How to stop a cat from scratching a leather sofa

Updated April 17, 2017

Cats enjoy scratching. They scratch to mark their territory because they have scent glands in their paws. Some just enjoy stretching and scratching. Declawing a cat is not necessary because there are many ways to protect your belongings from a cat’s claws. Declawing cats is an unnecessary surgery; basically, the cat's toes are amputated to the first knuckle. It is painful and traumatic. Learning to change your cat’s behaviour will not only save your belongings, but your cat's toes.

Provide a scratching post. Place the post near the couch. Make sure the post does not rock and is sturdy. A tall sisal or carpeted post works best. Do not remove the post if it is shredded since your cat is attracted to the post because his scent is there.

Place double-sided tape over the area where you cat is scratching. This works if the cat is only scratching one area of the couch. Many cats find the feel of double sided tape unpleasant so they will not scratch where it is placed.

Cover the couch in plastic mats and runners. Put the smooth side down. Most cats will avoid scratching on the plastic mats because it does not feel good.

Try aversion therapy. Spray the cat with water when it starts to scratch the couch. The cat will soon associate the unwanted spray with the couch.

Use citrus products in the area of the leather couch. Cats dislike the smell of citrus. They will avoid areas that have been saturated with that scent. If you use a cleaner for the leather sofa, make sure it is citrus-scented.

Cite this Article A tool to create a citation to reference this article Cite this Article

About the Author

Justine DePalma is a freelance writer who lives in rural Michigan. She is the editor of, a website dedicated to providing information about Michigan animals.