As any experienced cat lover knows, cats are wonderful, but they aren’t easy. Cats are independent and live life on their terms. They’ll give their human plenty affection and love, but in their own way and only in their own time. If you want attention and obedience when you ask for it, get a dog.Scratching is part of a cat’s nature, and no matter how hard you try, you will not be able to stop a cat from scratching. Some people try to prevent scratching damage by having a cat declawed, but declawing is never a solution. In many states declawing is illegal, and even where it isn’t, it is inhumane and causes the cat much pain.To stop your cat from scratching, it helps to understand why they do scratch. Cats do not just scratch to sharpen their nails. They scratch so that they mark their territory. They want to let other cats that might come along know that this area is “taken”.

They also scratch for exercise, as you’ll notice that they always stretch as they scratch. In addition, scratching helps the cats to remove older layers of their nails, so don’t panic if you find pieces of nails around the house. This is quite normal.When training a cat, the sooner you start, the better. Cat training is most effective with kittens, since older cats may have already formed bad habits. If you have an older cat who has not been trained, just start as soon as you can and hope for the best.If you want your cat to stop scratching your furniture and rugs you must give them something different to scratch. Pet stores carry a large selection of scratching post and mats. Choose a type according to whether your cat prefers to scratch up high, or out flat.

It is important while cat training that you show your cat the new scratching area. Sprinkle it with catnip and place your kitty in front of it. If he scratches, give him some praise or a tasty treat. Be patient, it takes time to train a cat.Training a cat goes beyond trying to get cats to use the fancy new scratching area that you’ve set up. At least equally important is getting the cat not to scratch where you don’t want him to. One successful technique has been to cover areas you don’t want scratched with aluminum foil or soda cans with pennies; the rattling of the foil or the falling cans will frighten your cat into not scratching there again.Above all, the most important rule of cat training is to always show your furry friend that you love him. Never make him fear you. And remember, you can never, ever, make a cat do something he doesn’t want to do.

Cats make wonderful pets, but many potential cat owners are put off by the instinct cats have to scratch. They scratch partly to sharpen their claws and remove the older layers of nail, but mostly to mark their territories. To train a cat most effectively, start early. Kitten training is easier, as they have not developed bad habits. Cats must scratch; it’s instinctual. Give the cat something attractive to scratch, and make scratching furniture or rugs unappealing with aversive tactics. Cat training takes patience and affection, but it is worth the trouble to have both a loving feline companion and a home free of claw-marks.
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