What’s the Best Cat Scratcher for Your Pet: 6 Tips for Product Selection
What’s the best cat scratcher out there? Should you go for a corner cat scratcher? A sisal cat scratcher? The type of scratch toy that can be attached to furniture like sofas (to prevent your favorite item from getting entirely ruined by those little claws)?
Choosing a high quality cat scratcher goes beyond visual considerations and just picking an item that looks cute.
If you’re getting a cat scratcher for the very first time, here are some of the most important rules to follow for a perfect selection.
Why Do Cats Scratch?
Before moving on to the other essentials related to the selection of the best cat scratcher, let’s examine a curious question first. Why do cats scratch? Is it something natural? Will your pet be doing it for their entire lifetime?
According to American Humane, cats scratch because they mark their territory this way. When engaging in scratching, kitties leave both visual markers and some of their scent on the place that they’ve jut “attacked.” In this sense, it’s a perfectly normal and healthy cat behavior.
Scratching also enables cats to stretch their body, as well as to keep their claws sharp and healthy.
When scratching becomes destructive, however, it turns into an actual problem.
Cats often tend to scratch furniture like sofas, loveseats or chairs. These are the places where you sit and spend a lot of time in. As a result, a kitty may feel compelled to mark their territory by scratching the sides of the furniture you use the most.
To deal with such behaviors while giving your kitty a chance to engage in a habit that’s healthy and natural, you’ll need to choose the best cat scratcher. Here are some of the most important criteria and considerations for the selection.
To Choose the Best Cat Scratcher, Make Sure That the Texture Is Right
A good scratching post should allow your kitty to dig their claws into it. This is why rougher materials work best.
A sisal cat scratcher is an excellent choice. Not only is the texture right, the material is also long-lived and durable. Your cat will get many years of good use out of such an item.
Many sisal cat scratchers also come in combination with a toy, encouraging activity and further promoting the health of your pet.
Some cats like digging their claws into softer materials like carpets. In these instances, you can find scratching posts crafted from softer, fluffier materials. Corrugated cardboard scratchers can also turn into a quick favorite because they can be shredded. The obvious problem here is that the item is going to get destroyed relatively fast and you’ll need a replacement.
Angle and Placement Considerations
Observing your kitty in action will give you a good idea about the right placement and the angle at which the cat scratching post should be positioned.
As already mentioned, many cats like to stretch while they scratch. The leg of a chair or a table will provide the perfect opportunity for such kitty yoga. If this is the case, you can get a natural sisal mat that will wrap around the leg of the respective piece of furniture to offer protection and a bit of fun for your pet.
Some cats, however, will scratch the carpet or another horizontal surface.
In these cases, opt for cat scratching mats that are positioned directly on the floor.
The Best Cat Scratchers Offer Stability
The way the scratcher is attached to a surface or how it stands on its own will determine just how stable the accessory is.
And you definitely need a scratching post that isn’t going to come apart the first time your kitty decides to target it.
Cat climbing trees that incorporate a scratcher are an excellent choice if you’re looking for stability. They’re designed with a wide base so that they wouldn’t tip over in the event of intense play. These cat climbing trees also allow kitties to jump, exercise and observe the world from a high spot (something that most kitties absolutely adore).
Scratchers that are mounted on wall corners and scratching pads that can be attached to furniture also offer a ton of greatness in terms of stability.
Now that you’ve addressed your cat’s most basic needs, it’s time to go into a few practical considerations for the selection of the best cat scratcher.
The right size and shape will be essential to fit your home’s interior.
If you’re buying pet accessories for the very first time, you may be tempted to go overboard with the choices you make. Picking the largest possible cat tree or a funky cat scratch cactus, however, will not always be optimal choices.
These larger items are often pretty expensive and you can’t be certain that your pet will fall in love with the accessory. Chances are that you’ll end up with a massive tower that your cat hates and that’s simply occupying half of a room.
Small and compact scratchers are usually enough to address your kitty’s basic primal need. Do start slow and small. If you discover that your cat absolutely adores a particular type of scratcher, you can easily size up in the future.
Getting two in one or even three in one cat products can often save you money and space at home.
As already mentioned, some cat scratching posts incorporate a toy like a bell or a mouse attached to a rope. This way, your kitty can take care of their claws and launch into a fitness session immediately after.
You can also look for scratchable cat furniture, a scratcher that also incorporates a cat bed or a hammock on top or a little scratchable staircase that your kitty can climb and explore.
The market offers a lot of variety today so don’t rush into making a purchase. Explore a sufficiently big number of products to make sure you’ve identified the one you like the most (and that also falls within your budget).
Look for Alternatives to Traditional Cat Scratchers
The good news is that the market today also gives you a lot of versatility. You don’t have to stick to a classic pet accessory if you don’t want to. Some cool, modern and streamlined alternatives do exist.
Take this funky sisal cat scratcher rope as an example. You are essentially getting a rope that you can wrap around anything – a favorite cat toy, a piece of furniture your pet likes to scratch or even a floor mat. It is sufficiently long and it comes in numerous colors, allowing for effortless personalization.
This way, you can transform a spot in the house that your kitty already goes to for scratching. Often, cats will reject a brand new scratching post that you’ve just brought in. Modifying a surface that they already like to scratch, however, can yield much better results.
What to Do if Your Cat Doesn’t Want to Use the Brand New Scratching Post
As pet owners, we’ve all been there: getting excited about a brand new purchase that the kitty or pup is immediately going to reject.
So, what do you do if the amazing brand new cat scratcher you’ve just acquired gets completely ignored?
For a start, the scratching post may be positioned incorrectly.
Again, it’s essential to observe your cat. Where do they go to when they want to scratch? Do they stretch up or scratch the carpet on the floor? If you select a scratcher that doesn’t seem natural to your pet, chances are that it will remain unused.
If your kitty has a favorite scratching place, this is where you should position the brand new accessory. Trying to teach your cat to go somewhere else and completely change their habits is a lost cause right off the bat.
Finally, you can try to create a positive association with the cat scratcher.
Pets that feel good about a certain item will likely maintain their interest in it.
Spraying a brand new scratcher with concentrated catnip spray is one way to get the job done and make the accessory a bit more enticing.
You can also incorporate the use of the scratcher in your play time. This is especially easy for products that have some kind of cat toy incorporated in the design. If an association is established between the scratching post and a bit of fun time with the kitty’s human, chances are that the brand new item will eventually be accepted.
Remember that cats are creatures of habit. They can be pretty stubborn once their routine has been established. Don’t try to change things up aggressively. Getting a kitty used to something new gradually will eventually get your pet curious and more receptive of what you have to offer.
Are You Looking for the Best Cat Scratcher?
Hopefully, this guide has answered some of your most common questions about selecting the best cat scratching post your pet is going to enjoy.
The final question that remains to be answered is where do you find such a high quality item?
Shop for All Pets has a quality selection of cat scratching posts and mats. Check the collection out and don’t hesitate to get in touch with us if you have a specific question. Our cat scratchers, as well as all other products on the website are available with free international shipping, regardless of the order’s value.
So what are you waiting for? A brand new cat scratcher is just a few clicks away!