No declaw or no adoption

livvysmomOctober 28, 2006

Here is another one to ponder... Do you think it is right for a rescue to refuse to adopt a cat to a person because that person plans on declawing the cat? Or... do you think the kitty is better off living with a family in a real home even though it would loose its claws?

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mine are inside/outside cats so no declawing them is not an option. But I do think once the pet is yours and it is destroying your furniture, you should be able to declaw it so long as you don't let it out side. You should see our sofa from our cats. Cat would definietely be better off in the family I think.

    Bookmark   October 28, 2006 at 3:11PM
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If the cat is actually causing harm to person or property and can be made into a happy indoor only cat, then OK. But I don't think I would adopt out a cat if an owner was going to automatically declaw it no matter what. Most cats can be trained to not claw furniture or scratch people. Soft-paws can be applied to many cats. I think that if the rescue wasn't going to euthanize any cats due to lack of space issues, then holding onto it until it can go to a non-declawing household is preferable.

    Bookmark   October 28, 2006 at 3:19PM
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Those who want a declawed cat should be encouraged to adopt one that already has been declawed. They end up in rescues too.

    Bookmark   October 28, 2006 at 3:44PM
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I'm really neither for or against declawing. It would not be something I would automatically do like some people but if the cat was being destructive in the home I would rather see it declawed and keep a home that to loose it.


    Bookmark   October 28, 2006 at 5:06PM
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I don't like the idea of declawing a cat but that is my own personal feeling. I think if you adopt a cat it should be your option as to whether to or not. Certainaly the cat would be better off in a home,declawed,than in a shelter! What are these people thinking?
Also,I think the idea that a cat can't survive or be an outdoor cat if it has been declawed is somewhat of a myth. I have an outside cat that was left here by one of my renters. He has been here for at least 7 years and has been an outside cat for at least 4 of those years,after he was abandoned by his owner. He has been declawed and fends very well for himself. We feed the outside cats every day but I see him almost daily with mice and birds. So,I think they adapt,and they still have their back claws which if you will notice,they use quite proficiently in destroying their prey. He climbs our large trees quite well too......Lillie

    Bookmark   October 28, 2006 at 6:20PM
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We adopted a cat from a shelter once that had all 4 paws declawed... I have no idea why someone would do all 4. Anyhow, he got outside one day and imagine my surprise when I saw him on top of my neighbor's roof! He had no problem getting back down either. It was amazing to see.

In answer to the question, I would much rather see the cats get out of the shelters and into real homes, even if it means losing their claws. Our shelter does not declaw, but if someone picks out a cat that has not yet been "fixed" - they can pay the extra money to have the cat declawed while at the vet as the shelter is having it fixed.

We get many in our shelter already declawed as someone else mentioned.

    Bookmark   October 28, 2006 at 7:21PM
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I've always been strongly opposed to declawing and wouldn't consider any other point of view until I was faced with the decisison of having to do something about a cat that suddenly became a destroyer. We'd recently spent over 100K on renovations and new furniture and my 6 yr old cat must not have liked it. She started ripping apart the new furniture and nothing I did would make her stop. After 3 months of trying to correct her behavior I asked my vet who is also opposed to declawing to do it. Her surgery was a bit more risky because of her age and the fact that she is a bit overweight but thankfully all went well and she fully recovered. Some cats develop other unwanted behaviors after declawing, she didn't. We adopted another cat from a rescue and explained what had happened and why our other cat was declawed. They had some reservations about adopting to us but did speak with our vet and we got the kitten. She's almost two and still has her claws but doesn't scratch anything besides her posts. My cats are strictly indoor pets. Depending on the circumstance I think that most cats would be better off in a home even if they were declawed but I do think that training should be attempted prior to considering a declaw procedure.

    Bookmark   October 28, 2006 at 8:30PM
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I do not think anyone should refuse to adopt a cat out because the person wants the cat declawed. I mean, come on, MOST cats like to see their claws used on the occasion. I don't think declawing should be first on a prospective adopter's minds. I think it is better to wait and see if it is even necessary first. We adopted our obese tabby, Sammy, many many years ago. She was already declawed from the previous owners. we couldn't figure out why they bothered because she lays around all day, but we soon learned why! She loves to go up to things and "pretend" to scratch the side of it. Our other cat was a stray we kept named Petunia. She is not declawed. she goes outside and rips up things out there. She does occasionally stretch her nails on the carpet, but all it takes is a "pssht" and she quits and goes on her way. No declawing needed there.

    Bookmark   October 28, 2006 at 8:44PM
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Sure they should have the right to refuse adoption to someone who wants to maim the animal...that is what it is...people shouldn't sugar coat it to make themselves feel better. The rescue group owns the animal until they decide who to give it to.

The main reason most rescues (and many vets) feel this way is because they get to see firsthand the many problems that cats face when they are declawed.

I am ashamed to think how selfish our society has become.

You know, I trim my cats nails (weekly) and provide a proper scratching post (at least 32 inches high) and don't have a single piece of damaged furniture...never have.

One thing that we forget is that, like dogs, cats also need some training as they come into the house. The first should be that nail trimming session...on a very regular basis...they get used to it and accept it.

You may already know this, but it is illegal in England to declaw...they are not the only country, either....

As you will see in the following link, we are the only country who declaws for sad...

This is an interesting read:

Here is a link that might be useful: Declawing facts

    Bookmark   October 28, 2006 at 11:14PM
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Ok now this is why this is called a debate forum. The declaw issue can get very heated.
My personal opinion is, if it is going to be done it should be done at the same time as Spay/neuter and I advocate early S/N. 12 weeks old or even younger for shelter rescue animals. Some people still think that a declaw is just removing the claws. It's not. The first joint is also removed. Think about having your finger removed at the first joint. I am not against declawing, I'm against people not doing their research and thinking it is no big deal. I was one of those people and always had my cats declawed. Looking back I may have still done it, but probably not. Now I live with four cats with all their claws. Not much difference.IMO

    Bookmark   October 29, 2006 at 12:04AM
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Here is another one to ponder... Do you think it is right for a rescue to refuse to adopt a cat to a person because that person plans on declawing the cat?

Absolutely. They get to decide who they want to adopt to -- there's no "right" to adopt.

Declawing is an inhumane practice, IMO. If someone came to a rescue organization and said, "I want to adopt a cat. I plan to beat the cat everyday," should they adopt to that person? No. Frankly, in my opinion, declawing is just as inhumane as a practice.

If you trim your cats nails regularly, provide plenty of other scratching material, and in extreme cases, put up anti-scratching material on the furniture that you don't want a cat to scratch, you should be able to stop a cat from scratching your furniture. Or you can you use softpaws. Or rehome the cat and get a dog.

    Bookmark   October 29, 2006 at 1:21PM
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I would much rather see a cat declawed in a home than in a shelter, rescue or just abandoned. Our 3 are all declawed, each of the breeders have a 'no declawing' clause in their contract and each knew that there was a 95% chance that the cats would be declawed before we ever bought them, in fact they knew it from the first time we spoke. Each of them commented that there are much worse things than declawing that can happen to a cat. Every one of the dozen cats we have had over the years have been declawed and not one of them had any issues, physical or otherwise.

