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29-03-2010, 10:27   #1
Clangeroo
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Hi, just thinking of getting a kitten, however, we have a leather sofa and because ive had a cat many years ago, I know how they love to claw on furniture.

Anyone had problems with cat scratching leather sofas and have you solved it? other than scratching posts etc? - also ive googled this prob and found cat claw covers as one solution but dont want to use these if it would mean kitty cant defend herself when out doing cat type things in the woods etc!

Await your comments.
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29-03-2010, 11:32   #2
SpeedDemon
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None of mine claw our leather sofa, but they're not in the lounge when we're out or in bed. I do have scratch posts tho and they use them. I also clip the ends off their claws HTH
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29-03-2010, 11:38   #3
katkin
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Hi Clangeroo, if you're really precious about your furniture, a dog or cat might not be a good idea because even if you keep your pet's claw's well trimmed, it's possible to get minor scratches and scuffs on most leather sofas or chairs. But saying that, you could just as easliy scratch one with the studs on jeans, handbags or long nails.

Our first leather sofa was very supple leather and our baby Maine Coon Amber managed to give it a fine set of frilly leather arms that no amount of leather repair or polish could cover. Our fault for not keeping her and her Wegie borther out of the living room when we were out.

The new one is a more robust heavy duty leather but even so, it gets scratched simply by a cat springboarding from the sofa to the floor to chase another cat or an imaginary moth. It just happens. My other half winces at the thought but I bought them to be sat on and if I'd wanted them to be musuem pieces I would have put them in glass cases!

You can help to reduce the damage somewhat by:
* Getting scratch posts for your kitten and encouraging him or her to use that.

* Keeping your pet's claws trimmed (because kitten claws are tiny daggers and no amount of scratch post will ever keep them blunted) - get your pet used to having his or her claws trimmed from an early age and it won't be the stressful job some people seem to experience.

* Don't allow your pet to have free run of the room where the sofa is when you are out - cats and kittens seem to have a huge party when their owners are at work, bouncing all over the furniture, batting toys all over, puking on the dry-clean only rugs and curtains - they know exactly which buttons to press to drive us nuts!

* Give your pet plenty of interesting toys to play with.

* Kittens tend to climb up onto furniture because they havent yet fathomed out the leaping and jumping thing, in the early weeks/months, so you could try to provide a sturdy stepping stone for them to use (such as a footstool or a storage box) to make it easier than the alternative (digging their claws into the sofa and dragging their bodies up onto it, which is what our Maine Coon used to do - hence the frilly leather).

If you absolutely don't want your pet to sit on your furniture, I don't know what to suggest, because I won't resort to squirting foul potions or shouting at my pets to 'get off!' and, for me, having a furry feline or canine snuggled up to me is the best thing in the world, so I tolerate the minor scuffs and scrapes because I dont want to live in a sterile, perfect home and besides, if I'd got kids, I expect my perfect sofa would just as quickly be covered in scratches and unidentified sticky stuff. The nice thing about leather- it doesnt absorb and it all wipes off!

Last edited by katkin; 29-03-2010 at 11:41.
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29-03-2010, 12:06   #4
Redstripe
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I just put throws over my sofas and so far Stan hasn't really done any damage, a couple of scratches and he's nearly one so he's had plenty of time to rip them if he wanted.

I have been told though by others he's not the brightest of kittys so maybe that's why a piece of material has baffled him so far...
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29-03-2010, 12:23   #5
Dozy
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None of my cats would even look at a scratching post - they much preferred the furniture, the wallpaper, a particularly attractive piece of carpet .....

Trimming claws, using throws, providing scratching posts, not leaving kitty alone in the room might work - but they might not. If that's going to mean an unhappy owner and an equally unhappy kitty, probably best not to get one, especially a kitten, with their razor sharp claws and clumsiness.

I've had cats who just didn't seem to sharpen their claws at all and others whose favourite hobby was reducing the sofa to tatters - but you can't be sure which sort you'll end up with.
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29-03-2010, 12:39   #6
SpeedDemon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Redstripe View Post
I have been told though by others he's not the brightest of kittys so maybe that's why a piece of material has baffled him so far...
aawwwww poor Stan! lol
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21-07-2010, 10:06   #7
johney
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try spraying the cat with a water bottle each time he tries getting on it.

