Many note a decline in destruction as pet ages
San Francisco, CA -- (SBWIRE) -- 10/08/2012 -- Nearly 15 million pet owners have dealt with bills over $1,000 to replace or repair destroyed home furniture. The destruction is not flooding or fire, but their beloved pets. The cleaning and replacement bill for lost or ‘stolen’ items also pile up when one owns a nefarious feline or dubious dog.
One in five pet owners admitted to considering simply removing the pet to remove the problem.
Sarah Endersby, Veterinary Advisor at Ceva Animal Shelter, said: ''All pet owners would agree that as much as they love their animals, the odd bit of damage is inevitable regardless of whether you own a dog, cat, rabbit or guinea pigs.
''Having said that, having to fork out $1,000 sounds a huge amount of money and many incidents probably could be avoided if you train your pets correctly and make preventative measures.
''It's incredibly sad if people are genuinely considering re-homing their animals because of the damage they cause.
''Owning a pet is a huge decision to make and if you have expensive ornaments and are overly house proud, pets may not be for you.
''Using a scratching post or a deterrent scratching spray for your cat and laying down off-cuts of carpet where pets walk could all help reduce the wear and tear on your carpets and furniture.''
A study looked at 2,000 pet owners and found 47% have cleaned up large messes, costing over $500 left by a pet at some point.
To fix or repair items cost another $300, while hiring professional cleaners for certain messes cost another $250 on average. The average for swallowed-and-lost items was near $100.
While research noted that dogs and cats do a large portion of the damage, rabbits, guinea pigs, and hamsters also caused their share of trouble (at the average of 1 in 20 owners).
Carpets were the most common casualty, with 63% of pets chewing up floors. Nearly half of owners dealt with damage to chairs, while 43% had to replace damaged sofas. Nearly 25% of pet owners had plants, lawn and garden items damaged, while 23% had books or magazines destroyed.
Research also found that two-thirds of owners say the that as the animal ages, the destruction becomes less of an issue. One in twenty owners reported dealing with a persistently destructive pet. Another 10% noted that destruction resurfaced when a significant change was noted in the animal’s life.
''Pets are unable to tell us when they are stressed or anxious and therefore resort to things like sofa scratching, chewing cables or shredding papers.
''However, if an owner is finding their pet difficult to handle, there are products available to help calm and soothe the animal such as Adaptil or Feliway sprays and diffusers which contain natural pheromones.
''For dogs, many puppies damage the home when scared or worried so behavior training and socialisation when they are very small is crucial and can prevent problems in the long-term.''
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