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Welcome, Crazy Cat People!
Maine Coons are intelligent, gentle and playful by nature but one thing I get asked a lot is if Maine coom cats scratch furniture?
After years of studying cat behaviour and watching my own cats closely, It has taught me a few things about the way they behave and how to rectify the problem. I have used my knowledge to answer your question.
Maine Coon Cats like any other cat breed, have a natural tendency to scratch for exercise, to mark territory and to remove the outer casing of their claws. If not provided with enough scratching posts and not given enough stimulation through play, they may also begin to scratch your furniture.
Okay so you now know that Yes Maine coons do scratch and they may scratch your furniture but what can you do about it?
Keep reading my fellow crazy cat people to learn more!
Check out my full post to find out if Maine coons are aggressive, the different types of aggression in cats and how to deal with a mean cat in the correct way. – Click here to take a look or bookmark for a later read!
Do Maine Coons Like to Scratch?
The Maine coon cat is a big friendly cat but they are no different to any other feline.
Cats need to scratch, wild cats scratch and indoor cats need to scratch too!
A cat who has nowhere to scratch can become very unhappy and can end up feeling depressed, stressed and sometimes angry. Even a gentle breed like the Maine coon has needs.
Why Do Cats Scratch?
Cats scratch for several reasons and one of the biggest reasons they scratch is to leave a mark in their territory. Their paws are one of the areas that contain scent glands that release cat hormones called pheromones.
Their scent then wards other cats away, they are sending out a message to let others know that they own this land!
To a cat it is super important to have boundaries to their territory and for your cat to be confident they need to feel like they own the land they live in.
Other reasons cats need to scratch –
- Express emotions such has excitement
- Relieve stress
- Strecth their muscles
- Remove the outer casing of their nails and to keep them trim
Are Maine Coons Destructive?
Some breeds are known to be more active and tend to be more destructive.
Maine coons are often gentle and very dog-like in the way they behave however they are also intelligent and they are still feline! They are a big breed and can easily knock things over and become destructive if their needs are not being met by their owner.
If you are away at work all day or if you are not spending enough time with your Maine coon they may act out and could become destructive.
Boredom, stress and loneliness often lead to bad behaviours so anything you can do to prevent this the better.
Ways in which a Maine Coon can be destructive –
- Excessive grooming
- Chewing and eating non-food items such as plastic
- Spraying (More common in un-neutered male cats)
- Knocking things over
It’s so important to provide multiple toys, lasers, interactive toys, surfaces they can climb up onto such as cat trees or wall mounted cat shelves and to schedule playtime sessions a few times a day.
Make sure if you are out all day that when you come home you spend quality time with your cats, they have been stuck inside all day and they are eagerly awaiting your return.
A play session can go a long way in reducing any destructive behaviours.
Your cat cant verbally tell you how they feel so sometimes destructive behaviours are a cry for help and attention!
You may also wish to get a companion for your Maine coon, they tend to get along well with other cats and also dogs, just research how to introduce them correctly and they will form a lifelong bond with the loving, playful Maine coon.
Do Maine Coons Scratch Humans?
Maine coon cats may scratch you during play or to get your attention. Scratching during play is normal and you may wish to protect yourself by not using your hands and using wand toys instead. Occasionally your Maine coon may scratch due to fear or if they feel threatened.
How To Stop Maine Coon Cat From Scratching Furniture?
It can be so frustrating when you have just bought a new sofa and your cat decides to scratch it, another problem area can be the bed too.
I know, I’ve been there.
We have examined why cats scratch and we know now that they need to scratch. I have seen many cat owners frustrated at their cats for scratching but then I have looked at their home and surprise surprise where are the scratching posts?
If you have a multi-cat household just one post is not going to be enough.
- Get more scracthing posts
This is super important, place scratching posts in different spots throughout the home. Cats tend to like them on the entrance to rooms and also close by for when they wake up from their sleep. These areas are where they are marking their territory to let other cats know not to enter this area.
It’s a good idea for a problem scratcher to have traditional posts as well as flat sisal surfaces and ideally a cat tree that has multiple scratching areas.
Variety is key!
2. Aliminium foil or double-sided tape is your best friend
Yes I know it doesn’t look the part but it works. Cats HATE sticky surfaces and they HATE aluminium foil. So it’s a good idea to place this on the surface they are scratching as a temporary measure to put them off.
You can also buy transparent sheets which can be placed over surfaces you don’t want your cat to scratch if you are not keen on a house covered in foil!
3. Citrus cat sprays
Ever seen a cats face when you are cutting up citrus fruit? Probably not because as soon as you slice open that lemon they are nowhere to be seen.
Specially designed cat sprays that contain citrus can help deter cats from surfaces. I am not a fan of this method because I don’t enjoy the smell of citrus, I think I was a cat in a past life and the trauma of the smell makes me feel sick lol
4. Play the Yes/No game
This technique is GOLD!
We must remember that when we say NO by taking something away we need to say YES by replacing it with something your cat will enjoy.
When you cover up the sofa with foil, the cat will only start to scratch it again once you remove it unless you place a scratching post right in front of where the foil was. Allowing your cat to scratch an alternative item in the area that they love.
5. Regular playtime
I may sound like a broken record here but I am stressing the importance of regular play because it is so important for your cats mental and physical health.
Schedule playtime a few times a day with your cat and make sure the environment is enriching for them with cat trees, toys etc…
If you follow these tips you will be well on your way to a happy cat home with no scratching!
Key Takeaways: Do Maine Coon Cats Scratch Furniture?
- Maine coons like all cats need to scratch for their physical and mental health
- Cats scratch to mark their territory
- Never get a cat declawed it’s cruel
- A bored cat can be a destructive cat
- Consider a companion to keep your cat entertained
- Play the YES/NO game (See the previous section)
As always take care of yourself and your little fur babies!
Mark (The Crazy Cat Man)