If your cat scratches the window, this post will show you why and what you can do about it.

So, why does my cat scratch the window? A likely reason why your cat scratches the wall is to sharpen and maintain its claws. This is because scratching the wall removes the cracked outer part of its claws leaving just the healthy parts.

Your cat might scratch the window for a number of different reasons and it could be due to a combination of them. However, there are some things you can consider when figuring out the main cause and there are some things you can do about it.

Why does my cat paw at the window?

Below are a number of possible reasons why your cat has been doing it and what would make each of them more likely to be the main reason.

It sees a bird, mouse or a squirrel

The reason why your cat might scratch at the window could be that it sees a mouse, bird or squirrel. This would be more likely if your cat scratches at the window urgently and is seems like it really wants to get outside quickly.

It wants to go outside

It could also be the case that your cat just wants to go outside to poop or to just walk around outside. This would be more likely if your cat seems to be looking at you to let it outside.

It wants to come inside

If your cat scratches at the window from the outside, it could be the case that your cat is doing it because it wants to come inside. If your cat does not actually come inside, when you open the window, the cause could be that it wants to have the ability to come inside. This would be more likely if your cat starts scratching at the window again, from the outside, when you close it.

To sharpen its claws

Cats’ claws are growing all the time. The old parts of the claws become dull over time and are usually worn away when the cat scratches at hard surfaces. The reason why your cat scratches the window and other hard surfaces is likely to be that it is maintaining its claws. This would be more likely if your cat does not claw at the window after a specific time such as eating or using the litter box.

Spreading its scent

Cats have sweat glands on their paws. Another possible reason why your cat scratches at the windo could be that it is marking its territory. This would be more likely if your cat paws at the window more than it scratches it and if it tends to do it more when other animals have been around.

Stretching

Another possible reason why your cat does it is that it is stretching. This would be more likely if your cat does it more with a stretching motion and it extends its paws and claws.

To get attention

It could also be the case that your cat does it because it knows that it will result in you giving it attention. This would be more likely if your cat tend to do it at a specific time such as before you have given it food.

It likes the feeling

It could also be the case that your cat does it because it simply likes the feeling. This would be more likely if your cat does it at random times and it does things such as purr when doing it. It is likely that this is a secondary reason to scratching the window in order to maintain its claws.

Things to consider about your cat scratching the window

Below are some things to consider to help figure out the main reason why your cat has been scratching the window.

If your cat has always scratched the window

If your cat has started scratching the window suddenly, it would help to consider what else happened when your cat first started doing it. For example, if it started doing it since losing access to a scratch post, it would be likely that your cat is doing it to clean its paws and because the window is the best location for your cat to do it.

If there is a certain time that your cat tends to scratch the window

It would also help to consider if there is a certain time that your cat tends to scratch the window. For example, if your cat tends to do it after eating, it is more likely to be because it has an innate urge to scratch after eating in order to hide its food. Whereas, if it seems to do it at random times, it would be more likely that your cat is doing it in order to maintain its claws.

What to do about your cat scratching the window

Below are some options you have when dealing with the behavior.

Redirect its focus

One option would be to redirect your cat’s focus towards something else when it seems likely to start scratching the window. Ways to redirect its focus could include showing it a toy or putting it near another hard surface that you don’t mind it scratching.

Trim its claws

Since your cat is probably doing it to maintain its claws, one option would be to help maintain them yourself. By doing so, your cat will not have as much need to scratch the window.

Give it a scratch post

Another thing to do would be to give your cat access to a scratch post and to take your cat there whenever it starts scratching the window. By doing so, you should be able to encourage your cat to scratch the scratch post instead of the window.

Author

I created and currently run Kitty Cat Tips, the website that you can go to when you have questions about your cat's behavior. It's my hope that you find Kitty Cat Tips to be a helpful resource. It is also my hope that it will help you to improve your relationship with your cat. You can read more about me and my website here.