My Adopted Kitties

Wednesday, June 17, 2009


I am personally against declawing. There is one main reason people will usually declaw: it's easier on them because their furniture won't be messed up, and they don't have to worry about being scratched. As a general rule, though, these people in question have no idea what declawing actually is. Ignorance is not bliss. Of course, there are still some people who will declaw anyway, but are these really the people we want owning cats?

Your cat scratches your furniture, so you want them declawed. Get rid of the problem, right? Well, does your kid color on the walls? Cut his hands off, why don't you? That'll get rid of the problem. Okay, that may be a little extreme, but most cat owners consider their cats their children. People buy their cats treats, special beds, lots of toys, enough catnip to get half a neighborhood of cats high, just like what one would buy a child. So, if your cat is your child, why don't you consider its medical care the same? As a general rule, the medical care one performs on a child is not elective, it is for the child's benefit. Why not the same for your cat? Spaying and neutering serves a purpose, and gives a cat a better life. Declawing does no such thing. There is no good reason to declaw, aside from medical reasons, such as tumors and cancer. Cats are declawed because it's easier on the humans.

A rough comparison between humans and cats for declawing is the removal of your fingers from the last joint (the one just below your nail) out to the tip. When a cat is declawed, that is basically what is removed. Obviously, the amount is smaller, because cats "hands" are smaller. Most people who declaw do not know this. They believe a cat is sedated and the claw ONLY is removed. Now, I'm not condemning the people who have done this without knowledge. The vet should have told you this, but it's a relatively easy $100+ dollars. The word "amputation" and "disjointing" and "dismemberment" are not words you're going to throw around for an elective surgery. People tend to react adversely to those words. The claw only cannot be removed, because to remove only the claw would leave the cells that generate the claw intact, allowing the claw to grow back, usually in an unnatural fashion: to the side, top, bottom, etc. So an entire section of bone above the claw must be removed as well to prevent regrowth. It is not like removing a human fingernail.

Cats who are declawed can develop a tendency towards biting, litter box aversion, and general aggression. They don't always, but do you really want to risk a sweet kitty becoming a mean kitty over your furniture? Cats can be trained to not claw furniture, or their claws can be clipped, or there's this awesome thing called Soft Paws (c) that work as something like plastic gloves over the claws. Pretty nifty little invention actually.

Cats also be in pain while healing, as they have a tendency to walk on their "toes", sort of like if you were to walk around in a demi-pointe, on the balls of your feet. Cats walk, more or less, the same way. Now, after declawing, the very ends of their "toes" are missing. I think that would hurt to walk on. Not all cats show discomfort, or at least not discomfort as we recognize it. Cats can't talk and ask for tylenol, sadly. Sure would make life easier. Declawing procedures can also sometimes cause abcesses, and, if done incorrectly, the claws can actually grow back anyway, in a most painful fashion, and the declawing will have to be done again, as there is no other option. It can take up to 2 weeks for a cat to be close to normal after this procedure. Spaying and neutering takes only roughly 3 days.

In fact, in most of Europe, declawing is considered inhumane and is actually illegal. Turkey, parts of Japan, Brazil, Ireland, Britain, Germany, Finland, the Netherlands, Denmark, Estonia, and others all have laws against declawing except in cases where it is of benefit to the CAT, not to the HUMAN. Like medical benefit. your furniture really worth it?

After all, there are some really nice scratching posts out there, and those Soft Paws come in lots of nifty colors. And there's this thing on TV now, the Emery Cat, which I've never tried out, but it looks really awesome. In theory. As is anything on TV that hasn't been tried out. If anyone has one of those Emery Cats, I'd love to hear how they work. In theory, it sounds really awesome.


Babz said...

Absolutely right and vey well said, there are some very good points in your blog. I think the Emery cat is going to be valuable to recommend to those who are contemplating declawing to save their "precious" furniture.
You might like to sign and circulate our petition calling for a ban on declawing

kneadstoknow said...

Exellent article. Thanks for posting this information. I wrote an article about the dark side of declawing also, on

The more people learn about this inhumane procedure, perhaps one day in the near future this will be banned in the USA and Canada,joining the other humane countries around the world.