Cat owners often wonder why their cats are constantly scratching windows. The unpleasant noise it makes wears on the nerves. Of course, some cats are more prone to this behavior than others.
Cats scratch windows when they see birds, mice, and other prey outside. They get frustrated because they can’t track their prey. A territorial cat may also have seen its own reflection and thought it was another cat. Some cats simply want to sharpen their claws on the windows, while others find the scratching sound soothing.
There are several explanations for cats scratching at windows. Fortunately, it is possible to break cats from this annoying behavior.
Regardless, a cat’s claws will not cause permanent damage to the window.
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Why Do Cats Scratch Windows and Mirrors?
Cats like to scratch windows and mirrors for the following reasons:
- They see birds and rodents and want to chase them.
- The cat has seen its own reflection and wants to fight with this other cat.
- They sharpen their claws this way.
- The cat is stressed and finds the scratching sound soothing.
- She marks a new territory with her scent in this way.
If you understand why your cat scratches the window or mirror, you can take appropriate measures against it and stop scratching.
The Cat Has Seen Birds Outside
The most common explanation for window scratching is the cat’s desire to chase birds and other wildlife outside.
Many cats sit for hours watching birds as if they were hypnotically spellbound. Your cat may even trill and chirp to imitate its prey.
However, your cat will probably soon become frustrated just watching its prey. A cat that scratches at the window is quickly annoyed with its bystander status and would rather be outside chasing birds.
However, you can play hunting games with your cat as an alternative to satisfy its hunting instinct.
This way, your cat won’t get frustrated, and no birds will have to die. Also, this way you will strengthen the bond between you and your cat.
A toy on a fishing pole is a popular and fun hunting game for cats. Just dangle the toy and allow your cat to chase it.
She will pounce on the toy, simulating the hunt she would do in the wild.
In the wild, your cat would not successfully catch its prey every time. Therefore, you should prevent your cat from winning every game. If your cat always wins, it will soon become bored and disinterested.
The Cat Fights Against Its Own Reflection
This behavior stems from the fact that your cat does not recognize its own reflection. Your cat simply sees another cat.
And this cat is a rival cat trying to invade its territory. So your cat defends its territory with its teeth and claws.
Some cats realize earlier than others that they have made a mistake. They are bored with the seemingly constant stalemate.
Your cat will eventually notice that it is backing away at the same time as the other cat.
The Cat Sharpens Its Claws On Windows
Cats naturally tend to sharpen their claws. Glass windows provide them with the opportunity to do that. Glass is one of the few materials that can withstand cat claws.
This is good in that your cat won’t do any permanent damage to the glass. Less ideal is the habit itself. It sounds like nails on a chalkboard.
This behavior can usually be remedied with scratching posts. Cats need to scratch because it is part of their natural instinct.
If you sprinkle catnip on a cat tree, the cat is more likely to scratch the cat tree than your windows.
The Cat Relieves Stress and Anxiety
When your cat doesn’t feel safe and comfortable, it will try to calm itself down.
This often includes certain destructive behaviors. Since windows do not break or cause pain, they are the ideal target for this.
The Cat is Bored
Boredom is just as likely a cause of scratching. If your cat doesn’t have enough to do, it will find unwelcome ways to amuse itself.
It does not go unnoticed by your cat that scratching at the window elicits a reaction from humans.
Make sure your cat has plenty to do. Your cat needs to be challenged mentally and physically on a regular basis to be happy and content.
The Cat Marks Its Territory With Its Scent
Cats have eccrine sweat glands in their paw pads that allow them to secrete a distinct odor.
Some cats, especially those with an unsafe past, rub their paws on windows to make a scent mark.
In this way, they can claim the window as their own. So they mark the window as part of their territory.
Why Do Cats Rub Their Paws On the Window?
Stretching and leaning against windows is a common behavior of cats. After all, many cats also like to snooze on the windowsill.
This is the best way to absorb the sun’s rays when they are not outdoors. Cats rubbing their paws on the window without trying to scratch are quite common.
Here are the explanations for this behavior:
- With the help of a window to lean against, your cat can stand up on her hind legs. She can loosen up all the joints with a stretch.
- Your cat checks to see if the window lets her out like a cat flap. She may also be mimicking a behavior she has seen you do, such as opening a window to let in fresh air.
- Perhaps your cat marks the window as her territory, because cats have scent glands in their paws, as mentioned. If you have more than one cat, one of them might mark the window as their lookout and sleeping spot.
However, these are only brief, sporadic behaviors. If your cat regularly rubs or scratches the window, you should break him of this behavior.
How to Get Cats Out of the Habit of Scratching Windows
If your cat is determined to scratch the window, you need to use training techniques to break him of the habit.
The following methods are helpful and proven to help cats break the habit of scratching windows:
- Prevent access: Place the furniture near the window so that your cat can not reach it.
- Tint your windows: Your cat will have trouble seeing birds, mice, rats, and other wildlife through the windows.
- Apply an unpleasant scent: A scent that cats don’t like, such as citrus, will keep cats away.
- Put double-sided tape on the windowsill: cats don’t like a sticky feeling under their paws.
- Try deterrent training: Make a loud noise when your cat starts scratching the windows.
- Buy cat trees: Encourage scratching in appropriate places. Provide cat trees and scratching posts for your cat where he is more likely to scratch.
- Provide ample playtime: This will keep your cat busy and content, and he won’t take out his frustrations on the windows as easily.
Train your cat away from this behavior, but take the time to find out why she is scratching at the window in the first place.
When you find out the cause, your cat will relax and improve its behavior.