Feline scratching of furniture
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A survey on feline scratching of household items and attitudes towards declawing was distributed to 140 cat owners. Of 116 returned surveys, most cats (83.9 %) scratched inappropriate items, mainly furniture. Carpeted and fabric items and items that were angled vertically were scratched significantly more than items of another angle or material (all repeated measures model, p<0.05). Most cats (76.1 %) had at least one designated scratching item. Scratching posts were preferred over scratch pads (repeated measures model, p=0.0156). Declawing (12.9 % of all cats) reduced the amount of damage to furniture, pets or people significantly (all Wilcoxon’s signed rank test, n=10, p< 0.05). Most cats were declawed to prevent or stop scratching of furniture. A survey of 23 veterinary practices revealed that 17 out of 20 practices explained alternatives to declawing to clients, but were willing to declaw cats without any attempts by the client to try alternatives.