The Austin Anti-Declawing Bill. The good, the bad, and the ugly.

The Austin Anti-Declawing Bill. The good, the bad, and the ugly.

September 2018

Austin, Texas soon may be the next city in America that bans declawing.

The anti-declawing bill in Austin went before the Austin Animal Advisory Commission on September 10, 2018, where it was unanimously approved. The bill will head to the Health and Human Services Committee before eventually going before the Austin City Council. Here is the link to the video from this hearing. It is in Item 4. Hearing for the Austin Anti-declawing bill


Many ethical, no-declaw veterinarians and other animal welfare leaders spoke out in support of the bill and talked about the facts and studies that show how harmful and mutilating declawing is to a cat.

People who spoke out in favor of the bill, Dr Katrina Breitreiter of South Austin Cat Hospital, Dr Nicole Martell-Moran of Feline Medical Center, Dr Roy Smith of Central Texas Cat Hospital, Dr Taia Lubitz, Monica Frenden of Austin Pets Alive, Sheila Smith of Shadow Cats, Anne Zabolio of Thundering Paws, and John Garrison, a biochemist and biologist.


There were two people who spoke out against the bill. Dr Gina Vance, President of the Capital Area Veterinary Medical Association (16.40 min. mark in video) and one of their member declawing vets, Dr Richard Reinap, Bee Cave Veterinary Clinic (13.50 min mark in video).

Dr Reinap and Dr Vance both stated the CAVMA position on this bill and said, “We oppose the current version of the proposed ordinance because it compromises the veterinary, doctor, client, patient relationship.

Dr Gina Vance went on to say, “The decision to perform any veterinary treatment or therapy should be made by the pet owner and the veterinarian on a case-by-case basis within the context of a veterinary doctor client patient relationship.”

Commissioner Ryan Clinton asked Dr Vance, “Is elective declawing for non-medical reasons a treatment or therapy?”

Dr Gina Vance replied, “It could be considered a behavioral treatment.”

Dr Gina Vance also stated, “We try everything we can to talk people out of it.”


In my opinion, after years of researching and looking into how veterinary practices in America address declawing, this is a lie.

The majority of declawing vet practices in America do NOT do everything they can to talk people out of declawing their cats, in fact, it’s the opposite. They offer declawing as a standard and common procedure and even make it cheaper if the cat owner has the declaw done with a spay or neuter.


Commissioner Ryan Clinton asked the 5 veterinarians this question, “Is an elective declawing for non-medical reasons a diagnosis, treatment, correction, change, manipulation, relief or prevention of animal disease, deformity, defect, injury, or other physical condition of the animal?”

* The Councilman also had to narrow this question down and ask Dr Gina Vance, “What is physical condition of the animal that is treated by a declaw?” Dr Gina Vance answered, “The ability or the likelihood for the animal to harm the owner potentially, maybe with the scratching or making it incompatible for that animal to stay in that owner’s home is the potential there.” (43 minute mark of the video)

Dr. Katrina Breitreiter, “No.”  South Austin Cat Hospital

Dr Taia Lubitz, “No.”

Dr. Nicole Martell-Moran, “No, it is not.”  Feline Medical Center, Houston

Dr Roy Smith, “No.”  Central Texas Cat Hospital, Round Rock




(*A spot check on how Dr Reinap’s Bee Cave Veterinary Clinic addresses declawing when a cat owner calls to make a spay/declaw appointment.  An employee said that the price of a spay/declaw is $600- $690 and you have to have a $49 exam to discuss declawing with the doctor and see if that’s what you still want to do. If that’s what you want to do after the exam you can schedule the appointment for the procedures.  There isn’t any information on Bee Cave Veterinary Clinic’s website about the facts about declawing or the easy, humane options.)


How the spokesman from the New Jersey Veterinary Medical Association lied to legislators. NJVMA Lies

How the New York State Veterinary Medical Society lied to legislators- NYSVMS Lies


A tv station did a segment about this bill in Austin and interviewed a declawing vet, Dr Ian Voelzel, who stated that laser declaw is least invasive and least painful. KXAN interview


I sent an email to this vet in the story, to his CAT FRIENDLY Practice and AAHA hospital, Westlake Animal Hospital in Austin, Westlake Animal Hospital Website and asked these important questions.

Hey Dr Voelzel,
 I was a Los Angeles Times photojournalist/journalist for 25 years and now write stories on my famous cat’s blog, citythekitty.com to educate the public about the facts about declawing and the humane alternatives.
 I’m doing a story about the declawing legislation in Austin and wanted to ask you these questions for it.
I saw the article where you were interviewed and you are against the anti-declawing bill. You said that laser surgery has “been shown to be least invasive, least painful technique to do it.”
Do you have a study that you are referring to about the less invasive and least painful.
I’ve read studies that said the long-term outcome was not significantly different among the 3 methods of declawing but how is burning off a cat’s toe bones the least invasive method?
You are a Cat Friendly and AAHA practice. Do you follow their guidelines about declawing? Do you know that the Cat Friendly practice, Exclusively Cats in Michigan, where the 2017 AAFP President works, said they don’t use a laser because it can scar the tissue really bad, it can burn the tissue and there can be delayed healing as a result of that. What do you make of that? Are they completely wrong and telling the public lies about laser declawing?
You also say that you do around 25-35 declaws each year and that declawing isn’t common.  Why couldn’t the humane alternatives have been used for those 25-35 cats?
 Do you offer declawing with spay/neuters and if so, how is that a necessity or a last resort? Does your staff educate cat owners who call for a declaw appointment about the facts about declawing, ask if they have tried the easy, humane options, or do they just book a pre-exam to see if the cat is healthy enough for the procedures? Will you do 4 paw declaws? If so, what is your justification for it?
Why wouldn’t you want this inhumane and mutilating procedure banned and just educate cat owners about the easy, humane alternatives? Canadian vets are banning it in their provinces and it’s been banned and not performed by most countries in the world. The Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons call declawing mutilation. Are they all wrong?
Do you have any educational material on your website about the facts about declawing and the humane options. If you don’t, is there a reason why?
 I look forward to hearing back from you for my story. Thanks,
Lori Shepler

The manager of Westlake Animal Hospital wrote this reply.

“Thank you for reaching out.  Unfortunately, we will be unable to participate in your story at this time.  Due to the amount of requests we receive, we are currently limited to responding to traditional news media organizations.  We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause and again, thank you for your interest.”


Since Dr Voelzel didn’t have the time to answer my questions about how he addresses declawing at his practice, we had to look into it this way.

A spot check on how Dr Ian Voelzel’s Westlake Animal Hospital addresses declawing with a cat owner when they called and asked for declawing prices.

Westlake Animal Hospital- Austin Texas

Researcher asked for the price for a spay/declaw and employee said it is $831- $882.

Researcher asked for the price of a 4 paw declaw and the employee said that they do offer 4 paw declaws but you have to have a vet tech write up a treatment plan to get a price for it. They said that you need an exam and pre-op blood work and they can definitely go ahead and schedule the spay/declaw if the cat is healthy enough for the procedures. Researcher asked for the best vet for the declaw procedure and the employee said that all the doctors do them and it’s a routine procedure.

Another employee said that they don’t have an age limit for declaws.

A researcher called for a neuter/declaw for a 10 week old kitten and the employee said that a neuter is $424-$442 2 paw declaw is $700-800. When the researcher asked for the best vet to perform the declaw, the employee said that all the vets are good at it.