Thanks for sharing..
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21-07-2010, 10:41   #8
medusa
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I'm with everybody who says not to get a kitten to be honest. You can plan for all sorts of preventative measures but if you're house proud then the first time that your kitten sicks up something which stains the carpet or chews through something vital then resentment will grow.

I've got 4 adult cats and a big furry dog and regularly have foster kittens by the dozen and also have 2 leather sofas which have survived all of these for over 5 years now, with the exception of a few claw marks and prickles- nothing which stops the sofa working but does stop the leather being smooth etc.

I think you really do need to be honest about how much you love your sofa. If you really would have an issue with it being damaged then don't get an animal. I know of kittens and cats, rats, mice, rabbits and dogs which have all taken on a leather sofa as adversary over the last few years (and I suspect that ferrets, birds and others are just as bad on occasion).

If you're determined to get a kitten then you need to be honest with yourself now or the kitten will be up for rehoming the first time that they ruin anything- and they WILL ruin things, even if it's accidental.

Only give in to the wish to get a kitten when you've dealt with these worries.
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21-07-2010, 12:26   #9
geerarffe
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Lavender oil! They hate it! Also a great deterant if they foul the floors. Puts them off the scent as it were! lol. One of ours used to do his business behind the TV cabinet. I tried all sorts to stop him, bio powder etc, but the lavender oil worked a treat, Only found that out as I knocked an open bottel off the TV on to the floor and didn't clean it up properly! Not had a problem since!
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21-07-2010, 12:57   #10
spiritangel1
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I have just got a gawjus tortie an shes so norty!!! i have leather dining chairs ouch!! i managed to get a set of seat covers for them from the catalouge shop at hillsborough and they dont half look bad,then i got a set of uni covers for my sofas and although they dont look like in the catalouge ha ha they do serve there purpose and minimise the damage to the furniture,she thinks its funny at mo to climb up the dining chairs by her claws and stand on the table oh dear! but we just keep putting her on the floor with a firm NO not that i think it will work but thats all part of having kittens and my home is a house not a showcase
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21-07-2010, 17:15   #11
angnjosh
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Zoo plus have some great offers on scratching posts at the minute but i have to agree with others my leather settee took some damage from mine when they were kittens mainly because they 'pulled themselves' onto it as they couldnt jump now they don't have a problem and never touch it altho they do have a luxury scratching post lol. once they get to the age where they can go out they tend to find trees etc to sharpen their claws on but if you are going to be distraught everytime you find a scratch a kitten is defo not a good idea
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21-07-2010, 17:38   #12
lubylou12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clangeroo View Post
Hi, just thinking of getting a kitten, however, we have a leather sofa and because ive had a cat many years ago, I know how they love to claw on furniture.

Anyone had problems with cat scratching leather sofas and have you solved it? other than scratching posts etc? - also ive googled this prob and found cat claw covers as one solution but dont want to use these if it would mean kitty cant defend herself when out doing cat type things in the woods etc!

Await your comments.
hey hun, my cat totally wrecked my leather sofa, i tried everything, from scratch posts, pepper, to spaying them with water, but they still did it, even when i was sat on it no matter how much i told them off they didnt care, the sofa became a mess of white pulls on my brown leather, anyway i now have new brown sofAS but in fabric and for some odd reason they dont find this as tempting as the leather, only a few times they have tried and if they do they get shut in the kitchen when i go to bed or go out............

i dont agree with the cat claw covers unless your gona get an indoor kitty, as i thought aBOUT it then thought how can they climb a treee if a dog is after them etc or defend themselves......

go for it and if they do it, make it sleep in the kitchen with its basket, and only allow it in the room for cuddles etc................

