How to keep a cat off the couch or any other surface

It’s not just the sofa, is it? Sometimes you need to make sure Kitty avoids jumping on a particular surface. It could be the new baby’s bed or maybe the countertops. It’s a question many owners ask: How to keep a cat off… something! How to keep a cat off a couch

Frankly, I don’t think you should prevent your cat from jumping on the couch or bed (with a couple of exceptions which I’ll address later on).

keep cat off couchThis product can be a useful tool in your campaign to keep Kitty off and away from certain surfaces. The Amazon page calls this the Pet Repeller Furniture Pad and suggests that you use it on your couch.

The way this can help you keep a cat off any surface is simple enough.

Most cats don’t like stepping on aluminum foil. Perhaps they don’t like the way it feels under their delicate paws. Or maybe it’s that crinkly noise it makes? Who knows. The bottom line is that cats stay away. At least, most of them do.

Of course, no one wants to have an aluminum covered kitchen countertop. Or an aluminum covered couch for that matter. Let’s face it, we like sitting on that crinkly noisy material as much as cats like stepping on it.

The idea here is to use the deterrence as a temporary measure. Cats are creatures of habit. It can take a few days to weeks for them to build a habit and usually about the same amount of time to break one. Once Kitty gets the message that jumping on the baby’s bed is not fun, she will stop trying. At which point, you should be able to remove the crinkly pad.

This pad is a useful tool for keeping a cat off dangerous surfaces such as the stove. Just please keep in mind that cats need to climb and jump. Don’t cover every surface with these nasty aluminum covers. Instead, keep this only for dangerous surfaces or those that you absolutely need her to avoid. I would keep the couch and bed within limits. And add a good cat tree as well, just to provide more options.

The two exceptions for keeping a cat off the couch

I can think of only two reasons to keep a cat from climbing on a couch and they both involve specific behavioral problems.

  1. Litterbox problems – when a cat uses the couch as a litterbox, you may need to deter him or her from getting to the same spot again. This must be part of a more complete strategy for dealing with the problem, beginning first and foremost with a medical checkup. You can read here about how to solve litterboxes problems. It’s not always easy but it can be done.
  2. Inappropriate scratching – if Kitty insists on scratching your expensive couch, then using a temporary barrier can help. Again, it should be part of a more comprehensive strategy. Cats need to claw at things, so providing a suitable replacement in the right location is imperative. Read more on preventing inappropriate scratching behavior here.

Finally, for more information on how to keep a cat off surfaces, read this guide: Get Off! How to Discourage Your Cat from Jumping on Counters. You can use the deterrence pad as part of the negative reinforcement process that’s described there.

And before I forget, here’s a link to the pet deterrent again. Lots of links in today’s post, I know! That’s what happens when you touch so many important topics in a single post. All done now, promise!

Any other tips on how to keep a cat off certain surfaces? Let me know in the comments!

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