In response to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), roughly 3.2 million cats find yourself in shelters every year. Whereas most are strays, 42% are relinquished due to behavioral points, comparable to scratching and ruining home items.1 Declawing turned the popular resolution. It began with unique animals within the movie business within the late Sixties earlier than getting into small animal practices.2
Nonetheless, many animal welfare organizations oppose the process. The American Veterinary Medical Affiliation (AVMA) and The Cat Fanciers’ Affiliation (CFA) are strongly towards routine declawing. They suggest it solely as a final resort if euthanasia or give up of the pet is on the road. Luckily, a number of options exist with out resorting to a process with potential hostile penalties.3
What Is Declawing?
The method of declawing is not only the removing of the claw (though that may be unhealthy sufficient), however includes the amputation of the final bone on every digit. Have a look at the top of your finger and movie having it minimize off on the first knuckle; that is what declawing is. It’s merciless, pointless, and unlawful in lots of nations, which is why many are attempting to get it banned within the US as properly.
High 10 Options to Cat Declawing
Listed here are 10 options to this barbaric process, however as at all times, speak to your vet you probably have every other questions or considerations.
1. Take away Entry to Sure Objects and Locations
In case your cat scratches a specific object, the simplest resolution is to bar entry to it. You possibly can bodily take away the merchandise, cowl it with one thing, or hold your pet from getting into that room. Whereas it’ll undoubtedly work, it doesn’t eradicate the issue. It’s solely a short lived repair. Your kitty will possible flip their fancy towards one thing else. In addition to, it’s not at all times sensible.
2. Use a Deterrent on the Furnishings
Cat house owners know that their pets will be explicit about many issues, whether or not it’s the litter you get or the meals you supply. The identical finicky nature applies to the surfaces they stroll on or use. One wonderful solution to hold your furnishings secure is to make use of double-sided sticky tape on the locations the place your cat has began scratching. Aluminum foil is an alternative choice. Your pet received’t like the sensation and can keep away from it.
This different works in case you should solely shield a small space. It’s not the only option in case you are available contact with the deterrent. Nonetheless, it’s possible you’ll discover that your cat avoids the article after only some encounters with the tape or foil, and also you received’t want to depart your furnishings lined in foil for too lengthy!
3. Use a Pheromone Spray
One of many causes that cats scratch is to mark their territory. They could spray conspicuous objects or scratch them, leaving an equally appropriate warning to interlopers. Chances are you’ll discover that utilizing a pheromone spray can eradicate this drive. The product smells comforting to felines and may curb undesirable habits like scratching. You received’t scent the spray however your cat will. It might probably additionally ease stress between different pets.
4. Trim Your Cat’s Nails
Whereas we don’t suggest declawing, trimming your pet’s nails could make scratching much less damaging with out the razor-sharp factors. You must do it not less than each 2 weeks, perhaps much more typically. The frequency will assist your cat get used to the method. Nonetheless, providing your kitty a deal with afterward will make it a win-win resolution.
5. Use Nail Caps
One other different is to make use of nail caps in your cat. They match over the ideas of your pet’s claws. The plastic caps hold the sharp finish of their nails from doing harm to your belongings. You’ll want to interchange them each 4 to six weeks. After all, this resolution assumes you deal with your cat ceaselessly since it’s important to put them on with out getting scratched within the course of.
6. Present a Appropriate Various
Maybe the most effective resolution on our round-up is to not struggle your cat’s intuition however redirect it to one thing extra applicable, comparable to a scratching put up. Researchers found that cats want upright posts versus ones on the ground. In addition they like textured surfaces like sisal or cardboard instead of soft materials.
Catnip or silver vine present potent motivators to get the cats to make use of the posts and improve the time they scratch them. You must present not less than one per cat in your family. You possibly can place it the place your pet routinely scratches, comparable to subsequent to your furnishings or their favourite spot on the carpet.
Make certain it’s sturdy, and tall sufficient in your cat to succeed in as much as. Quick scratch posts are hardly ever used.
7. Practice Your Cat
We strongly urge you to not punish your cat for scratching. It’s an instinctive habits for them. As a substitute, use constructive reinforcement to redirect their actions. Felines reply properly to reward, particularly in case you and your pet have bonded. Let your cat know you’re happy once they use the put up. In the event that they attempt to scratch one thing inappropriate, give them an appropriate different. They’ll shortly make a constructive affiliation.
Should you catch your cat within the act of scratching your furnishings, a fast “hiss” is often sufficient to get them to cease, with out truly punishing them. Yelling or spraying water will solely generate resentment.
8. Forestall Boredom
Some pets develop into damaging just because they’re bored. Felines are extra clever than it’s possible you’ll assume. They want psychological stimulation to be content material of their world. You possibly can present it by interacting along with your cat extra typically. It’ll additionally strengthen your bond. You may also give your pet interactive toys to maintain them occupied. This resolution is greatest used together with a number of of our options.
Do not forget that your cat views their atmosphere vertically, in addition to horizontally, so search for methods to make the most of excessive areas with cabinets or cat walkways to make their area extra fascinating. There are a great deal of choices, that may assist take advantage of your vertical areas, and provides your cat some nice locations to sharpen these claws.
9. Focus on Neutering or Spaying Your Cat With Your Vet
In case your cat remains to be intact, we recommend discussing neutering or spaying along with your pet. It might probably curb the drive inflicting your cat to mark their territory and unfold their scent.
10. Seek the advice of an Animal Behaviorist
If nothing has appeared to work, we recommend reaching out to an animal behaviorist. They could produce other options that will work in your case. Each cat is totally different. Environmental components play a big function in animal habits. Knowledgeable will help you discover different methods to cease the undesirable scratching with out taking drastic motion.
Why Cats Scratch & The way to Management It
Understanding why cats scratch will help you perceive the feasibility of our varied options. We talked about that it’s instinctive. Your pet isn’t ruining your stuff out of spite. They’re hardwired to have interaction on this habits. Scientists theorize that scent marking might be the first motive. Wild felines typically use the identical bushes or objects to scratch. You’ve most likely observed the identical along with your pet.
That makes placing a scratching put up someplace they already use an affordable choice. Cats additionally scratch and stretch once they get up or when a family member returns. Subsequently, you’ll be able to put one close to their favourite sleeping spots or by the entryway. In case your cat doesn’t appear within the put up, strive the olfactory incentive, i.e., catnip.
Opposite to what many cat house owners imagine, cats don’t use scratching posts (or furnishings) to put on their claws down, but it surely helps take away the lifeless, flaking outer layers, and hold them in tiptop situation, which is sharp.
Observe your cat and decide if there’s a sample to their habits. That may present invaluable clues for selecting and implementing the most effective resolution.
No one wants to buy nice furniture only to have it damaged. Sadly, cats can’t distinguish between a tree or a $1,000 recliner. Chances are you’ll not have the ability to cease the habits altogether, however you’ll be able to redirect it or decrease the results. Don’t hesitate to seek the advice of your vet if nothing appears to work. Hopefully, relinquishment is just not even on the desk.
Featured Picture Credit score: New Africa, Shutterstock