Does Your Cat Scratch Your Furniture?

4 Tips to Help Reduce Unwanted Cat Scratching

  1. Clean all areas scratched by your cat

    • With warm water and soap
    • This removes the 'territory messages' left by your cat's paws on the object
  2. Reduce unwanted cat scratching with FELIWAY® Optimum

    • FELIWAY® sends a message of enhanced serenity which provides reassurance to your cat so they are less likely to scratch inappropriately and mark their territory
    • If your cat is scratching inappropriate areas, use the FELIWAY® Optimum diffuser in the room where the unwanted scratching is taking place
    • Please Note: All cats are unique. Results may vary depending on the presence of other pets and other environmental factors.

  3. Redirect your cat's scratching with FELIWAY® Classic Spray

    • Spray the area where your cat scratches with FELIWAY® Classic Spray (after cleaning the area first)
    • This leaves reassuring messages so your cat no longer feels the need to scratch in the area
    • Place a scratching post near the areas your cat has been scratching to encourage your cat to use the scratching post instead (do NOT spray the scratching post; this would discourage your cat from scratching an appropriate area)
  4. Follow scratching post “golden rules”

    • All cats need to scratch, so at least one scratching post (or other appropriate object) per cat is essential
    • The post should be sturdy (and not wobble when being used!)
    • The post needs to be tall enough, allowing your cat to fully stretch when scratching (at least 90cm tall)
    • Place near your cat's sleeping area or close to areas of unwanted scratching

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FELIWAY® Multicat Diffuser Kit


Scratching is a natural need for all cats. When scratching, they mark their territory. This territory marking is both visible (the scratched lines) and invisible! Indeed, cats leave “territory messages” coming from their paws, that only other cats can perceive.

When cats are uncomfortable they will scratch more, and this can become an issue if this happens on your sofa, walls, doors or other furniture!
In many cases, scratching in your home is in fact your cat’s way of coping with something stressful. It is particularly true for kitten and newly adopted cats, who are discovering their new home.

How can you tell if your cat's scratching is related to stress?

  • Your cat is scratching in many areas in the house (on furniture, sofa, chairs...)
  • Your cat is scratching near windows and doors
  • You have 2 or more cats
  • There are many cats in the neighborhood (other cats living close to your home)
  • There have been recent changes in your home (like new furniture or moving furniture around)


If your cat has decided to make your sofa its scratching post, start by cleaning the areas that have been scratched with warm water and soap to remove the scent marks your cat has left. These scent marks bring your cat back to scratch the area again! So washing the area removes the scent marks. If possible, cover the scratched areas to remove the visual reminder too!

Next, make sure you provide your cat with their own scratching post in a strategic location, next to where they sleep, for example. Cats love to stretch when they wake up, so make the most of it!

Finally, plugging in a FELIWAY® Optimum diffuser helps to recreate a calm, soothing and reassuring atmosphere in your home, to help reduce your cat's unwanted scratching. For localized scratching, use FELIWAY® Classic Spray, sprayed onto the scratched area after cleaning it thoroughly. Never spray FELIWAY® Classic Spray on the scratching post as this will deter your cat from using it!

Please Note: All cats are unique. Results may vary depending on the presence of other pets and other environmental factors.


Cats are generally able to maintain their claws effectively when they have something to scratch. When nails are not maintained, they can become a problem for your cat.

In order to maintain their nails, cats may scratch cardboard, rope, or scratching posts / pads (both vertical and horizontal options are suggested).

If your cat is not interested in a scratching post, offer them another option and consider changing the location. Check out our article on caring for cats' claws for more information.