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Home Pet Q&A Cat Questions How Do You Stop A Cat From Scratching Carpet?

How Do You Stop A Cat From Scratching Carpet?

To stop a cat from scratching carpet, you'll need to provide alternative objects for him to scratch that are just as appealing as the carpet. Provide strategically placed scratching posts, and encourage your cat to use them. Cats need to scratch, so you won't be able to stop the behavior, but you can take steps to stop your cat from turning your Berber rug into a shag carpet.

Kitty's Gotta Scratch

Scratching and stretching are musts for cats. It removes the dead outer layer of their claws, allows them to mark their territory, and gives them a way to flex and stretch out their bodies. That's why cat owners who value their carpet and furniture ensure the cat has appropriate scratching options. 

Place a scratching post close to where your pet sleeps and in areas where you've caught him scratching. If your cat is scratching the carpet in just one or two spots, cover those spots with a plastic rug runner or furniture and if feasible, put the scratching post on top of that spot. If your cat is a kitten, when you see him scratching your carpet, move him over to the scratching post. Adult cats may not appreciate being moved, so enticing with catnip sprinkled on the post and using your own nails to make a scratching sound on the post are two techniques likely to be more effective with an adult cat. Commercial sprays are also available that attract your cat to the post. Also, place your cat's favorite toys around the scratching post and spend time playing with him nearby. Choose posts with a rough surface, such as sisal or burlap, as cats find those textures appealing.

Protect Your Carpet 

Until your cat decides he likes his scratching posts more than your carpet, you'll want to protect your carpet. Several products are available that can help with this including two-sided tape, plastic mats, and spray deterrents.

Some pet owners also have nail caps applied to their cat's claws. Each application lasts about six weeks. Nail caps are a humane alternative to declawing.  


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