Step 7: If...

If this is your cat's first cardboard scratcher, put it near where she likes to sleep, and occasionally place the cat on the scratcher just as she's waking up. Cats like to stretch and scratch right at waking, and it doesn't take them long to learn that the cardboard "tree bark" is the ideal place to do that. Our cat naps right on the thing to save time commuting. We've found scooping the cat up out of her nap, and pouring her onto the scratcher (front feet first) seems to give her a pre-stretch that leads to scratching every time.

If the cat really, truly does not seem to know what to do with it, scratch on it with your own fingernails while he watches. The motion and sound are both useful because cats learn easily by imitating us. You can also gently rub his front paws on it, to further provide the idea. Try not to freak him out, or he'll never go near the thing again.

Most adult cats won't actually climb the thing, since it is only about as long as their body, but it's better if it's not attached to something unstable or very light. For instance, a mop handle is a poor choice. You can also just lean it up against things (walls, the end of the couch where she used to scratch...). Our cat learned the exact technique for getting better scratch without knocking the thing down.

If the top surface of the scratcher gets all used up and ratty looking, just cut the tape, flip the accordion over, and re-tape it.

If your cat dispenses bodily substances onto it or something spills on it, or it gets rained on, remember that cardboard is absorbent, not washable, and free. Cats who get a lot of hairballs like to stand on the scratcher to vomit, because it gives good traction, but usually they puke over the side.

