Scratching posts can help satisfy cats’ need to sharpen claws and mark their territory. But are scratching posts good for kittens? We've consulted with cat experts, and here's the answer.
Yes, scratching posts are good for kittens. Kittens generally have unrefined hunting tendencies, which means they can ruin furniture and other objects around the house if left unsupervised. Scratching posts can help divert the kittens’ attention away from furniture, keeping them scratch-free while providing the kittens with an outlet for scratching.
Scratching is a natural desire for cats, so choosing the right model of scratching post is important to satisfy your kitten's scratching impulses. Keep reading to discover the best scratching posts for kittens. We’ll also discuss whether or not kittens grow out of scratching as well as the best material for scratching posts.
Should I Get My Kitten A Scratching Post?
Kittens, particularly those between 8 to 12 weeks of age, need scratching posts. Scratching posts give kittens an outlet to scratch.
For the kittens, scratching posts can help refine their hunting instincts. Cats are natural predators, although some feline breeds may exercise their hunting urges more than others. Still, many domestic cats retain some degree of the predatory drive of their ancestors.
Therefore, since many kittens commonly have unrefined hunting instincts, they’re usually more aggressive and destructive than their adult counterparts. Providing kittens with scratching posts can help them refine those feral cravings without the risk of your furniture being destroyed.
But just like any other cat, kittens may choose to either use the scratching post or not; some of these kitties may have picky preferences.
Also, make sure that kittens only use scratching posts up to a certain height. For more information about the right scratching post height, check out out this post: Are Cat Trees Safe For Kittens?
Why Do Kittens Need Scratching Posts?
Kittens need scratching posts to divert their instinctive urges to items other than furniture or other objects. Take note that adult and young cats scratch because it’s a marking behavior. Special scent and sweat glands in a cat’s paws secrete a unique smell, marking objects as their own.
Moreover, kittens and adult cats need scratching posts to exercise their muscles through stretching. Many felines stretch their bodies as they scratch. Some cats scratch and stretch while standing while others may drag their bodies on the floor while pulling their body weight.
Still, some cat breeds may not need scratching posts as much as others. The following are cat breeds that are least likely to exhibit destructive scratching behavior:
- Russian Blues
- Scottish or Fold Straight cats
Do Kittens Grow Out Of Scratching?
Scratching is an instinctive behavior in cats, regardless of their age. Therefore, many kittens don’t grow out of scratching because they will carry that urge throughout adulthood.
Moreover, some young and adult felines may scratch more than others. This destructive behavior can ruin different items in and around the house. Pet parents should redirect their cats’ destructive scratching tendencies by redirecting the pets’ attention.
For instance, cat parents can use plants with catnip-like effects on the surface to distract kittens from scratching surfaces. Take note that most kittens are immune to catnip up to a certain age.
However, plants like the Silver vine, Tatarian Honeysuckle, and Valerian root are excellent alternatives. Find out more about these options by reading this post on 3 Catnip Alternatives To Consider.
What Scratching Post Is Best For A Kitten?
Scratching posts that provide joy to kittens while providing release from their hunting urges are ideal. Some excellent options include:
1. Lesure Cactus Scratching Post
Pet parents that find the standard look of scratching posts boring may choose this product for their kittens. The cactus shape separates the product from the rest of the crowd and might entice some kittens to scratch on it thanks to its unique appearance.
This post has a thick coverage of sisal twine for those frequent scratching sessions. The base is also sufficiently large and comfortable, allowing some kittens of reasonable size to relax on it after their sudden energy bursts.
2. PEEKAB Cat Scratching Post With Toy Balls
This particular scratching post focuses on providing kittens with hours of fun thanks to the different toys available for play. Aside from the scratching post itself, this product comes with a rotating arm that cats love to chase. Also, three balls are at the base for kittens’ added enjoyment.
As for the post, it has a thick cardboard construction wrapped with natural sisal. It provides a satisfying feeling when kittens scratch it.
3. Catry Cat Scratching Post
Cat parents who don’t want seemingly cluttered designs on cat scratching posts may consider this product. It has a fairly unobtrusive appearance, and the gray and white scheme makes the product an ideal fit for minimalist homes showcasing contemporary flair.
Aside from its clean-looking design, this cat scratching post also promotes different benefits for kittens. For instance, the post has a fleece and sisal construction, making each scratch satisfying for kittens. Also, the hanging balls help distract kittens from playing with other objects.
4. PAWZ Road Cat Scratching Post And Pad
This scratching post-and-pad for cats is great for fairly small homes. The reasonably compact dimensions allow it to satisfy kittens’ scratching needs without taking up a significant amount of space.
The scratching post also has a horizontal orientation, allowing most kittens to scratch the sisal material without the need to overstretch. A fuzzy ball will swing back and forth when struck.
5. GJK Trades Adorable Cat Tree
This cat tree and scratching post have the ideal height for many kittens. The post is fairly short, allowing kittens to appease their scratching tendencies without having to climb. It also has a natural sisal construction for long-term use.
The product also comes with two cat toys that come in the shapes of a ball and a small mouse. Kittens can take advantage of these hanging toys for that extra fun and excitement.
What Is The Best Material To Use For A Cat Scratching Post?
Despite the many materials used in making cat scratching posts, many kitties usually prefer sisal fabric over others. Sisal fabric is generally excellent for satisfying cats’ need to scratch without getting their claws lodged in the material.
Also, sisal fabric becomes softer with use, encouraging household felines to scratch it more than other surfaces like cabinets and couches.
We hope this guide has helped you better understand how scratching posts can satisfy kittens' need to scratch. Scratching posts are good for cats for relatively any age group, especially kittens. These young felines can refine their natural hunting instincts through scratching by using scratching posts.