In addition to the cats we have birds, the declawing is needed for their safety and wellbeing.

    Bookmark   October 29, 2006 at 2:52PM
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The rescue I volunteer for will not adopt out a cat to a family that will declaw.

I know for a fact that on the average 20 declawed cats will be turned into our local kill shelter every week. I'm there weekly taking pictures to update the website. If you want a declawed cat do check your local shelter and adopt one that is already declawed. Of those 20 cats about 5 or so will be adopted at the end of the week. The other 15 end up euthanized due to lack of space or they get sick.

Another thing that isn't talked about often is the fact that there is a connection to declawing cats and litter box issues.

    Bookmark   October 29, 2006 at 4:32PM
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I thoroughly agree datdog, I, too have volunteered in the local shelters...updating their websites with photos/cleaning/etc...

You mention: Another thing that isn't talked about often is the fact that there is a connection to declawing cats and litter box issues.

I did mention that a couple times over on the "pees outside the litter box" thread...pretty sure it is getting one wants to believe that, even though it is true.

    Bookmark   October 29, 2006 at 4:42PM
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We had to contractually obligate ourselves not to declaw to bring our cat home.

As I said in the thread about dogs and trailers, how will the shelter even know what happens a few months out from the adoption?

So far we're 3 years in, and she's just been super about letting me clip her regularly (former cats I have had would get VERY hostile but in this shelter, they had volunteers clipping them weekly so the cats were used to it).

It never occurred to me to see if any of the shelter cats were already declawed. That is a wonderful suggestion!

I have declawed cats in the past. They did just fine with it. However, I think the going argument now is that it is cruel. The literature has horror stories about how declawing is tantamount to torture.

Since I know very little about the actual process, what is the truth? I mean pet owners spay and neuter, and do other procedures like clipping ears and tails of certain breeds of dogs, but somehow declawing is inhumane, according to the latest thinking.

What are the cons to declawing (besides the aforementioned litter box issues)?

One I have often heard is - what happens if they get outside, they'll be defenseless.

    Bookmark   October 30, 2006 at 8:06AM
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Trekaren, cats can even develop behavioral issues. When you are declawing (not even sure why they still call it this...), you are taking away a major source of confidence for a cat...their primary defense mechanism. This can generally make the cat feel insecure and act more shy.

Look at your own hands, now imagine your hands without the first knuckle (the one closest to your nails)...that is what is removed. The nails of a cat are not separate from the bone...they are part of the skeletal structure. There is no way to declaw without removing part of the is impossible to say this is not a maiming.

Check out the link I provided explains it pretty well.

    Bookmark   October 30, 2006 at 10:54AM
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People who have had perfectly happy declawed cats will never be sold on the idea of behavior problems, insecurity,etc.
I personally have never known a declawed cat with any issues such as those. The ones I've known and owned have been very happy and well adjusted.
What HAS changed my mind is what the actual surgery is.
I think when ANTI-DECLAW people go on an on about behavior problems, litter box problems,they are causing people to just tune them out, because honestly they don't believe it.
Now, if I had known what the surgery was I wouldn't have done it. However at that time I probably wouldn't have had cats if I wasn't going to declaw. I had birds then.

    Bookmark   October 30, 2006 at 12:18PM
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I think when ANTI-DECLAW people go on an on about behavior problems, litter box problems,they are causing people to just tune them out,because honestly they don't believe it.

The reason they tune it out is because they want to justify it....push it back in the section of their brain that is in denial so they can be OK with it.

    Bookmark   October 30, 2006 at 1:20PM
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Sorry to disagree, but I never pushed behavior problems to the back section of my brain. They never existed in any of my cats or any other declawed cats that I knew of.
Again, what changed my mind was learning what the surgery actually was and that it wasn't a simple removal of the claws. I feel bad that my kitties had part of their toes removed because of the decisions I made many years ago.

    Bookmark   October 30, 2006 at 1:49PM
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I do not allow my adopted kittens/cats to be declawed. It's in the adoption contract. I have very few adoptions, but that's OK because I keep them.

I use to think it was better for a cat to be declawed than to end up euthanized in a shelter. Then I learned that declawing is nothing short of mutilation of a cats toes. There is no excuse to mutilate an animal in this fashion. No piece of furniture is worth that. If someone can't deal with the claws they should get a different type of pet. I always ask people who think they want to declaw, if it was a child touching your things, would you cut off their fingers?

Cats use their toes and paws to do so many things. I love watching my Sara and Snow pick up their food with their claws or how they love to scratch their sisal scratching posts. How awful it must be for an animal not to be able to do what God intended it to do.

I have 2 cats that my ex vet declawed that were pets of his. Soon the cats were urinating all over his clinic. You know why, because they attributed the pain in their paws to the litter box so they avoided it. I can't tell you how many thousands of declawed cats end up euthanized at shelters because they were biters or urinated outside the box or had other behavioral problems.

I adopted the 2 from the vet becaause I couldn't bear the thought of them having to live in a cage all the time. They now live happily in my group in my secured back yard. Poor darlings are biters and they tuck their feet underneat them when they lie down. When they are sitting they always hold one foot up because of residual pain.

Everyone should know, as the cat ages, the tendons in the foot shorten and the cat is walking around in constant pain. The cat can't tell you, but it's happening so please save the "my cat is declawed and it's just fine." No it's not, not by a long shot.

    Bookmark   October 30, 2006 at 9:38PM
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I tuned out almost immediately and I am on your side. That is so much BS. You'll get many more over to your side if you are honest. It was reading posts like yours that took me so long to be against declawing. What a load of crap.

    Bookmark   October 30, 2006 at 10:24PM
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beeanne, your post is completely uncalled for. brutuses was posting her opinion on the topic. Calling that opinion "BS" and "crap" contributes absolutely nothing to the conversation, and is not appropriate debating behavior.

    Bookmark   October 31, 2006 at 1:24AM
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You are correct rivkadr. I never should of posted to this thread at all. I knew that some fanatics would show up with their stories of mutalations,cats walking in constant pain, biting, missing the litter box. tucking their feet under them, holding their little paws up because they hurt,etc.
Next the people who declaw will be called evil, animal abusers who should never own a pet rock, much less a cat. I'm outta here unless I see some poor poster being beat up that way, then maybe I'll just have to say something in their defense. But I will try to not post even if I have to sit on my hands.

    Bookmark   October 31, 2006 at 9:24AM
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beeanne- I might suggest you spend some time doing some volunteer work at your local KILL SHELTER I promise you will see first hand some of the things that have been talked about on this thread. Most cats I've seen with litter box issues have been ones that are declawed. I've also seen several really bad declaw jobs that made cats walk funny. I'm not a fanatic as you would call it but a realist and I see it first hand every single week. This is not hear-say or second hand knowledge.

