A scratching post is surely every cat’s favorite toy. They totally love it since scratching is simply their natural behavior.
Further, scratching posts also save your expensive sofa and carpet from your cats’ sharp nails. The more they scratch, the more severe the damage will be.
However, a lot of cat homeowners don’t take it seriously when they buy scratching posts when it actually can be a waste when you don’t pick the right one. Your cats may ignore it if you don’t get the one that suits their needs. They will be back to attacking your pieces of furniture then.
The most common mistake is that some of you buy scratching posts that look attractive to you and not to your cats. It’s the cats’ point of view that should be the essential consideration when you are planning to buy a scratching post.
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So, to avoid those mistakes, here we have a guide on How to Buy the Right Scratching Post that you can use as an ultimate reference.
How to Buy the Right Scratching Post
Choose the Height
This is actually the most important thing to think about that’s why you should put it first in mind. It’s because they need a scratching post that is tall enough to allow their body to fully extend when they are scratching. They need to stretch their body and pull the muscles back when they scratch their nails onto the scratching post.
The rule of thumb, the scratching post with 31 inches height is a good option. It provides enough space for your cats to exercise their muscles. You may see that your cat also scratches in hunker down position but it’s only one of their favorites. The point is, the post should be able to let them scratch around in various positions.
Ensure the Sturdiness
Of course, the sturdiness of the post is an essential point. The post is surely a waste if it’s not sturdy enough.
Do you know why the cats love to scratch your sofa and table? Because they are sturdy and don’t move here and there. Therefore, if the scratching post wobbles. your cats will not touch it at all. Further, you don’t want to see the scratching post fall on your cats which can be dangerous
Look for a scratching post that has a heavy base, especially when it’s tall. The lightweight base will make the post easy to move around. You have to make sure that the post is unmovable so the cats can scratch their nails comfortably.
Determine the Materials
Choosing the materials of a scratching post can be the most confusing step. It’s because not only you will find tons of options, but also some of them are promoted just to attract you as humans but are not suitable for your cats at all.
Here’s what you can consider:
- Shredding stuff – In nature, cats love shredding, for instance in making their territory. So besides the sturdiness, the materials that shred under your cats’ claws are also another thing that you need to keep in mind.
- Avoid ‘carpety’ material – Some scratching posts are covered by carpets which are not bad but not good either. What makes it not really good is if the carpet material is similar to the ones that you use in your living room, bedroom, or dining room. They will still scratch the carpets around your house since they think the scratching post is not any different than them.
- Opt for sisal fabric – The winner of scratching posts’ material is sisal fabric. It offers great satisfaction for your cats. They shred really well and are very durable. Your cats will love the texture of the sisal fabric since they can draw their claws, Don’t confuse sisal fabric with sisal rope, it’s because sisal rope tends not to get shredded easily by the cats.
Pick Hollow or Solid Tube
A hollow tube is considered a sturdier option since it’s more stable than the wood posts that may stumble around. A scratching post made of hollow tubes covered with sisal fabric is definitely a good one to buy. Keep in mind to always check the base of the post to see whether it’s solid enough or not.
Moreover, a hollow tube also creates noises that the solid one doesn’t provide. Cats love noisy scratching which gives some kind of satisfaction for them.
Horizontal and Vertical Scratching Surface
Besides the scratching post (the one that stands vertically), it would be best if you can also provide a scratching surface in a horizontal position. It’s because they also scratch their muscles horizontally. You can find some flat scratchers to offer them various scratching positions.
Have a Play with Them
Cats can easily get bored and they can leave the scratching post that you provide them if you don’t have a play with it. To trick them, you can place the scratching post in various positions. For instance, you can move the scratching post or platform from the corner of the room to the front of the window once a week.
Moreover, if you have an extra budget, you can buy several scratching posts which are made of different materials so once they have options when they get bored.
Consider Additional Features
Some scratching posts also come with additional features which are designed to provide more comforts for your cats. These are some popular features that you can find:
- A scratching post with lounge – This type of scratching post comes with a place for your cats to comfortably sit on. In the wild, cats love to ‘claim’ trees as the spot to monitor their territory. A scratching post with perch can resemble the trees in nature.
- Angled position – Besides the horizontal and vertical scratching platform, you can also find the ones in an angled position. It provides another position since some cats also scratch backward.