Should I Declaw My Cat?

One question that we hear quite frequently as vets here at Leesville Animal Hospital, is “should I declaw my cat?” There are varying opinions on this matter depending upon who you ask, but rather than give a biased answer, allow us to provide the facts on declawing cats.

The Facts On Declawing Cats

cat getting microchipped

– Cats create visual and scent identification marks in their territory using their front claws, removing these claws prevents this.

– Kneading is a comforting motion carried out by cats, this is not the same for declawed cats.

– Declawing cats can sometimes lead to complications such as lameness or abscesses.

– Some cats that have their front claws removed experience claw regrowth.

– Joint stiffness results in cats that have been declawed as a result of the tendons that control the claws becoming frozen.

– Declawing causes cats to shift their weight on to their large pads rather than their toes which contributes to the development of arthritis.

– Any non-medically necessary procedure for any animal is discouraged.

– There are a number of potential solutions to cat claws that do not involve removal of the claws themselves.

– Declawing is not just the removal of the cat’s claw, but it also involves removal of a portion of the toe making it quite a significant and painful surgery.

– Declawing cats is illegal in a number of countries including the United Kingdom and Australia.