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Scratching Post

Cats

Scratching Post

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A wickerwork cat pole A wickerwork cat pole

A scratching post is a wooden post covered in softer material that cat owners provide so their pets have an acceptable place to scratch. Cats have a natural urge to scratch: the action helps them remove old material from their claws, and they mark territory with scent glands in their paws. Indoor cats may be prevented from exercising this urge on furniture if they are provided with an acceptable scratching post.

The most common type of post consists of a wooden post, roughly 60 - 90 cm (24-36 inches) tall, covered in rough fabric or sisal. The post is mounted vertically in a wide base, which allows the cat to stretch upward on its rear legs and scratch freely without tipping it over. Surfaces vary: the post may be covered in sisal rope, upholstery fabric, or the jute backing of a piece of carpet. Many pet owners find they have to experiment with different surfaces to find one that their cats will scratch reliably. Other kinds of scratching posts are more elaborate, with several levels of horizontal platforms for climbing and cozy cave-like areas where cats may hide. Very tall ones are often called "cat trees." These may have a vertical tension rod that extends to the ceiling to provide extra stability.

Smaller scratching surfaces may consist of something as simple as a piece of carpet turned upside down, or a flat pad of woven sisal with a loop to allow it to hang from a doorknob. Others are made from corrugated cardboard.

Scratching posts may be purchased at most stores that carry pet supplies, but many people build their own.

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This guide is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia.


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