We’re joining feline welfare, behaviour, grooming, training, and veterinary organisations to warn people of the possible dangers of using unnecessary scruffing techniques to restrain cats.
Inhumane methods include applying physical restraints to stop the natural behaviours of cats and may include using neck clips, pinning down, and scruffing to restrict the cats’ ability to move.
Scruffing and restraint techniques and equipment should never be used ‘as standard’. The myth is that they reduce the likelihood of injury to the operator during handling. In fact, these methods are more likely to frighten the cat, and such techniques may unnecessarily compromise the welfare of cats. In reality, gentle handling is more likely to result in greater safety for both handler and patient.
Wrapsio creator Miranda Luck said, ‘There is a perception that scruffing must be done in all instances to prevent the handler from being injured. I’ve over 30 years of experience handling and trapping cats and know that scruffing often makes things much more stressful for both the cat and handler’.
We want to challenge the idea that scruffing (in the first instance) is the standard or acceptable thing to do. Instead, we believe that scruffing should only ever be used as a last resort or in an emergency.
We’re asking others to join forces to voice their concerns about scruffing through the “Must You Scruff ?” campaign. Feline welfare organisations Cats Protection (along with many others) will share the campaign message that scruffing is often unnecessary and can be physically and emotionally harmful to the cat.
As an alternative to scruffing, we recommend using a Wrapsio, which can be used similarly to a towel gently wrapped around a cat – but surpassing a towel; Wrapsios are made of high-tech, penetration-resistant Pro-Tex fabric to protect the handler from injury.