Updated: March 9, 2021 by Kristen Chapple
Oh, your poor sofa. And drapes, and carpet, and whatever else they can dig those claws into and stretch that back. They have to scratch, and as cat lovers, we’d never deny them that urge. But how to do so without sacrificing your stuff??
Two fronts: show them what’s off-limits (more on how to do that later), and provide them with something they’ll want more.
That’s where a good scratching post comes in handy.
We’ve consulted cats everywhere to find the best cat scratching posts to help satisfy their scratchy urges and save your furniture.
Table of Contents
- The Best Cat Scratching Posts Are:
- 1. Frisco 33.5-in Sisal Cat Scratching Post
- 2. VETRESKA 41″ Tall Cactus Cat Scratching Post with Sisal Rope, Cat Scratcher Cactus — Best Scratching Post for Large Cats
- 3. SmartCat The Ultimate 32-in Sisal Cat Scratching Post
- 4. On2Pets Skyline 22-in Sisal Cat Scratching Post, Beige
- 5. Trixie Soria 31.5-in Fleece Tower Cat Scratching Post
- 6. Frisco Wall Sisal Cat Scratcher
- 7. Paws & Pals 3-in-1 Cat Scratching Post w/Hammock & Toy
- 8. Catry Cat Tree Cat Scratching Post with Natural Rope
- 9. PAWZ Road 32″ Cats Ultimate Scratching Post
- Buying Guide To The Best Scratching Posts For Cats
- Setting Boundaries
- A Final Word
The Best Cat Scratching Posts Are:
|1. Frisco 33.5-in Sisal Cat Scratching Post||Check Current Price|
|2. VETRESKA 41" Tall Cactus Cat Scratching Post with Sisal Rope, Cat Scratcher Cactus||Check Current Price|
|3. SmartCat The Ultimate 32-in Sisal Cat Scratching Post||Check Current Price|
|4. On2Pets Skyline 22-in Sisal Cat Scratching Post, Beige||Check Current Price|
|5. Trixie Soria 31.5-in Fleece Tower Cat Scratching Post||Check Current Price|
|6. Frisco Wall Sisal Cat Scratcher||Check Current Price|
|7. Paws & Pals 3-in-1 Cat Scratching Post w/Hammock & Toy||Check Current Price|
|8. Catry Cat Tree Cat Scratching Post with Natural Rope||Check Current Price|
|9. PAWZ Road 32" Cats Ultimate Scratching Post||Check Current Price|
At just over 2 ½ feet tall, this durable wood and sisal scratching post is great for any sized cat to use. After one good scratch, they’ll claim it as theirs forever.
With four sides of sturdy, woven sisal for optimal scratching access and a wide, plushy base, he can dig away to his purring heart’s content, and when he’s done, a plushy platform on top gives him an excellent view of his kingdom.
This scratching post is constructed from sturdy engineered wood and rough, textured sisal for a super satisfying claw sesh. We also love the fact that it’s attractive enough to sit in your living room (or wherever your cat prefers to scratch) without being a total eyesore.
This post comes in three nondescript neutral colors: cream, brown, and gray, to complement any interior. It’s quick and easy to assemble with instructions and tools included to get it up and ready for clawing.
- Dimensions: 33.5 in tall
- Materials: Faux fur, Sisal, Engineered Wood
- Free-Standing Design
- 5 inches of vertical scratching and stretching space tempts your kitty away from the sofa
- Plush perch on top gives him the perfect spot for surveying his kingdom
- Four sides of durable, woven sisal provide space for a multi-cat household to satisfy their urge to claw
- The sturdy, wide plushy base provides stability
- Simple, easy to follow instructions and tools included for easy assembly
- Some kitties didn’t like the sisal texture
- Some cats managed to tip it over quickly
- Some owners reported it didn’t assemble correctly
2. VETRESKA 41″ Tall Cactus Cat Scratching Post with Sisal Rope, Cat Scratcher Cactus — Best Scratching Post for Large Cats
This super tall, cactus-shaped scratching post is great for big cats who need lots of scratching and stretching real-estate. It’s also extremely sturdy, even for the heaviest of wild things.
It’s made from PVC pipe wrapped entirely in natural sisal rope to entice him away from your furniture and toward the cactus.
With a strong main trunk and two sisal-wrapped “arms”, he’ll have plenty of places to climb and claw. It also features two fluffy cactus “flowers” for a multi-textured experience. If 41” tall is too much for your living room, it also comes in a smaller 31.5-incher.
Easily assembled, this scratcher comes with the instructions and hardware you’ll need to put it together in a snap. This whimsical cat scratching post will make even the biggest of house-tigers happy!