If your cat is a sheep, like our cat, you may want to get the shed hairs off it with the cat's brush, or even vacuum it occasionally. This will be somewhat traumatic to the cat if he is on it at the time.
Does anyone know how to make tower-shaped cardboard cat scratching posts/climbers? Or those sculpted-looking curvy "furniture" scratchers/loungers made of corrugated cardboard?? I run a small (+/- 30 cats) cat rescue home and would love to give the cats some of the new corrugated cardboard "furniture" but who can afford it?! It costs a fortune! And it's only made of stupid cardboard! Why can't I make it myself?! Anyone help, please?
long, skinny carpet scraps can usually be picked up free the night before trash day behind the high-turnover apartments.
Best laugh I've had in ages.. thanks !! Good idea too.. though my two kitty overlords have decreed that cardboard is for lower life forms only.. ONLY carpet or sisal meets their criteria. Catnip is no help, they're both immune, darn it. I keep their claws trimmed short so their scratchy mats and posts last a fairly long time, as they don't have razor sharp claw tips to mangle them with.
thanks for the laugh on the hairball comment. =) <br /> <br /> We will be moving in about 10 days, and I have a ton of boxes. I am looking at what I can do with them besides throw them out after we are done unpacking.&nbsp; With 2 kitties, this should work nicely. Add in some nip, and they will be very happy. &nbsp;
Just to complicate things, Ikea did sell ready-made cardboard cat scratchers for real, but hey did not pack in the usual cardboard box. (Our cats did not like the novel idea however. They still prefer the carpets and the furniture to the scratchers. :( )<br /> Hmm, if I were a manufacturer who uses corrugated cardboard to pack things, I would print these&nbsp;instructions&nbsp;on the boxes. :)
sfasdgfbbg. God, I laughed so hard I started coughing. I hope you're happy! XD In all actuality, this is awesome. Our precious little girl loves to scratch, tears scratchers up in only a day or two, it's amazing if it lasts a week... And considering we just moved, I think I'll add this to my mounting list of things to do with our overabundance of cardboard... *peers around her apartment* x.x Thank you!<br/>
<em>vacuum it occasionally</em> <br/><br/>The cat or the box?<br/>
Whatever your cat will put up with, I suppose. If you can get away with vacuuming the cat, you could probably save a lot of time on other housecleaning...
cats don't like vacuums that much...
That's why you need a vacuum with a hose attachment. Just put the vacuum farther away from the cat so the noise doesn't bother it as much.
My cat wont move out from in front of the vacuum when I'm cleaning TILL I vacuum her!
Loved the laugh. However, I've purchased one of "those cardboard scrachers" and my cats didn't like them, even with cat nip! But they do like the carpet one! Go figure!
try some honeysuckle spray. One of my cats doesn't like catnip but they both go nuts for honeysuckle. You can also get old carpet samples from flooring stores for free it you don't want to pay for the carpet scratchers. My cats tear them apart so fast I would spend a fortune replacing them all the time.
Yeah, some cats don't get into the cardboard thing. Just like some cats don't get into catnip (mine doesn't). The little buggers do take pride in defying expectation... :) Thanks for reading!
Excellent instructions and I LOVE your sense of humor .. !!!
Funny and useful and <em>funny</em>. <br/>
I work for a nation wide pet supply chain and I use these type scratchers for my 2 kitties. I just moved myself and thought the same thing..."they can't be that hard to make" I'm going to pass this on to the animal rescue groups in the area! PS I always flip the store bought ones before tossing, some people don't.
I just have to say how perfectly delightful (and utilitarian) your project is... I, too have a "big boned" cat who dearly loves to shred her cardboard scratcher, then go ripping and tearing through the house, and then collapse neatly in a pile and look at me like nothing happened. <wide-eyed, blink, blink> "Who, me? I did nothing of the sort; how utterly preposterous and undignified..." <yawn> Never mind that she's just flopped onto "her" beanbag video game chair, which no one else is allowed to use.
I got caught web-surfing because I was laughing so hard....
Is BBF <em>Best Friend Forever</em>, or <em>Big Freaking Fur-ball</em>?<br/>
it can also mean Big frying Forehead, of Ballistic Flight Fries-receiver, or Bad floody Flies,.... and it is BFF, not BBF.
<em>and it is BFF, not BBF</em><br/><br/>We call that a typo, my friend. <br/><br/><em>Big frying Forehead, of Ballistic Flight Fries-receiver, or Bad floody Flies</em><br/><br/>Not of the correct <strong>cat</strong>agory, really.<br/>
yes it's a CATastrophy.
Its a CATaclysmic event during a time of CATastrophy, but now the CAT HAS BEEN LET OUT OF THE BAG with this intsructable that was buried in the CATacombs. Now it is the CATS PAJAMAS. it belongs in a CATologue for CATapults and CATaracts It could be in its own section. haha this was meant to be nice so if it comes off as mean, its not supposed to be
i understand. this is a friendly, competetive game about writing the most words with cat in them. i like it!
mine was a stretch in fifth grade, we did this thing in school where we came up with all of thesse words that started with cat it was hard
sham wow.....
i have a shamwow except its generic and expensive so i call it a scamwow my friend and i "accidently" got it for free no we did not steal it it is not stealing if the bank offers to give you money haha
i waz watching shun white own the free ride snow boarding comp. at winter x-games 13 and the announcers clearly watch too much late night tv 'cuz thats how they described his 96%(gold medal winning run) but i like "scamwow"
wow, i think you missed this one: "CATdeoxyribonucleic acid" or, in short: cat DNA.
yes totalyy missed that thanjks
Hmm, yeah, I think BBF is something else entirely. I did mean Best Friend Forever in this case, that little green toy mouse is the only toy she really loves. It should've been thrown out about 2 years ago.
This was hilarious... I think it is far cheaper to go and buy a cat scratcher but your lessons were great. Love the cat too!
It's only cheaper if you are counting the cost of my furniture... the cardboard came with it for free. It's certainly FASTER and EASIER to buy one.
I think I was laughing too much to pay attention to what I wrote... I'm pretty sure I meant easier! and faster!
Cool Scratcher I also use cardboard to make mine but they are a disk on pole design, held together with bolts.
Thanks for laughs! Clear, funny, and functional. Tin foil works for some cats, others love it. They do insist on being individual in their tastes... for apholstery lovers, get a piece of ugly (the uglier it is, the tougher it is) and wrap it around a 2x4. staple gun it. The faux-leather-lover wants a 2x4 wrapped with a layer of quilt batting then pleather. If the cat refers the side of the furniture, nail this to the wall. If it prefers the arm/back tops, lay it down.
great instructable, pictures were really good aswell. did you take a photo and then photoshoped it? my cat is sitting with me while i am reading this she is walking over the keyboard while trying to get my attention
LOL. I think most figure out. the the commercial items aren't a stupid idea is when the cat starts shredding the house. Your instructable fits the bill for those cat owners who are frugal, tightwads or just plain broke. In that for me cutting cardboard is about as bad as someone dragging their finger nails across a chalk board, I will buy the commercial item if I ever get an indoor cat again. Amusing how nuts they go with batting that ball in a circle.
It's a love affair, mainly ikea... and my cat-scratcher<br/>yeah f*** it!<br/>
My cat could take your cat. My cat is 1.5 times the size of yours.
uh...... ?
If your cat and my cat got in a fight mine would win. I know you think your cat is big but mine is bigger.
Could you get off the internet, please? Us adults want to use it now.
My cat isn't too afraid of the vacuum cleaner, as she tends to sit on it and ride while I clean. I'm afraid the results would be much different if I tried to vacuum her though. She loves her cardboard scratcher though.
I am literally laughing out loud reading this. You are a hilarious writer! Thanks for the laughs.

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