Cats have to play to be happy. Lose their energy and stay in shape. Life can become very ordinary for a domestic cat and that is why it is important to give him his pleasure and exercise. For this reason, a scratching post is perhaps the very best gift you can give your cat.
The scratching post that you are going to buy should suit your cat friend’s needs and, of course, your living space. In the following paragraphs you will find a guide to discover the best scratching posts on the market. You can also read the answers to the most frequently asked questions by cat owners, let’s start!
Important to know
- Cats scratch with their nails to renew them. They have to play to get rid of their adrenaline and ask for many hours of rest afterwards. All these possibilities are in a scratching post for cats.
- On the market of cat scratching posts there is a wide variety of sizes and designs, because there are many different wishes and needs.
- Probably your cat will have no problem getting used to his new play tree with all kinds of play possibilities around it.
Our selection: The best cat scratching post on the market
In this part of the article you see a collection of 5 scratching poles. These are currently the most popular cat scratching posts on the market. Underneath you’ll find a summary that highlights the most important and special features of these products. This way you will get acquainted with cat scratching posts in no time and you can choose one that you and your cat really like.
First place: FEANDREA 67 inches Multi-Level Cat Tree for Large Cats, with Cozy Perches
This multi-level scratching post is suitable for active males and cuddly kittens who like to jump from platform to platform, hide in caves or lounge in a hammock. Clawing, lazing, playing, hiding: every cat has a favourite pastime in this scratching post. What about your cat?
The professional design team has made this scratching post more stable, comfortable and thoughtful than ever. Fully tailored to the needs of your friend with the velvet legs. Selected natural sisal ropes are very strong yet soft enough to withstand tears and scratches. The robust pressed material support tubes keep the platforms firmly in place without wobbling.
Second place: SmartCat Pioneer Pet Ultimate Scratching Post
The Smartcat pioneer Pet Ultimate scratching post with 1 pole consists of an ABS core and is completely glued with sisal. The base plate and the squared platform at the top are very solid.
The scratching post is a scratching post with one pole in the middle. The scratching post is 32 inches high. One of the many positive reviews: “This is a nice sturdy scratching post, we have 2 small demolishers and they haven’t broken it yet”. 🙂
Third place: Trixie Parla minimalist scratching post
The Trixie Parla cat scratching tree, offers your cat enough scratching space on a minimal surface area. Ideal, therefore, when you live small. The trunk with a diameter of 3.5 inches is wrapped in sisal, the soft plush covering on the base and at the end gives the scratching post a high quality appearance. This scratching post comes in a plush cover.
The trunk of the scratching post is wrapped in natural sisal, on a base of 15 by 15 inches. So it can stand in every corner of your house. Because of the height of 24 inches, this scratching post is ideal for small and bigger cats. Parla is available in two different colours and is suitable for small spaces.
There are even more advanced versions with dangling fluffy balls from the top of the scratching post: get it here
Fourth place: Nova Microdermabrasion 53 Inches Multi-Level Cat Tree
Nova is a young and dynamic company that achieves great success with quality products at very friendly prices. In recent years the company has grown strongly throughout the world, partly due to its good service. This scratching post of the brand is equipped with 2 cat houses with plush cover in which your cats can relax. In addition, this scratching post has multiple levels, 2 dangling toys and 3 viewing platforms for lying down and resting. The scratching post has a maximum size of 52.36″L x 19.29″W x 19.29″H.
fifth place: Midwest Durable scratching post
This is a beautiful finished scratching post from the brand Midwest, with an extra high sisal stem of 41 inches. Cats like to stretch when they want to scratch the post, so this extra high post is the solution. Do your cat a favor and buy the Midwest right away. The plate is 19×19 inches and the height is 41 inches with a diameter of 6 inches.
Discounted price: click here
Shopping Guide: Everything you need to know about scratching posts
Before you buy a cat scratching post it is useful to be aware of the most important characteristics and behaviors of these pets. This way you can buy a scratching post that suits your specific cat well. It can have all kinds of different parts and characteristics. Here we will answer the most frequently asked questions.
What do I do if my cats ignore the new scratching post?
It can happen that if you put a new scratching post in the room, your cat won’t look after it first. Should this happen, don’t despair, because the solution is very easy. Cats love to play, whether they like it or not. An unknown object in their room can arouse some suspicion, but not if the new object has their scent. There are several ways you can make sure that the new scratching post gets the scent of your cat. Below you can read a number of tricks to get that done.
