Cat Scratchers, Posts, Condos, and Homes: Everything Your Cat Needs To Play And Scratch
Cat scratchers and cat furniture are more than accessories for your spoiled feline.
They address destructive scratching in a fun, humane way.
This is your guide to finding the best cat scratchers, cat scratching posts, kitty condos, cat homes and more.
Why Purchase A Cat Scratcher?
A cat scratcher is a necessary accessory for cats that have not been declawed (and don’t even think about declawing your cat).
Scratching is also a way for cats to mark their territory. Scratches are a visual and olfactory mark. Scratching releases the scent glands in their pads as a warning to would-be feline intruders.
The act of scratching is a great stretch for keeping limbs and paws limber.
Basically, cats need to (and love to) scratch for a lot of reasons.
Destructive scratching occurs when cats do not have an appropriate outlet for their scratching.
Your couch, curtains, carpets, and walls are all convenient alternatives for cats. Don’t let your cat take over your house. Instead, provide your cat with places to scratch that are not destructive to your home.
There are many options available from simple cardboard cat scratchers to elaborate kitty condos. These toys offer stimulation and enticing surfaces to scratch.
Best Of The Best Resource Table
How To Train Your Cat To Scratch
Buying a scratching post, box or cat furniture with scratching surfaces for your cat when she is a kitten saves you the trouble of training an older cat.
Encourage your kitten to play on the box. Sprinkle catnip around the toy and allow your kitten to explore.
Place several cat scratchers around your home and your kitten’s play area to encourage proper scratching.
Patience and observation are all you need to correct destructive scratching in kittens and older cats.
Kittens learn quickly. Older cats take a little longer to persuade to scratch where you want them to scratch.
Observe where your cat prefers to scratch. Some cats like the carpet. Others prefer the side of your sofa. These preferences help you determine the kind of scratcher that appeals to your cat. Cats that prefer to stand on their hind legs to scratch enjoy a cat tree or a cat post. Those that like to scratch your carpet prefer a flatter surface like a cardboard cat scratcher.
Make a note of your cat’s preferred position and location.
Choosing A Scratcher
Choose a post that you think your cat will enjoy. Purchase the appropriate post or box and place it near where your cat prefers to scratch.
This might require sacrificing a corner of the living room for your new cat tree. Don’t worry. You can move it into the corner once your cat has fallen in love with her new toy.
Cat scratchers come in a variety of styles and sizes. They also serve multiple purposes. Cats enjoy lofty perches like the top of refrigerators or the back of the couch. Cat trees, cat tunnels, and cat condos give your cat a place to play, explore and nap that is entirely her own.
A cardboard cat scratcher is a cheap and effective way to stimulate your cat’s natural scratching urges.
Cardboard scratchers are sold at most pet stores and can even be found in grocery and drug stores (though even for small purchases like these, we prefer going online like Amazon…just cheaper and usually pretty quick, plus better selection).
Some come with catnip. Others are angled for an incline scratcher. Most are in the five to fifteen dollar price range, making them the most affordable cat scratch accessory available.
A popular cardboard scratcher isthe Catit Style Scratcher with Catnip.
Some cats adore ripping table legs to shreds. Scratching posts are a good option if you have one of these cats. Consider a scratcher pad that wraps around the table leg your cat already considers her personal territory.
The SmartCat Ultimate Scratching Post offers a slightly more expensive, but high quality option.
There are a few things you need to keep in mind when selecting a scratching post. The most important is stability. Your cat will not scratch a post that easily topples over. Height is important too. Make sure the cat post is tall enough to satisfy your cat’s needs. Measure the height of the surface she already scratches on and add a few inches for optimal scratching.
You treat your cat like a princess. Give her a cat tower to survey her kingdom and scratch away to her heart’s content.
Cat towers offer a total recreational experience for your cat. She can climb, scratch and snooze atop her tower.
Towers come in all sizes and price ranges. Sometimes they are called cat trees as well. The difference between a cat tower, cat climber, and cat tree is complexity.
Climbers focus on the climbing experience. Trees offer a variety of landings for exploration. Towers offer a perch for your kitty.
If space is an issue, consider a folding cat tower. Folding cat towers are affordable and easy to store. Some are even machine washable.
Consider this fashionable cat tower if you are willing to pay the price for your cat to lounge in style.
Cat trees offer the fun of real trees without the dead birds and health risks associated with outdoor cats. Cat trees are usually covered with a carpet-like fiber for scratching and rolling.
Trees come in a variety of colors including beige, navy blue, white and even leopard print to bring out your cat’s wild side.
Cat trees run the price gamut. Some are hundreds of dollars. Others are closer to thirty dollars. Check out these cheap cat trees that are guaranteed to please you cat and your wallet.
Trixie Pet Products makes two affordable cat trees. Amazon has a medium size tree on sale for about $35 here:
Plus, there’s a simple cat tree for around $25, this guy right here:
Cat climbers are a stimulating toy for cats who love to jump and climb. Some cat climbers attach to the back of a door. SmartCat makes a cat climber like this for around $65 that can easily be moved from door to door.
Other cat climber models resemble cat condos or a cat climbing tree. These have climbing features as well as cat furniture. Go Pet Club makes a climber condo for around $100.
Cat stands are pieces of cat furniture that provide cats with a place to relax off of the ground. Sometimes labeled cat hammocks or cat trees, cat stands are simple pieces of furniture that usually lack the multiple levels and accessories of more elaborate trees.
Trixie Pet Products makes an excellent example of a cat stand that includes a scratching post. Make sure your cat stand is sturdy and will not topple over with your kitty on board.
Cats love dark hiding places. Cats are found in the strangest locations, like your laundry hamper, in-between the couch cushions or up a sweater sleeve. A cat tunnel is the perfect accessory for your feline. Cat tunnels are typically made of flexible material and are a very affordable toy for your cat.
Cat perches are similar to cat stands. They provide a place for your cat to relax.
Some hook onto windows.
Others mount on the wall.
Perches that mount on the window give your cat a place to relax in the sunshine while also watching the great outdoors. Place the window perch near a bird feeder so that your cat can observe your flighty visitors from a safe distance.
Cat condos are elaborate cat trees that incorporate perches, cat houses, scratching posts and climbers. A cat condo is often pricier than a cat tree.
These jungle gyms are perfect for households with multiple cats. Each cat gets her own perch and place to scratch. Affectionate cats can cuddle up together while more solitary cats enjoy the luxury of ignoring their housemates.
Cat houses offer your kitty a private retreat. Some are designed for outdoor cats, others for indoor cats.
Consider a heated outdoor cat house if you have an outdoor kitty.
Cats that enjoy scratching appreciate this cat scratch house.
Homeowners looking to incorporate a cat house into an existing design scheme should consider a cat ottoman.
Some cats have an inner wild side. Cat houses come in many designs including this shark cat house.
Now you have the perfect cat tree, stand, post, condo, or house. It is easy to get carried away while shopping for your pet. Restrain yourself from purchasing multiple cat condos!
Instead, accessorize the condo with cat beds and toys. There are so many options to choose from. You can select colored beds to match your cat condo or to compliment your wall trim. The number of cat toys on the market is astounding. Dangle a few from your cat post or leave them in your cat house for some quiet play time. The limit to your cat’s toy collection is your imagination – and your wallet.