Reasons Why You Should Never Declaw Your Cat

Reasons Why You Should NEVER Declaw Your Cat

Reasons Why You Should Never Declaw Your Cat

Today I am going to share with you some very good reasons why you should never declaw your cat.  A lot of people think that declawing a cat is the right thing to do without realizing the consequences of their cat being without claws.  Please bare with me for some simple facts.

Reasons Why You Should Never Declaw Your Cat

** Declawing a cat is not a simple procedure. **

It is major surgery that involves the amputation of the last bone of each toe If performed on a human being, it would be like cutting off each finger at the last knuckle.

Declawing your cat is very painful. It is a form of mutilation and it is illegal in fourteen countries. It has serious side affects, and it’s not even necessary. Yet, 31% of all cat owners in the United States have their cats declawed. If you are considering the same fate for your cat, please make sure you have all the facts.

The after effects that your cat must suffer through include considerable pain, infection and tissue necrosis (tissue death), lameness and back pain. Removing claws changes the way a cat’s foot meets the ground and can cause pain similar to wearing an uncomfortable pair of shoes. There can also be a regrowth of improperly removed claws, nerve damage, and bone spurs.

More Reasons Why You Should Never Declaw Your Cat

Declawing is not only unfair to your furry friend, but it is also cruel.  Learn how to modify your cat’s behavior instead. Likewise, you can teach your cat to use his or her claws in a non-destructive manner.

Clawing is a natural and necessary thing for a cat to do. Cats need their claws for several reasons:

  • Grooming is necessary to maintain health and cleanliness.
  • Scratching and licking prevents the fur from tangling, removes dead skin and hair, and helps to waterproof their coat.
  • Because cats require a lot of sleep, it is also necessary for them to stretch and exercise their muscles.
  • Cats also need to scratch to help shed away the dead outer husk layer of the nail to expose the healthy nail underneath.
  • Scratch marks are visual and olfactory territorial markers. The act of scratching deposits the cat’s scent from glands in their feet.
  • Most importantly, a cat uses its claws to protect itself.

Cat Declawing Surgery

As I mentioned earlier, the surgery requires the amputation of the entire last joint of the toe.  For a human, Reasons Why You Should Never Declaw Your Catdeclawing a cat is equivalent to having the tips of the fingers cut off at the first joint below the fingernail. The amputation could be performed in one of two ways:

  1. Using a guillotine-type nail trimmer which cuts the joint between the last two bones of the toe;
  2. Using a scalpel blade to dissect between the two bones.

The wounds on each toe are then filled will surgical glue and held closed for several seconds to promote bonding. Several layers of bandages are applied while the cat recovers from anesthesia. The bandages are removed before the cat goes home.  Unfortunately, several toes usually need to be cleaned and re-glued which is extremely painful to the cat who is no longer under anesthesia.

Another method used for declawing a cat is laser surgery, in which a small, intense beam of light cuts through tissue by heating and vaporizing it. However, it’s still the amputation of the last toe bone of the cat and carries with it the same long-term risks of lameness and behavioral problems as does declawing with scalpels or clippers.

 

Reasons why you should never declaw your cat

Post Surgery Recovery

Following the surgery, the cat will experience pain for several days and often exhibit elevated blood pressure, an increased pulse rate, fever, and limping as evidence that pain exists. Complications such as bleeding, swelling and infection may also occur.

The cat goes will have trouble walking for a few days, and the caregiver must use a special litter made out of recycled newspaper to avoid infection. The surgery is considered to be moderately to severely painful. One vet described:

“cats bouncing off the walls of the recovery cage because of excruciating pain. Cats that are more stoic huddle in the corner of the recovery cage, immobilized in a state of helplessness, presumably by the overwhelming pain” (Dodman).