The employee said that if the kitten had any residual teeth at the surgery time they would have to be removed & there would be extra charges. Researcher asked if there would be any long term effects from the declaw and the employee said no, not that she’s aware of and stated that they use a laser.

When asked about declawing a 2 year old cat and if there is an age limit the employee said that they didn’t think there was a age limit but that’s something the doctor would have to decide in a consult appointment.


Below are the results of a July 2018, random study of how some Cat Friendly Practices in Texas address declawing. 

CAT FRIENDLY Practices in Texas

1) VCA Park Cities Animal Hospital in Dallas

Employee was asked if they can do a declaw with a spay and said, “ We certainly are able to do the declaw.”

Declaw/spay is around $1000. They also give an antibiotic injection and send you home with Purina’s Yesterday’s News litter.

They said that they have 3 vets who do declaws relatively frequently and they use a scalpel.

They said that you can bring the cat in for an exam on the morning of the procedure. They said in 10-14 days the kitty is back to normal.

2) VCA Castle Hill Companion Animal Hospital

Employee said that they do declaws but their laser isn’t working so they currently aren’t performing them and aren’t sure if and when it will be fixed. Employee said, “If you do get it done, make sure it’s with a laser.”

 

3) Kelly Hill Country Animal Hospital

They said that they do declaws and there’s a little discount if you do it at the same time as a spay/neuter. A spay/ laser declaw is $681.

They said that their vet does them pretty regularly. They said that the laser is less painful, less swelling, and speeds up the healing process.

4) Kyle Animal Hospital

They said that you have to make an appointment for an exam and to see if the cat is a candidate for the declaw. They said that not all cats can be declawed. A declaw is $120-160.

5) Kitten to Cat Hospital in South Lake

They said that they do a laser declaw and their vet does a fair amount of declaws. A spay/declaw is $805. They said that they only do declaw with spay/neuters and usually in 14-21 days the cat will be healed.

6) Riverchase Animal Hospital

The spay/declaw is $518. They said that both doctors are experienced at declaws, they use a scalpel, and they do them regularly.

7) Highland Park Animal Hospital

The employee said that a spay/declaw is $650-750. All of their vets do declaws but that Dr Dixon and Dr Vargo do the most declaws and are their cat specialists. They said that they surgically remove the nail where it meets the finger. They said that in 10-14 days the kitty will be back to normal.

 8) Lexington Blvd Animal Hospital

When researcher asked for the price of a spay/declaw, the employee asked, “Just the front two?” A spay/4 paw declaw is $724 and the cat will stay for 3 nights. They said their vet who does the declaws, Dr Stanley, is a feline specialist and she uses a scalpel for the declaws.

9) Northern Oaks Bird and Animal Hospital- AAHA

Employee said that a spay/declaw is $550. They said that either of their vets are good at the declaws. They said that the cat won’t have their claws there to do the damage and the cat usually doesn’t know anything has happened after the declaw. They use the guillotine clippers for the declaws and a laser for healing after the declaw.

 10) Advanced Pet Care of Clearlake

The employee said that their spay/declaw is $700-$750, their vet, Dr Rush uses a laser and does them regularly. They said that they use a laser and it cauterizes when it cuts and it helps with inflammation and they feel better. They said that there’s a vet tech surgery assistant helping and they have a good team. They give a pain injection which lasts 3 days and an antibiotic that lasts 2 weeks.

11) Bent Tree Animal Hospital

The employee said that a spay/declaw is $404.40, their vet, Dr Kimball uses a scalpel and does declaws regularly.

12) The Cats Meow Veterinary

Employee says that their vets do laser declaws regularly. A spay/declaw is $585, the cat won’t have to have bandages, the laser takes off the claws so that there’s no bleeding, and they use 3 different modes of pain meds.

 13) Perky Paws Pet Hospital

The employee said that a spay/declaw is $305 and their vet, Dr Farmer, uses a scalpel. They said that she’s a Cat Friendly doctor and has extra skills when it comes to cats.

They said a declaw is the same as chopping off a finger and the cat will have to stay overnight. They recommend getting the pain medication for $48 but it is optional.

 14) Zippivet in Austin

They don’t declaw cats. The employee said that it’s not a good practice to declaw cats and that it’s horrible because it’s cutting off the ends of their little toes. They said to look it up and read about it. They said it can cause arthritis and pain for the rest of their life. Also, the cat has to go through pain for weeks from the procedure. Employee said that they don’t know of any vet in Texas that will do it. They talked about the alternatives like getting scratching poles and a product called Feliscratch which directs the cat to scratch on the appropriate things.

 

15) Feline Medical Center in Houston

They don’t declaw cats. The employee said that they stopped because it causes the cats a lot of long term issues like arthritis and behavioral issues. They talked about the alternatives like nail trims, soft paws, and giving the cats the appropriate scratching options. They said that they can help with tips and training if needed.

16) Metro Paws Animal Hospital in Dallas

They don’t declaw cats. The employee said that they advise against it and their vets aren’t comfortable doing them. They talked about the alternatives like getting proper scratching posts.

 

17) VCA Oso Creek Animal Hospital in Corpus Christie

The employee said that they no longer do them unless there’s a medical reason for the cat. Another employee said that they don’t declaw cats because it’s a company policy. They said that it’s a controversy because some people declaw their cats because they are scratching furniture or because they are aggressive.

Bless His Heart, Let’s Try To Educate Him

Bless His Heart, Let’s Try To Educate Him

Cats Only Veterinary Clinic Declaw Diagram link Declaw Diagram

This is one of the many archaic, old-school declawing vets who needs to be educated about the facts about declawing. He must love cats since he has a cats only vet practice and even says, “We love them like you do” on his website.

Dr Carlin surely doesn’t realize that he is unwillingly mutilating and harming hundreds of cats by barbarically chopping off part of their toe bone, and he needs our help. He is using declawing information from 1974.

This study PROVES how mutilating declawing is, ESPECIALLY the method that Dr Carlin is using. Declawing study


I respectfully reached out to his practice to ask Dr Carlin some questions about the declawing info on his website and other questions. (Email is at the end of this story)

I spoke to the vet tech and also the manager at this practice and asked her about his technique and informed her that he was cutting off the bone and that it is mutilating and harmful to cats. She said that she went to school and and Dr Carlin doesn’t do it that way. She said, “He extends the claw out and takes the nail at the base.”  The manager said that they do quite a few declaws each week and they have never seen any issues and the cats recover very well.

The manager of his practice also wrote me back and said, “Good Afternoon,

We share your concern when the procedure is done improperly. Dr. Carlin has been a veterinarian since 1982 and feels very comfortable doing this procedure correctly. An excellent reference is Dr. Joseph Bojrab, “Current Techniques in Small Animal Surgery,” page 274.

Blessings,

Cats Only Veterinary Clinic
1304 N. Maple, Searcy AR “

Dr Stan Carlin has some GREAT INFO about the HUMANE options to declawing but then goes on to say some very archaic and old-school things about this mutilating procedure. Link to this declawing info on his website Cats Only Veterinary Clinic


 Screenshot from Cats Only Veterinary Clinic’s facebook page.

