De-clawing cats (yes, here we go again)

Rather than hijack the threadthat prompted this, I don’t believe your information is correct, BiblioCat.

From this site:

I called my vet clinic, and the receptionist assured me that just the claw is removed. She didn’t know anything about the knuckle being removed, and recommended I talk to the vet (who is busy with appointments) for that information. I called the Calgary Humane Society, and they informed me that there is no procedure for de-clawing cats that does not involve removing the first knuckle of a cat’s digit.

I cannot find any information that indicates that laser de-clawing is anything except onychectomy, which is the removal of the first knuckle of a cat’s digit. If anybody has a cite that laser de-clawing is removal of the claw only, not the phalanx, please share.

featherlou, you are correct; laser declawing still involves the amputation of the terminal bone and the severing of the ligaments and tendons. Please check this link for details. It shows anatomical drawings of the bones and ligaments in a cat’s paw showing exactly what is involved in a laser declawing - and remember, this is from a site advertising the service.

That’s what’s involved in declawing?
Holy crap!
I never knew. :frowning:
It’s something that would idly cross my mind as my cats happily scratched the stuffing out of furniture, but I never seriously considered it.
Now? Nope, no way, never. I’ll continue trimming, tyvm!

One of the vets I formerly worked for said if they try to remove just the claw, it will grow back, often deformed and is much more likely to cause infections.

Back before I knew better, I had one of my cats declawed. Rationale never seemed to suffer any ill effects from the procedure and had no personality change, increase in biting behaviors, etc. However, the only reason I will even consider discussing having a cat declawed is if the owner is a senior citizen who is having problems with their skin due to the cat. (I’m sure many of you are familiar with how tissue thin and delicate some elderly peoples skin gets.)

Even tho I am against the procedure in most cases, I do have to admit that the actual procedure itself has come a long way in the 21 years since I first worked in a vet’s office. The recovery time is much shorter and the cats don’t seem to be in nearly as much pain.

Two of my current eight cats are declawed, but I got them after the procedure was done - I didn’t have it done. And Yogi, my orange tabby polydactyl, still tries to sharpen his toes on any cardboard box he sees. Looks like he enjoys it, too.

I still don’t like it. (declawing)

[slight hijack]And I am proud to say that my vet no longer does any type of ear crop at all. [/hijack]

I just keep picturing people walking around with the top third of their fingers (terminal phalanx?*) missing because they’re tired of having fingernails.
Maybe not so bad for a cat? :dubious:
Still looks pretty horrible.

*Trying to remember 10th grade biology. Probably not even close :o

I have only one cat now, but of the 3 I have had de-clawed, none ever gave me any indication that it bothered them. One cat, Graham, was leaping onto furniture as soon as I got her in the house. The other two didn’t jump onto anything until the day after I brought them home.

Maybe that bump labeled ‘pad’ in the illustration is what cushions the end of the bone (which might be at an angle when the cat stands. Angled might spread the weight more comfortably than the point of the bone)? Just a wild guess on my part, because the closest I’ve come to declawing cats is one my aunt adopted already declawed. For what it’s worth, I didn’t even know until they told me. She ran around like any cat, though she was kept strictly indoors and was the only pet.

I’ll just keep trimming my kitty’s claws thenkyewverymuch.

Well, holy crap, color me wildly misinformed. :eek:
When I discussed it with my vet, he assured me it was okay, and even showed me how you pop out the claw (like when you trim it) and that he’d just laser off the claw part.
Now I want to call him and find out exactly what he has to say about it, but I’m horribly tied up this week and don’t have a minute to spare - I’m in an intense crash course and this is the last week. I have class all day and really need to study at night. I’ve had no life for the last five weeks.

They did only stay one night, and had no bandages or stitches, and were able to walk and run around just fine the day after it was done, though, so it couldn’t have been too terribly traumatic. They certainly didn’t seem to be in any pain. Both of them still “claw” at things. I feel bad that I was misled, but neither of them have suffered any lasting affects. Poor kitties. Now I need to go give them treats and ear scritches.

As de-clawing surgery goes, it sounds like laser de-clawing is the best of the bunch in terms of the physical impact on the cat, but from what I am learning, vets don’t seem to be very honest with people about what’s really involved in the de-clawing, and I’m not sure why.

None of my cats were ever declawed. If you decide to do this, be aware that you must never let the cat outside, no matter how sneaky they can be in trying to “escape”. Claws are what they use for protecting themselves against dogs and other cats.

They also use them to escape - most vets will not declaw the rear feet so, if the cat does get out, he can still climb a tree to escape.

ROFL yes they do. I’ve seen my cats try it. They use the claws like fingers, trying to slide the patio doors open. It’s barred with a piece of broomstick - otherwise they’d get out. One has almost solved The Mystery Of The Door Knob. She reaches up with both paws trying to turn the knob. Fortunately, she can’t quite get the grip she needs to do it :smiley:

You’ve convinced me, featherlou. Bruno and Lloyd keep their toe-daggers!

I’ve got one that is close to being able to turn the doorknobs. She stretches up, places a paw on each side of the knob and wiggles it. She knows that’s how it works, but she just can’t make it turn. It’s funny to be in the bathroom and hear her wiggling the knob on the other side of the door.

If we had levers rather than knobs, she’d rule the house (like she doesn’t already!).

It’s probably just me, but I took a look at those drawings and I have to say that to me they were as clear as mud.

Please Don’t do it unless you feel the cat is in serious jeopardy of hurting themslevs.

My wife and I have two siamese and neither have been declawed. They simply understand where to scratch and what not to scratch! Don’t do it…

Sorry I have no scientific data to suppor this, I am in a bitof a hurry right now. Still - if you can avoid it, please don’t do it.*

[sup]From the man who hated cats until his wife showed him the wonderful world there-in. [/sup]


That’s exactly how my cat does it, and She Who Must Be Obeyed already rules the house. :slight_smile:

Not if you trim them. They go from weapons to mild annoyances once they’re clipped

I’m not advocating the procedure but if a cat is destroying the house it may be necessary. I’ve lost 2 couches and a mattress to one of my cats. It was not for lack of trying either. I have scratching pads and rugs that cat’s would die for and the little darling still goes for the furniture (she also uses the rugs and scratching pads). She’ll do it in front if me and then wonder where the magic shoe comes from. It’s been 10 years and she still doesn’t get it. My other cat learned not to do it immediately.

I’ve seen cats that have been declawed and they seem normal in every sense. Other then the ghastly nature of the procedure it doesn’t seem to stop cats from being cats. I figure it’s way too late to declaw a 10 year old cat but I would consider doing it to a 1 year old that is intent on shredding everything.

Isn’t there some sort of claw-covering nubbin you can put on their claws? My parents are considering this for our cat since she’s tearing the carpet on the stairs to pieces.