    Bookmark   October 31, 2006 at 10:10AM
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Well, I actually thought beanne's comments were kind of refreshing and honest.
Private organizations that try to place animals are free to make up their own rules and folks who don't agree can easily find their pets elsewhere. They can then decide to declaw or not. It's not illegal.

    Bookmark   October 31, 2006 at 2:48PM
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I am with beeanne, but you all probably would guess that anyway. I don't think my furniture is worth having torn apart and I totally disagree with your insistence that declawed cats have litter box issues, pain, etc. I know many pet owners who choose to declaw their pets and they have totally fine well adjusted liter box using cats.

Beeanne, to be totally honest, I have been sitting on my hands an awful lot of late. I am afraid something I will say will be jumped on. Have made some good acquaitances, but I think its time to move on. In the process of looking for a less judgmental group of people... or at least stay off the debate forum since its really not a debate its judgment.

    Bookmark   October 31, 2006 at 6:46PM
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My cat has all her claws, she has never had her nails clipped either. In other words, she's a natural inside cat who is allowed outside only in the back yard with supervision. My Echo is often laying down with her feet tucked underneath her, she also misses the litterbox and guess what? She doesn't even cover her feces when she goes in the litterbox.

I've owned 4 cats in my adult life (2 of these were from her first and only litter) and they've never been declawed. I beleive that all cats have their own quirks, and personalities and that behavioral problems have nothing to do with declawing. Some cats are comfortable laying one way, some are furniture scratchers, curtain climbers, and bed wetters (my neice's cat). My 12 yr old girl has never climbed up on counters or climbed up the drapes, however, her "daughter" used to climb way to the top of my cabinets and perch there. Different personalities are what makes the cat world go round... I have a hard time believing that it's because of a procedure done to them (most likely when they were wee kittens)that makes them behave as such.

I don't care to ever de-claw any cat of mine, I understand that it's painful to them and I could never want to be the one responsible for hurting one of my pets, but I really don't beleive that declawing is responsible for behaviours except perhaps biting, since that would be the only defence it has... but guess what? My cat is also a biter when she's annoyed, so geez maybe even that excuse needs to be nixed as well.

    Bookmark   October 31, 2006 at 6:54PM
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That really saddens me, Labmomma, I have enjoyed your insights, but like you I will probably read more than I post here as well. You are right it is judgemental instead being healthy and respectful debate.

    Bookmark   November 1, 2006 at 11:29AM
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I have three cats, who all have their claws intact. Only one of them has claws that NEED to be trimmed regularly. They actually grow so long that it becomes uncomfortable for him to walk, so I scoop him up and clip the claws from time to time. He's just as active or inactive as the other two--he just has superclaws, I guess. (What I wouldn't give to have fingernails that grow that well...)

Yes, "da boyz" DO shred the furniture a little. Yes, they do play indoors and outdoors. (A whole 'nother issue, but not so germane here) I just accept it as the price of kitty companionship.

There was a visiting kitty, a siamese, who was declawed on his front paws. He had no problem running the neighborhood, and could hold his own in huge kitty rasslin' matches with the oldest of my cats. The siamese, Leo, and my cat, Grumpy, were the best of pals and would play and chase and kick and wrestle for hours. If Grumpy gave up "too soon", Leo would bite Grumpy on the butt and they would be off again...

That said, I'd never take a cat to be declawed, but if I had an "opening", I'd adopt a declawed cat OR an un-declawed cat from a shelter. I wouldn't let someone else's decision stop me from adopting.


    Bookmark   November 2, 2006 at 3:26PM
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Just to throw in my 2 cents: I've had many cats in my lifetime, none of which were declawed. My furniture isn't shredded, and I have several pet birds.
I am of the school of thought that declawing is a mutilation, and whether or not the pain is long term, it's unnatural and should only be done as a last resort (and by that I mean it's either that or the cat's going to the shelter). I've known people that seemed to think it was just what one did when getting a cat, as in "of course, we're having it declawed", and then seem perplexed as to there being any alternative.
And by the way, my cats have always given my parrots a wide berth; there has never been any attempt to harm the birds, and for that I am grateful.

    Bookmark   November 3, 2006 at 8:12PM
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Speaking as an owner who in her earlier youth was uniformed and declawed one of her cats I WOULD NEVER DO IT AGAIN. I felt horrible afterwords, the cat was depressed, they can not play properly, etc;. It is the same as cutting off the first joint of our fingers, yes the wound heals but it's still not natural. For an animal this is even more confusing because we can't explain to them that we love them but just don't want them shredding the sofa.
Now I keep my cats claws trimmed, about once a week I take the tips off. She has a cat tree and cardboard catnip box that is sold at Trader Joes or the major pet stores.
One thing you can do to break a cat of scratching in a certain spot, they always have a favorite, is put two sided sticky tape, the real heavy duty kind. For keeping cats off of counters spread out aluminum foil. You usually only need to "re-decorate" for a week or two then the cat looses interest. Cat nip spray used where you want them to scratch is also great.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2006 at 1:56PM
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No declaw or no adoption!

Cat declawing is amputation of the end of their toes to the first joint.

It is done for the convenience of the owner.

It is illegal in most of the world:
Northern Ireland
New Zealand

Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons, Great Britain (

The RCVS describes declawing as "mutilation." Further it states "the removal of clawsto preclude damage to furnishings is not acceptable."

"Claws are an integral part of a cat's lifeÂDeclawing is a painful and permanently crippling procedure that should not be practiced."

The Cat Fancier's Association (

"The CFA perceives the declawing of cats (onychectomy) and the severing of digital tendons (tendonectomy) to be elective surgical procedures which are without benefit to the cat. Because of postoperative discomfort or pain, and potential future behavioral or physical effects, CFA disapproves of declawing or tendonectomy surgery."

The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (

"The ASPCA does not approve of the declawing of cats as a matter of supposed convenience to cat owners. It is form of mutilation and it does cause pain."

The Humane Society of the United States (

"It is the policy of The Humans Society of the United States (HSUS) to oppose declawing of cats when done solely for the convenience of the owners and without benefit to the animal."

    Bookmark   November 7, 2006 at 11:52PM
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We had declawed cats when I was a kid living with my parents. They were just fine. No litter box issues, no unhappiness, well adjusted, loving kitties. Best of all, my mom's furniture didn't end up in shreds.

It is entirely up to each body of government to set laws regarding these types of issues, but it is still legal to declaw here in the US.

I personally wouldn't do it, but I won't jump all over someone who feels the need to declaw their cats. It's a personal decision made by the pet owner. A private matter between the pet owner and his/her family and vet.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2006 at 12:36PM
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It's also a personal decision as to whether or not I kick my cat every day. Do you support my right to kick my cat every day?

It really comes down to whether or not you believe declawing is cruel. For those of us that do believe it is cruel and inhumane, it is not simply a "personal decision" -- it is animal cruelty, and should not be allowed.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2006 at 6:51PM
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It is not animal cruelty. How do you equate kicking your cat to declawing a cat? I will just chalk it up to the source of the post.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2006 at 6:59PM
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Discussing declawing is kind of like discussing abortion. Somebody always has to get nasty if what you say is not in agreement with their agenda. It's probably a mistake to get into this discussion, but I'll give it a try.

