Do Cat Claw Resistant Fabrics Exist?
Is there any cat nails proof fabrics or materials available? It’s one of our most common question we’ve been ask by our clients. Hopefully this article will provide some answers.
For those who are cats lover, who appreciate their unique energy, presence and way to interact with humans, there is one point of agreement : how to deal with their natural needs to do their nails still not ruining our upholstery furniture?
As I now personally exclude the alternative to declawing my cats. (I did it to my first cat when it was fashion at the time. After observing all the pain she suffered and her continual limitations -she was not longer capable to do cat things.) There is a natural need I have to manage, as it can become a real problem.
Is there any cat friendly fabrics out there?
This is THE question we’ve been ask the most often about upholstery fabrics. Our observations, client testimonies and our reading are unanimous : such a fabric does not exist… yet. But, we can also say that some fabrics are more cat friendly than others. Two aspects can guide our choice : fabric texture and weaving.
Fabrics to avoid
Some fabrics are like cat magnet : they just lllove it and a simple touch activate there needling natural reflex. The worst (or the best for cats) are those similar to towel or chenille textures and all fabrics where a velcro hook (scratchy side) can stick on.
Any other fabric made with a loose weaving or made of a very small thread can be at risque of pulling a thread .
What are the best cat nail proof fabrics?
It is important to remember : cats do their nails because it’s in their nature. This is why they have to have a place where they are freely allowed and where they can do cat things.
First thing to keep in mind, there is no 100% cat nail proof fabrics. Unless you cover your couches with a commercial carpet, you shall forget about such an option. But some fabrics are offering better resistance than other. The best are microfiber fabrics and faux suede as cats are not really interested in these textures. Strong cotton or hemp canvas, and velvet or velvet like texture are not doing too bad neither. Cat nails just can’t stick on and pull thread off.
Some other fabrics are not doing too bad i.e. those having a tight weave construction, and those having a protector backing. In these case, cats can do their nail, but fabrics will be strong enough to not pull off thread at the very first trial.
Have a look at the pictures on the side. We can see two seats with such fabrics. The orange one belong to a cat lover uncle and after 40 years of usage, the fabric is still mint.
Leather, faux-leather and vinyle
Good quality genuine leather made with a full dying color (not only a spread color on surface) are offering a very good resistance. Well, if cats intentionally do their nails, they will destroy it over time, but if they just walk on or play on, they will age very well. Avoid any on surface colored leather. Any small scratch will be visible.
Faux-leather and vinyle can offer a certain resistance, but they may not last very long. There is a wide variety of quality and durability. Ask your upholsterer to show you the most resistant.
Picture on the side shows a faux-leather with cat nail scratches. This one was only one year of usage, and cats just walked on it. This one is not a good choice.
Cat Natural Needs
No need to try stopping our cats from doing their nails and from grooming. It’s in their nature. Instead, we have to figure out how to deal with it. Best practice is to provide places where they are aloud to claw from the very first moment we adopt them.
Some training may be necessary, but your cat will make the difference between what is aloud and what is not. Like most species, cats learn by observation and imitation. So, if we teach our cats, we can be surprise how they can reproduce our behaviors.
When I’ve adopted my little cat, I’ve quickly provide a cat essential kit. Cardboard, a broken tree branch, toys, paper bags, etc. About the tree branch, I’ve mounted it and screwed it on a plywood plank. For days, I’ve shown here how to use the branch by pretending I was doing my own nails on it. She was observing my with perplex eyes, but I’ve taken her gently and respectfully and put her paws on the branch and it was done. It became her favorite claw station.
Some cats also love a lot the entrance door mats. Those in coconut fiber work very well. They are rugged carpets, which are very resistant to claws. Although they may come out a little disheveled, they cost less than a sofa to replace.
The important thing to keep in mind is to provide our cats spaces where they can freely let go their cat nature without fearing being reprimanded.
Your upholsterer : an ally for cats lover
A good upholsterer will know about cat clawing problems for owners and will be able to guide you choosing the right fabric.
Remember there is no cat claw proof fabric, but there is options better than other. Luwiss team is totally aware of this concern and will be please to guide your choices for the joy of you and your cats.