If you can feel the scratches or nicks, the leather would benefit from repair. Otherwise, a new finish will correct it.
Finished leather creates a fine dust when sanded. Mix this dust into wet super glue, and you have an instant filler. This repair method is exceptional for cat scratches as well as small nicks or cracks on steering wheels, gear shifts, seats, and leather auto interiors. The video below demonstrates on a leather ottoman.
NOTE: This method is only suited to genuine leather. More severe damage (think scratching post), areas requiring flexibility, and synthetics should be repaired with Soft Filler. Please read this article specific to repairing cat scratches on synthetics like vinyl, bonded or faux leather.
- 0:33 – Using super glue and a toothpick to tack down little flaps
- 1:55 – Sanding with 320 grit wet-or-dry sandpaper
- 2:04 – More super glue on flaps and gouges
- 2:17 – More sanding
- 2:35 – Color, dry, and reassess
- 3:12 – More glue to fill gouges, feathering and texturizing with a paper towel
- 3:52 – Sanding with a finer 500 grit wet-or-dry sandpaper
- 4:40 – Color and dry
- 5:04 – Stippling the color to get a better finish and hide streaks
- 5:24 – Before and after comparison
CAUTION: Studies of workers in shoe factories and tanneries show sufficient evidence that leather dust causes sinonasal cancers. CC has been using this method since 1987, Lesandre since 2000, and still clean bills of health.
PLEASE DO NOT DECLAW YOUR FELINE!
This procedure is amputation of the bone up to the last knuckle, not mere removal of the nail. It’s banned in many countries and opposed by the Humane Society and the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Declawing can make a cat less likely to use the litter box or more likely to bite. But they can be easily trained with a spray bottle of water (set on shoot-to-soak) and pheromone sprays. Providing them a scratching post to engage in this natural behavior will save the furniture also. You can also safely trim their claws with pet nail clippers.