More stories about old school declawing veterinarians. Archaic, old school declawing vets


PLEASE REMEMBER TO TAKE THE HIGH ROAD AND DON’T BE MEAN OR THREATENING. WE MUST EDUCATE THE PUBLIC AND THESE OLD SCHOOL DECLAWING VETERINARIANS ABOUT THE FACTS ABOUT DECLAWING AND ABOUT THE EASY, HUMANE OPTIONS.
WHEN YOU ARE MEAN, IT HURTS THE CAUSE, IT’S WRONG, AND IT OFTEN HURTS ME BECAUSE THEY BLAME YOUR WORDS ON ME. THANK YOU.
Declawing Raccoons: The Truth Unmasked

Declawing Raccoons: The Truth Unmasked

August 14, 2018


These are photos of a declawed raccoon that were posted on Instagram on July 26, 2018. The location was tagged “Safari Animal Care Centers” in League, Texas.

The purpose of this story is to educate the public about why they shouldn’t own a pet raccoon and also why they shouldn’t declaw them.




Here’s another photo on Instagram that was posted by the raccoon owner.

The founder and chief of staff of this veterinary practice, Safari Animal Care Centers, is Dr Steven Dale Garner. He’s a 37 year member of the AVMA.

According to his staff, he declaws many cats and many raccoons at Safari Animal Care Center. He is the only Board Certified Veterinarian in Galveston County, Texas. He is an accomplished leader in the veterinary profession. Dr. Garner also has been recognized as a member of the AAHA Standards Enhancement Task Force.

More about his accomplishments here. Dr Steven Garner’s accomplishments


Just to confirm that Safari Animal Care Center declaws raccoons, we placed a few calls inquiring about it.

When a person called Safari Animal Care Center to inquire about declawing a raccoon, the employee said they can do that and said they actually did a declaw on a raccoon the day before. The person asked if it’s ok to declaw a raccoon and the employee said, “With everything, some people might not agree, but if you want to home one and make it your baby, it’s ok.”

According to the employee, their raccoon declaw prices are as follows:  $405 for the front paws and $600 for an all four paw declaw. They said the doctor uses a laser and that it is less pain and less bleeding.

Another employee, when asked about getting a raccoon declawed and if their vet is skilled at the procedure, said that they do 2-3 raccoon declaws a week.

A vet tech, who said that they assist Dr Garner with the raccoon declaws, was put on the phone to explain some questions the caller had. The vet tech was asked if it is true that they do 2-3 raccoon declaws a week and the vet tech laughed and said that they do “quite a few.”

The vet tech said that some people think it’s like declawing a cat but that it’s not and said it’s like a removing a nail from a human finger that has soft padding under the nail.

The caller said that they were confused because they saw online photos of a skeleton of a raccoon paw and it looked like the claw was attached to the bone. The vet tech went online while the phone call was taking place and was adamant that raccoon claws are not attached to bone and said that they must have glued them to the skeleton in the photo.

The caller asked if it was harmful to declaw a raccoon and the vet tech said it’s not something they highly recommend but a lot of people who have them as pets don’t want to get “torn up.”

Another phone call was made to try to get an answer about the raccoon claw being attached to the bone from Dr Garner, but he wasn’t in the office. The employee asked Dr Garner’s wife, who is also a vet but doesn’t practice at Safari, and she conveyed this information to the employee to tell the caller. She said that they have to get in to get the root of the claw and that a little bit of the bone might be removed.

We have withheld the names of employees for fear that they might suffer a backlash for their honest answers.

More facts about raccoons. Raccoon facts


A check in the area of veterinary practices that treat exotic pets revealed that none of them will perform a declaw on a raccoon.

A vet at Gulf Coast Veterinary Specialists in Houston said that it’s not recommended to have raccoons as pets or to declaw them because it’s not humane and they don’t have retractable claws so it’s like cutting off the tips of their fingers. When asked if they declaw cats there, the doctor said they only perform tendonectomies on cats.

Another hospital that treats exotics, Westgate Pet and Bird Hospital (AAHA hospital) in Austin said that raccoons don’t have retractable claws so declawing them is taking out their whole nail bed and it would be like they were walking on “nubs.”  They declaw cats and ask if you want all four or two paws when a researcher called to check on their declaw fees.

Animal Kingdom Pet Hospital in League City said that raccoons are wildlife and they don’t declaw them. They declaw cats.


Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County

I reached out to the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County to get some facts about declawing a raccoon and here is their response.

1) Keeping raccoons as pets is a horrible idea, and 2. Removing the claws of a raccoon is an equally horrible idea.

The claws of raccoons are permanently exposed (as in dogs and many other mammals), which is completely different from the situation in cats, where the claws are retractile. The claws are attached to and cover the very last bone of the fingers and toes (called the distal phalanx).. Removing the claw involves removing the bone—so it’s not just de-clawing the animal, it’s de-boning the animal.

The same is true for cats, but that last bone in cats is smaller and more slender than it is in a raccoon. It is not a trivial thing to remove those claws and bones in cats, and it’s certainly a pretty big deal to do it to a raccoon. Painful, yes. Potential for nerve damage, yes.

And if the raccoon is ever released back into the wild (for example, if the owner later decides it was a bad idea to have a pet raccoon), that released animal would be at a supreme disadvantage in the wild (they have claws for many reasons, including protection, foraging, etc.).

Jim Dines, Ph.D. Mammalogy Section, Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County


Here’s a photo of the same raccoon after the 4 paw laser declaw with possible signs of damage to the paw pads from burning off the raccoon’s toe bones and claws. Close up of the declawed back paws.

 


Dr Garner also declaws cats, he uses a CO2 laser and an employee at Safari Animal Care Center said that they do cat declaws regularly. When a caller asks for the price of a declaw they ask, “Front or all four?”

The employee said that a front declaw is $500 and that they think an all four paw declaw is around $900. When asked who is best at the declaws, employee said Dr Garner is the one who does their declaws and that he is the only Board Certified vet in Galveston County. The employee said that they use the same anesthesia that Texas Children’s Hospital uses. Employee also said that Dr Garner recently declawed their cat and it’s all healed up after two weeks.


We reached out to Dr Garner to see if we could get some facts about declawing a raccoon from this expert and his take of this story. Here is the email correspondence.

August 11, 2018
Dear Dr Garner,
I wanted to get your input on how a raccoon is declawed since you are a board certified doctor and your staff said you do raccoon declaws often and to reach out to you this way.  I figured you are the expert and can give me the facts.
I know that declawing a cat is removing the claw and the bone it is attached to, so I was wondering if it is the same for declawing a raccoon or do you just remove the claw with your laser?
Is there any harm to declawing a raccoon? Does it hurt them in anyway long-term and what is the recovery time. Is there any reason it shouldn’t be done? How would one decide what’s best, 2 vs 4 paws?
I’ve heard declawing changes a cat’s behavior, will it affect a raccoon negatively too in anyway?
Thanks so much,

Lori


His response,

August 13, 2018

Lori,

Just to be clear, I do not recommend the ownership of Raccoons.  In Texas I believe it is considered illegal to own such wildlife.  My veterinary position is that if people are going to own these pets against our recommendations – then and only then – will we provide veterinary care. They need someone who understands their nutrition and physical needs.   When a raccoon has been taken from the wild and reared in the home, it is difficult for them to return to the wild – ever.  This is because they have not developed the wild instincts to forage for their food and to be warily of their enemies.  Raccoons in captivity are always a problem however as they become aggressive (as interpreted by humans) and this aggression is difficult for most humans to manage.

Declawing is not recommended as it permanently changes a raccoons behavior.

