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Scratching is a 100% natural and healthy activity that your cat needs to do. And when you share your home with a cat, you should be prepared to offer plenty of different types of scratching surfaces and substrates (materials) to meet your kitty’s needs. If you’re new to owning a cat or to the world of scratchers, the first thing you should know is that not all scratching surfaces appeal to all cats. It may take some trial and error to figure out what type of surface and substrate your cat prefers.
Unfortunately many cat owners are misinformed and think that cat scratching is some sort of inappropriate or “revenge” behavior. Nothing could be further from the truth. And sadly scratching is one of the biggest reasons why people declaw their cats or relinquish them to a rescue.
We are here to help! Here are the top-rated cat scratchers from Chewy and Amazon. Pay special attention to the surface: curved, vertical, horizontal, angled, etc. And equally important is the substrate: carpet, sisal, cardboard, etc. Figure out the right combination, and both you and your cat will be happy campers.
Need a scratcher that will match your home decor? This regal cat scratcher comes in three neutral colors: cream, gray, and brown. Purrfect for a full-body stretch, this cat post keeps your kitty busy instead of scratching up your sofa. The double-layer baseboard gives this scratcher extra stability and woven sisal covers on all four sides entice kitties to sink her claws right in.
Here’s what customers have to say: “I have two LARGE cats and one tiny one that all love to tear into and launch off of scratching posts, and so far this one has held up incredibly well! I’ve had it for about two years now and it’s easily the best scratching post I’ve ever found (especially for the price!). Couldn’t be easier to assemble, I’ve never had to readjust or tighten it since I put it together” -Chelsea G., 5 stars.
Want a touch of greenery but have a house full of dead plants? The Frisco Cactus Cat Scratching Post is the choice fur you! Possibly the softest cactus you’ll ever see, this quirky cat scratcher has a plush material on the top and base for your cat to nuzzle. The stem is wrapped in sisal to encourage scratching.
“This is an attractive & unique scratching post. It’s tall enough to allow my cats to stretch up to scratch the carpet part; however, if they want to scratch a little lower on the sisal rope, they can do that too. However, the main thing is that the kitties actually USE IT! Plus it’s cute and decorative and seems to be holding up well after about a month or two of the kitties scratching on it…” -Trace, 5 stars.
This tall, vertical scratcher gives your kitty a good stretch while maintaining her healthy manicure. Easy to hang on walls or furniture, this scratcher can help discourage destructive scratching behaviors. Customers have used this product to protect doorways, sofas, and chairs with much success! Also wrapped in sisal, this scratching post provides just the right amount of resistance for your cat.
“I put these all over the house – have 4 now. One draped over the sofa arm that they like to scratch on. One on a throw rug they like to scratch on..just ordered two more for other favorite level spots. I haven’t attached them to anything, just lay them down where they like to do a ground stretch and scratch. Works great, easy to divert them from something else to this. High quality for a low price, too!” -EarleAndJasper, 5 stars.
Affordable and fun for your cat! This cardboard cat scratcher has tassels, a stuffed toy, and catnip! Sprinkle some of the catnip on the scratcher to really get your cat’s attention–and divert unwanted scratching behaviors into a more furniture-friendly outlet. If your cat is not tempted by regular scratchers, this catnip-included option may give them just what they need to become interested!
“I can’t keep my 3 cats off this thing. The meek female I have even swats the big boys away from her scratchy box….this thing is magic, who knew?? I bought it because I bought a new runner rug–well I saw the cats always scratching on my new rug! I was going insane—this little box put an end to that!! I put it next to the rug and the scratchy box was much more fun thank god I bought 3 types of floor scratchers–fancy incline ones and they pay no attention to those —all 3 went immediately to this. I need to get a couple more they basically decimated it…” -catskilllaura, 5 stars.
Looking for something that you and your cat will love? This cat scratcher’s curved design makes for easier scratching and lounging for your cat. Plus, you will feel good about buying it! Made with recycled cardboard and non-toxic corn starch glue, you can help the planet while knowing your cat is scratching safely. This product is also reversible, so you are getting 2x the use.
