How To #SaveTheCouch From Your Cat's Claws (WITHOUT Declawing)
Cats love to scratch for some various (and good) reasons. They scratch to stretch, play, mark their territory, maintain healthy claws, communicate, and sometimes out of boredom. Having cats in your home means that sooner or later, something will get scratched. Here are some ways you can keep your carpeting and favorite furniture safe from those scratches, and why declawing is NOT the solution!
Why The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty Opposes Declawing
Some pet owners would resort to a drastic measure to prevent their cats from scratching – declawing. The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) strongly opposes this painful procedure. It is actually a permanent solution to a temporary problem.
Declawing may seem like it will solve your problem instantly, but it comes with a great cost. For one, declawing your cat’s claws actually involves the amputation of the distal digital bone of your cat’s paws. This causes intense pain to your beloved cat, not only during the operation but also afterward. It also exposes your cat to the negative side effects of anesthesia and increases the risk of bleeding, infection, and paralysis.
Declawing has been shown to not be an effective solution to scratching. It's also surprisingly not the solution to other problems that some people thought it can solve such as behavioral issues and aggression.
The bottom line is that declawing is an irreversible surgical procedure that may lead to physical, behavioral, and emotional complications. Before you consider declawing, make sure you have explored all possible solutions and have discussed this thoroughly with your vet.
Protect Your Home
At first, if you can’t control your cat’s urge to scratch, what you can do is protect your furniture instead. Offering alternative solutions is one of the best ways to prevent ruined furniture. Put a scratching tool such as a ScratchyRamp or a scratching post near your furniture so your cat is provided a better alternative.
You might also want to try spraying a citrus solution to your couch and carpet. Cats are known to hate citric odors.
There are also couch covers on the market that you can purchase, similar to what you might use for dogs as a couch protector to prevent fur from shedding all over the furniture. Except, for cats, it will discourage the scratching (at least in the wrong places).
Trim Your Cat’s Nails
Another tip that you can use is to clip your cat’s nails on a regular basis. Just be careful not to clip beyond the pink area of your cat’s nails. That is a special area where blood vessels are found. Damage to the blood vessels may lead to bleeding. If you aren’t so sure how to clip the nails of your cat, ask your vet and learn the proper techniques!
Understanding Your Cat's Behavior is the First Step!
These are just some of the best ways that you can protect your carpet and furniture from cat scratching. You can do all these things without the need to declaw your cat.
By understanding your cat’s behavior and the reason they scratch, you’ll gain a deeper connection with your cat. Instead of suppressing the urge to scratch, you can simply allow your cat to scratch but in a proper and non-destructive way.
Apply all the lessons from this blog and you sure will have a happier cat and more beautiful furniture and carpet! Leave a comment below and share any ideas you may have about how you can #SaveTheCouch!
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