Declawing cats was once common but is now frowned on and illegal in most other countries and some states.  If declawing is done it should be done to minimize pain, trauma, and to prevent the claws from growing back.  Surgical laser is one way to accomplish this.  Declawing a raccoon is no different except a raccoon is not a domestic animal.

Please leave the wildlife wild.

Best Regards,

Dr. Garner

∧__∧

ミ^♀^彡

⌒ ⌒

Steven D. Garner DVM, DABVP
American Board of Veterinary Practitioners
Chief of Staff: Safari Animal Care Centers
Safari Knowledge Systems, LLC


 August 13, 2018

Dr Garner,

Ok, Thanks for the note. So just to be clear since I was confused. When you declaw a raccoon, you use a laser and are you taking off just the claw or the last bone with the claw?
Also, if someone was going to do it, what are the pros and cons to a 2 paw or 4 paw? What do you suggest and will there be a need to give pain meds to them for a few days when they are brought home?
How does declawing change a raccoons behavior?
Thanks,

Lori


August 13, 2018

Lori,

I suspect your motives are not above board here.  There is a real moral and ethical dilemma when an uninformed person takes on an animal such as a raccoon from the wild and rears it in the home.  There becomes a real time when euthanasia is measured against declaw.  You know more about declaws than most on the planet and I do not appreciate your coyness about the gravity of declawing a wild animal.
Have a nice day.

Dr. Garner


August 14

Mr Garner,

  Actually I didn’t know a thing about declawing raccoons and was trying to get the facts from an expert who performs that amputation procedure on them.

I do not appreciate your coyness about pretending that declawing a raccoon is a serious thing when according to your own staff,  you perform lots and lots of 2 paw and 4 paw declaws on them.
I don’t appreciate your coyness to pretend to be an advocate for raccoons when you are harming so many of them by declawing them.
Are you referring to euthanasia and raccoons? Please explain that comment.
How do you justify declawing raccoons when it’s illegal for people to own them as pets?
My motives are to educate the public about the facts on why people shouldn’t have raccoons as pets and why they should never declaw them.
Do you educate the raccoon owners about what declawing is and why they shouldn’t do it to their raccoons?

Aug 17, 2018
To Mr Garner,
I received a heads up that you are now requiring raccoon owners to bring in proof of a license to own a raccoon before they can get their pet raccoon declawed or before you treat it.
Can you let me know what the name of that license is and what agency issues them so that I can add it to my story.
  I’m sure most raccoon owners aren’t aware that they need a license to own them in Texas, so this would be valuable information to share with the public.
Thanks,

Lori


August 17

Lori,

I am happy to provide information to you – or anyone who is sincere and not adversarial with regard to the welfare and care of exotic animals – raccoons included.  Unfortunately, your article, and or your associates have caused immeasurable damage to me.  I have only dedicated my whole life to helping animals and those who own animals.  I am a pragmatist, not an activist.  I do not appreciate the attacks you have directed toward me, my staff and my clients.  My lively-hood my life-long pursuit is involved in saving pets – most of which, by far, are dogs and cats.  I have thirty staff members whose families depend on their jobs at Safari.  How dare you and your associates demand that we be closed down for declawing no more than 10 raccoons in 35 years of practice?  How is the destruction of my business for the greater good and welfare of animals?
Regarding licenses,  I do not know of an individual license to own raccoons.  With regards to wildlife, the local laws trump the state laws which trump the federal laws.  Texas law says it is illegal to own Texas wildlife while the USDA may publish guidelines for the humane ownership of such animals.  A USDA license may be obtained by some educational and rehabilitation entities or even individuals but this does not supersede the Texas law.  I am not a lawyer – so I may be wrong.  We do not ask any client about licenses to own the animals they bring to us as we are only interested in the medical care of the pet not the legal aspects of pet ownership.
Disappointed,

Dr. Garner


August 17
Hey Steve,
 I’ve dedicated my life to this working on this cause full-time as a volunteer for the last 4 years and am all about protecting the welfare of all animals from having their toe bones and claws barbarically amputated by veterinarians who took an oath to ease the suffering in animals. My lively-hood my life-long pursuit is involved in saving animals from this sadistic cruelty and harm and I’ve used a good share of my savings to be able to keep working on it as a volunteer.
 First of all, I don’t know who you are referring to when you say my “associates.”
 I am a journalist and I am the one writing these stories that have nothing but facts in them. Last I checked, writing a story about animal welfare issues and about this cause is what a free press is about and is not considered attacking.
Shining light on this animal cruelty, educating the public, and writing stories about it are what I do.
 You might want to stop turning things around and playing the victim and get your facts straight. I never demanded that your practice is closed down and I never asked anyone to try to get your practice closed down, so I don’t appreciate your false accusations. I also do not appreciate you saying that I have directed attacks towards you, your staff and your clients. How did you come up with that Steve?
I always ask my famous cat’s followers to take the high road and just educate others about this inhumane and mutilating procedure, even though they see such cruelty and harm being done by humans who joined the noble profession of veterinary medicine, that is all about healing and helping animals.
Remember Steve, your actions of burning off the toe bones and claws on many raccoons (and cats) has caused immeasurable suffering and damage to the long term health and well-being of those animals.
  As far as I know, a vet practice can’t be shut down unless they are doing something that is against the law or if the vet med board takes action for something that isn’t the standard of veterinary care, so if you are concerned about your reputation and the livelihood of your 30 staff members you might keep that in mind.
 You say that in 35 years you’ve only declawed 10 raccoons.
 So are you saying that two of your employees, who said that you declaw raccoons 2-3 times a week and your vet tech who agreed that you do “quite a few” raccoon declaws, were lying? Also, why would it be that your experienced vet tech, who said that she is right by your side assisting you when you do the raccoon declaws, actually believes that you were only taking off the raccoon’s claws and that the claws aren’t attached to bone? Why didn’t you ever educate her about what you were doing when you declaw a raccoon?
 Can you explain why you declawed that raccoon on all four paws and why two other employees said that you had just done a 2 paw raccoon declaw the day before the phone call?  Were they lying too? Was the 4 paw raccoon declaw your number 9 declaw and the one that you did the day before the call the number 10 declaw?
 How are you helping raccoons by declawing them?
 According to a tip I received, why did one of your employees say yesterday that a raccoon owner now needs to prove they have a license to own a raccoon before you will declaw and spay it? Are they taking the liberty to say this kind of requirement themselves?
 How is declawing a raccoon “medical care” for the raccoon?
 I’m not a lawyer but I’m pretty sure Federal law trumps any state law.
Very disappointed,

Lori


August 20

Ms. Shepler,

My clients, friends and staff call me Dr. Garner or DOC.  Steve is reserved for my family.

I grew up in the rural Arkansas Ozarks during the 50’s and 60’s where wildlife ownership was common, and we watched Elly Mae Clampett on TV “The Beverly Hillbillies” loving on her 6-pound young juvenile raccoon.  On the other hand, Fall and Winter weekends in rural Arkansas; it was not uncommon to go Raccoon Hunting where you could witness a 25 pound fully adult raccoon ravage a whole pack of larger dogs. Today, 50 or 60 years later most people see raccoons as either “Road-kill” or as vermin raiding their garbage.  Here in Texas it is perfectly legal to trap or in other ways kill a “vermin” raccoon on your property.  The raccoon population has exploded as they have migrated from the woodlands to the back alleys and yards of urban America in search of food. The Springtime brings many many cute, cuddly baby raccoons into contact with the public.  Raccoons have become one of the most important reservoirs and vectors of Rabies as they, unlike dogs or cats, can carry the virus without showing clinical outward signs and they go unvaccinated.