Grab one of your cat’s favourite toys, or his blanket or basket, and put it somewhere on or in the scratching post so it starts to smell like your cat. Just like Hansel and Gretel, you can make a trace of the favourite toys on the scratching post, because then your cat will associate the scratching post with something pleasant. If you have a very playful cat, it’s very simple, just move the hanging parts of the scratching post to attract the animal’s attention and to let them get closer.
What’s the scratching post for?
For a cat, the nails are its identity and need to be regularly groomed and renewed. By scratching a pole a cat loses the old layers of its nails.
Scratching objects also helps to mark certain parts of the territory as his or her own. A scratching post also serves to get rid of itching and to stretch out. It’s good for your cat’s targets, muscles and bones.
A scratching post also has big advantages for you, because the moment your cat has a fine scratching post, he/she won’t sharpen the nails on your couches or chairs anymore.
How does a scratching post help prevent my cat from being overweight?
A cat that is inside all day every day can get bored and lose the motivation to stay active. Domestic cats sleep between 12 and 16 horas hours a day, but for optimal health they should be active the hours they don’t sleep. Hunters par excellence, they are cats, and a house without many stimuli can quickly become bored.
Sitting inside and not moving will not help your cat. Overweight is lurking. A scratching post invites your little tiger to stay active. Your cat can climb in, jump, play with the moving parts and ropes. These activities support the movement of your domestic cat and will help him to stay in shape.
What consequences does obesity have on cats that do not have a scratching post?
It is worth emphasising once again here that a cat that moves very little and becomes overweight can have many more health problems. For example, obesity in cats can lead to chronic conditions such as diabetes or liver disease. For this reason it is important to think of ways in which your domestic cat can still get his exercise, by setting up a playground for him with a scratching post in it.
Overweight cats are at greater risk of arthritis because the weight is constantly on the different joints. Animal experts therefore strongly recommend that you prevent this, by paying attention to your pets’ food, but also by providing them with opportunities for exercise. If a cat can just be active indoors, there’s nothing to worry about.
What advantages does it have for my cats to play with a scratching post?
In addition to preventing and fighting obesity, having a scratching post has other advantages in preventing other annoying behaviours. If a cat always sits inside, it can become aggressive or depressed over time. Remember, cats are naturally hunters.
The fact that a cat has no stimuli can lead to very disturbing behaviour. A cat without toys will hunt other objects in your house, such as candles, curtains, plants or even your legs. In addition, almost every playground for cats has a scratching post, which will benefit your cat’s health. As will the wellbeing of your furniture, by the way, because it will not be used for scratching.
If your cat is not immediately fond of his or her new scratching post, you can try to spray a little catnip on it or see if you can use one of the Feliway sprays to make the cat tree more appealing to your sweetheart.
When choosing a scratching post, should I take into account the number of cats in the house?
When choosing a scratching post for cats it is very wise to think in advance about how many cats will use this object in your house. Experts recommend that cat owners of multiple animals set up different places in the house where the cats and cats can play or rest. For example, it is optimal to have at least one bed or basket for every cat or cat in the house.
If you own more than one cat or cat, you will have noticed that they sometimes want to play with the same object and fight over it with each other. To prevent this from happening, it is useful to have a scratching post that offers enough space and playing possibilities for several cats at the same time. It also happens that cats mimic each other, and that if one cat plays, the other will too.
Where do I put the new scratching post in my house?
Do you know where you’re gonna put the scratching post in the house yet? This must be a place where cats normally come. It’s also useful if you come there regularly, but in such a way that you don’t have to bother with the scratching posts while you’re doing your things. Avoid risks by not placing a scratching post too close to valuable objects, because they can damage them.
If your cat is big and heavy, we recommend that you place the scratching post against a wall and secure it if necessary. In this way, the scratching post also stays in place when playing and jumping. Does your cat like to have a view? Then install the scratching post near a window or other viewpoint. In this way, your cat can float where he wants to while life passes him by.
Why do cats abandon their scratching post?
Your cat used to play with the scratching post every day, but he doesn’t anymore. How is this possible? There are several reasons. Maybe the platforms are dirty, because I’m sure you remember cats are very clean animals. Or the scratching post isn’t stable anymore, so your darling doesn’t dare to play in it anymore.
