Petco has some great trees, Petsmart not so much. But you pay a premium price at these places. Shows tend to have much better costs. You can check e-bay as they have large trees. Also, I like this one:

If you/know someone that is handy you can get some pvc tubing (the wider kind) and wrap it with sisal and put it on a wood base. It comes out pretty cheap that way.

I think for now getting a bunch of the corrugated cardboard from Petsmart/Petco/petstores will help you a lot. I have some bitter apple spray but find they don't seem to care a whole lot about it (other people find their cats detest it though so maybe its just mine). Lime juice works great :P .
post #13 of 13
Foster/Smith catalog has some great trees, but the cost of shipping them is too high IMO - you can get the same tree at a show for that price without the shipping costs.

Petsmart has some nice ones IMO - a little higher then at a show.

Bitter Apple spray should be found in almost any retail pet store. I got mine from F/S catalog only cause I bought a few other things at the same time.
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