Wildlife rehabilitation specialists are licensed by the State of Texas to care for these babies and to return them to the wild.  Which they do by the truckload every year, in every location around Houston. We help with this process when veterinary care is needed.  Most ill or injured are euthanized. This year however we had one licensed rehabilitator bring us a young raccoon baby being bottle fed that had a cut around its mid-line so severe it required several surgeries to repair.  By the time this raccoon had recovered he was a youngster too late to rehome to the woodlands.  The “owner” had it in her home and had fallen in love with it and its siblings. They were in turn given to her sisters and or cousins and it is this family of raccoons that were declawed.  I am not sure of the family ties or details, but the families also had babies, toddlers and or young children. I am sure my staff was asking your “spy” if they were a licensed rehab specialist when they called with a raccoon question.  They were not requiring a license for ownership of a raccoon treated by us.

Animal Control officers are employed by cities and counties in Texas to control animals – in the case of raccoons, “control” means kill.  Even though the rabies vaccine works in raccoons, there is no legal definition of a vaccinated raccoon.  So, a vaccinated raccoon (unlike a vaccinated dog, cat or ferret) that bites or even scratches a human is killed.  There is no quarantine or consideration for people who have been caring for these animals.

If a raccoon is kept in a home in Texas it is illegal and will be confiscated and euthanized immediately.  This is what has now happened to the raccoon that you posted on your website.  Because of your publicity, the Animal Control has controlled this animal.  If a child is scratched the raccoon is killed. The purpose of declawing raccoons which cannot be returned to the woodlands is to prevent scratches that if reported could result in the raccoon’s death. Our recommendations to all people who own exotic animals from exotic cats, to wolf hybrids, to monkeys, to wildlife is to vaccinate the animals and to not publicize the ownership of them.  So many times, the result of bragging or showing off their pet, is death of their pet. As stated before, I do not condone the ownership of these animals or am I obligated to turn in my clients to the officials.  I am obligated, however, to the care of these animals and to the prevention of their death.

This one family represents all the raccoon declaws that I have done recently or in the past several years for that matter. The staff members you have spoken to are new to our staff and made unwise assumptions about how many raccoons we declaw. They see a lot of weird animals and are told to act as if it not their first time to see a sloth or alligator for example.  I am not in the habit of lying and do not appreciate these accusations. 

Laser is CO2 molecules hyperexcited and tuned to create a photon frequency that causes water to vaporize.  Cells are largely bags of water, so when their contents are vaporized it causes the cell to be disrupted by steam.  This is not burning, does not cause the same pain, but does allow accurate dissection not allowed by scalpel or electrosurgery. The nerves are sealed by the process and blood vessel collagen is constricted so there is no bleeding and visualization is easier.  This is important.  Think of your nails, they grow from bone, but it is your finger tips that are important.  Removal of the claws in a manner that is humane and so they will not grow back is done by laser so that the claw and the bit of bone that it grows from is removed while leaving the important finger tips or pads of the toes present.  This can be done with laser.  Look at the photos you posted.  The fingertips are still there and only the claws are gone.  This is not mutilation – it is done with laser under magnification to preserve the feeling and function of the toes.  The heavy bandages are to prevent the raccoon from doing self-trauma before the wounds are healed. 

Raccoons are now a part of our urban environment – here to stay – they are not just the woodland creatures of the past. Their mental capacity was measured and reported in last month’s Scientific American as being smarter than cats and even dogs in some manners.  They adapt well to the home and live twice as long in captivity than in the wild.  They change to an adult at 3 years of age and become aggressive and potentially dangerous, but not more than a rottweiler or pit bull. Do you ever think how cats and dogs were first domesticated? Do you ever think how you would feel if one day a knock at the door resulted in your loved pet cat being removed and killed by animal control?  Think about these things next time before you pass judgement on someone who may be more on your side than you realize.

Dr. Garner


August 20,

Steve
 So many things to address with many of your comments but I’ll ask you this one first. So you are saying that animal control took Sassy the raccoon in and euthanized her? Where did you get that info from so that I know it is fact?
You didn’t answer a lot of my questions in my email.
Also why would you do a two paw declaw on one raccoon last week and a 4 paw declaw on Sassy?
I’m not passing judgement on anyone. I’m writing stories with the facts in them.

Lori


August 20
Lori,
We are certain it was Animal Control. We are certain it was Sassy. It was Friday. We do not know for sure the disposition of her. The clients are very upset and one blamed Safari although we had nothing to do with it other than our interactions with you.
I can attest that you have a tenuous relationship with facts.
Clients decide 2 vs. 4 based on risk vs. benefit vs. cost. Some animals are very sweet and some are not.
I am not happy to continue my education of you Ms. Shepler. As I said previously we have suffered from your attacks and only wish to stop this madness.

Dr. Garner


August 20

Mr Garner,

You said that Sassy was euthanized.  Is this a fact Mr Garner?

So the 10 raccoon declaws you’ve done in 35 years are all from the same family? Okie dokie.  Very interesting to say the least.

Posting a story with all facts is not attacking FYI.
Feel free to let me know what isn’t factual in my story and I will write a correction.

You’re big worded description of how your $35,000 laser works is a clever way to try to throw up a smokescreen and mask the fact that you are barbarically and unnecessarily burning off much needed toe bones and claws on cats and raccoons.
There’s no sugar coating this sadistic and mutilating amputation procedure and cruelty. Sorry. Nice try.






More Information About Dr Garner from his website.


From Safarivet.com Safarivet.com

“Ethical Standards For Safari

The Safari Code of Ethics sets the stage for how we “Ought” to behave. They provide a frame of reference for decision making as we care for your loved ones. This Standard includes many Ideals that we strive to achieve in our personal and professional life. Including, “Do No Harm”, “Respect All Life” , “Always Do What Is Best For The Pet”, and many others.”

Another motto they use is, “We Never Say No.” Safarivet.com “We Never Say No”


I received a heads up that you are now requiring raccoon owners to bring in proof of a license to own a raccoon before they can get their pet raccoon declawed or before you treat it.

Dr Garner, touts all his accomplishments on his website. The history of Safari  Some of the info on the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners website says this, “ABVP Certification sets you apart – among the most ambitious, forward-thinking professionals in veterinary care, driven by a commitment to the wellbeing of animal and those who care for them.The ABVP board certified veterinarian has demonstrated they are capable of providing a level of clinical practice that is clearly superior to the norm of the profession. ”

Link to the ABVP page ABVP website


Here’s another screenshot from Safarivet.com.


Here is a screenshot from Safarivet.com that talks about surgery for exotics.


Here’s a page saying that Safari Animal Care Center is a Fear Free Practice. (This Practice is NOT an officical Fear Free Certified veterinary practice) https://fearfreepets.com/

http://www.safarivet.com/pet-care-with-a-difference/the-safari-difference/we-diagnose-before-we-treat/fear-free-practice/


PLEASE REMEMBER TO ALWAYS BE RESPECTFUL AND TAKE THE HIGH ROAD WITH YOUR COMMENTS. WE MUST EDUCATE THE PUBLIC ABOUT THE FACTS ABOUT DECLAWING A CAT, A DOG, A RACCOON, A KINKAJOU, OR ANY ANIMAL. WE MUST EDUCATE THE PUBLIC ABOUT THE EASY, HUMANE OPTIONS LIKE NAIL TRIMS, COMMONSENSE, STURDY SCRATCHERS, DETERRENTS, ETC.