To answer the original question, sure it's ok for someone to refuse to adopt a cat to you for whatever reason.

As for declawing, I have seen some botched declaws that I would definitely call mutilation. However, declawing really and truly is a benign surgical procedure if it is performed correctly, and that is the key PERFORMED CORRECTLY. I have chosen to declaw most of my cats and none have ever had a problem as a result of the surgery because it was performed correctly.

There is a great deal of misinformation that is put out by people who are opposed to declawing. It is fine to be opposed to declawing. If you are opposed to it, don't do it.

I have a large number of cats. Mine is not the average pet household, so I can speak from a great deal of personal experience.

Surgical techniques have certainly improved over the last 25 years or so, but there are still Vets out there who don't know what they're doing. Do your homework. My own Veterinarian is now performing declaws with a laser. I have watched both procedures. The laser is quick and bloodless.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2006 at 8:24PM
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hi catladysgarden, you seem to be very informed on the declawing issue and the procedure performed by a competently trained vet. Do you feel that declawing a cat is cruelty to that particular animal.

Personally, I have three that are not declawed and never intend to do so. I just think some people feel they have no choice and I think they should be afforded the choice since it is still legal in the US to do so.

When cruelty to animals is reported to the proper authorities, there are consequences. So if we compare declawing and cruelty they seem to me to be comparing apples and oranges?

You should post a little more about the laser declawing that way those who would like to declaw could seek out a vet with continuing education and who has the skills to do the least invasive alternative. Information is power in any setting.

Thanks for posting.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2006 at 8:32PM
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Labmomma, No I don't believe that declawing is cruelty, if it is done right. My Vet has declawed close to 100 cats for me in the last 25 years and as I said, none have had a problem. I don't profess to be able to know what the animal is thinking. I can only say that none of mine seem to know that they don't have claws. They go through all of the same stretching and scratching motions that cats with claws do. They run and jump and climb the same as any other cat. I don't think they would be doing swan dives off the refrigerator if they were in pain.

I am the consumate cat lover, so if I believed for one moment that I was harming one of my cats, I wouldn't be doing it. I realize that some people truly believe it is cruel. They have probably had a bad experience with an incompetent Vet or know someone who has and they think that's what the surgery does. I suppose people could make the same arguments about docking puppy tails and cropping ears. I have seen bad declaws where the paw pads were sliced in half and other things and they were pretty awful. That has never happened to one of my cats because my Vet is an excellent surgeon.

In the last 25 years, I've had 2 bleeders and one of those was done with the laser. What I mean is that they started to bleed when I removed their bandages. Those things can happen and it's a simple matter of rewrapping the paw for another day. It certainly doesn't bother the cat. Something like that can happen with any surgery, sutures can pull loose, etc. Occasionally a neuter will bleed a little. Does that mean we should stop neutering our cats? I don't think so.

The laser is pretty slick. It seals little blood vessels and nerve endings as it cuts. It just takes the place of the scalpel. It makes a lot of smoke and has a suction device to clear the smoke from the area. My Vet doesn't mind having me in surgery with him, so I've watched a lot of neat procedures. He performed a perineal urethrostomy on one of my cats a couple of years ago. He has a set of eye instruments that he uses for that procedure. I can't imagine suturing such tiny little parts. It was really quite fascinating.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2006 at 9:08PM
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I think that a lot of unnecesary surgeries are bad, such as clipping tails, or dogs ears. There is not reason for that. Declawing on the other hand serves a purpose. I have holes all over me from a kitten. His nails were clipped. He would climb up my body from the floor. He had to be put down because of a bladder abnormality. I am planning on getting another kitten and I will see how he does. If he climbs my drapes or destroys anthing I will have him declawed. If not, no problem. Any cat that I have had declawed has done fine. I have never had a problem. They were all done very young. My cats are all house cats. Most of my cats live until their late teens, and they live happily, with love, attention, and all the care they need. That would not happen if they destroyed my home.

    Bookmark   December 19, 2006 at 7:15AM
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It is so simple to trim the cat's nails once a week or so.

Why, oh why, can't everyone just do that??

Mine consider it part of the routine...hardly put up a fuss...and they have nice short nails, that can't dig into me, afterwards.

I have even thought of smoothing them off with a file, but I doubt that would bode well with

They get to keep their claws, no mutilations necessary, and I am happy too. A win-win situation all the way around!

    Bookmark   December 19, 2006 at 8:55AM
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Funniest thing I ever saw: A friend of ours has hamsters. You have to trim their nails! I had no idea.

She just turns the little critters on their back, and there they lie, all fours up in the air, while she clips them!!! LOL

My former cats were adopted strays and just would tear me up rather than be clipped. But my current cat was trimmed weekly at the shelter before I adopted her at 7 months old, so she's pretty super about it.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2006 at 8:12AM
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Every cat I know that has litterbox problems is declawed -- but... I know very few cats (friends, family, etc...) that are not declawed. To say it is the norm here is an understatement. I still get people shaking their heads in disbelief that I did not declaw my kitty. I am proud of myself for not doing it and proud of my DH for giving me a chance to prove that it was not necessary.

My kitty gets nail trimmings every 10 days and uses his cat tree to scratch. I do catch him occasionally scratching the carpet on the stairs -- but because of his nail trimmings, there is no damage. My comforter is snagged like crazy -- but that is because I play with him with my hands under the covers.

Nail trimmings and scratching posts are no guarantee that some damage will not occur. But... I can accept this risk.

Back the original question. I think it is fair to ask an applicant if they plan to declaw -- if the answer is yes, I would encourage adopting an already declawed cat or kitten (there are plenty in my area that don't have homes).

    Bookmark   December 21, 2006 at 9:16AM
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I dont see anyone judgeing,just trying to inform.You keep saying "my cats were fine,my cats were fine" But that doesnt mean that there arent plenty of cats who ARE NOT FINE because of declawing.
It's like smoking...everyone did it in the 50's and what not,fact you werent cool if you didnt.Now look how much we all know smoking is bad for us and they are trying to ban that everywhere.They WILL sooner or later ban declawing.You'd declaw in a heartbeat but I bet you'd have a real problem with someone blowing smoke around you.The more we learn how things are bad,the more we as a society try to improve on it.No need to get bent out of shape.
And it is very easy to have a cat without it being declawed.I trim my cat's once a week and he sits there like a big baby in my arms and lets me.Once a cat knows it is not allowed to scratch in certain places,it wont with the proper training.(and a clap is usually enough)
I for one am thankful for the information regarding declawing. And where I live there are hardly any vets who will even perform a declawing~so if it is not inhumane,then how do you explain that???

