Why Does My cat Scratch the Window?

Your cats’ behavior is always a source of worry.

This is why you should understand your cat’s scratching behavior. Whether your cat scratches the windows of your family home or its own door, it’s essential to try and understand the underlying cause.

So, why does my cat scratch the window? Cats scratch for various reasons.

They scratch to mark their territory by digging their claws into furniture or to relieve stress by stretching and rubbing their paws and body on surfaces.

Scratching can convey other messages too, so it’s important to pay attention to what cat scratch marks mean. Declawing your cat is not the answer.

Cats also scratch when they feel anxious or bored or when they suffer from a medical problem like a urinary tract infection or arthritis.

So, always seek veterinary advice if your cats scratching is affecting them or their behaviour otherwise.

Why Does My cat Scratch the Window?

He should Sharpen His Claws.

Cats are natural scratchers and they sharpen their claws by moving their paws over rough surfaces such as tree bark or cardboard boxes.

If you have an undisciplined cat who scratches the furniture, a scratching post for cats will help satisfy their need to scratch and deter their other destructive behaviours, such as scratching the sofa.

Excess Energy

1 in 4 cats in North America is obese so it’s important to make sure they have regular play and exercise.

If your cat doesn’t get enough exercise he may turn your sofa into his personal playground.

Cats are more adaptable than dogs, because they don’t need regular walks and can go a long time without food.

However, they need plenty of play and exercise, especially outdoors.

Resultantly, a cat that has spent the day confined indoors with no exercise. Stimulation will be more likely to pace or scratch the furnishings.

Allowing your cat to expend energy chasing and playing with toys will relieve some of his excess energy.

Stress Relief

Cats are highly sensitive creatures and even the most contented cat may become stressed for a variety of reasons, such as a new baby in the house, a move or change of environment, a new pet or a change in the cat.

Even small variations can have an impact, such as going outside to use the litter box or moving furniture around in the house can trigger stress and anxiety in your cat.

A cat lacking an outlet for his stress may turn his frustrations and anxieties to your furniture or even his litter box.

The same is true of nervous or shy cats that don’t get to play outside or with other cats and may become stressed and anxious as a result.

If your cat is bored, it will probably find ways of relieving it’s boredom by destroying something which is tantamount to relieving stress and frustration.

Keep your living environment as constant as is possible so that your cat has few stimuli to reduce stress and anxiety.

Outdoor Dangers

Allowing your cat to sit near the doors or windows will allow it to watch the outside world and this may trigger it to go outside.

Your cat, just like you, may get bored or frustrated when confined indoors and may decide that it no longer wants to be cooped up and will thus try to go out there desperately.

Birds, tiny animals, or even wild cats may send your cat into an unwarranted frenzy of excitement or terror and they may seek immediate escape by jumping through a window.

A cat will claw the window since it’s the only way it can go out there unscathed and without any fear of being eaten or chased by the wild creatures.

Fighting His Reflection

Cats and other wild animals, unlike humans, an see themselves in the mirror and may become distracted by their reflections.

Your cat may be clawing the reflection of the wild animal in the mirror rather than the actual wild animal itself.

Cats depend greatly on their sense of smell, and when a cat sees a distorted reflection of the wild animal in the glass, it may scratch it simply because this is a distorted image that the abnormal smell.

When cats view their reflections in a glass window, it may seem to them that they are about to be attacked or hunted by the wild animals inside their reflection.

Stretching His Body

Another possible explanation for scratching a window could be that your cat is simply stretching its body while it scratches the window.

Cats are just the same as they stretch their muscles by scratching to relieve stress.

Cats can scratch their nails, their paws and their body on their scratching post or window pane to stretch and relieve tension by rubbing their paws and fingers on surfaces and stretching their limbs.

Scratching relieves stress and promotes blood circulation and it also stretches their muscles and also clears up any dirt in their fur or claws.

This is more likely if it’s a warm day and your cat is anxious to get outdoors.

Leaving His Scent Mark

Cats have developed several methods to leave their scent or mark on a particular place or object to mark their territory or attract the attention of other cats in their area.