- Dimensions: 17.7” x 17.7” x 41.3”
- Color: Green, cactus style
- Materials: PVC pipe, sisal rope
- The tall, sturdy design is great for large cats.
- Constructed from PVC pipe wrapped in sisal rope for durability
- The cactus-shaped design gives your cat plenty of climbing space and two “branches” to explore.
- Two fluffy cactus “flowers” for a multi-sensory experience
- Easy assembly
- Some owners reported the base began to come apart easily soon after use
- Some cats didn’t seem interested in climbing the cactus
33 inches of upright scratching satisfaction will keep your kitties focused on the scratcher and away from your furniture when you bring home the SmartCat Ultimate 32-in scratching post.
Made from sturdy engineered wood and covered with rough, fibrous sisal — this scratching post will satisfy even the most high-maintenance kitties up to 30 pounds.
It’s wide 16” x16” base keeps the post steady while she scratches, stretches, and relaxes. Easy assembly with included screws makes sure you can get it up and running fast, and it comes in neutral gray or beige to blend nicely into any living space.
- Dimensions: 16 x 16 x 32 in
- Weight: 16.0 lbs
- Materials: Sisal, Engineered Wood
- Free-Standing Design
- Tall, 32” post gives her plenty of room to stretch, scratch and relax
- Neutral gray and beige options blend into your decor
- Quick and easy to assemble
- Durable, highly textured woven sisal tempts her to scratch without catching her claws
- Wide 16″ x 16″ base keeps the post steady while she scratches
- Some cats don’t like the sisal texture
- Smelled like chemicals upon arrival
- Some owners reported it was cheaply made and fell apart when it tipped over
A soft, faux grass base keeps this 22-inch vertical post in place while your kitty scratches away happily. Three posts of differing heights make it great for multiple cats up to 32 pounds. Everyone gets their own scratching territory!
The durable, sisal-wrapped posts offer her plenty of places to indulge her scratching instincts, as well as a place for a good stretch. It’s easy to assemble, with no tools needed.
- Dimensions: 22 x 16.5 x 30.5 in
- Weight: 11.0 lbs
- Materials: Sisal, Engineered Wood
- Includes three posts of different heights for multiple scratching options
- Solid, faux-grass base keeps the posts standing sturdy
- Made with safe, nontoxic materials
- Easy assembly with no tools required
- The round, sisal-covered posts satisfy your cats urge for scratching
- Some kitties weren’t all that interested in scratching.
- Some owners said it wasn’t big enough for their fur baby
This unique vertical post comes with three sides of sisal-covered scratching satisfaction, and a fourth, covered in soft, plushy material that’s perfect for nuzzling. Is your little hunter particularly frisky?
She’ll love the surprises hidden in the fluffy side: three hidey-holes with toys inside to bat and play with! This post is great for cats of all ages, but kittens will especially love this one.
At 31.5 inches tall, this post gives your kitty plenty of space to scratch and stretch, and because it has three sides for scratching, it’s great for multiple cat households.
No more worrying about your furniture, this post will keep them happy and entertained for hours. Comes in attractive, neutral beige and grey colors to blend in with your decor.
- Weight: 13.0 lbs
- Intended for adult cats
- Materials: Wood, Fleece
- Tall vertical tower allows her plenty of room for stretching
- Sturdy sisal covering on three sides for satisfying, safe scratching
- The 4th side is outfitted in soft plush material and features 3 different openings with fun toys inside.
- Available in neutral grey and beige to fit into any interior color-scape
- Some owners reported the material on the post came apart easily
- Some owners said they had to use extra hardware not included with the post to keep it together
- Some owners said the coverings seemed to be glued on and weren’t very good quality
This cat scratcher is versatile enough to mount flat on your wall, wedge it over a corner, or even lie it down on the floor, whatever your furry boss prefers. It comes in small or large sizes, you can custom fit it wherever you need to in order to save your furniture!
Covered with durable sisal, this post will satisfy your kitties’ urge to scratch and exercise those claws while getting in a good, stress-relieving stretch. Easy to mount, it comes with the option of screw-in mounting or hook-and-loop adhesive. This scratcher also comes in attractive neutral grey or beige.
- Dimensions: 27.15 x 11 x 1.18 in
- Weight: 13.5 lbs
- Materials: Sisal, Engineered Wood
- Space-saving design can be mounted on corners or flat on the wall
- Don’t want to mount it? It can also lie horizontally for floor stretches
- Comes in large and small sizes, and in neutral grey or beige tones
- Choice of screw-in mounting or adhesive hook-and-loop
- Some kitties weren’t interested
- Some owners reported it was too heavy to hang effectively on the wall
- Some owners had a difficult time mounting the scratcher
This scratching post does triple duty! She’ll keep those claws healthy and manicured with the two sturdy, sisal-covered posts, then she can climb her way to the top and lounge in the cozy plush “nest” while observing the activity in her domain.