    Bookmark   December 29, 2006 at 3:33AM
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I adopted a six toed cat with a no declaw clause. The poor thing got his nail caught in the carpet when he walked and would sit and cry. Because of the unusal configuration of that toe, cutting the nail made no difference. I declawed that one toe.
It is absurd to say it is inhumane and not consider the consequences if one has a serious problem with a cat that is having problems.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2007 at 11:36PM
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Hamptonmeadow,most cats DO NOT have a problem like yours did.Therefore,it is inhumane.
As I said,most vets where I live REFUSE to do it.So,that should tell you something.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2007 at 2:04AM
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Our humane society used to have such a clause but I believe they dropped it. Was more important to get cats to good homes then have them put to sleep. Surgery has come a long way. My childhood cat had bandages on his paws when he was declawed. Now they have little glue tips and not as much pain. I really don't see them making this illegal.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2007 at 8:07PM
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I had a few declawed cats when I was younger. Only one has (he's still around, as is one of the others) He holds his paw up sometimes, and limps a bit. Has since he got his claws out. But other than that, they've all been fine.

However, I now have two cats with all claws. And the kitten shreds the carpet along the stairs like theres no tomorrow, but she is learning (we are waiting to replace as planned before her, until she quits) and the other scratches the back of our recliner chairs every so often. Mostly when she's gotten in trouble for something. The only time I would ever declaw a cat again, is if I had children and the cat made a habit of clawing the kids up.

Its not so much that Im agaisnt declawing, I just dont see the point, unless they're using their claws to hurt someone over and over. Getting rid of your cat, or declawing it because it scratches furniture, to me is like getting brand new carpet, and then a puppy..and then taking the puppy back because it piddles on the new carpet. You know its going to happen, when you get into it. IF you dont want to deal with it, either dont get the new kitty, or move the furniture to somewhere where kitty cant claw it up. However, I'm also not going to say Im against it either. I will never declaw again unless I absolutely have to, but if other people feel the need to do it, then thats their right and I wont say boo about it. Its very difficult to find anyone to declaw in my city, or even my province anymore. A lot of the times vets will only do it under very special circumstances. If the cant is having problems with their claws, and usually if children are involved. None of this "Fluffy tore up my new sofa" They wont do it, or most wont anyways.

Some dogs are much more destructive than a cat clawing furniture could ever be. And we dont pull out all their teeth, or pull their claws so they cant dig. I treat my cats the same as my dogs. If its something I wouldnt/couldnt ever do to my dogs, I would never do it to my cats unless the next option would be a shelter.

    Bookmark   January 12, 2007 at 2:57PM
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Here's a link that does a good job of summarizing the debate points and facts.

FYI - someplease I read that PetSmart is starting to declaw cats.

    Bookmark   January 12, 2007 at 5:12PM
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From my own personal exprience,I was calling around places thinking of getting my kitten of a year old declawed.
I was cussed out by a vet who told me he doesnt perform this cruel practice and good luck finding someone who does.

So,I sat with the phone book,and called.Was told again and again that they didnt do it.

And when I adopted a cat from petsmart,THey GAVE A FLIER with a diagram and information about how cruel it is to do this to a cat.

Other posters have stated,how the claw is attached down to the bone,and removing it would be like removing the top of your fingers.Many cats have pain from it,and some just get severely depressed and never act the same.

My mom declawed our cat when we were kids,knowing what I know now,I would never do it.
And they have pretty much banned it from my state.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2007 at 2:41AM
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I agree with coolmama; so many people just don't understand what it really means to declaw a cat. They think of it as just "removing the fingernails" - not true!

Part of the cat's joints are amputated - and the recovery process is painful; the cat is hurt when it tries to walk on its litter, etc. And the worst part of all is that sometimes there is lingering pain for the rest of the cat's life - this can alter its personality.

There are so many options out there to keep the cat from scratching inappropriate surfaces. There are even Soft Claws...nifty "caps" that you adhere to the cat's claws.

It just takes a bit of time to teach the cat - and cats aren't stupid. Plus, it's not difficult to trim a cat's nails - heck, the vet can even do it for you!

    Bookmark   March 13, 2007 at 11:17AM
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WOW! I live here in cat hel, they are a dime a dozen. Many people get barn cats don't spay or nuter so in a couple years they have 30 inbred, sick wild cats and pay a young man $3.00 each to shoot them. We take in any cat at the feed store where I work, we get trapped cats that are so wild . We have given away 2 week old kittens with milk replacer and bottles. It is hard because sometimes you never find out what happened to the cats but in most cases the new owner buys their cat food at the feed store. I give no cat away if the person doesn't buy food and litter(they may be pit bull batit) I give no cat away if the person doesn't cuddle the first. I gave a whole litter to a family who I found out later fed them to a snake. They go out in the world to meet their kitty fate. Every cat is at heart like the cat you love and loves you. It hurts sometimes to know what a hard world these beings have to face. I am glad ther are people who have the luxary to debate declawing.
Now that I may have hijacked this thread my opinion on declawing is I don't belive in changing a animal no docking or ears. They like us came on earth to be themselves. Spaying and nutering are needed because we have such an unatural balance.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2007 at 2:24PM
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I'm new here and felt compelled to join after happening upon this thread as a result of a non-related search.
I find it unbelievable that there are so many uninformed individuals! To the person posting the original question.

.".. Or... do you think the kitty is better off living with a family in a real home even though it would loose its claws?"

It isn't a matter of one or the other. kitty is better off living in a home with a family AND with its claws.

And yes, it is totally within the shelter's rights to adopt or not adopt to whomever they choose. The shelter has legal custody of that animal and can refuse adoption to anyone it chooses

Did you even stop to think about their rationale or listen to what they had to say? Have you thought about the welfare of the animal? There are many many alternatives to declawing out there. Did you think about any of them?

Obviously, I'm very 'anti-declaw'. Being a rational person, I can see instances (some VERY extreme cases) where it may be necessary. However, why would you assume it is always necessary? Being an indoor only cat is not a good enough reason.
This is an extremely painful and brutal surgery
A little time and effort to save the cat's feet is well worth it.

I've worked with a local rescue group for 9 years now, and can verify that 1) Declawed cats are far more likely to bite
2) Declawed cats are far more likely to urinate outside the box.
3) Declawed cats are more likely to have multiple behavior issues.
Just because you had a cat that was fine after declaw only means you were lucky (at your cats expense)

Are you aware of all of the European countries that have banned this practice?

I apologize, I could go on and on, but as one that fights this battle on a daily basis, I had to put my two cents in.
Thank you.

    Bookmark   December 14, 2007 at 12:44PM
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What I see in this thread is a lot of rhetoric about how cruel declawing, a lot of horror stories about pain, behavioral problems, and a considerable amount of anthropomorphizing. What I don't see is much in the way of supporting evidence.

Silvergold posted a link to the AVMA website which stated the AVMA's position regarding declawing. Among the points it made, was this:

There is no scientific evidence that declawing leads to behavioral abnormalities when the behavior of declawed cats is compared with that of cats in control groups.

So, has this changed? Does anyone have any actual evidence that is not anecdotal to support the claims that it leads to behavior problems?

