Where Should I Position A Scratching Mat For My Horizontal Scratching Kitty?

Cats have an innate need to scratch to maintain their claws and mark their territory.
While some cats prefer vertical scratching posts, others are horizontal scratchers.
If you have a horizontal scratching kitty, positioning a scratching mat in the right location is essential to satisfy their scratching instincts.
In this article, we’ll explore the world of horizontal scratching cats, provide insights into selecting the optimal location for a scratching mat,
and answer frequently asked questions to ensure your feline friend has a satisfying and appropriate scratching experience.

Understanding Horizontal Scratching

Horizontal scratching is a common behavior among cats, and it serves several purposes:

  • Claw Maintenance: Scratching helps cats shed the outer sheath of their claws, keeping them sharp and healthy.
  • Stretching: Cats often scratch horizontally as part of their stretching routine, which helps maintain flexibility.
  • Territorial Marking: Cats have scent glands in their paw pads, and scratching leaves both a visual mark and a scent marker,
    signaling their presence to other cats.

Choosing the Right Scratching Mat

Before discussing the ideal location, it’s essential to select an appropriate scratching mat for your kitty. Here are some considerations:

  • Material: Choose a scratching mat made from a durable material like sisal, cardboard, or woven fabric.
  • Size: Ensure the mat is large enough for your cat to comfortably stretch and scratch.
  • Texture: Cats may have preferences for different textures, so consider your cat’s preferences.
  • Sturdiness: The mat should be stable and not easily toppled during vigorous scratching sessions.

Optimal Locations for a Scratching Mat

Finding the right spot for your cat’s scratching mat is crucial to encourage regular use. Here are some strategic locations to consider:

1. Near Their Favorite Lounging Area

Placing the mat near your cat’s preferred resting spot can encourage them to scratch after waking up or while transitioning from rest to activity.

2. Along High-Traffic Areas

Positioning the scratching mat along hallways or in areas where your cat frequently walks can entice them to scratch as they pass by.

3. Near Vertical Scratching Posts

If your cat already uses a vertical scratching post, placing the mat nearby can create a scratching zone, offering options for both horizontal
and vertical scratching.

4. Close to a Window

Cats often enjoy observing outdoor activity. Placing the mat near a window allows your cat to scratch while watching the world outside.

5. In Multiple Locations

If your home allows, consider having multiple scratching mats in different rooms to cater to your cat’s scratching needs wherever they are.


1. My cat ignores the scratching mat. What can I do?

Try sprinkling catnip on the mat, using a cat pheromone spray, or gently encouraging your cat to use it with treats or toys.

2. How often should I replace a scratching mat?

Scratching mats will wear out over time. Replace them when they become frayed or no longer provide a satisfying scratching surface.

3. Can I train my cat to use the scratching mat?

Yes, you can train your cat to use the mat by gently guiding their paws onto it and rewarding them when they scratch.

4. Are there alternatives to scratching mats?

Cats may also enjoy scratching cardboard boxes, rugs, or even specially designed cat furniture.

5. Should I trim my cat’s claws in addition to providing a scratching mat?

Trimming your cat’s claws can complement scratching behavior but should be done with care or by a professional groomer or veterinarian.

In Conclusion, Happy Scratching

In conclusion, positioning a scratching mat for your horizontal scratching kitty in the right location is essential to satisfy their natural instincts
and keep their claws healthy.
Choose an appropriate scratching mat, consider your cat’s preferences, and strategically place it in areas where your cat frequents.
With patience and encouragement, you can help your feline friend develop a strong affinity for their scratching mat, ensuring they have a happy
and satisfying scratching experience.

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