“Kitty loves it! Never had a cat before, brought in a 10+ year old stray from my old apartment who is the sweetest cat ever and I fell in love with him so wanted to spoil him and bought him this. He loves it even more than I could have hoped. Spends several hours a day sleeping or just perched on it and hits it with his claws every time he jumps on. So adorable. Have had it for a couple months and it’s held up really well. Cool that when the top is worn out I can just flip it over and it’s like having a brand new scratcher again. He’s a pretty big/long cat so I was unsure how well he’d fit on it but it’s absolutely perfect. Will definitely be buying another if this one ever wears out!” -Super Bon Bon, 5 stars.
This product combines two things all cats love: scratchers and sun bathing! According to Chewy, this product has been proven to hold up to 50 pounds! The convenient design attaches this cat scratcher to the window in seconds, using suction cups for added security. This product comes with a bonus bag of catnip to really entice your kitty.
“I have two 5 month old kittens and they love being up on high surfaces. We have a tall cat tree upstairs that they play on but our downstairs area is small and we don’t have room to fit another cat tree, so when I came across this window mount kitty sill, I knew it would be perfect! It was fairly easy to put up; I cleaned the window and suction cups with rubbing alcohol first to make sure they would adhere properly. I had to put each kitten up on it and have yet to see them jump up by themselves. But so far, they’re very happy to be able to look down on us (humans) and watch the birds outside!” -Julie23, 5 stars.
Does your cat appreciate the cottage core aesthetic? This 2 in 1 cat cottage and scratcher gives your cat a private place to rest and play. Not only is the design super cute and cozy, but this cat scratcher comes with a bag of catnip, too! Sprinkle a little around the entrance of the cottage to encourage your cat to check it out.
“I am so dang surprised at how great this little house is!! I bought one for my new kitty to see if he’d like it and figured he would destroy it or something and it would be a fast $15 down the drain. WELL LET ME TELL YOU – the exact opposite is true. This thing is so easy to put together a spider monkey could do it. It’s great quality, very sturdy. The cat nip was great positive reinforcement for my kitty to use it, now it’s his primary hiding place and he likes the scratch pad. I was also worried my chonky kitty wouldn’t fit, but he has plenty of room to go inside and turn around and whatnot. Will be buying more of these!” -Sarah, 5 stars.
Another eco-friendly cat scratcher, this product is made with all-natural recycled wood! Made with a track and 2 small balls, your cat can nudge them with their nose or bat at it with their paws. And, after they’ve played their hearts out, they can get in a good manicure with the cardboard center of this scratcher!
Check out this review: “My cat has an insanely short attention span, but she will randomly take to this for short periods of time. She immediately knew it was for her and really enjoys scratching it in the middle. And she gets such a look of determination trying to get at those little balls” -Amelia, 5 stars.
Missing warm weather this winter? This tropical palm tree scratcher will bring a little bit of paradise to your home! With a rope-wrapped trunk and hanging coconut to swat at, this cat scratcher will bring hours of entertainment to your cat. Designed for swatting, scratching, stretching, and perching, this scratcher provides plenty of mental and physical stimulation to your pet. Not only is it a cute decoration for you and fun for your cat, but it is easy and quick to assemble!
“My cat’s claws were starting to get a tad too sharp so I started looking for a scratching post to buy for him (and my skin!) I took a chance on this one simply because it’s cute then ended up being most impressed with its sturdiness. My cat, Henry, uses it several times a day and as you can see from the photo he’s not gentle with it. Equally important, the tree was easy to assemble, looks aesthetically as advertised, and gets those claws under control!” -Tina E, 5 stars.
Trying to combat shedding and sharp claws? This 2 in 1 scratcher accomplishes both! The looped brush gives your cat something sturdy to rub on, thus removing loose fur. The cat scratcher on the bottom is cardboard encourages healthy scratching and can also be recycled once used. Plus, if you are not satisfied with the quality of your purchase after one month, the seller will accept returns for a full refund.
“I swear my cats will constantly take turns using this scratch pad, but mostly as a bed! I guess it’s comfortable as it is fun. Very pleased with this purchase and i love that it came with catnip. I wish I could’ve recorded my cat’s initial reaction. She was so content rolling around in it as soon as I set it up” -Lizbeth Nelson, 5 stars.
About the Author:
Madeleine Brown is a student at the University of Chicago studying English literature. When she’s not studying, her passions are reading, baking, and spoiling her two kitties, Harper and Mr. Bingley.