As for my own anecdotal evidence, I had 2 cats, years ago, who I had declawed. I lived on a very busy street, so they were going to be completely indoor cats. After trying to train them not to rip up the carpet and my sofas, I spoke to my vet and he did the procedure. I picked them up the next day, and when we got home, they jumped out of their carry cases and ran around the house just like nothing happened. I had to use newspaper in their box for a few days, but not once did I see either one of them evince any pain or distress of any kind.

Very happy, normal cats with whom, I may add, I was able to play-wrestle with for their whole lives without getting scarified hands and arms!

One lived 16 years, and the other 21 years, and never had any problems because of the surgery.

I now have 2 cats who are not declawed, because one is an indoor-outdoor and scarifies trees and such outside and the other has been amenable to training. I have no plans to declaw her, but if she started ripping holes in my furniture or shredding my carpet, I certainly would consider it with a clear conscience.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2008 at 11:04AM
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I agree, rachelellen...
My partner and I found two cats abandoned in a parking lot eight years ago. My partner wouldn't o.k. us keeping them unless they were declawed. The cats are healthy and happy with no after affects from their declaw. These cats were unspayed, with one being extremely shy and the other being extremely pregnant. They would most likely not have been adopted if taken to the county shelter (cop showed up shortly after we did, based on phone complaints and was going to take them to the shelter). Maybe there are some folks out there who think a euthanized cat is better off than a declawed indoors cat with a good home...but I think they're wrong.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2008 at 7:17PM
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My DH would only agree to a kitten if it were to be declawed. After we got the kitten at four months, I got several scratching trees/boxes. Whenever the kitten used them I rewarded him with a treat. If he tried the furniture or carpet I moved him to the scratching post and then rewarded him. I also trimmed the kittys nails. DH was still not convinced.

So, I contacted Dr. Nicholas Dodman at the Tufts University Veterinary School. I asked him if there were any real studies on the effects of declawing. He responded and sent me a hardcopy of a study that proved the negative effects of declawing -- he also urged me not to do it. I gave it to my DH -- he was so impressed that this professor felt strongly enough about it to respond to me.

So, our wonderful kitty is now almost 2 years old and fully clawed -- the way a cat should be.

I look forward to the day that this barbaric surgery is illegal in this country.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2008 at 9:29AM
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Here are the facts that you are looking for (see link).
There are a few of the many places one can see fact-based information. Sadly,its only six studies, but it is six more than those that support the alternative.

Also, there are many places that would take a cat, particularly a pregnant one or those in need of medical help. The shelter I volunteer for is one of them.
If you insist that the choice is declawing or death, I'd be intersted to see your source and facts that support that position.
Thank you

    Bookmark   March 11, 2008 at 4:17PM
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I agree with the beginner's thread about it no de-claw or no adoption , its far better for the cat IMO to be painlessly PTS, The practice is in IMO Heathenish, because the deff of the word a 'Heathen' is savage and uneducated, Declawing is savage because its cutting off the first end of the cats paws, has in some cases lasting negative effects, and besides this most of the people who do it are poorly educated, sometimes however its done when the pet cannot control his/her own behavior because of a sezure,

There are many ways to prevent clawing of drapes, living adornments or people, placing catnip on desired scratching places, soft paws, verbal training, rehoming or in very unhappy cases painlessly ending the cats life. - As for those cats that seem to have no visual effect from the practice the movie roots comes to mind ( very sad movie) I'm sure a lot of the 16 to 17 century slaves who got their toes or fingers hacked off because of how they angered the master or overseer waked 'somewhat' fine after words, a persons can loose his/her big toes and still be able to "walk" I've heard its harder but they can still do it.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2008 at 11:26AM
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I am not in favor of declawing a cat, how would you like having your fingernails ripped out?

But let me say I did have one inside cat declawed as a last resort. The cat would run across the room and up the walls, if you patted it wrong it would claw you with it's back feet. Nothing I did helped, in the end the cat was better for it and settled down after abit. My other choice was to give the cat away something I didn't want to do.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2008 at 4:58PM
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I regret having a cat declawed. After watching my cat suffer through his recovery, I have decided that it is cruel. I do not have cats now because I cannot live with the furniture destruction and I would not wish that same suffering on another cat.

    Bookmark   May 31, 2008 at 1:17PM
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I am so against declawing and I would hope they would refuse anyone that plans on ripping out their claws.

I want it banned, it makes me sick when owners do that.

Their furniture is more important than their cats.

I have grown up with cats all my live, sure they claw chairs, couches. We got scratching posts and they used them. We didn't freak out if they did claw anything. We loved our cats more than our furniture.

I also hear pet owners freaking out when their cat has gotten out of the house missing. They don't have a chance out there with no claws.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2008 at 9:13PM
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Declawing is mutilation. To say it's better to mutilate than allow to go to a shelter, is nuts. Would you say it's better to cut it's leg off than go to a shelter. Declawing is legalized abuse. No, I will not ever adopt to anyone who wants to butcher an animal I rescue.

There are alternatives to declaw if people really want to investigate them. Saying there is nothing else to do is a lie. Tell it to people who don't know any better. I do. I have multiple cats. They do not tear up my furniture because they were trained and provided with things cats need and love, i.e., very tall and sturdy sisal scratching posts. Multiple scratching surfaces that are just for them.

I live for the day when this form of mutilation, along with ear and tail cropping are banned in this country. How can we ask the outsiders to think we are civilized when we do cra$ like this to save a pair of drapes or make an animal look a certain way?

    Bookmark   August 6, 2008 at 1:14AM
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Here is a non-surgical solution for those who don't think that training is enough.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2008 at 12:35PM
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I think if obama gets to be our president we should overwhelm him with letters saying our feelings on this matter, if enough write to him, it WILL get banned. He seems to be the one guy out of the two that might do this.

    Bookmark   September 27, 2008 at 2:53PM
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Also one of the reasons I think de clawing isn't properly banned like dogfighting, is because it doesn't look gory, you see the pit bulls, all bloody and hurt but with a de clawed cat the abuse is more under the covers and unlike fighting dogs, a de clawed cat cannot kill someone.

    Bookmark   November 1, 2008 at 2:31PM
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I currently work in a Shelter and have worked in a veterinary practice as well. This article is very informative and gives a realistic account of declawing and its consequences. We see many declawed cats surrendered to our shelter with litter box issues. They refuse to use the box due to painful paws. The procedure is NOTHING like a surgery. While some cats can be harder to train than others I agree that this procedure should be illegal in our nation as it is in many others. It's just my personal belief based on my observations and experiences.


    Bookmark   December 15, 2008 at 1:35AM
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Sorry, forgot to post the link. It's a very good article.

    Bookmark   December 15, 2008 at 1:36AM
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They should really just not market de clawed cats with a monetary value, doing so teaches people, esspeicaly childen its not bad, they don't sell fighting pit bulls in shelters, why de clawed cats? Shelters/churches should instead put them to sleep. (the ones who are really messed up) or use them as education animals, like hawks and raptors that can't fly. Telling kids why its dumb to de claw.

Most people are Christians and I'm sure there's a bible phrase out there about not hurting or harming others.