WHEN YOU ARE DISRESPECTFUL, MEAN, OR THREATENING, IT HURTS THE CAUSE, IT’S WRONG, AND IT HURTS ME BECAUSE THEY WILL BLAME YOUR MEAN COMMENTS ON ME.

Declawing and CAT FRIENDLY Practices- A Study

Declawing and CAT FRIENDLY Practices- A Study

July, 2018

Declawing and CAT FRIENDLY don’t go together.

 Of the 156 Cat Friendly Practices in Alabama, Ohio, Iowa, Nebraska, Illinois, New York, New Jersey, Michigan, Oklahoma, and Texas in my study, 133 declaw cats. (85%)

PLEASE TAKE 20 SECONDS AND SIGN MY PETITION TO THE CAT FRIENDLY ORGANIZATION. YOUR VOICE MATTERS. CAT FRIENDLY PETITION


The Cat Friendly Practice is a program that was conceived and developed by International Cat Care (ICatCare) in 2012. This program is run by International Cat Care’s veterinary division, the International Society of Feline Medicine (ISFM) , which accredits clinics that have met its high standards of feline care.

I reached out to ICatCare.org and asked them when did they stop allowing declawing Cat Friendly Practices.

Here’s their answer.

Declawing has never been allowed at our Cat Friendly Clinic’s which cover the whole world apart from America.


Why is the American Association of Feline Practitioners allowing declawing in their Cat Friendly practices? The rest of the world has nice furniture, older people with thin skin, and people with immune-compromised issues but they know it is wrong to do such a mutilating and inhumane procedure to cats.

I wanted to look into how declawing is addressed in many of the Cat Friendly practices in America.   The states in my survey like Michigan, Iowa, and Nebraska, covered most of the Cat Friendly practices. The other states, it was just a random sampling of Cat Friendly Practices.

Does your local CAT FRIENDLY Practice declaw cats? Here’s the link on how to find one in your area. Cat Friendly Practices Search


THE METHOD

My researchers made calls to survey 156 AAFP CAT FRIENDLY veterinary practices in 10 states. The practices are listed on the catvets.com website.   In some cases, we made multiple calls to the same practice to double check the information.

 The general questioning went like this:

The practice was called by a researcher posing as a cat owner (most commonly a first time cat owner) who adopted a cat and wanted it spayed or neutered and declawed. The cat owner had concerns about the declawing procedure and asked for a vet who was skilled at the procedure. The cat owner asked if it was a regular and routine procedure at the Cat Friendly practice.

We have withheld the names of employees for fear that they might suffer a backlash for their honest answers.


THE RESULTS

According to our study of 156 Cat Friendly Practices in 10 states:

  • 85% of the CAT FRIENDLY practices declaw cats
  • 15% do not perform declaws
Many of the declawing Cat Friendly Practices, especially in Michigan, actually offered a declaw when a researcher asked for the price of a spay/neuter and then asked since they were a first time cat owner, is there anything else they recommend or that cat owners have done at the same time.

I want to start this study out on a positive note.  I reached out to the 23 no-declaw Cat Friendly practices in my study and asked them if they want to send me a note on why they don’t declaw cats.
 Here are the ones who wrote back with their reasons. Please give them a big thank you and great review on their facebook pages!
THESE VET PRACTICES ARE TRULY CAT FRIENDLY AND ARE HOW ALL THE American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP) CAT FRIENDLY PRACTICES SHOULD BE!
 
The Cat Doctor of Monroe in Monroe, Michigan

“Thank you for contacting us. I’m happy to hear that our staff responded to your caller’s questions as they’ve been trained. We work hard to educate our clients and prospective clients on what declawing actually is and the effects that it can have on their cats. Fortunately, most people appreciate the information and follow our recommendation NOT to declaw their cat. We’ve had a few that did follow through with a declaw elsewhere and have stated they regret the decision and won’t do it again.

My decision not to declaw cats came after much research into the subject and seeing the awful consequences of declawing. When I was a kid you had your cat spayed or neutered and declawed. No one ever questioned this or educated cat owners about this. Sadly, my two oldest kitties were declawed before I really realized the repercussions of doing this. My two young boys are not declawed.

As I began practicing, I strove to change how I approached declaws. I was the first and only vet in the practice I worked in to perform local numbing blocks for the procedure and to change how the incisions were closed and to not bandage the feet after surgery. This and strong pain medication helped my surgery patients recover quicker and with less pain. However, I still dreaded doing the procedure! I began educating clients about the procedure and alternatives. I tried to educate the other doctors in the practice to raise their level of pain management for these kitties. Eventually, I only had a couple clients a month that requested declaw procedures and I elected to stop performing them. I have not declawed a cat since 2010 and regret sincerely ever having done this brutal procedure.

Now, we educate clients about properly training their cats and providing an appropriate environment for them to scratch in. We teach clients how to trim nails and offer Soft Paws and Feliscratch to our clients when they’re having a particularly difficult time. Client reception to this education is wonderful and we love to see clients bonding with their cats as a result.

I wish that more veterinarians would get on board with banning declawing. We would never condone declawing a dog that’s scratching on a door or the floor, but we are okay with doing this for a cat? Why can’t vets take the same approach they do for a dog – recommend training – and recommend training for the cat that is scratching?!

Thanks again,
Dr. Miller”


Abor Pointe Veterinary Hospital in Canton, Michigan
“If for no other reason, too many of these declawed cats suffer from persistent post operative pain. Even if a veterinarian uses the best pain control possible, over ten percent of these cats develop an issue, and if they do, only a fraction of them can be cured.
Michael C Petty, DVM”

Feline Medical Center in Houston, Texas
“Our clinic has chosen not to declaw cats based on the effects we have seen in our patients long-term. We see a disproportionate number of declawed cats with behavior problems and chronic pain when compared to clawed cats. We have found that teaching owners what to expect with cat scratching behaviors, how to trim nails if needed, and how to train cats to scratch appropriate surfaces is effective and the most humane thing to do for the cat. For those clients with health concerns from being scratched, appropriate flea prevention and trimming nails will help them live harmoniously with their cats.

Dr Moran, DVM”


Zippivet in Austin, Texas  Zippivet Facebook page

Zippivet does not approve or support declawing procedures.  Our mission is to enhance the quality of life for pets and their families. Declawing cats is not part of our philosophy.

We are lucky to be located in Austin, Texas.  Austin is an amazing pet friendly city that provides a wide variety of resources to pet owners. We are fortunate to have clients that are very sensitive to the treatment of animals and the special bond with humans. Rarely do we have clients request declawing procedures. When a client does request information on declawing,  we focus on addressing the reasoning for the request and find alternative solutions for the issue.

We always recommend behavior training when a client is experiencing unwanted behavior. There are so many alternatives including regular nail trims, Soft Paws vinyl nail caps, decreasing stress in the home, scratching deterrents, and encouraging cats to perform natural behaviors. Enrichment with a variety of scratching surfaces, climbing and hiding areas, and mental stimulation can go a long way to make a cat happy in their homes.

