How To Prevent Your Cat From Scratching Your Furniture
Some cats will scratch on things around the house, such as sofas, chairs and mattresses. If your cat has been picking at your furniture and you would like to know what to do to prevent your furniture from being destroyed by scratches, then here are a few ideas.
BUY A SCRATCH PAD
If you haven't already done so, you may want to purchase a scratching pad or post for your cat to scratch on. You may want to buy a few of them and place them around the house, in areas where your cat scratches the most. When you first buy a scratch pad and bring it home, put your cat on the scratch pad and gently scrape it's paws against the pad so that the cat knows to dig it's claws on the pad and not on your furniture.
If your cat is calm and you think it will allow you to apply something to it's nails, then you may want to purchase cat nail caps. Nail caps are placed over the cat's claws to prevent problem scratching. These nail caps are a good alternative to declawing a cat. You can find this product in pet stores or online.
NO SCRATCH SPRAY
Another way to prevent problem scratching is to spray areas of your furniture with a no scratch spray that can be found in pet stores. These sprays usually have a distinct scent that will deter the cat from going near it. This kind of spray is nontoxic and would probably be best if you sprayed it on your furniture on a regular basis because the scent may eventually wear off.
If you see that your cat is scratching your furniture, you may want to firmly yell "No!". You might also want to make a little noise that would scare the cat away from the furniture. My cat is afraid of plastic bags, so when I wanted to stop him from scratching furniture, I would rustle the plastic bags around to make noise and he would quickly run away from the furniture. Remember though, that the cat is just following it's instincts to scratch, so try not to be too harsh.
You may want to try one or all of these ideas to help prevent your cat from picking at your furniture. Declawing a cat is up to the owner's preference, however, I will not recommend it. Also, you may want to use furniture protectors, such as slip covers or blankets if all else fails.