In a welcome enlightenment in the animal community, over the past couple of years, more and more people have started to realize that declawing is cruel, unnecessary and painful for cats.
We used to believe that declawing cats saved their lives. We feared that cats with claws would be turned in to the shelters. As it turns out, the numbers do not bear this out. When areas have stopped declawing, the number of surrendered cats actually dropped.
The clinic had already been discouraging declawing before they finally stopped it completely. The veterinarians believe that it is, in fact, the amputation of the end of a cat's finger. Melanie Blair, manager of the clinic, told The Dodo:
Once people understood what it was (an amputation) and learned good ways to keep their cat from tearing up things, they are very receptive.
The staff knew that the biggest reason pet owners want to declaw their cats is to prevent the destruction of their furniture, so they decided to give a list of tips. Below, you will find out how to stop your cat destroying your furniture without resorting to the cruel last resort of declawing.
1. Cover it up
If your cat is already scratching a certain piece of furniture, cover it with a sheet, plastic or foil. Your cat won't like the feeling.
2. Provide alternatives
Your cat needs another option if he can't scratch your furniture. Buy scratch posts and place them in the areas where he used to scratch the furniture. Make sure the posts are heavy so that they do not topple over as your kitty leans against it with all his weight.
3. Go horizontal
Cats also like horizontal scratching surfaces, so look out for those in pet stores or online.
4. Let them tear it up
Cats need to "tear" the material up, so make sure the posts are made of sisal or similar matter. They scratch in order to have a visual portrayal of their territory, so they need to see that they have torn up their post.
5. Use a pheromone spray
Feliway is an example of a pheromone spray that releases the same smells that cats do naturally. This synthetic copy makes think that this particular area has already been scratched, so spray it on your furniture.
6. Don't leave him alone
If you are out, lock the doors of the room with the good furniture so your kitty can't go in there until you are home.
7. Trim his nails
Instead of declawing, just trim your furry friend's nails. Be sure to go to your local veterinarian first, to see how it should be done in order not to hurt the cat.
Your kitty should stop scratching your furniture, and you will have it back in no time. Your pet will also be happy scratching his posts – so it's a win-win situation.