We Believe The Practice Of Cat Declawing Is Cruel – Train Your Cat To Stop Scratching Instead
Scratching is often one of the downsides to owning a pet. For cats and dogs, scratching is normal behaviour, and is something they do frequently. There are several reasons for why they use their claws in what seems to be a destructive way, but there are also ways to prevent this behaviour continuing.
It is not always easy to train your cat to stop scratching altogether and many resort to declawing their pets. Although this may seem like nipping the problem in the bud, it is an incredibly cruel surgical process and illegal in many countries. Even if surgery is successful, declawing will most often lead to other behavioural problems. such as: aggression, biting, depression and the refusal to use the litter tray. The following paragraphs examine inavasive ways to train your cat not to scratch.
Deter cats from their previous scratching areas with a water spray, aimed at their faces, or by using citrus scents around the area. Cats are adverse to such smells, so leaving orange peel, or leaving a few drops of eucalyptus or citrus scented oils on or near the surface (test a hidden patch to prevent permanent staining before application) will deter your cat from the area. Covering the parts of the furniture with tin foil, balloons or double-sided sticky tape will also annoy your cat and they will avoid those textures.
Place the scratching boards or posts in front of, or as close to the area where they initially targeted. Encourage them against returning to the original site with water spray, but not physically aggressive behaviour. Pick them up, carry them to the new post and then reward them for acknowledging and using the post, as they respond very well to positive behaviour from owners. Alternatively, place the post or board near their sleeping area. Cats often like to stretch when they wake up so this is an ideal place.
Regularly trimming your cat’s nails will reduce the damage of scratching, and vets and professional groomers offer this service. You can easily do this yourself, however, be careful that you do not cut too far up the nail into the quick, as this will cause pain and bleeding and possibly lead to infection. The ideal time to try this is when your cat is relaxed or asleep, and you may only find you can trim one or two claws at a time before they become irritated.
The best method to avoid expensive damage in your house and pain for your pets is to use Soft Claws. Simple and immediately effective, these vinyl caps are adhered to the claws and last for months. They are non-toxic and available in several colours, for a natural or statement look. Since their invention and introduction into the market millions have been sold because of the easy application. Celebrities, such as Victoria Beckham, use Soft Claws to protect their floors and furniture and to make their cute pets even cuter!
Top 5 Tips to Train Your Cat
1. Don’t give up
Two seconds into starting to train your cat, you might realise that’s not a piece of cake, but it’s not rocket science either. If you have trained another animal before, you have probably noticed that it’s not easy, but it’s not difficult once you look back on it. With training a cat, you have to stay focused and willing. Though it might take a little more effort, you can train your cat.
2. Know your cat
In order to train your cat, you have to know what his/her personality is like. No two cats are the same, learn what your cat likes and doesn’t and go from there.
3. Know when to train your cat
You need to know when it’s OK to train your cat. Don’t wake them from a catnap to train them. Keep training sessions short. You don’t want your cat to get overwhelmed or worse bored. This will be counter productive and leave you frustrated.
4. Use Positive Reinforcement
This is the most crucial part of your cat’s training program. When your cat does the desired behaviour reward them with praise or a treat. Don’t reward them randomly because they will associate rewards with doing nothing. Lastly, remember not to punish them. If they do something wrong, don’t react at all as you don’t want them to associate what they did wrong with any attention.
5. Small steps
Though this might cause the training process to take a little longer, you have to take things slowly. You’re teaching a new cat, new tricks, so it will take time. If you want your cat to learn something, you can’t expect him/her to know how to do it that first day.