There is also speculation that behavioral problems may arise in cats that undergo declaw surgery such as biting and personality changes. Because the cat no longer has its claws for protection, he or she may overcompensate for the loss by biting. The cat may also become withdrawn or stressed due to the loss of its claws. The stress could be caused by many things including the inability to simply jump onto an object, like a chair or couch or bed, and hold on with its claws. Even the joy of playing will be altered because the cat will no longer be able to grasp string or other toys with its claws.

Yet More Reasons Why You Should Never Declaw Your Cat

If putting your loving cat through the anguish is not enough to change your mind about declawing your cat, there are significant medical reasons why you should never declaw your cat.

  • An onychectomy is major surgery. There is a risk involved with subjecting a cat to the physical stress of anesthesia and the strain of surgery.
  • There is also a risk that substandard surgical techniques can result in shattered bones, hemorrhaging, and regrowth of the nail in a deformed manner that is hard to treat later.Reasons Why You Should Never Declaw Your Cat
  • X-rays of the bone structure of the cat’s legs before and after declawing show a marked difference that’s caused by his having to balance himself unnaturally.  Without the nails, physical stress is placed on the legs, where it wasn’t intended to be.
  • From an emotional standpoint, the added long-term stress and frustration can cause chronic cystitis (bladder infection) or skin disorders.
  • If a cat experiences any or several of these side affects, the additional veterinary costs, in addition to the initial surgery, will well exceed any monetary loss due to damage in the home.

Alternatives to Declawing your cat

There is another procedure you may hear mentioned called a flexor tenectomy. In the flexor tenectomy surgery, the tendon that enables a cat to extend its claws is severed. The cat is then prevented from extending its claws, which dramatically decreases the amount of damage the cat can inflict, as long as the owner keeps the cat’s claws trimmed.  However, similar to the declaw surgery, the tendon surgery can have serious side-affects from the incidence of bleeding, lameness, and infection.

Some owners will STILL argue that there are valid reasons to have a cat declawed.  Perhaps the person should decide against owning a cat at all.  If such a person still wants a feline companion, they should consider adopting an already declawed cat. If they already own a cat with claws, they should consider placing their cat up for adoption in exchange for one without claws. There is no good reason to declaw a cat, other than rare medical conditions involving problems with a cat’s claws that require such treatment.

What You Can Do Instead of Opting For Surgery

Is your cat scratching up your furniture?  Do some research into how to modify the cat’s behavior.  Here are a few things that you can try:

  • Keep his claws trimmed to minimize damage to household items.
  • Provide stable scratching posts and boards around your home. Offer different materials like carpet, sisal, wood, and cardboard, as well as different styles (vertical and horizontal). Use toys and catnip to entice your cat to use the posts and boards.
  • Ask your veterinarian about soft plastic caps (like Soft Paws®) that are glued to the cat’s nails. They need to be replaced about every six weeks.
  • Attach a special tape (like Sticky Paws®) to furniture to deter your cat from unwanted scratching.

Reasons Why You Should Never Declaw Your Cat

There is a lot of information on the Internet these days that can guide you with modifying your cat’s behavior.   If you have been thinking of declawing your cat, I hope that these reasons why you should never declaw your cat has made an impression on you.  Here’s to your success and to your cat’s peace of mind as well.

Thank you for reading.

Reasons Why You Should Never Declaw Your Cat

SOURCES: HumaneSociety.org & Paw-Rescue.org

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I hope you have enjoyed, “Reasons Why You Should Never Declaw Your Cat

DID YOU KNOW?   Declawing is an unnecessary surgery, which provides no medical benefit to the cat. Yet 31% of all cat owners in the U.S. have their cats declawed.  Please don’t subject your cat to this unnecessary and cruel procedure.

