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If you are a cat lover, then you probably have a love/hate relationship with cat scratching. Your favorite chair and your wits may be in shreds. You may try to discuss this unwanted behavior with your cat to no avail. But on the inside, you know that your cat is one of the world’s most self-reliant and pragmatic animals. Your cat may simply give you a look that screams, “Hey I’m just doing my thing.” As professional pet sitters, we have cared for many cats considered to be “excessive scratchers.” Here are some things to understand about cat scratching.

Do what you can to avoid declawing

As pet sitters, please understand that this is our educated opinion, but one should avoid declawing their cat. For specific cases, you should always consult with your vet before taking further action. Declawing can be maiming a cat. Cat’s claws are a necessary part of their bodies. They are vital to balance, mobility, and survival. Declawing is an irreversible operation that involves amputating a cat’s toes to the first joint.

Declawing can also lead to other troubles for your beloved cats. Contractures of the tendons can occur which make it uncomfortable for your cat to walk. And since part of their front paws are amputated, cats tend to compensate for this by putting more weight on their back paws. This causes a cat to be out of balance. One could argue that a cat’s life is about balance, therefore, losing balance can be very disturbing to them.

Why do cats scratch?

As pet sitters, we’re often asked this question. There is one very important topic that must be discuss to understand why cats scratch stuff; that is that scratching is a natural behavior for cats. Furthermore, you can’t truly keep your cat from scratching things.

You should also avoid punishing your cat for scratching. Feline pets don’t understand punishment like us humans do. Cats don’t associate the activity of scratching with anything negative or any unwanted behavior. Therefore, punishing your cat for scratching will make your relationship worse.

If you have any questions about dog walking, pet sitters, or kennel alternatives, please reach out to us at walk@comewalkmydog.com