Cat Scratching Posts Are Good For Your Cat
The scratching post is one of a cat’s most essential tools — it physically helps them stretch and mark their territory, psychologically it lets them express their natural instinctive claw-scratting behaviors, and it protects their health by keeping their nails at proper length. So if you want to keep your cat happy and your furniture intact, a scratching post is a must.
But there are many different types of cat scratching posts to choose from, and determining the best option for your pet is a matter of understanding their unique needs and preferences. Whether they prefer the feel of cardboard or the more rugged texture of sisal, horizontal or vertical, some types of scratchers are better for certain cats than others.
When shopping for a new cat scratching post, first consider how tall you’d like it to be. A recent study showed that the higher the scratching surface, the more likely your cat will use it as intended, which means a post three feet or more in height is often the best choice. Also consider where you’d like to place the post, and be sure it’s within easy reach for your cat. Typically, the top spot is near their bed or litter tray, as they often tend to scratch when they’re resting or waking up. It may also be a good idea to have a scratching post in a room where they spend a lot of time, such as the living room or office.
Which Cat Scratching Posts Are Good For Your Cat?
A humble piece of corrugated cardboard is a popular scratching surface among many felines, and for good reason. It offers a satisfying feeling beneath their claws, and some experts believe that it’s even more satisfying than the more common sisal rope that covers most commercial scratchers. Cardboard is also inexpensive and easy to replace, making it an economical, convenient, and effective option for most cats.
Other popular options include the woven mesh of sisal rope, which is durable and attractive to many cats. This type of material is also relatively inexpensive, and it doesn’t retain dirt or leave splinters behind the way that cardboard does. Many cats also find the grooves of wood to be particularly appealing, especially if they’re covered with a carpet or a flocked surface that provides extra stimulation to their claws. The only downside of a wooden post is that it might need to be replaced more frequently than some other types of scratchers.
Cats that go outdoors often scratch on trees and wooden fences, so they’re probably used to rougher surfaces than what most indoor posts offer. However, some cat product specialists recommend introducing a wooden scratcher by sprinkling it with catnip or using treats to draw the cat’s attention to it in order to encourage scratching. They can also consider a scratching post with an integrated perch or cat condo to add an additional element of interest for their cats. Regardless of what kind of scratching post you select, the key is to regularly replace it when it’s shredded to the point where your cat no longer finds satisfaction in it.