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When picking out a cat to join your family, many factors come into play. One of the most important ones is scratching behavior.
Every pet parent agrees that scratching, albeit it feels good for the cat, can be a huge challenge. If your precious sofa, kids, rugs, or clothes have been on the receiving end of cat scratches, you will agree it is a difficult thing to deal with.
Wouldn’t it be a great idea to pick out a kitty that will not destroy your house just to fulfill her natural desire to scratch?
Some cat behaviors are gender-based. For instance, male cats tend to be more territorial than female cats. As a result, they are notorious for spaying the house, marking it with urine to ward off strangers.
On the opposite side of things, female cats, especially those who are nursing can be distrusting and wary of everything just to protect their kids.
What about scratching? Does it have anything to do with gender? We’ll find out shortly but first…
Why do cats scratch?
To answer the question better, a good understanding of why cats scratch will suffice. All kitties scratch to fulfill one or several of these reasons.
- To Stretch The Muscles: Like athletes, cats need to exercise their muscles, tendons, and joints. Scratching provides enough stretching of muscles of the feet, toes, shoulders, legs, and back. This way, they are healthy and able to protect themselves from injury.
- To Sharpen The Claws and Keep Them Healthy: As part of their grooming ritual, cats scratch to keep their nails looking nice and sharp. After hunting for years, they know better than to walk around with blunt nails. As they scratch, the outer husk of the claw is removed, and underneath comes a newer, sharper, and healthier nail.
- To Mark The Territory: When your kitty scratches, the sweat glands in her paws produce a scent. This scent acts as a communication device to let others know that the kitty was in the spot and perhaps owns it.
- Instinct: Cats are wired to scratch on things. It is one of those things that come naturally and feel good to them. Whether they are excited, frustrated, happy, sad, or just looking to have fun, cats will resort to scratching.
Which Gender Scratches More?
There’s no reliable source that points to one gender of cats scratching more than another. It really just depends on the individual cat, just like it is with other behaviors. Some male cats love to scratch more than female cats and vice versa.
With that said, unneutered male cats are more likely to scratch more than females because of dominance.
When they reach the age of sexual maturity, their sexual drive will prompt them to do mark their territory. They do that to gain control over other males around the area.
Along with urinating everywhere, they will scratch endlessly to fill the home with their scent. From walls to couches to carpets, they will scratch on anything with a rough texture.
Scratching pads will prevent your possessions from being destroyed. Also, neutering the kitty solves the problem once and for all.
The story rings true for unsprayed female cats. When they are on heat, they tend to go a little crazy.
Apart from scratching just to mark the territory, they also do that out of frustration. The surging hormones in her body throw her into a craze mood and she will do anything to let out the frustration and discomfort.
Still, you cannot compare her to an unneutered male when it comes to scratching.
Spayed Females Vs Neutered Males
For neutered toms and spayed queens, the behavior can go either way.
The individual cat’s temperament plays a key role here. Some kitties are just calmer than others and don’t particularly enjoy tearing the house apart.
Others scratch more because they enjoy the act of grooming themselves repeatedly.
Then there’s the issue of mood. A happy cat is likely to scratch more than a frustrated and sad one.
The latter will engage in the behavior as a way to escape what is going on. These include cats on heat, those who met a new cat for the first time, and those who move houses, just to mention a few.
If for no other reason, some felines just love to scratch more than others.
The instinct is too strong for them to resist. This can happen with any sex, further proving that scratching doesn’t depend on gender as does the personality and design of the individual cat.
A cat is hardwired to scratch on hard surfaces. They do that for fun, to mark their territory, stretch their muscles, and out of instinct.
Once you understand this, you will know that both male and female cats love to scratch.
To save yourself and your prized possessions, get enough scratching posts for the kitty and worry less about which gender scratches more than the other.
Hi! I am Eleanor Price. I started this website after my cat, Louie, almost died from a case of botulism (a type of food poisoning often caused by bacteria that grow on food items). Turned out that my cat’s diet was the problem. I have made it my duty to provide the best information and recommendations about everything cat lovers need to know about their felines’ health and wellbeing. My goal is to find the most informative content on anything feline-related and share it with fellow hardworking kitty lovers.