Sincerely,

Robin Allen DVM, MBA

Chief Medical Officer

Zippivet

Family Pet Practice in Wixom, Michigan (Also an AAHA hospital)  Family Pet Practice Facebook page  
“Family Pet Practice spent years educating clients about the humane alternatives to declawing, while sadly managing painful patients as they presented later in life with issues related to declawing. It felt wonderful for the entire team, owner, and doctors when we finally said no to declawing under all circumstances. We also refuse to use the addendum “only if for medical reasons”, because no declaw is for a medical reason; if a tumor needs to be removed and the associated single toe amputated, that is what it is referred to.
We proudly educate owners, whether it is via phone or in person during examinations. We have our own educational handouts, as well as Paw Project pamphlets and Paw Project Documentaries to lend out. We praise our already pro-claw clients, and ask them to continue educating to help us, help our patients. Frequent nail trims, positive behavioral modifications, feline friendly practices, and Soft Paws are our focuses. The honesty involved in our client education has formed a wonderful bond. We have seen absolutely no decline in our business, rather growth secondary to the communication and transparency. We will do no harm and we are very proud of it.
Jessica VanHusen, LVT”

THE SURVEY

It’s always important to see how the “leaders” of the American Association of Feline Practitioners address declawing at their Cat Friendly Practices.
 The Cat Friendly Practice where the 2018 AAFP President, Dr Paula Monroe-Aldridge, works is River Trail Animal Hospital and Pet Lodge in Oklahoma.
Researcher asked the employee for the price for a spay and the employee said $245. The researcher then asked for a price for a declaw. The employee said it’s $175 if you do the declaw with the spay or $299 for just the declaw.

Researcher asked which vet they recommend for the declaw who’s the most skilled at it and they said Dr Monroe.

Researcher asked if Dr Monroe does declaws regularly and employee said yes. The researcher asked about Dr Monroe’s skills with the declaw procedure and the employee reassured them and said that Dr Monroe is the current President of the American Association of Feline Practitioners and is very skilled with cats and is the “cat lady of all cat ladies.“

When asked what Dr Monroe uses to declaw, the employee said a laser. Researcher asked if the laser is better, the employee said, “It’s a different way of getting the nail out without causing damage.”

The employee said that Dr Monroe requires a consultation appointment to chat with you about the declaw and to let you know that it must be an indoor cat because if it ever gets outside it doesn’t have it’s claws to defend itself.

Researcher said they were concerned that they didn’t want to waste the time and money on the consultation exam and would they for sure be able to do the declaw after it and employee said, “oh yes.”

Employee asked if researcher wanted to make the appointment.


 ALABAMA CAT FRIENDLY PRACTICES

1) Auburn University Veterinary Clinic                                       According to one of their employees, they mostly use a blade for their declaws. $270 for a 2 paw declaw. The employee said that they typically stay away from doing all 4 paw declaws because if the cat gets out it can’t defend itself. When asked if the cat would be ok long term from a declaw they say that as long as you follow the aftercare instructions the cat should be perfectly fine.
2) Taylor Crossing Animal Hospital in Montgomery             After the researcher asked for the price of a declaw, they asked, “Are we looking at the front or also back?” A 4 paw declaw is $298.30. They use a laser and said that it cuts through the cartilage and is not as painful, there’s less bleeding, and say that some say it is less invasive. They recommend Dr Loch for the declaw since they say she is their “cat person.”

3) Countryside Veterinary Hospital                                          After researcher asked for a price of a declaw, the employee asked if they wanted it with a spay or neuter since it’s cheaper that way. The employee said that they use a laser and said, “it cauterizes while it cuts, I love that.
It is $241.70 for a two paw declaw and all 6 of their doctors do declaws. You can get a 4 paw declaw after a consultation with a doctor but they say a 2 paw declaw is better.
When asked if they do them regularly and is their doctor skilled at the declaw, the employee said yes and that their doctor did a declaw last week. The employee said she had her two cats declawed and they are doing fine. She said one of her cat’s paws bled but the doctor just put on more glue.
4) Whitesburg Animal Hospital in Huntsville                         They use a laser to declaw cats and say it is less painful. They say that they can do a 4 paw declaw but you have to do two separate surgeries, around a month apart. They said their doctor does declaws very frequently.
5) Holmes Feline Clinic in Birmingham, AL                           They use a scalpel for their declaws and a 2 paw declaw is $361-$409.52. They said their vet does at least one a month and that’s her expertise.
6) Bit and Spur Animal Hospital in Mobile, AL                           A declaw is around $500 and you have to have a consult exam first to see if the cat is healthy enough to go under anesthesia.
7) Pennington Animal Hospital P.C in Huntsville                   They use a scalpel to declaw and they only do the front paws. A two paw declaw is $315 and they say that they don’t do very many.
8) Pet Vet Animal Helath Center in Auburn                            They asked, “Are you just wanting the front paws?” A 4 paw declaw is $362.70 and they said they have two vets that do declaws regularly. 
9) Riverview Animal Clinic in Birgmingham                          They asked if the cats are over 3 years old since that would cost more. A 2 paw declaw is $450 and they use a scalpel. They said it’s not a procedure they do often and they only do 2 paws. The cat needs an exam to see if it’s healthy enough to go under anesthesia.

10) Valley Animal Hospital and Pet Resort in Huntsville (Also an AAHA Hospital)                                                                    They said they don’t have a price for a declaw without a spay/neuter so would have to call back with that. A spay/declaw is $670 and a neuter/declaw is $580. They use a scalpel to declaw.


No Declaw Practices
11)  Metro Cat Clinic Inc. in Hoover

They don’t declaw cats. They say that it is taking the whole joint off and it can impede their balance, cause litter box avoidance, and health risks to the cat later in life. They said that scratching is a natural behavior and helps them stretch and keeps them healthy. They said that some great alternatives are tall scratching posts with sisal material and they carry Feliway which is a deterrent you spray on items you don’t want the cat to scratch and Feliscratch that you spray on that you want the cat to use for scratching. They said that you can put on nylon caps (Soft Paws) if everything else isn’t working.


ILLINOIS CAT FRIENDLY PRACTICES


1- VCA County West Animal Hospital in Kankakee               
They said that they can do declaws and that a declaw is $400 and a spay is $350. They have an option for laser declaw. They recommend their medical director for the declaws and you have to have an exam to see if the cat is healthy enough for the procedures.      

2- Markham Animal Clinic (Also AAHA and FEAR FREE)

Researcher asked for the price of a spay/declaw and the employee asked, “Were you interested in all 4 paws or just 2?”

An all four paw declaw is $285 and it’s $68 extra if you go with the laser. One employee said that all their doctors do declaws regularly. Another employee said that their 3 vets, Heidi, Denise, and Jackie are “well versed” in the declaw and have done multiple declaws.

When asked if they were a FEAR FREE practice the employee said yes and that they use pheromones and try to avoid excessively holding the animals.

One of their associate veterinarian’s since 1997, Dr. Jack Titolo, invented a declaw clamp. Here is a video of him performing a declaw with his special clamp. WARNING, THIS VIDEO IS VERY GRAPHIC AND DISTURBING WARNING-Graphic video of Dr Jack Titolo using the clamp he invented to declaw a kitty

According to an employee at the practice, Dr Titolo is retired but fills in at their clinic once every couple of months.

3- Animal Medical Center of Chicago                                      After researcher asked for the price of a spay and said they are a first time cat owner and is there anything else that people have done or that they recommend to have done for their cats and employee said, “If you want to do a declaw or dental, we can do that.”   The employee said that you have to get a $72 exam to see if the cat is healthy enough for the procedures and all four of their doctors do declaws and use a scalpel. They said they can’t give a price for a declaw until the exam.