Felines communicate through vocalization, body language and urine marking on objects and surfaces.

Scent marking is the technique of spreading cat urine over a particular location and rubbing their paws in the freshly deposited urine to leave their scent mark there.

A cat successfully brands a window when it becomes anxious and wants to get outdoors and the only way it knows to do that is by scent of its urine.

If you have multiple cats, you’ll understand when they scratch a particular window or object constantly, it’s a routine to spray its urine and mark its territory especially since the window glass is not accessible for urination.

How Do I Stop My Cat From Scratching my Window?


If your cat displays a number of unusual behavior such as scratching your window, you need to get it examined by a vet.

They may be able to prescribe medicine to calm your cat and prevent it from scratching your window.

Make Use of Positive Reinforcement.

Redirect your cat’s scratching behavior by scratching your own hand gently with him rubbing his head against your hand and a small number of treats while rubbing your fingers on him will reinforce his good behavior.

If it’s scratching at the window, don’t give it your undivided attention by visual contact but tell him no and walk away from the window giving no eye contact with it.

Instead, use as little eye contact as possible by looking away and turn your back to it for a few seconds before looking at him gently again and give it a handful of treats.

Demonstrate how much attention he gets by giving him treats and petting it whenever he scratches the designated objects and not your window.

Make Use of a Spray

Manifesting a change in your cat’s behavior by training them can be a problem especially when they are scratching your windows which is a sign of stress.

Many cat owners have reported on how a spray can stop their cat from scratching the windows and spraying them has helped them to stop the problem.

Others say these products work as quickly and effectively as they claim and that they’ve been using these products for years to stop their cats from scratching the windows. So, this helps them to leave their windows.

Regardless, it may be worth giving a diffuser or spray product a try especially if it’s scratching at your windows as it could be a sign of stress.

Block Their Access

This is not a long-term solution, but it’s a good place to start and you can quickly block your cat from accessing the spots they are scratching the designated objects.

After a few days/weeks, you may move to the next solution which is training and this in turn will help to solve the scratching problem.

Give Your Cat More Scratching Posts

A cat’s claws are one of a cat’s most treasured possessions and it’s important to see them by giving them more scratching objects to try to stop the scratching problem.

If your cat is scratching your windows, it is a sign that your cat is under stress. This may mean that there aren’t enough scratching posts to give your cat and this may mean that your cat is feeling stressed.

Take them there when they begin clawing at the window.

Apply adhesive tape on the window.

Cats dislike the feeling of being restrained and it can leave them feeling frustrated and stressed. So, it’s better to let your cat scratch the designated areas than to let them scratch the furniture.

Give them a piece of adhesive tape and apply it to the designated area.

This will prevent them scratching in the area as well as prevent them from clawing your window.

Try a Catio

Catios are outdoor cat shelters. If you get a catio for your cat, then you can give them the opportunity to scratch and climb in a safe and protected outdoor environment.

This gives them the opportunity to interact with the outside world. This may help solve the scratching problem.

Designs and sizes are available in a wide array of options. You can talk to a supplier of catios about the designs available so that you can buy the one that is right for your cat.

Offer Indoor Stimulation

Enrich your cat’s playtime so that they become more interested in activities inside their home and this will distract them from scratching the window.

Get him a puzzle toy to play with for a longer time and this will give your cat something to do during the day rather than scratching the windows .

Hiding its food bowl is another way to keep your cats busy and he’ll have to look for its food in the hiding places.

You can also hide its toys here and there. You can give him a good chase around the house to play a game of tag with your cat.

Also See: How To Stop Your Maine Coon Scratching Your Furniture


Scratching is a natural behavior for cats so it’s important to understand their motivations behind scratching and respond appropriately to cat scratch marks.

Destructive scratching is a sign that your cat is not getting enough mental and physical stimulation so they need a purpose to scratch and make their mark and this can be in an indoor environment.

The easiest way to prevent this behavior from happening is by getting your cat plenty of exercise and toys to play with and to enrich their playtime as well as giving them plenty of opportunity for exercise.