LifestyleScratching posts or love letters? New study reveals surprising reason behind cats destructive behavior

Scratching posts or love letters? New study reveals surprising reason behind cats destructive behavior

The cat scratches furniture? Here's the reason
The cat scratches furniture? Here's the reason
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5:11 PM EST, January 18, 2024

As a cat owner, you've probably resigned yourself to the occasional destruction of furniture, as your pet decides to sharpen its claws on a wardrobe, chair or an upholstered sofa.

According to the "World of Animals" portal, there are numerous reasons behind such behavior. Yet, the latest theory proposed by Brazilian scientists about why cats scratch furniture might surprise many cat lovers.

Understanding why cats scratch furniture: The most common reasons

The portal suggests that scratching does less with sharpening claws and more with hygiene. Scratching helps to remove worn-out claws, allowing new ones to grow. Moreover, scratching enables the cat to stretch and thus, exercise its muscles.

Scratching also serves as a non-verbal form of communication between individuals. By scratching furniture, cats mark their territory, leaving not just visual, but also olfactory traces. It also serves as an outlet for emotions like excitement or stress.

Cats scratch furniture out of love, not malice

"The Journal of Veterinary Behavior" reports that Brazilian scientists have discovered fascinating insights about the emotional bond between cats and their owners. After analyzing 500 surveys from cat caregivers, they've made an intriguing observation.

Remarkably, cat caregivers whose pets frequently scratched furniture indicated a "higher degree of emotional attachment" to their pets than those with cats that scratched less often. This suggests that individuals who are emotionally closer to their pets are more understanding and accepting of their species-specific behaviors, like scratching, according to veterinary behaviorist Katherine Pankratz.

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