You might also like to read, All NATURAL Flea and Tick Spray for Dogs and Cats That Really Works

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Jeanne Melanson Personal Blog

Jeanne Melanson

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Jeanne Melanson

Owner at Animal Bliss
Born in Nova Scotia, I moved to the United States 20+ years ago.I am a dedicated lover of animals and fight for their rights and protection.I love people too, of course, and enjoy meeting folks from all walks of life.I enjoy philosophical discussion, laughing, and really odd ball stuff.I hope you enjoy my site.Leave me a comment to let me know you were here!Peace out.
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46 thoughts on “Reasons Why You Should NEVER Declaw Your Cat

  1. Awesome post Jeanne!! Aside from giving a dirty look and saying “that’s cruel” I’ve never known how to respond to people who want to do this to their cats. Now I have some facts to present and it’ll be much less my opinion than information that will hopefully deter someone from actually going through with this!
    Rebekah Nemethy recently posted…Reflections of an Artist: Fine Art Photography with a Splash of Prose (72) – A Stinky SpringMy Profile

    • Yes, just knowing that it’s like taking a person’s knuckle might be enough to stop anyone from doing this in the future. I can’t imagine the pain those poor cats must experience. Thanks for taking the time to read the article, Rebekah. All the best!

  2. Hi Jeanne,
    I am first time reading your blogs and really feel good to read your interesting blogs. After reading these blogs I realize that You also love all the animals like me. And the topic you have shared about the declawing cat is so informative. People often do that declawing of their cat for their own safety but its not a good cat’s health. After decalw they have faced so many problem in their life.
    Thanks for sharing…..Please keep posting such informative post.

    • You’re welcome, Brenda. A lot of people don’t realize what’s involved. Can you imagine? It must be so painful for them. I’m lucky. I’ve had cats all my life and I’ve never had a ruined piece of furniture. Thank you for visiting, and for your comment too.

  3. Excellent post! I can’t believe this is still allowed in the US, it should be banned. I think anyone that has this done to their cat should have it done to them.

    • Aww, it must have been awful to see those cats that had been declawed, Lauren. I can imagine it would be the worst thing ever. I wonder if that vet clinic still does this procedure? I hope not. Thanks for leaving your comment. You know I appreciate it. 🙂

    • A lot of people don’t realize how much pain their cats can experience from being declawed. This was my way of spread the word and hopefully it will save some poor cat’s pretty claws. 🙂

  4. I don’t understand why so much fuss is made about declawing cats but so little about cropping dogs ears and tails for only cosmetic reasons.

  5. I did not know the extend of this.. I used to have cats but I never de clawed them… It’s really like cutting fingers off?? I though it was just like finger nails.. I guess not.. Mine never used to scratch at the furniture too much.. surely it takes away their hunting abilities?

    William
    WILLIAM OTOOLE recently posted…5000 friends or 10 Good friendsMy Profile

    • Thank you for stopping by, William, and for leaving a comment too. Yes, so many people do not know the extent of this horrible procedure. It certainly does take away from their hunting abilities and their self-defense. It’s bad. Peace.

    • I’m glad you took to the to read my post, Merle. Perhaps the day will come when you can share this information with someone that needs to hear it. I appreciate you. Thank you for your comment. Peace.

    • Thanks, Kelli. It is my wish that somewhere along the line, a cat owner that is thinking of having this procedure done will either read this post, or someone will tell her about it. I would hope that if people were more informed about what is involved, they would think twice. Take care, Kelli. Come back soon. 😉

  6. Awww, that’s terrible!!! 🙁 I do not have a cat but I’d not want any of them to go through something so gruesome like this. You always share the most helpful things, I hope the pet owners realise that this is absolutely unnecessary. Sharing right away.
    Esha recently posted…My June Envy Box!! 🙂My Profile

    • Thank you for your support, Esha. Isn’t it awful? It’s very cruel. My intention with this post is to at least let a few people know that is involved with this procedure, and then to pass the word, hopefully saving a cat or two from this horror. Thank you so much for sharing this. All the best.