all this said i dont think any deterant will work, nothing did with mine, just keep the cat away from it
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21-07-2010, 22:50   #13
Binga
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I have 4 indoor cats...infact now 5...all entire and hormonal and I have never had and furniture scratched. I can have 10 kittens racing round too...all with me to 13 weeks old and never had any problems and YES I am mega house proud. I provide scratching posts all over the house and change them often. I use catnip on them to encourage usage and trim all cats and kittens claws often. I discourage any slight sign of potential unwanted scratching with citronella oil diluted in water and white vinegar is also good. Feliway spray is good and I use Feliway diffusers. I provide toys that are changed daily and my house is completely open...all rooms are available for our cats to use. I am also on hand to provide company as and when it is needed. Cats can be and often are quite complicated creatures and are also territorial so alot of thought needs to go into keeping them happy and your home in one piece.
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21-07-2010, 22:51   #14
lubylou12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Binga View Post
I have 4 indoor cats...infact now 5...all entire and hormonal and I have never had and furniture scratched. I can have 10 kittens racing round too...all with me to 13 weeks old and never had any problems and YES I am mega house proud. I provide scratching posts all over the house and change them often. I use catnip on them to encourage usage and trim all cats and kittens claws often. I discourage any slight sign of potential unwanted scratching with citronella oil diluted in water and white vinegar is also good. Feliway spray is good and I use Feliway diffusers. I provide toys that are changed daily and my house is completely open...all rooms are available for our cats to use. I am also on hand to provide company as and when it is needed. Cats can be and often are quite complicated creatures and are also territorial so alot of thought needs to go into keeping them happy and your home in one piece.
oh great tips, im gona be trying these ones
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21-07-2010, 22:56   #15
SpeedDemon
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Binga, i take it you're a breeder? What breed do you have? None of mine that i have currently seem to bother scratching anything other than their posts. Oh, apart from I've recently noticed 1 or 2 of them scratching the bottom of my bed
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21-07-2010, 22:58   #16
Binga
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British Shorthairs speed! x
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22-07-2010, 00:35   #17
Binga
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Having re-read this post there does seem to be a distinction regarding what people expect.....as a pedigree British Shorthair breeder who breeds for quality, type and temperament and trains kittens to scratch posts I have no problems with un-wanted scratching as do my customers. But am I lucky breeding BSH? Are other cats and kittens more prone to scratching where they like? Also other breeds? Perhaps it is easy for me to offer advice when perhaps the problems are more deep rooted. I know that Siamese are not the easiest breed to deal with.
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22-07-2010, 00:36   #18
Binga
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Having re-read this thread there does seem to be a distinction regarding what people expect.....as a pedigree British Shorthair breeder who breeds for quality, type and temperament and trains kittens to scratch posts I have no problems with un-wanted scratching as do my customers. But am I lucky breeding BSH? Are other cats and kittens more prone to scratching where they like? Also other breeds? Perhaps it is easy for me to offer advice when perhaps the problems are more deep rooted. I know that Siamese are not the easiest breed to deal with.
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22-07-2010, 01:00   #19
medusa
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I think that British Shorthairs are at the 'sweet and predictable' end of cat behaviour Binga, and you have the advantage of knowing that you're starting with stable, calm and happy parent cats.

Believe me, it's nothing like that easy with either oriental cats or cats which come with unknown personality traits like a DSH from rescue. I had a litter of 7 as fosters last year which were all climbing curtains and pulling themselves up the sides of the sofa by 5 weeks- their mummy was just the same and is currently running her new owner ragged.

The other thing is that if all of your cats are entire and hormonal then I take it that you've got all girls? Young toms can do a horrendous amount of damage with territory marking with their claws if they're that way inclined. Even neutered toms are made of just muscle and energy at a year old, as I'm finding out with the gorgeous but strong willed Isaac who came to me as a very broken kitten.

Billy (who is part oriental and also came to me as a broken kitten) is strong enough to pull himself up a plaster wall by his claws when he wants to, so I'm glad that he plays nicely most of the time!

Most of the damage to my house has come about from small kittens to be honest, with needle claws and no knowledge of the household rules. By the time they're grown up enough to know the rules then they're quite amenable to using scratching pads, posts and carpet with the hessian side out- whilst I'm looking at least!

What I really meant with my original post was that there's no real way that you can guarantee a kitten not doing damage and if the sofa is that important then the only way you can make sure that it's not damaged is to not get the kitten in the first place.

Of course there's a chance that preventative measures will work, but you do need to be prepared for what will happen if they don't. If it's a deal breaker it's much better to not expect the kitten to be unrealistically perfect and just not bring them into the home in the first place because even if it's not the sofa, the odds are that there will be something that gets damaged as a result of the kitten.
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