The 6 Best Ways to Cat-Proof and Protect Your Couch

Updated: July 7, 2022

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Your cat may be the ruler of the house, but that doesn’t mean you have to enjoy the fact they scratch everything. They mostly scratch to mark their territory. Scratching is a way for cats to leave their scent and let other animals know that they’ve claimed this area as theirs.

Additionally, scratching can also serve as a form of exercise for your feline friend. As cats scratch, they extend and retract their claws, which helps keep their muscles toned. Another reason is it allows them to maintain their nails by cleaning them.

So, why does it seem like your cat always chooses to scratch your couch? It could be because couches are often made of soft fabrics that are easy on the claws. Plus, the height of a sofa provides a good vantage point for your cat to survey their kingdom. As majestic as that sounds, it’s not so great for your couch, so here are the best ways to protect your sofa from your cat.

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1. Cut Their Nails

Cat parents know they love to scratch – it’s instinctive for them. Unfortunately, this can quickly become a nightmare for pet parents if the kitty’s nails are left unchecked. Not only will those sharp claws ruin your furniture, but they can also cause your cat pain if their nails get too long. To counter this, there are helpful ways to prevent this damage. One way is to keep your cat’s nails trimmed on a regular basis. This can be done at home with special clippers designed for cats, or you can take them to a groomer for the job done. Either way, it’s essential to trim your cat’s nails every two to four weeks in order to prevent too much damage to your furniture and keep your feline friend healthy and comfortable.

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Resco Original Cat Nail Clippers
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2. Purchase a Couch Cover

A couch cover made for cats will help protect your couch from scratches. Cats love to scratch, and they can do a lot of damage to your furniture. A couch cover will protect your couch from your cat’s claws and teeth. It will also keep your cat from getting hair all over your furniture. A couch cover is a must-have for any cat owner. The main two are pet covers that hide all your couch and protect it from cat fur and scratches. It is also waterproof. This is important for keeping your cat from peeing on furniture too. Another style of couch protector you can get is a big piece of clear plastic that sticks to the sides of the couches. This clear adhesive helps discourage them from scratching your couch. It doesn’t protect against other things like cat fur or urine. These are easy options for deterring that pesky cat! 

Best Scratch Guard
Panther Armor 8-Pack Furniture Protectors from Cat Scratches
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  • Install in just 7 minutes!
  • Pliable sheets mold to the shape of your furniture
  • This product will not damage your furniture when it's removed
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3. Get a Scratch Post

A cat scratch post is a great way to protect your couch from scratches and provides your cat with some much-needed exercise. A cat scratch post can help your cat stay healthy and happy by keeping them out of trouble. But how do you choose the right scratch post for your cat? There are a few things to consider, such as size, materials, and placement. First, Decide how large of a scratch post you need. If you have a small cat, a smaller post may be sufficient. However, if you have a large cat or multiple cats, you’ll need a larger one to accommodate them. Second, pick what material you want your scratch post to be made out of. Some people prefer natural materials like sisal or jute, while others prefer synthetic materials like carpet or vinyl. Finally, you’ll need to decide where to place your scratch post. It should be in a spot where your cat has easy access to it and where it won’t get in the way. A good place could be near the couch to help deter them.

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Cat Scratching Post Tower with 3 Scratcher Posts
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4. Train Your Cat

Every cat owner dreams of having a well-behaved kitty who doesn’t jump on the furniture or scratch up the couch. While it may seem impossible, training your cat not to jump on the furniture is quite simple – and it can be done with positive reinforcement and treats. One way to do this is to start by placing your cat’s favorite toy or treat on the edge of the couch or chair. Once your cat goes to investigate, give her a verbal cue (such as “no jumping” or “off”) and offer a small treat. Repeat this process several times, gradually moving the toy or treating it further onto the furniture until your cat can stay put without jumping. With patience and consistency, you’ll have a well-behaved kitty in no time!

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5. Cat Trees

Cats love to climb and scratch, and a cat tree provides them with a safe outlet for these instincts. Cat trees are an excellent way to keep your cats entertained and away from your furniture. They offer benefits such as mental stimulation, physical activity, and a sense of security. Cat trees also help to redirect a cat’s natural scratching instinct. Scratching is essential to a cat’s grooming routine, and cat trees provide a safe outlet for this behavior. In addition, cat trees can help create a vertical space in your home, giving your cats a place to explore and play. And, because cat trees come in various sizes and styles, you can find one that fits perfectly into your home décor. A cat tree is an excellent addition to your home if you have one cat or multiple cats.

Best Overall
Penn-Plax Spin Kitty Cat Exerciser Wheel & Tree
  • Exercise wheel and cat tree in one
  • Includes removable pads for napping
  • Tree is made of wood
  • Wheel is 20-inch diameter
  • Lined with sisal carpet
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6. Groom Their Fur

As any cat owner knows, dealing with pet hair can be a real pain. Not only is it unsightly, but it can also be challenging to remove, especially from upholstered furniture. It spreads all over the carpets and your clean clothes. You should maintain their fur if you don’t enjoy walking around looking like a Yeti. Keeping your cat brushed is one way to help protect your couch from fur. This will help prevent loose hair from collecting, and it can also help reduce the risk of hairballs. In addition, regular brushing can help to keep your cat’s coat healthy and free of tangles. As a result, it’s definitely worth taking the time to brush your cat regularly. A great cat brush is essential to ensure the hassle-free grooming of your furry friend.  

Best Overall
KONG Cat ZoomGroom Multi-Use Brush
  • Brushes are very supple
  • Gently removes excessive hair
  • Stimulate your cat's natural oils
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Keeping your feline friend off the couch can be a never-ending battle. Cats love a soft surface, and they’re often drawn to furniture that looks like a cozy place to nap. Unfortunately, this can lead to scratches, stains, and other damage. However, you can do a few things to protect your couch from your cat, like offering other options for comfortable places to sleep. Provide a cat tree or a scratch post in a room where your cat spends time, and she’ll be less likely to see your couch as an attractive place to rest. With a little effort, you can keep your furniture looking new – even if you have a cat in the house.

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About the Author

Creepy-crawly creatures enthrall Marisa. Aside from raising caterpillars, she has a collection of spiders as pets. The brown recluse is her favorite spider of all time. They're just misunderstood. You don't have to worry about squishing the creatures as her catching, and relocating abilities can safely move stray centipedes or snakes to a new location that's not your living room.