Curing Your Couch of Cat Scratch Fever

Our old couch was in dire need of a pick-me-up. Torn to pieces in some places by our cats, we were finally in a place where we could afford to get it reupholstered. Our newest concern--keeping the pristine couch free from our cats clawing ways. Check out how we're approaching it, after the jump.
  • When we were in the first stages of picking out a fabric, we knew to swear off any type of tweed material. The couch we wanted to get reupholstered was tweed and the cats went to town clawing it to bits. We didn't really want to go the leather route so we decided instead on micro suede. Cats tend to pass fabrics like micro suede and velvet right by so we knew we had to give it a shot.

  • While protective tape works for some folks, we never had any luck with it. Without fail, we'd apply the tape to one section and our cat would end up clawing the other parts of the couch.

  • We decided beforehand that if the micro suede fabric wasn't a deterrent we'd pick up some bitter apple spray to scent the couch. Apparently, if cats get near the smell, they will likely avoid contact with the piece of furniture that's been sprayed.

  • While we do trim our cats claws, we decided that we're going to have to make this chore a weekly routine to make the new couch last longer.

  • Since we can't be around to monitor the cats behavior 24/7 we decided to put the scratching post right next to the spot they usually like to claw.

  • We once heard that cats hate tin foil and have actually used some in the home office to cover a low lying bookshelf. It worked so well on the shelf that we think it would probably be a great solution for the back of the couch.

  • And of course, when we are at home, a spray bottle to correct the bad behavior is always an option. If you catch your cat in the act, make sure their scratching post is close by and attempt to get them to use it instead. Scenting the scratching post with cat nip is also wise since they'll naturally be drawn to it.

Apartment Therapy readers, what are some solutions that you've tried that have worked like a charm?

(Image: Beth Zeigler)