Attach a fun, fluffy ball with string to the hammock, and you’ve got everything she needs in one place to stay happy, healthy, and chill.
The scratching posts are made from sturdy pressed wood and wrapped in durable sisal rope to lure her away from your sofa, the hammock “nest” is made from pressed wood and covered in snuggly vegan faux-fur.
The generously-sized cat hammock and plenty of vertical space for scratching makes this post great for adults cats and kittens. Easy assembly with instructions and hardware included.
- Dimensions: 16” x 16 x 20 in
- Materials: Faux-Fur, Pressed Wood, Sisal
- Assembly required, hardware and instructions included
- Generously-sized cat hammock and plenty of vertical space for scratching
- Sisal-covered posts encourage her to scratch and stretch
- Snuggly faux-fur covered hammock gives her a cozy spot to relax
- Fluffy toy attachment gives her even more to do in her new space
- Easy to assemble, instructions and hardware included
- Some owners said this post was smaller than advertised
- Some owners said this post was too flimsy for their cat to use effectively
- Some owners said the toy came detached and there was no way to reattach it safely
This stylish post is covered with attractive grey felt and wrapped at the top with durable sisal rope, making it a great option for your beautifully furnished home when you want your fluffy beloved to keep her claws off your beautiful furnishings!
Not only will the textured sisal tempt her away from your sofa, but the attached bouncing toy ball will also keep her attention for a long time. She’ll keep her claws trimmed and healthy while blowing off some steam as she scratches away!
Includes instructions and hardware for fast, easy assembly.
- Materials: Felt, sisal, MDF Board
- Comes in “17 and “32 in sizes
- Grey, neutral colors
- Stylish grey and neutral beige colors complement any decor
- Attached jingling ball for her to swat and bat
- Sturdy sisal rope gives her plenty of space for scratching satisfaction
- Easy assembly with instructions and hardware included
- Some cat parents reported it tips over easily
- Some said the felt and sisal weren’t attached firmly and shredded too easily
- Some said it fell apart easily after construction
This post sports a sturdy, heavy wooden base to keep it standing steady while your little shredder claws it to his heart’s content.
At 32” tall, it’s tall enough for even the lengthiest cats to stretch and climb on in order to get to the top and survey their territory. A fun toy bird attached by string to the top provides even more action when he tries to swat it out of the air.
The 100% natural sisal cover is hearty enough to withstand a beating and is perfect for keeping his claws healthy and manicured. You won’t have to worry about your furniture acting as the household scratching post again!
This post is easy to assemble, with three-step instructions and two included screws, it’ll be up, used, and abused in no time.
- Dimensions: 16” x 16” base, 32” tall
- Materials: Sisal Wood
- Color: Black
- Heavy base ensures the tower won’t tip over when your kitty scratches and stretches on it.
- Durable, 100% natural sisal cover is strong enough for even the most enthusiastic shredders
- The platform on the top gives him a place to sit and observe the scenery
- Attached toy bird will keep him occupied and jumping
- Easy to assemble, instructions and hardware included
- Some owners reported the sisal covering came off easily
- Some owners reported it wasn’t so easy to assemble
- Some cats weren’t impressed and ignored it
Buying Guide To The Best Scratching Posts For Cats
So you’ve found the scratcher for your fluffy diva. The anticipation mounts as you unbox, unwrap, and put it all together. You put it right in front of your new sofa that is her new favorite place to scratch. “Ha!” you think to yourself, “my couch is saved!”
She sniffs at it, rubs up against it, and saunters away. “Fine,” you think, “let’s see you resist the catnip!”
You sprinkle catnip on the new scratching post, and she comes back, sniffs it, rubs on it, rolls around in front of it, then scratches the brand new sofa you’re trying to block with her brand new scratching post. “HEY!!” you shout.
She runs off, but pauses to turn and throw you a dirty look over her shoulder before she disappears into the next room.
As cat lovers, we love the attitude. It’s what makes a cat a cat. But you’ve got to draw the line somewhere, and your brand new sofa has become that line.
How am I supposed to do that, you ask? Read on, we’ve assembled some tips and tricks when it comes to buying a great scratching post, understanding why she needs to scratch, and how you can keep her claws out of your couch.
