Scratching is a natural behavior for cats. It exercises their muscles, sharpens and cleans their claws, relieves stress and marks their territory to alert other pets. It’s also a behavior that has wrecked many couches, chairs and carpets to the frustration of cat owners everywhere. Fortunately, there are ways to keep your cat away from furniture so your home stays in tip-top condition.

Provide alternative scratching surfaces

Since scratching is instinctive for cats, it’s unreasonable to try and train them to stop scratching altogether. You can, however, keep them away from your furniture by giving them something else to focus their claws on. Sisal Rugs has a number of 100 percent woven sisal cat scratching posts and mats to keep your cat entertained. Sisal is one of the strongest natural fibers available, making it the perfect match for your cat’s claws. In addition to being sturdy enough to withstand your cat’s beatings, Sisal Rugs’ posts are tall enough for your cat to fully stretch out and scratch comfortably.

Make your furniture less appealing

Upholstered couches and chairs are prime targets for a cat’s sharp claws. With an herbal-scented deterrent spray or removable double-sided tape, you can make those surfaces uninviting. Cats dislike herbal scents and are sensitive to sticky surfaces, so they’ll avoid sprayed and taped areas. Over time, your cat will be conditioned to avoid the furniture completely, and you can remove the tape and/or stop spraying.

Trim the cat’s nails

Another way to combat your cat’s scratching problem is to tackle it at the core. Regularly trimming your cat’s claws will prevent them from becoming razor-sharp weapons, and your furniture will be out of harm’s way. If you don’t know how to properly clip a cat’s nails, be sure to ask your vet beforehand. Trimming claws incorrectly can easily cause injury and put your cat in a lot of pain.

Scratching may be in a cat’s nature, but that doesn’t mean your furniture has to take a beating. With these tricks, you can prevent your cat from wreaking havoc in your home.