You want your couch to stay in good shape for as long as possible. Keeping your couch in good condition can be tougher than usual when you have pets, though.
If you have a cat, you likely already know how problematic it can be to keep it from clawing things. Many cats will claw pieces of furniture and other objects in homes.
Clawing can be a huge issue that will make you want to pull your hair out. Can you stop cats from scratching couches, though?
Continue reading to learn about ways to protect your couch from your cat. This should help you to make good decisions so you can keep it looking nice for a long time to come.
Why Do Cats Scratch Couches?
One thing you should know about cats is that scratching is normal for them. Your cat isn’t scratching your couch to be vindictive.
Cats seem to have an instinctive need to scratch. This is something that they do when expressing certain emotions such as excitement, but it’s also something that cats do when they’re stressed.
So your cat could be scratching the couch because it’s stressed about something that’s going on in the house. It might also be doing it simply because it’s excited and it doesn’t know any better.
You should also know that cats scratch things so that their scent will rub off on them. When cats scratch things it marks them with their scent.
There are scent glands in a cat’s paws. When the cat scratches it’s a way for them to mark something and claim it as theirs.
Sometimes you’ll see cats scratching simply because it feels good for them to do so. They like scratching and they will often stretch as they scratch objects.
Scratching is something that helps cats to remove dead parts of their nails, too. So it’s something that they need to do to maintain healthy nails.
Do Cats Scratch Leather Couches?
Leather sofas aren’t safe from cats. Some cats might seem to like scratching fabric couches more, but it’s not unusual to see cats scratching leather couches.
It doesn’t matter what material your sofa is made out of. A cat might have the inclination to scratch the couch at some point.
Cats have been known to scratch furniture that’s made out of wood, plastic, fabric, leather, and more. So you need to be prepared to deal with scratching issues no matter what your couch is made out of.
Note that leather couches can become damaged by cat scratches. A cat could rip the leather and make your nice leather couch look terrible.
Leather couches are truly beautiful and you don’t want them to get ruined by your cats. So it’s important to do what you can to protect them.
How to Protect Your Couch From a Cat
There are many things that you can do to keep your couch safe from a cat. How you’ll want to approach things will depend on your situation.
Below, you’ll learn about several things that you can do to keep your couch from getting clawed by your cat. All of these things can make a difference, but you might find that some of them will be more appealing to you than others.
Just take the time to consider them and then examine your situation. Once you have all of the information, it’ll be easier to decide how to proceed.
1 – Train Your Cat
Focus on training your cat to keep it from scratching your furniture. You should do this to keep the cat from doing many bad things in the house.
When you notice the cat scratching something that it shouldn’t be touching, it’s best to scold it. Often, pet owners will spray their cats with water to make them stop.
You can keep a water bottle nearby and use it to spray the cat when it does something bad. So whenever you see the cat scratching the couch or something else, you can spray it.
Eventually, this should teach the cat that it isn’t supposed to do certain things. This is a standard method for training cats not to perform certain negative actions.
Hopefully, this will be enough to solve the problem. It’s best for you to start training cats when they’re young.
Train kittens not to scratch couches so that they will know not to do so once they’re older. It will take a bit of time and dedication on your part.
This is easier when you have someone who can be home with the cats. It’s tougher when the cats are alone in the house for several hours each day.
2 – Use Obstacles
You can protect your sofa by putting things in your cat’s way as well. Cats seem to hate touching sticky things.
People use this to their advantage to protect couches. You can place plastic mats on the floor near the couch and put double-sided sticky tape on the mats.
The cats won’t want to stand on the mats because of their hatred of sticky things. It’ll keep the cats away from the couch.
Granted, having mats like this in your way won’t be convenient. You want to be able to use the couch normally.
Even so, it’s common for people to put objects that are either sticky or rough on the couch and on the floor in front of the couch. These can be used to deter cats from bothering the couch.
It’s not unusual to see people use sandpaper to try to keep cats away from the couch. This idea can help, but it’s likely not a good long-term solution.
You may or may not want to give this idea a shot. Ideally, you’ll want to train the cat and look into some of the other options to permanently solve the issue.
3 – Keep Your Cat’s Nails Trimmed
Keeping your cat’s nails trimmed should help a lot. Earlier, you learned that cats scratch things as a way to remove dead portions of their nails.
So it’s important to trim the cat’s claws often enough. Many people don’t like to do this because cats might scratch their owners when being handled.
One method that makes things much simpler is to hire someone to do it. You can take your cat to a veterinarian or a groomer to get its nails trimmed periodically.
Cats need to have their nails trimmed fairly often. It’s said that you should trim their nails every two or three weeks.
If you do this it’ll be less likely that the cat will turn your couch into a scratching post. So keep this in mind and make good decisions to protect your sofa.
