Can you quickly describe what a good cat scratching post looks like? The normal guess is going to include a nice tall post wrapped in carpet. If this was your guess, you just discovered the wrong answer.
A scratching post covered in carpet is likely to end up with one very unhappy cat at some point in time. Many cats have ended up with a claw deeply wrapped up in the nylon fibers of a carpet, with some finding themselves hanging from one paw trying to break loose. The picture in our minds might appear a bit humorous, but imagine your cat trapped this way for hours waiting for you to arrive back home. Suddenly the image in your mind feels a little more panicked and worried for your cat.
While your selection of carpet for the cat scratching post may have been all wrong, do not feel bad, it is the most commonly found type of scratching post, but not the one your cat really wants and needs.
Sisal is the preferred material to use on your cat’s post. It is a material which stands up to the harsh abuse it will receive. The texture is one your cat will enjoy under their feet. It does not have the same tendencies as carpet which gets tangled in their claws.
One of the biggest mistakes you could make with your scratching post is to use materials which look and feel like any of your furniture. The cat could easily believe they are at the right place, while they tear your furniture to shreds. There would be no one to blame but yourself.
The next important factor is strength. The post must be very sturdy. If the post is wobbly, your cat will go on the hunt for a more stable scratching surface. The post must be strong enough when they stand on their hind legs to scratch, and are furiously ripping at the post, it never moves.
If you are attempting to break your cat of the habit of scratching other surfaces you may need to add some new enticing aromas. One of the best ways to get a cat to start using the cat scratching post is to add catnip to the post. Your cat will smell their delicious cat nip and start hunting for it, which leads them right to the scratching post.
You can buy pre-made posts if you do not feel inclined to build one yourself. They are available in many pet stores and online locations. Check the scratching material carefully to make sure it fills your needs. Making your own post is very easy, too. If you are a little bit handy with tools you can build one with some easy supplies from the local lumber yard.
If you really want to build a fun area for your cat do not just give them just a scratching post, but either build or buy a scratching post and cat climb which are combined. By having both a fun place to climb and find a quiet perch away from everyone, and the scratching post, it will become one of the favorite places for your cat.