  7. I just want to say thank you for this post. As an ex-vet tech, I know just how horrible this is for cats. Thankfully, none of the vets I worked for would do this as they thought it was cruel as well. It’s entirely unnecessary and my personal opinion is if you don’t want to deal with the claws, don’t get a cat.
    Michelle Christopher recently posted…7 Ways To Drive Yourself To DistractionMy Profile

    • And I thank you for your comment. Too many people don’t realize how cruel this procedure is. A lot of grief could be avoided if more people were informed. I’m glad the vets you worked for refused to do this. Thank you for all that you’ve done to help animals as well. Peace.

    • So much pain could be avoided if people would simply educate themselves and ASK QUESTIONS before deciding to do any sort of surgical procedures for their animals. A lot of it is just ignorance on the owner’s part. Anyway, thank you for visiting my blog, and for your comment. And yes, I agree, dogs should not have to suffer from procedures to stop them from barking. Good grief, people. Come back soon, Alexandra! Peace.

  8. Hi Jeanne,

    My goodness, what a horrible thing to do to a cat. Long ago, I had taken in a cat that was de-clawed. That poor thing would get stuck in high places all the time because he managed to climb up, but couldn’t get down.
    Yes, claws are necessary for a cat and I cannot for the life of me understand why a cat owner would do this horrible experience. I had other cats in my life, and when the were “clawing” in an inappropriate manner, I would lightly pinch their paws and say no. They caught on.
    Sure glad you included those pictures in here Jeanne to teach others what exactly goes on.
    -Donna
    donna merrill recently posted…Blogging For Network MarketersMy Profile

    • Claws are definitely necessary for a cat. They’re there for a reason! As you say, cats can be trained to modify their behaviors if need be. They very intelligent animals, after all. Ah yes, the pictures … I always wonder if I should add graphic pics or not on these types of post. But, of course, I always do. Otherwise it’s often unimaginable. Thank you so much for your comment and support, Donna. I appreciate you.

  9. HI Jeanne Melanson,
    What an informative post indeed. 🙂
    Really we should never declaw our cat or kitten.Because after declaw they (cat or kitten) can face many difficulties on walking and jumping.we always love all animals as they can never discuss their problem with us.
    Thanks for sharing….
    Condos in High Park

    • That’s right, Sunny. Our animals cannot speak for themselves, so it is up to us to make sure that they stay safe and unharmed. I’m glad you took the time to read my post! Come back soon!

  10. Oh goodness. I am an animal lover and a long time supporter of the ASPCA and PETA. So, things like this make me so sad but I am so happy to see someone EDUCATING the public. It is sorely needed. I hear so many people talking about “declawing” their cats and I think wow, ok so nature’s most natural gift to these animals and because its an inconvenience to the “owner” you elect to forcibly remove them? Wow. The pictures, for me, are so graphic that they land the proverbial plane right where it needs to be. This article is a MUST SHARE FOR ME! Thank you Jeanne.
    Danielle recently posted…Threading a Life: A Woman’s lensMy Profile

    • Ah, a supporter! It’s always nice to have friends that are supportive of animals and their welfare. It always makes me see red when someone mentions declawing their cat. How would you like to have your fingernails ripped out, let alone cutting up to the first joint? Ouch. Why wouldn’t that hurt, you know? Thanks for stopping by and for sharing my post. Transforming one person’s way of looking at animals … one post at a time. 🙂 Peace

  11. Jeanne,

    You have truly educated me on why a cat should not be declawed. I do not have a cat but if and when I do, I definitely will not put them through this inhumane treatment. I now understand why cats need their claws and the proper procedures to actually declaw a cat the right way.

    That last picture of the kitten with blue eyes is enough to make anyone feel sorry for declawing a cat the wrong way. Thank you for sharing.
    Nathaniel Kidd recently posted…How to Save Money as a Wedding GuestMy Profile

    • Thanks for visiting my blog, Nathaniel. I’m glad you feel educated about why not to declaw a cat. That’s always been one of my ‘pet’ peeves. (Haha! No pun intended. Really!) Yes, that kitten with the blue eyes … I think I chose that one well. It does tend to pull at one’s heart strings. Take care! Come back soon!

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