Caring for Your Cat Scratcher
Caring for Your Cat Scratcher's Oil Finish
Your scratcher is finished with special non-toxic oil. You can wash the wood
parts with mild soap and water. To renew the finish, use Old English furniture
polish or Watco wood oil. Mineral oil will work as well.
For the Flat Scratcher, the best way to renew the finish is with mineral oil. However, you may also leave it to age: eventually the cedar will turn a beautiful gray with some light cracking and the black walnut dowels will turn a deep reddish brown.
Caring for Your Cat Scratcher's Painted Finish
Your scratcher is finished with nontoxic acrylic latex paints. You can wash the wood parts with mild soap and water.
Replacing the Sisal Rope
Cats generally prefer a slightly tattered scratcher, but eventually they can break the rope or the scratcher will look so shaggy that you can't stand looking at it (this will usually take several years.) We sell rope replacement for our scratchers. If you opt to buy it locally, get high quality, nontoxic, oil free, ¼ in sisal rope. Most scratchers will need at least 100 feet. Wrap as tightly as you can and be sure to keep each wrap of rope tight to the previous. Refer to the directions that came with your scratcher for specifics on disassembly if you have questions. You can email us for another set if needed.
When you rewrap a scratcher, be sure to wear gloves: sisal will scratch and burn your hands and can leave slivers of fibers in your skin. Be sure to wrap the rope tightly and keep each wrap as tight to the previous as possible. When wrapping we usually do 4 - 5 turns, then slide the new wraps tightly to the previous wraps (this may take a lot of pressure. Having another person to help hold the scratcher may be helpful. You may also try standing the scratcher up and pressing the new wraps downward.
Painting or Varnishing
If you desire to paint your scratcher, you can use an acrylic paint. If you want to apply a varnish, use a polyurethane type. Before painting or varnishing, wait until the scratcher is at least 2 months old (to allow the oil finish time to dry completely.) Always test an inconspicuous area first for compatibility and adhesion.
These seldom wear out, but they can sometimes soak up spilled fluids and swell up and break. We sell replacement feet. You can also use a #9 Wine cork cut to the right length.