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How to Stop My Cat From Ripping Up Your Carpet

Cats are great little companions, but their natural instinct to scratch surfaces can sometimes clash with our want to keep a tidy home.

One common issue many cat owners face is their furry friend tearing up the carpet. Before you start envisioning a home covered in plastic, let’s explore some practical and humane ways to minimise this behaviour and maintain good relations between you, your cat and your carpet.

ginger kitten

Provide suitable alternatives

Cats scratch to mark their territory and keep their claws healthy.

To redirect this behaviour away from your carpet, get some alternative scratching posts or pads.

Place them strategically in areas where your cat likes to scratch, like near doorways or their favourite lounging spots.

You can encourage your cat to use these alternatives by applying catnip, too. 

It’s important to understand that different cats have different scratching preferences.

While some cats prefer to scratch vertical surfaces, others prefer horizontal ones. If you’re reading this article, your cat probably falls into the latter category, so you’d be better off picking up things like pads over vertical scratchers like posts, but you can always try both.

Choose cat-friendly materials

If your cat is particularly fond of a certain type of carpet or rug, consider choosing materials that are less appealing to their scratching instincts. Sisal or other rough textures are less likely to entice a cat to sink their claws in, offering a compromise that satisfies both your cat and your design preferences.

Use double-sided tape or sticky pads

Cats typically dislike sticky textures on their paws. Applying double-sided tape or sticky pads to the areas your cat targets for scratching can deter them.

The uncomfortable sensation will encourage them to seek more comfortable alternatives. Be sure to replace these periodically as they lose their stickiness.

While these might be an eyesore, over time you will be able to get rid of them once your cat has begun to associate these areas with an unpleasant texture.

Invest in furniture protectors

Furniture protectors, available at pet supply shops, are clear, adhesive sheets that can be applied to your carpet.

These protectors make the surface less appealing for scratching and will deter your cat.

They are easy to apply and remove too, making them a convenient option for cat owners.

Regular nail trimming

Keeping your cat’s nails trimmed can significantly reduce the damage they can cause while scratching.

Use cat-friendly nail clippers or consult your veterinarian for guidance on nail maintenance if you feel unsure.

Remember to be gentle and reward your cat with treats or affection after a successful nail-trimming session to create positive associations.

Environmental enrichment

Cats often scratch as a form of exercise and stress relief.

By providing your cat with enough environmental stimuli, like toys and climbing structures, they will be less likely to exercise destructive behaviours.

Consult a vet

If your cat’s carpet-scratching behaviour persists despite your best efforts, consult with a veterinarian.

There may be underlying health issues, such as anxiety or the need for additional stimulation, that contribute to this behaviour. A vet can provide tailored advice and recommend behavioural interventions or, if necessary, prescribe medications to address underlying issues.

John Frederick is a leading carpet supplier and cleaner based in London.

We’ve been providing high-quality carpet services for decades, so if you’re interested in taking advantage of our services, we’d love to hear from you. 

We have 90 years of experience in the industry, so you can always trust our team to do an excellent job. Call for a quick quote!


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