Declaw Your Cat?
Should you or should you not? Here are our top reasons why you should not declaw your cat.
Many of us believe that it’s a harmless action that can be related to a manicure. Unfortunately, when you declaw your cat this is far from the case.
Even though veterinarians or other resources online recommend that you declaw your cat, please do your research first so that you can fully understand why declawing is not an ethical thing to do for your cats.
There are many countries that have already banned declawing, including Australia, England, and Japan, however, the United States is not on this list yet.
What is Declawing?
In case you weren’t fully aware, declawing is not just a simple nail trim. The process of declawing involves 10 entirely separate and painful amputations.
It’s a full-on surgery, and cats need to go under general anesthesia in order for this to be done. The surgery includes amputating the last joint of every toe. This includes the bones and not just the nail.
Complications from Declawing
There are many potential complications that could arise from this surgery and that your cat might have to suffer through.
• Reluctance to walk
• Persistent pain
• Scar tissue formation
• Skin disorders
• Permanent nerve damage
With a little research you will find this list goes on and on when you take the action to declaw your cat.
After the surgery is complete, the nails can sometimes grow back inside the paw, which causes immense pain to cats.
However, unless you can see that your cat is in pain, there is no way to tell that this is happening.
Declawing also results in cats having weaker legs and impaired balance. Imagine what would happen if you lost your toes – you would have to relearn how to walk completely. That’s what declawed cats have to do.
Why Clawing is Important
Clawing is natural for cats to do, it’s a part of their behavior and it’s very healthy for them.
Cats scratch in order to exercise and it’s a form of enjoyment for them. It also helps to keep their nails healthy, and it assists with stretching their muscles. Claws are also a cat’s form of defense. Even if you have indoor cats, these cats still need to be able to defend themselves if a situation arises.
Many people who have gotten their cats declawed have noticed that the cats become more aggressive. This is totally understandable and makes complete sense.
If you think that declawed cats are safer for babies and children, it’s actually the opposite. The lack of claws that declawed cats has makes them feel insecure because they feel like they cannot protect or defend themselves. Therefore, declawed cats are prone to biting more often.
Compassionate Alternatives to Declawing
Instead of declawing, here are a few things that you can do instead which will benefit both your cat and yourself without causing any harm.
• Regularly trim your cat’s nails. If you are too afraid to do this yourself, get a veterinarian to trim their nails for you. When done correctly, this is painless and doesn’t cause any damage.
• Buy a few scratching posts. Aim to have at least 2-3 scratching posts throughout your home, in different rooms. Make sure that they are strong and tall enough so that your cat can fully stretch. Cats prefer rough catching posts instead of softer and fluffier ones. If you are having trouble getting your cat to use the scratching posts, you can sprinkle catnip on them.
• Consider placing cardboard “scratching boxes” around your house. These lie flat on the floor, they are pretty small, and inexpensive too. These are great because it gives your cats permission to use an “approved” scratching post whenever they want. The only downside of them is that they wear out pretty quickly and need to be replaced every few months.
If you want to learn more information, I recommend a book called 250 Things You Can Do to Make Your Cat Adore You, by Ingrid Newkirk. This book is available here: http://www.PETA.org
Once you are able to better understand your cat’s behavior, it becomes much easier to prevent any clawing damage and it can strengthen your relationship with them.
If you know anyone who is considering getting their cats declawed, please take the time to inform them of the dangers and damage that declawing causes to cats by sharing this article.
Consider making it a great vegan Christmas for someone and check out my new book on VEGANISM, HERE. Inside this book I explore the cultural reasons behind the appalling slaughter, and why it needs to stop—not just to save the animals, but to save us and our planet.