American Association of Feline Practitioners

Veterinary professionals passionate about the care of cats

Scratching Resources

The best method to advance feline welfare is through education. Many cat caregivers are unaware that scratching is a natural behavior for cats. The AAFP has created the educational resources below to assist your team in educating cat caregivers about why cats need to scratch, ideal scratching surfaces, troubleshooting inappropriate scratching, training cats to scratch appropriately in the home, and alternatives to declawing.

Veterinary Professionals


Claw Counseling: Helping Clients Live Alongside Cats with Claws (In-depth Article)
This comprehensive article provides more detailed information to help you counsel clients on why and how to live with a clawed cat. It provides information about why clients declaw, short and long-term complications, what causes cats to scratch excessively and on unfavorable locations, and how to work through inappropriate scratching situations. DOWNLOAD

  Guiding Clients on Living with a Clawed Cat (Summary Flyer) 
Train your veterinary team how to appropriately counsel and assist your clients to live in harmony with a clawed cat. Topics include why cats scratch inanimate objects, ideal scratching surfaces, troubleshooting inappropriate scratching, and training cats to scratch appropriately in the home.  DOWNLOAD

Claw Counseling: Living in Harmony with Clawed Cats (Webinar)
This webinar will help you learn how to counsel your clients so they can live in harmony with their clawed cat. This presentation reviews the natural scratching behavior of domestic cats with guidance on how to target this behavior to desirable surfaces. It will describe the goals behind Claw Counseling, providing the necessary information for veterinary practices to implement this program immediately. VIEW WEBINAR

Client Education

  It's Natural for Cats to Scratch (Flyer)
This is a flyer you can print or hang in your clinic to educate clients about how scratching is a natural behavior for cats. This resource also provides some tips on best practices for their home. DOWNLOAD
It's Natural for Cats to Scratch (Social Media Image)
Use this image and text on your veterinary practice's social media pages to provide education on why cats need to scratch. DOWNLOAD

Links to AAFP's Client Website -

You can share links to these educational pages with your clients via your social media channels, website, and newsletter. 


Alternatives to Declawing Client Brochure 
Share this brochure with your clients to educate them on scratching resources and nail care as appropriate alternatives.

Download Electronic Viewing
Download Print Ready Booklet Color
Download Print Ready Booklet Black and White
Limited additional copies can be ordered online or via paper form.

Check out our additional client education resources!

Print Scratching Resources Page

© American Association of Feline Practitioners, 2020