4 – Use a Couch Cover
If you’re having a very hard time keeping your cat away from your couch, it might be wise to look into buying a couch cover. Couch covers go over the top of your couch and help to keep it safe.
Instead of the cat scratching the fabric of the couch, the cat would merely be scratching the couch cover. So you can remove the cover and replace it as necessary.
This isn’t an ideal way to deal with cats scratching couches. The couch cover can only cover so much of the couch.
It covers the material of the couch and keeps the cushions safe, but the couch legs are a different story. Also, you don’t want to ignore the cat acting up and damaging your furniture.
Regardless, having a couch cover can potentially make protecting your couch easier. It’s useful when it comes to protecting your couch from stains from spilling drinks as well.
5 – Give Your Cat a Scratching Post
Consider buying your cat a scratching post that it can use. As mentioned earlier, cats need to be able to scratch.
They like scratching a lot. It feels good for them to scratch things and they need to be able to do this fairly often.
You should buy one or two scratching posts for the cat. Encourage the cat to scratch the post and discourage the cat from scratching the couch.
You can combine the scratching post method with the training methods mentioned above. Eventually, the cat should learn that it’s okay to scratch the post while it’s bad to scratch the furniture.
Be patient as it can take some time for cats to learn. If you stick to it, you should have a good experience with scratching posts.
Scratching posts don’t cost a lot of money to buy. They can be bought at local pet stores or you can simply order what you need online.
How to Get Cats Interested in Scratching Posts
What if the cats don’t seem to care about the scratching posts that you buy? There are things you can do to make the cats more interested in the posts.
There are a few things that you can do to make the posts more interesting for the cats. One involves scenting the post with catnip.
Catnip is something that cats love to death. They will go crazy for it, and scenting the post with catnip will ensure that your cat will be all over it.
Even if you don’t want to use catnip there are other ideas you can try. For instance, you can hang toys from the scratching posts that cats can play with.
Cats like to smack hanging toys and other sorts of things. So this can make the scratching post more interesting than the couch or other pieces of furniture.
6 – Get the Cat Declawed
What if you’re just fed up with your cat scratching all of your things? Many people get frustrated by cats and all of the scratching that they do.
Many people choose to simply get their cats declawed. This is something that you can look into if you feel it is necessary.
A veterinarian can perform the procedure to remove the cat’s claws. The cat will not be able to scratch your furniture any longer and it’ll be easier to keep your couch safe.
For many, this will be an ideal choice. However, there are some who say that removing a cat’s claws is inhumane.
There’s a growing movement of people who are against the idea of removing cat claws. Where you will fall in this debate will depend on your sensibilities.
Just know that this is an option that you have available to you. If you don’t wish to have your cat’s claws removed, it’ll be better to focus on the ideas that you learned about earlier.
How to Protect a Leather Couch From Cats
Protecting a leather couch from a cat is the same as protecting any other type of couch. You don’t have to do anything different than the advice mentioned above.
Yes, leather couches can get damaged pretty easily by cats scratching them. However, your approach to keeping this from happening will be the same no matter what.
Training the cats should be the first thing that you focus on. You want to train the cats not to scratch the couch and give them scratching posts that they can use instead.
If you give them scratching posts, they should eventually learn to leave the couch alone. It can take a little bit of time and effort to get the cats to learn.
You can also try putting a couch cover or a scratch guard on the couch. A scratch guard is essentially the same type of thing as a couch cover.
You should feel like you have a much better idea of what to do now. Cats can scratch up couches and ruin them faster than you’d think.
So you need to take steps to keep this from happening. Protect your couches by training your cats not to scratch the furniture.
You can use spray bottles to make cats learn not to scratch couches. Cats do need to scratch, though, and this means that you must provide them with scratching posts.
Scratching posts are great because they give cats a place where they can stretch and scratch as much as they want. You can make scratching posts more interesting by putting toys on them or scenting them with catnip.
Some people might want to try using couch covers to protect their couches. This can help a bit, but it isn’t a perfect solution to this problem.
If all else fails, you could have your cat’s claws removed. Many people prefer to avoid this since some consider claw removal to be cruel.
Ultimately, it’s up to you to decide how you want to approach this situation. You know about the steps you can take to keep the cats from scratching your couches.
Use this knowledge to your advantage and make good choices. Your couches should stay in good shape and you won’t have to worry so much.
I have two Associate’s degrees, one in Medical Assisting and the other in Computer Technician, and I am roughly five classes from a bachelor’s degree. Though I never ended up working in the medical field, I have five and a half years of experience in IT. I recently became a stay-at-home mom to my two young boys, and I’m so excited to start this adventure with them! In my spare time, I love to bake and read pretty much anything I can get my hands on.