Declawing a cat is far worse than what many believe is a cat “manicure”. The last joint of the cat’s toes are removed so the nail does not grow back. It is cruel and unnecessary.
Many countries around the world have banned declawing of cats, but the U.S. has not followed suit. It is illegal in 37 countries and currently 8 U.S. cities.
A new bill was introduced by Assemblyman Bill Quirk (D-Hayward) to ban cat declawing in the state of California. While some cities already have bans, this legislation would make it a ban statewide.
The bill, AB 1230, states, “This bill would prohibit a person from performing a declawing on a cat or other animal unless the person is licensed as a veterinarian and the veterinarian is performing the declawing for a therapeutic purpose.”
“I am proud to be partnering with Paw Project on this legislation. When this bill becomes law, only licensed veterinarians performing the procedure for specific therapeutic purposes will legally be able to declaw a cat, saving them from a life time of pain and possible lameness,” said Assemblyman Quirk upon introducing AB 1230.
The most common reason people want their cat declawed is to protect their furniture and reduce the chance of being scratched. However, declawing can lead to other behavioral issues like biting.
“Declawing is one of the most painful and unnecessary surgeries in all of veterinary medicine,” said veterinarian Jennifer Conrad, founder of Paw Project, a non-profit that educated people on why declawing is inhumane. “We’ve seen what these cats go through. We are veterinarians who are standing up against the status quo because it is the right thing to do. We want veterinary medicine to be about helping animals, not helping couches.”
Aside from the behavioral issues the cruel procedure causes – it also impacts the health of the cat. Declawing can result in permanent lameness, arthritis and chronic pain.
This “unnecessary mutilation” needs to be banned worldwide. California is hopefully the first of many states to introduce new legislation to ban declawing.
Andrea Powell is an animal enthusiast that resides in West Michigan. When not writing, she is exploring the great outdoors with her dogs and horses.
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