Why Your Cat Needs To Scratch
Scratching may be inconvenient, but your cat has to do it in order to trim and condition her claws like clipping, get in a good stress-relieving stretch, and mark her territory with the scent glands in her paws. If you’ve ever watched a cat take a really satisfying scratch, it’s not hard to see how much better it makes her feel.
Cats can run into problems with claw health if they don’t have a good outlet for scratching, particularly as they get older. Cat’s claws are made of keratin, like human fingernails, and if their outer layer isn’t shed frequently, it can lead to overgrowth.
If a cat’s claw is overgrown, it can grow back into her paw pads and cause all kinds of problems, including infection. This can even become dangerous to the cat if the infection is bad enough, because a cat’s claws are connected directly to the bone in each toe.
Many feel the need to trim their cats’ claws. Most vets will say this shouldn’t be too necessary as long as your cat has plenty of places to scratch. Also, trimming a cat’s claws isn’t particularly easy. Since a cat’s claw covers the “quick”, or the nerve inside the claw, it can hurt her and cause bleeding if you cut too close.
Some Things To Look For When Choosing A Scratching Post
Have you noticed a pattern of what sort of surfaces your cat likes to scratch? They all want a surface and texture they can work those claws into for a really good scratch, but different cats prefer different kinds of textures.
Pay attention to what she claws. If you let her out sometimes and notice she really digs the tree or your backyard fence, or if when she’s inside she likes the dense material of your furniture, she’ll probably want something a little firmer like a sisal scratcher.
Sisal is a thick, durable rope made from fibers from the agave plant, and it stands up to some pretty intense abuse if it’s covering a quality scratcher. If you notice she likes to go to town on your carpets, take the hint and get her a scratcher that’s covered in carpet.
What Height/Angle Does She Need?
Use your common-sense judgement when it comes to selecting if she’ll like a vertical scratcher, a wedge scratcher, or something that lies flat on the floor.
Some cats love a good ground-stretch-down-dog-yoga pose thing, in which case a wedgelike or floor scratcher may be the right one for her.
If you notice she’s more inclined to stand on her hind legs and scratch, like on your favorite curtains, or the new sofa, for instance — resist the urge to sell her to gypsies or shrink-wrap her paws.
Just get her a nice, tall vertical scratcher so she’ll have plenty of space to reach as high as possible for the best stretch. If she’s a climber, a post with a perch on top is always a great choice.
Choose Quality And Stability
It may be tempting to buy on the cheap side when it comes to a scratching post, but resist the urge. When it comes to scratching posts, often you get what you pay for, and a cheap scratching post will end up as a waste of money.
If you’re purchasing a post in the store, see if there’s a display model you can check out, or at least partially unbox it to see if the fabric it’s wrapped with is secured well and it’s sturdily constructed. Check it’s weight, too. A good scratching post should have a nice, heavy, broad base to keep it from tipping over.
If you’re ordering online, consult consumer guides such as this one and reviews on the product sites to see what other cat owners have to say. A quality guarantee from the manufacturer is an added bonus if you can find one.
So you’ve observed her habits, and you’ve figured out she prefers your new sofa and usually scratches it enthusiastically as soon as she wakes up from her second afternoon nap. Now is the time for action.
Like we said above, every cat has their preference for scratching texture and style. Since you know she likes new-sofa-textured things that are vertical, cover everything you think may be tempting to her with things that’ll make her cringe.
Cats don’t love textures like cellophane, double-sided sticky tape, and aluminum foil. (Think of it like claws on a chalkboard for them.) Anything you suspect that she won’t want to put her claws into will work.
Another option is using scent as a deterrent. Cats scratch partially to mark their territory, and removing their scent from wherever she scratches with a thorough cleaning can help some. It’s usually just the first step of a two-step process, though.
Scrub first, then dab the area with a scent cats don’t like. Turns out, cat’s aren’t huge fans of menthol or citrus, so eucalyptus or citrus natural oil diluted with water may work wonders (as long as it doesn’t stain your sofa, of course).
If she’s scratching on a non-fabric surface, or you don’t want to spray scent directly onto the surface, saturate cotton balls or gauze with those scents and tape them onto the surface. Some say cologne works well, too. You’ll know what she hates pretty quickly…
A Final Word
Cats are fabulous, enigmatic, playful — there are a hundred adjectives cat lovers will use to describe the lords and ladies of their homes. What some may not realize is that when a cat is comfortable in its environment, they can also be hilarious (if not reluctant,) goofballs.
It’s a lot of fun to watch your favorite feline get their wiggles out with playtime and scratching, and since we want the best for them, we recommend the Frisco 33.5-in Sisal Cat Scratching Post as our top pick for the best cat scratching post out there.
Now go forth, and bravely save your furniture!