Making the decision to declaw your cat is one that should not be taken lightly. Your cat is a live animal and this type of surgery actually removes part of their toe in order to remove the claw. This means that they are put under anesthesia and that can be dangerous for any living thing. An invasive surgery can also lead to infection in the surgery area and in some rare cases death due to an allergic reaction to the anesthesia. There are some things you should know before you haul off your kitten to get their claws removed.
Some of the common reasons for declawing a cat are to keep them from destroying items in the home by scratching on them. Other kittens may be declawed because they are intended to be indoor cats and they do not need to have claws in order to hunt or protect themselves. Some cases when a cat is feral and who is vicious, they may have their claws removed in order to keep them from hurting someone and as a way to prevent them from having to be put completely down.
The following are some reasons why vets refuse to complete this surgery:
1. The removal of claws renders a cat defenseless. Even though the cat is intended to be a strictly indoor cat, it may get out and then be unable to protect itself from other animals.
2. Can cause damage to the musculature of the cat because it cannot stretch properly.
3. Injuries can be caused because it does not have the claws that help it to cling to items when climbing or jumping. While you may appreciate that it cannot do these things, it is in a cat’s nature and they do attempt these actions with or without claws.
4. Cats that do not have claws become more aggressive and develop a habit of biting rather than using their claws.
Anyone who researches this surgery may find that not many in other countries actually even consider this procedure. In fact, many European countries have actually made it a crime to do this and the veterinarians there are not allowed to remove claws from cats. There are certain circumstances, such as the procedure saving the animal’s life, that it can be performed, but that is really the only exception.
There are alternatives to completely removing the claws such as putting glued on claw caps on the cat. These are not very effective and can actually cause the kitty more problems. At the end of the day, a cat has claws for a reason and nature should not be messed with. If you have to have your cat declawed, then speak to your veterinarian in depth about all the risks.