Why Your Cat Needs a Scratching Post

You love your cat. And he loves you. But it is important to keep in mind that he is descended from the large cats – lions, cheetahs, tigers – which climb trees and require sharp, long claws for traction.  They also use the trees as scratching posts.

Your cat has no need for such traction, unless he is climbing your drapes, but he will instinctively want to scratch his claws and your drapes and your furniture should not be his “posts” of choice.

It is important to clip your cat’s claws regularly, but also to give him an alternative to furniture for scratching. A scratching post made of sisal on a wooden base is just the thing. It will provide him a safe place to accede to his instincts without ruining your home’s decor. Make sure that the post is high enough to accommodate his need to stretch his body out before scratching.

Introducing a scratching post to a cat that has never had one is basically simple. Just show him how it is used. He will get the idea, and since it will feel much better than your furniture, he will want to use it. For a very reluctant cat, you can rub some catnip on the sisal as an added incentive.

Our indoor cats still have a bit of the wild in them and should be treated that way. Their instinct for hunting is very strong, and they will always want to scratch and sharpen their claws before the hunt. You can save your furniture from the ravages of your cat’s instinct to scratch by getting him a scratching post, or making one yourself. Your cat will love it, and so will your home’s decor.