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Last Updated: Tuesday, 16 May 2006, 13:29 GMT 14:29 UK
Man died after scratch from cat
A man died days after he was scratched by his family's playful pet cat, an inquest has heard.

The cat grazed 61-year-old Martin Maas on the hand last December.

But days later the injury turned septic and Mr Maas, from Swindon, Wilts, died of a subcutaneous infection in the town's Great Western Hospital.

Recording a verdict of natural causes, Wiltshire Coroner David Masters said laying full blame on the cat would be unduly harsh.

He told the Swindon inquest it was impossible to prove that the scratch from the cat caused the death, but that it had been "the portal through which the infection had got in".

Speaking after the hearing, a friend of the Maas family said: "The family cat is still going strong and the family do not hold any grudges. It's just one of those things."

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