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Scratch Here, Not There

By Patience Fisher

© Can Stock Photo Inc./Marcogovel

Cats are almost as easy to train to use a scratching post as they are to use a litter box…Cats need to scratch for physical, mental, and social reasons. Scratching enables cats to shed the outer sheath of their claws, to maintain claw health. Sinking the claws in and stretching is also beneficial for the cat’s muscles. Scratching is a natural way for a cat to maintain mental health, especially during stressful times and is a way for a cat to help herself relax. As already mentioned, a cat’s paws have scent glands so when a cat scratches she leaves her mark and her scent. This reassures her that this is her territory. Scratching is also a cat’s way of showing others – and reassuring herself – that she is part of the family. As such, it is a type of communication. For all of these reasons, indoor cats must be provided with appropriate places to scratch. Read more.

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