Finding the best cat scratching post for your furry feline will be nothing, right? Just go online and pick a style through reviews and done; but your cat may have other ideas. To ensure its use everyday, you should involve some research into selecting a proper scratching post for your kitty. The Refined Feline whipped up some tips and tricks on choosing the right cat scratching post for your cat specifically.
Vertical vs. Horizontal
One key factor is positioning- a big tipping point for cats is how the scratching post is positioned. Most cats will end up preferring one over the other, like a more horizontal scratcher, or vice versa. Horizontal scratchers come in mostly flat shapes, cardboard-based structures that come in differing styles. If you notice your cat scratching your rugs and carpets, they may need a horizontal scratcher.
Vertical scratchers are tall posts with a strong wooden base on the bottom. The material can vary on these posts, as well as the length you want. Some vertical scratchers can be smaller, under a foot tall, while others can be a few feet tall. There are styles of scratchers that can even hang off of doorknobs! Having a vertical scratching post tall enough that your cat can fully stretch on is a good choice. You can even get some modern cat furniture with scratching pads on it!
To be on the safe side though, it’s best to purchase one of each style, so your cat can have choices. This gives them the opportunity to figure out which type they prefer and get a scratching!
Coverings and Materials
The top three coverings for most cat scratchers are going to be carpet, sisal, or cardboard. Carpet usually surrounds the post but also the scratching surface itself. You may want to steer clear of carpeted posts as it could cause confusion for your cat. They’re allowed to scratch their post which is carpeted but then get told no when they try to scratch the actual carpet. Your pet doesn’t really know the difference between the two, so keeping the actual material separate can help your cat better differentiate.
Most posts will use sisal, as it is durable against a cat’s claws for years. It’s a strong and rough surface that cats will usually enjoy scratching anyway. You can usually find cat trees and posts with two types of sisal – rope and fabric. Sisal rope is a long length of sisal wrapped around a cat post all in one piece. Since this rope is one long strand it can start to loosen over time, and a cat’s claws may get caught in-between the strand of ropes. Your cat may become less enthused to use it as they keep getting caught in it. Sisal fabric is less rough but covers the entire post, eliminating the potential for nail snags and still encouraging your cat’s use.
A slightly less sturdy option but one cats love is cardboard. It can crumble fairly easily over time, leaving a slight mess behind and your cat without a proper scratcher. Depending on what brand you buy though, it may be sturdier and have more layers. If you’re looking for other types of surfaces, scratching posts also come in bamboo, seagrass, and rattan, among other materials. Again, your best bet may be to get a couple of scratching posts in different material types to give your cat options.
Sturdy Posts, Happy Cats
Many pet parents may not realize how much the sturdiness of a scratching post makes a difference in how often they use it. Ensuring the base of the post is extra wide and weighted will decrease the potential of it falling over. Cats get the zoomies and will jump onto or off of scratching posts with a lot of force. If they happen to knock over a scratching post while running around, your cat may not use it again. If you’re doing some shopping, The Refined Feline’s A-Frame Cat Bed is sturdy and multi-purpose! This piece has one whole side of sisal fabric, an interior shelf for your cat, and space up top for your things.
Every few months or years it never hurts to simply move the scratching posts around to different rooms of the house. Your cat will assume it’s a new post and may use it even more! And remember that some models of scratching posts barely have a weighted bottom, meaning it may be hard to keep it stable. During your research of different models, be sure to check out and consider their weight as well. It may mean you pay more since it weighs more, but your cat will definitely use it since it can withstand their zoomies.
Cleaning the Post
Equally important to the above factors is the necessity in keeping the post clean, especially since it can last years. It will be more difficult keeping a carpeted cat post clean and stain free. An easier option would be a wooden base post with thinner material like sisal. Everyday, items like hair, dust, dirt, and of course vomit may end up on the post. Parts of sisal and cardboard bits may be around the base of the post, too, so being able to clean it efficiently will be key. Maintain its cleanliness by keeping an eye on it frequently so your cat will continue using it day after day. To help keep your home cleaner and more streamlined, you can even choose a style that is attached to the wall.
How It Looks
Even though the scratching post is for your cat, doesn’t mean that it can’t also be beautiful! There are hundreds of different designs & types of scratching posts on the market today. Some styles are cute and playful in their design and aesthetic. Some cat scratchers are so lovely you wouldn’t even recognize it as being for your furry feline. The Calypso Everlasting Cat Scratcher is one such example of beauty and functionality for a cat scratcher. There are many options available if you want something that will blend more easily into your home.
A simple shopping trip has definitely changed directions now, huh? But picking the right cat scratcher by doing more research is definitely the correct choice. You’ll be able to find one that fits both your cat’s playfulness and your home’s decor, saving you money. Picking the right kind of cat scratcher can give your cat years of playtime, and keep you and your feline friend happy!