Cats Doing Lots of Scratching
Tampa, FL - On April 28th 2006, Hillsborough County Animal Services released statistics regarding animal scratches and bites. Officials said that about three times a day, an animal bites or scratches someone in the county. Records showed that 1,219 animals caused 1,382 bites and scratches reported during the past 12 months. 221 of these incidents involved children ages 1 to 12.
The worst offender was the domestic shorthair cat with 341 incidents. The second-worst offender were pit bull type dogs with 309 incidents. Each incident represents a "break to the skin" and is measured equally as one bite (or one scratch). So one bite that leaves 3 puncture wounds is equivalent to a pit bull attack that may leave 100 puncture wounds and require a limb amputation.
Hillsborough County Scratches and Bites (2005-2006)
- Domestic shorthair cat (341 incidents)
- Pit bull-American Staffordshire-Staffordshire terrier (309 incidents)
- Labrador, golden and flat-coated retrievers (85 incidents)
- Shepherds, German shepherds and Australian shepherds (82 incidents)
- Chow chow (77 incidents)
- Rottweiler (36 incidents)
- Raccoon (30 incidents)
- Domestic longhair cat (24 incidents)
It appears that bites and scratches are recorded separately (1,219 animals caused 1,382 bites and scratches). For instance, if a cat bites and scratches it is recorded as "1 bite" and "1 scratch." But the bulleted point statistics group them together into "incidents."
03/28/08: 2007's Top 10 Biting Breeds, Florida