How to Stop Cats From Scratching the Carpet

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How to Stop Cats From Scratching the Carpet
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Cats scratch at things in their environment so that they can groom their claws and mark their turf. If there's nothing acceptable for them to scratch around your home, they may take to scratching things like your carpet instead, making ugly holes in the middle of your room. Stop your cats from ruining your carpet by providing them with acceptable alternatives to use and making the carpet inaccessible for them as well.

Cover and protect

Make the spots on your carpet that your cat has scratched ​inaccessible​ and unpleasant for her to continue to scratch.

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  • Cover the spots with plastic carpet runners, plastic drop cloths or inexpensive area rugs and carpet remnants that will protect your carpet from your kitty's sharp claws.
  • Lay down double-sided tape on the scratched areas. Cats generally don't like how the tape feels sticky under their paws and will avoid the areas covered with it, according to vet Elaine Wexler-Mitchell of the Cat Care Clinic in Orange, California.
  • Place sheets of aluminum foil over the carpet to discourage your cat from scratching it.

Deter bad behavior

Place some harmless cat ​deterrents​ around the area of carpeting that your cat has scratched.

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  • Put a motion-detection cat deterrent in the scratched area to scare your kitty away with a hiss-like puff of air or high-pitched sound that humans can't hear.
  • Spray the area with citrus or lavender essential oil scent. These smells naturally repel cats but smell good to people, according to the Alley Cat Allies website. Use products designed for cats such as SEGMINISMART Cat Scratch Deterrent Spray as some essential oil formulas can be toxic to pets.
  • Spritz a synthetic cat pheromone spray on the areas your cat has been scratching, recommends the Healthy Paws Animal Hospital website. The scent should deter your feline friend from scratching the carpet and calm her as well. CEVA Animal Health Feliway Cat Calming Pheromone Spray reduces scratching in nine out of 10 cats and can help your cat feel calm and happy.

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Provide scratching posts

Provide your cat with several surfaces that she's allowed to scratch ​freely​. Give your cat a scratching post to use, preferably covered with carpet, which your kitty already likes to scratch. Sprinkle some ​catnip​ on it to attract her to it.

Place scratching surfaces over the areas of carpet your cat has scratched in the past. Cats who scratch carpeting may prefer horizontal surfaces to scratch Check out the SnugglyCat Ripple Rug Cat Activity play mat. The 47 x 35-inch mat has two layers of cat-tough carpeting. Configure the top layer to make waves and caves — your pet will have fun crawling and clawing its way through holes and tunnels. A thermal bottom mat stabilizes the activity mat and gives kitty a comfy place to doze off when she tires of play. so lay out flat scratching posts and cardboard scratching pads for her to use. P

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Place a carpeted cat tree where your cat tends to hang out. This will allow her to scratch it and climb to a higher area, which cats like to do, according to Pam Johnson-Bennett of the Cat Behavior Associates of Nashville, Tennessee. Confote 51 inches Multi-Level Cat Tree Cat Condo with Scratching Posts Kittens Activity Tower Pet Play House has numerous carpeted areas, levels, and angles where kitty can dig his claws into pile carpet. There are also several sisal rope scratching poles for variety.

Keep her busy and trimmed

Keep your kitty ​busy​ with a variety of toys to occupy her time so she won't scratch your carpets out of boredom. Tucker her out with interactive play sessions using cat toys on a wand several times a day, recommends an article published in the September 2014 issue of Clinician's Brief.

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Regularly trim the sharp tips off of your kitty's nails, just above the pink area of each nail, known as the quick. You also can apply some soft plastic nail caps to your cat's claws, recommends the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. These prevent her from doing any damage to the carpeting if she scratches at it. The caps last up to six weeks before you need to replace them.

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