I'm disabled and work at an Art studieo-we had a woman at our job who lives in a group home- and they made her de claw her two cats. One day she came to work with a giant band aid on her arm. I say good... the group home deserved it The cat had difficultly jumping down wasn't that healthy, overweight, slightly and on kibble. and Spirit- cats name- bit me too on the day she brought her to work, not bad enough to break the skin but it hurt.

To avoid De clawing and all the mess and controversy with telling a Group home this and that, When I move into one I'm just going to leave my cats safely with Mom and dad. One of the cats-Leopalorn is a valueable purebred Somali which is probably worth 1 grand grown,the other is tempermental with other animals and has bitten me and a couple of other people.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2008 at 1:13PM
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Please see info links at post "cats versus dogs". There are pictures of declawing. My adopted kitty has no ends of the toes b/c of it.
You can train kitty! But if you absolutelly have to do this mutilation, find a vet surgeon who will do it little better instead of snipping the nails w/chunk of the toe. It can be done surgiacally by opening the toe and removing the nail, stitching it back together, At least the kitty will have the toes. But I heard from others declawing is not recomended for older cats. They can suffer psychologicaly b/c somehow they remember they had claws and after it feels different to them.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2009 at 7:36PM
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Personally, if you want a cat, but not the claws, don't have a cat. It sounds kind of selfish and typical of today - "I want things my way." Remember, you DO NOT have to have a cat. It's not necessary to life.

I would put docking dogs' tails in the same category. What does amaze me, is that it still gets done so frequently, even in cross-breeds. Outside of North America, it's a vanishing practice, yet there are no news reports of the world ending. Lots of happy dogs though :)

    Bookmark   May 14, 2009 at 4:05PM
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Just say NO NO NO to declawing! Start at an early age playing with the kittens feet. Then start clipping their nails. Do this on a regular base. Also get the kitten use to getting a bath, cleaning out the ears & cleaning their teeth. Keep several scratching posts around, make sure that the post is tall enough so the cat can get in a good stretch. Declawing is mutilation of their feet & lots of time the cat will have problems with biting, using his pan & what would happen if he got out doors.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2009 at 2:46AM
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spedigrees z4VT

I love my well clawed furniture. It is more dear to me because it is a memorial to my departed kitties. It even contains their dna. My pets are my most cherished possessions; furniture is for our collective comfort and use.

Mutilation of animals makes me very sad. I also look upon cosmetic surgery as crazy, but adult humans are free to make their own choices, unlike our dependent animals. I wish the US would adopt the same prohibitive legislation as our more evolved neighbors in regard to removal of body parts for reasons other than medical necessity.

    Bookmark   May 30, 2009 at 4:13PM
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I have to admit, with my old dog there might have been an argument in favour of removing his dewclaws (I don't know if that procedure is as nasty as cat declawing) because he quite often got them caught and broken in his collar.

I hadn't even thought about the notion of removing dewclaws til a Poodle breeder, who was being defensive about tail docking mentioned some people opposed to tail docking didn't oppose removing dew claws. I suspect the tail docking is much more major surgery, assuming it's done by a vet not a breeder (I can't imagine how agonising it would be, without anaesthesia)

I have to admit I'm shocked how many dogs here in British Columbia are docked, even mixed breeds. In Australia and New Zealand, the practice has been banned for several years, and as far as I know, the world hasn't ended there.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2009 at 3:15PM
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Thank you to those of you who attempted to provide some stats, though the sources of the stats had an obvious bias of their own, and as far as I can tell, cite studies done a decade ago at least.

Noting the widely disparate anecdotal evidence, I am recalled to someone's earlier comments about the difference in surgical skill levels. As I said in an earlier post, I had 2 cats declawed over twenty years ago, neither of whom ever showed the least discomfort. They stayed the night at the vet office, and came home the next morning, no bandages, no blood, no evidence of discomfort of any kind. If others have had their cats come home limping, bleeding and in pain, there is obviously something wrong with the way the procedure was done.

I wonder if what is needed, rather than banning a practice that can be so useful and desirable in certain cases, is a tightening of qualification requirements for vets who choose to practice the procedure? A requirement for certification, involving specialized training and strict testing of competency may be what is in order.

I am happy to report that I have been pretty successful in training my little kitty I mentioned in my earlier post to behave around my furniture, though I occasionally catch her going at the carpet a bit still. Her claws grow at an amazing rate, and curl in such a tight curve that she gets stuck on things, so I have to keep them trimmed anyway. She had developed an interest in one of the couch arms for a while, but a few instances of getting a squirt of water in the back of her head that came from she knew not where seems to have convinced her that clawing there wasn't a pleasant experience, and the enthusiastic praise she got when she used her scratching post made there much more desirable. The boys are both indoor/outdoor (we got them as adults, already used to going out) and they pretty much use the trees.

I am glad that it looks like I won't have to declaw her, but I don't think that someone who makes that decision when faced with potentially thousands of dollars worth of damage is some kind of monstrous pet abuser either.

Comparing a competently done declawing procedure to ripping out someone's fingernails, chopping off someone's fingers or setting dogs to fight to the death is the kind of over emotional rhetoric that turns people off. There are enough reasoned points to make on both sides of the issue without resorting to the kind of tactics that simply make people stop listening.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2009 at 12:03PM
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Rachelellen makes some excellent points and I hope you read her comments with an open mind.

I grew up in a time when declawing cats was standard practice if the cat was going to live inside. We were always a multiple cat household, as were the other members of my extended family, so we had several cats among us. Although I now have a cat with all his claws and a couple older cats with front claws removed, I have to say that I never had or saw a declawed cat with behavioral problems. They used their litter boxes, they were affectionate, athletic, cuddly, playful and apparently as happy and in-charge as cats typically are. Several lived well into their teens and 2 made it to 20. I just don't believe declawed cats are prone to the problems listed and can't find any evidence to support the allegations. I do understand that the surgery is amputation and that should never be taken lightly or done just because it's convenient. However, the idea that a cat should be put down instead of declawed is so amazing to me that I had to read all the responses just to accept that's what so many of you believe. The potential for a happy home and a long life or... dead with claws. Seriously?

I work with a lot of disabled people and when I brought up this subject with them they were stunned that anyone would suggest death is preferrable to living without fingertips.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2009 at 2:55PM
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I know I'm going to catch a lot of flac for saying this but I got me cat declawed. BUT it wasn't because he was tearing up my furniture it was because he was torturing all our other cats and scratching both my daughters twice in the face and no my girls were not hurting or hitting him.

You say get rid of the cat BUT he really is a nice cat. He is a sweetheart and now that he has been declawed the household isn't in such an uproar- he is still the top cat of the house. We got him from a shelter and did not want to bring him back just because he had an attitude problem- he had been at the shelter for over a year and I feel that he would not have been adopted because of his attitude and the fact that he is a black cat, most people don't want black cats.

I want to say that I generally thought people that declawed their cats were HORRIBLE people. I thought it was a mean thing to do. But after repeated discussions with even the vet we decided that the best thing was to declaw.