If your cat has fallen out of the scratching post in his game, he may not dare to return because of the fright. Therefore, check carefully whether the scratching post is stable for your cat’s weight and behaviour.
What is catnip, and why is it often on a scratching post?
It is customary for cat toys to contain catnip, also called catnip. This is a plant from the mint family, whose leaves contain an oil called “nepetalactone”. This oil provokes different reactions in cats. It stimulates them, but less in kittens.
People are scared because they think the substance works like drugs, but experts assure that it can’t do any harm. On the contrary, it can get your cat moving, which is why it has a lot of catnip scratching posts.
What do you have to pay attention to when you buy a cat tree?
When you are going to buy a scratching post, it is important to do so in an informed way. To be aware of the most important aspects, both of the product and your cat. Here we summarize the most important factors to make a good choice so that your cat can enjoy it to the fullest:
- Materials of which the scratching post is made of
- Extra play elements
- User feedback
The materials of a scratching post may vary, due to the use a cat gives it, but usually scratching posts are made of similar materials. Below you can see the materials most commonly used in scratching posts and their specifications:
- Of course sisal rope. Most scratching posts are wrapped with natural sisal ropes. This allows cats to sharpen their nails and clamber into them while playing. Sisal is a natural material, derived from the agave plant, a plant common in Mexico. Allergies to this material have not yet been discovered, so this is a perfect material for your cat.
- Plush. This material can mainly be found on the different platform of a scratching post for cats. Plush is often made of cotton, of an absorbent and soft-touch quality. It offers warmth to the person who touches the material.
- Velvet. A scratching post also often contains velvet parts, usually in the part where your cat can rest. Velvet can be made from almost any fibre. It’s a kind of hairy fabric, where the hairs are evenly distributed, soft to the touch and pleasant to lie on.
- MDF board. The abbreviation MDF comes from the English Medium Density Fibreboard. These semi-hard chipboards are often used for the platforms on a cat scratching post. Sometimes covered with one of the above mentioned materials velvet or plush. MDF is made from wood chips that are glued together and pressed to create a smooth surface.
Independent of the different functions a scratching post can have, there are scratching posts of different heights. You can’t think of a scratching post of this height, whether you think a few centimetres high, or meters high. When choosing the height of the scratching post, think about the character of your cat and the space in your house.
If your cat is young and playful and likes to go on adventures, choose a scratching post at least one metre high. There are also scratching posts that you can attach to the wall. For older and calmer cats, a lower tree is sufficient. Don’t buy a scratching post of which you can’t reach the highest height, this way you avoid dangerous rescues, if your cat is afraid to climb down by itself.
Extra play elements
In addition to the usual parts of a scratching post, some scratching posts contain several additional elements that you can choose to include, depending on the character of your velvet friend. For example, if your queen or cat likes to sleep at high altitude, choose a scratching post or part with a hammock at high altitude. Or a high flat element. A playful cat, on the other hand, will be happier with a scratching post with lots of hanging objects to play with.
Does your cat go completely wild when it scratches? Then pick a scratching post with different surfaces where he can do this. Playing hide and seek can also be your cat’s or pussy’s favourite. In this case it’s best to choose a scratching post with one or more closed areas, such as cubicles or hollows. Catnip can be an extra element that is inviting and stimulating to use the scratching post.
Opinions from other users and owners of cats can help you in your search for a nice scratching post for your cat. Pay attention to the comments and focus on what people write about the behaviour around the scratching post of cats that look like yours. If you have a particularly large or typical cat, look for reviews from people who also have a large or typical cat.
Sales pages and social networks are your best advisers in this area. In addition to scoring by means of stars or points, you will often see that the more technical aspects of the products are described. Make use of the guidelines and directions of those who have gone before you. They can lead you to the scratching posts that are best for you, your cat, your living space and circumstances.
City cats spend a lot of hours in the house and this can be a problem. Cats and cats get bored, develop bad behavior and unhealthy habits and can become lazy and overweight. So keep your cat active and entertained with a scratching post. Scratching posts are ideal for this purpose.
There are endless possibilities in scratching posts. They come in all kinds of shapes and materials with customizable options and possibilities, so you can customize the scratching post to suit the needs of your little tiger. A scratching post is one of the best gifts you can give your cat, and it also saves your furniture.
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