I did not ask the vet how it was done. I do however know he was put out and had stitches so they didn't just rip them out like barbarians! He is mostly an indoor cat but sneaks out on our front porch to sleep in the sun on our porch sofa. He does not act or look traumatized if anything he seems calmer. I don't think that every cat should be declawed, I have 5 other cats that are not and never will be declawed. I also would not tell someone they should declaw but sometimes it is a necessary evil.

My cat received pain medication after his surgery for his pain. My cats have there own 14'x14' room to get away from my children and the dogs when they feel like it. Actually I think my cats are treated better than my dogs! So even though there are a ton of people that now hate me because of what I did, I don't feel I did anything wrong.

I think that a shelter that denies a person an animal just because the person had a cat declawed is not very smart thinking. BUT if the cat that is going to a new home has its claws and the people that are adopting it PLAN on declawing for NO REAL REASON, well I think that is different, because then most likely the person is only getting a cat for looks and not for love or want of companionship. It doesn't truly matter though most all shelters are privately owned and they have every right to refuse a person an animal for any reason they want weather it be right or not. I really think that a shelter isn't the place for cats, it took 3-5 mos for one of my cats to come out of his shell he was so traumatized by the shelter, one of my other cats it took almost a year to get over it and he had only been there for 3 mos (5 of my cats are from a shelter and the other one was on his way to a shelter and in this state you don't want to be a cat going to a shelter because chances are )

If you just read the paragraph UNDERNEATH THE BIG BOX with letters on this link and then think about declawing- I'm gonna guess that a cat is going to probably choose the declawing if it can get a GOOD home

    Bookmark   July 31, 2009 at 11:26PM
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Actually, declawed cats are about twice as likely as clawed cats to be relinquished, many for behavioral problems that stem from declawing that make them unadoptable. The shelters and rescues that prohibit declawing have the right idea because even though there are less adoptions, if the cat goes to people who will train him/her to scratch appropriate surfaces, he/she probably won't come back. Or at least it probably wouldn't be for behavioral problems. (All info comes from several sites, including "Little Big Cat" and "Paws Need Claws." Opinions are mine.)

    Bookmark   January 12, 2013 at 12:56PM
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Actually, declawed cats are about twice as likely as clawed cats to be relinquished, many for behavioral problems that stem from declawing that make them unadoptable. The shelters and rescues that prohibit declawing have the right idea because even though there are less adoptions, if the cat goes to people who will train him/her to scratch appropriate surfaces, he/she probably won't come back. Or at least it probably wouldn't be for behavioral problems. (All info comes from several sites, including "Little Big Cat" and "Paws Need Claws." Speculations are mine.)

    Bookmark   January 12, 2013 at 12:57PM
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Most people on cat forums, those who rescue and work in shelters don't recommend de-clawing. It's becoming illegal in many states because it's cruel and of no benefit to the cat.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2013 at 12:04PM
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If twice as many declawed cats lose their homes, why are there so few declawed cats in shelters and rescues?

I think the cats would prefer a home to their claws.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2013 at 10:39PM
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snookums, it is for several reasons 1) because rescues don't want to deal with the behavioral problems. They want cats that are easy to adopt out. This is not always true but is most often why I see groups pass over the declawed cats. The group I foster with takes on anything (even FIV kitties, which is another woefully misunderstood cat issue). I have a year and few months old declaw that I got at 8 months old. He was going to be euthanized by the owner due to his severe behavioral problems (biting and attacking). It wasn't the owner that contacted me but a coworker the owner had been complaining too. I felt they were being over dramatic since I routinely tame feral kittens, deal with special needs kitties, etc. and I thought nothing could be worse than that. Oh boy, was I wrong! Cat from hell was an understatement. It has taken me 5-6 months to rehabilitate him and he still has a few issues. Granted, I think he was on the far end of the spectrum, but my mother's 13 yo declaw that we got as a rescue at 10 was almost as bad but is now as sweet as can be (due to a lot of reconditioning and training, although he is quick to become Mr. Grouch if you touch his paws). 2) Many times, declaws start exhibiting these behavioral and physical issues later on in life and older cats aren't so popular regardless of their claw status. So again, rescues pass them up because they don't want to be stuck with a cat for the rest of its life. 3) Many shelters, at least in my area, won't adopt out an animal with issues whether it be health problems related to the declawing or behavioral issues (biting, not using the box, etc.). So they won't even advertise the animal. Many shelters also leave the oldest animals out of the adoption rooms. The public would be surprised at how many animals never even get a shot. 4) It is also determined by the area you live in as some posters mentioned. Some areas are doing a good job of phasing it out or it is less common. Other areas, not so much. 5) I feel many people who do declaw their cats truly love their kitties (I know I will catch heck for this). So most of the times, when their cats start presenting with these problems, they would rather euthanize than drop their loved one at a shelter or place it in a new home where anything could happen. That is what my current foster's previous owner was thinking. She really thought it the most humane option. Good thing her coworker talked her out of it.
In any case, my generally position is that I dislike declawing and find it inhumane. I try to educate people but I won't attack them and at the end of the day, it is still legal and not my battle to fight. I hope for the day it is illegal though. None of my foster's will ever go to homes where they will be declawed. It is my duty to send my babies to the best homes possible and a home that would declaw is simply not the best home for any of my guys. I have no obligation to continue saving cats either, so the whole argument of letting other cats die while I am keeping one has no affect on me (not that anyone has said this here but I have personally heard it often enough). I put a lot of work, care and money into my foster's and I only let them go to homes that are up to my standards or higher. I guess a shelter would be a different story but they don't have that much power to dictate what new owners do anyway (at least not in my area).
On a side note, I see that this thread is pretty old but I see a few stragglers and I also wanted to leave something that others could look at later and decide for themselves.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2013 at 1:32AM
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I'm surprised that shelters hide the older kitties. I don't typically look for my cats, but did get one from the pound who was on display in a store, 12 years old. Lots of older ones at the rescue here, too. I'm not aware they turn animals away for any other reason than being a full house, or probably urination problems which is serious and generally unadoptable. They have seasonal kittens but mostly it's adults. Some will never go home because they are too skittish, too old or have health problems. I'm one who likes the hard to adopts, so some do find their way home :) They usually have a slim few who are declawed. Will have to ask. I know they do not approve of declawing there, it's in the contract and they insist. When I adopted there years ago, it was in the contract then too, but she told me verbally after I had agreed, that if I had to, it was alright. Management has since changed. And I have to say, when one of the volunteers starts going off about those things, often in militant fashion, it's a real turn off.

Laser is the way to go if you have to. I hate to think of animals being put down over declawing issues.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2013 at 4:44PM
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I got the two cats from a lady who was about to send them to a farm. They were declawed and would not have survived. It worked out well and though I would not choose to declaw a cat I can see why some do. I don't need the scratching post like I did for my old cats (both died of old age 16 and 17 years old) and the furniture is in better shape. The cats are happy and so am I as I love them to bits.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2013 at 1:41AM
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