4- Capitol Illini Veterinary in Carlinville                      Researcher asked if they do declaws and employee said yes and asked, “Would you want to do all four paws or just two?” The cost for an all four paw declaw and spay is $629.21. Employee said all their doctors do declaws everyday and said that they just did one last week.

5- River Heights Veterinary Hospital                                       Need a consultation appointment $47 before surgery scheduled.
Employee asked, “Do you want 2 or 4 paws? 2 paw starting at $199.75 with 2 night stay.
Employee said they don’t use laser because of the difficulty with the paws healing.

 6- Green Bay Animal Hospital                                                Would need a consultation appointment. Employee said they don’t always do declaws and they like to suggest alternatives such as scratching post. A two paw declaw is around $200.

7- Danada Veterinary Clinic                                                        Would need a consultation appointment at $63 before any surgery scheduled. Employee asked, “Do you want a 2 or 4 paw?”  A 2 paw declaw is $410, 4 paw declaw is $480. Doctor uses the laser method.

8- All Cats Clinic, PC
Need consultation appointment first at $60. Employee said a 2 paw $310.36 which includes a supply of Yesterday’s News cat litter. Employee said their doctor uses the tourniquet & blade technique.

9- Washington Veterinary Medical Clinic in Washington  
Employee said, “We do declaws and the sooner the better since the older one’s have a harder recovery.” They said that their vet does declaws regularly and uses a scalpel. They said that he usually does the declaws in separate surgeries and not with a spay, but that it depends. They said that a 2 paw declaw is $280.

10- Cat Hospital of Chicago (Also an AAHA hospital)           Need consultation appointment $68 before surgery scheduled. 2 paw declaw is $1300 to $1400 which includes 2 weeks of pain management . Employee said not all their doctors would do all 4 paws, they use the laser method because of better healing. This is the practice of the 2016 AAFP President Dr Colleen Currigan. She is in the AVMA’s declawing video at the 2.40 minute mark. AVMA Declawing video and story

11- Downers Grove Animal Hospital & Bird Clinic                     A 2 paw declaw is $606.61 and 4 paw $717.16. Employee said they do a lot of declaws with no problems.

12-
Wheaton Animal Hospital in Glen Ellyn                             After researcher asked for the price of a spay and said they are a first time cat owner and is there anything else that people have done or that they recommend to have done for their cats and employee said, “You can get a nail trim or microchip.”

Researcher asked for a price of a declaw. Employee asked, “Were you interested in just a 2 paw or 4?” They said a spay and 4 paw laser declaw is $468 and a 4 paw laser declaw is $321. They have 4 doctors and they do them regularly and said, “We do get a few declaws each week.”

13- Lincolnshire Animal Hospital                                        Employee said a declaw is between $225 to $300 with a 2 night stay. Doctor uses a scalpel.

14- Heartland Animal Hospital- Story about a Heartland Animal Hospital declawing video

15- Indian Prairie Animal Hospital                                          They said that you need to make an exam to see if the cat is healthy enough to have the declaw procedure.

16- Ancare Veterinary Clinic, PC
Researcher asked for the price of a spay and declaw. Employee asked, “Are you doing the front?”  They said it’s cheaper to do the spay and declaw together.  A spay/ 2 paw laser declaw is $523. They said their vet does declaws regularly.

17- Animal Wellness Center of Monee                                        A declaw is around $400 and they use a scalpel.

18- College Station Cat Clinic                                                  Must have initial exam first and be current on vaccinations which could run up to $190.  Employee asked if researcher wanted a 2 paw or 4 paw. A two paw declaw is $386.44 and they use a scalpel.

19- Animal Clinic at New Lenox                                               After researcher asked for the price of a spay and if there’s anything else they recommend or that people get for their cats, employee said, “If you are thinking of declawing then you can do it at the same time.”   A spay/declaw is $294 plus $89 for blood work and they use a scalpel.

20- Metropolitan Veterinary Center Chicago                  Researcher asked for the price of a spay and then asked if they do declaws. Employee said yes they do and that they recommend doing them at the same time as the spay. Employee asked, “Would you want all four paws or just two?”  A 4 paw declaw and spay is around $757. They said they use a scalpel and that all their doctors do declaws regularly.

21- Mahomet Animal Hospital                                         Employee said they do declaws but that you have to make an exam because they are a Cat Friendly and certified low stress hospital so legally they have to tell you the options like Feliscratch and how the procedure goes. After the exam, if you still want to get the declaw done, then you can. The employee asked, “Were you looking to do just the front feet?” Researcher said all four, and they said an all four feet declaw and spay is around $375 and their vet uses a scalpel.

22- Hoffman Estates Animal Hospital                             Researcher asked if they do declaws and employee said they do declaws as long as they cat is under 1 year old. Employee asked if researcher wanted a price for an all 4 paw declaw and said a 4 paw declaw and spay is $798.57 but then said they made a mistake, they have a combo price for both and that is $577.50.

23- North Shore Family Pet Hospital   (Also an AAHA hospital)          The employee said that they can do declaws but that they don’t like to do them a lot and they prefer not to do them. They said if there’s a way to get around doing them, they will, and say it is removing the last knuckle. They mentioned nail trims as an alternative and said an exam cost $35 and the doctor will talk about other options.

Researcher asked about a price for a declaw, employee said, “just the front is $130, just the back is $160, and all four paw declaw is $235. ” They said you need to make an appointment to see if the cat is healthy enough for the procedure. They said that Dr Bannow does the declaws and she is very familiar with cats and loves them.

Link- North Shore Family Pet website with declaws after spay/neuters

24- Whitney Veterinary Hospital in Peoria                                                      After researcher asked for the price of a spay and said that they are a first time cat owner and is there anything else that people have done or that they recommend to have done for their cats and employee said, “Like a declaw?” Researcher said they would like a price for a declaw and employee said they do 2 paw or 4 paw declaws.

A 4 paw declaw/spay is $537.90. A 2 paw declaw/spay is $509.90. They said that they have 4 vets who do declaws regularly. They said you need to schedule an exam to make sure the cat is healthy enough for the procedures. When asked if there are any long term negative problems after a declaw and they said the paws will be temporarily sensitive for a period of time and that it is extremely unlikely that there will be any permanent damage or disfigurement.

 25- Mid North Animal Hospital in Chicago                Researcher asked for the price of a spay and then if they do declaws. Employee said, “We can do a declaw as well at the same time.” They only do front paws and a spay/declaw is $923- $1024. Their vet uses a laser and they said it helps with their recovery and is less bleeding. They said their vet does a declaw around once or twice a month. They said you need to schedule an exam to make sure the cat is healthy enough for the surgeries and to go over any concerns you might have.

26-Pet Wellness Center of Southern Illinois in Effingham

They said, “We usually just do the front but if you want all four you have to see a doctor.” They said you don’t have to have an exam for a 2 paw declaw, their 2 vets do them all the time, and they use the clippers to do the declaws.                 

27- Family Pet Animal Hospital                                                 Must have exam ($69) first, doctor will quote cost but will suggest other options first like scratching post, they declaw as a last option because it’s very painful. I asked what technique her doctor used, the employee said “kinda like little scissors.”

28- Bethany Animal Hospital in Sycamore                     Employee said that just the front claws is $443 with a spay. They said that they do a fair amount of declaws and quite a few throughout the year. They use a laser and said they heal a lot easier. A four paw declaw and spay is $492

29-West Loop Veterinary Care in Chicago                             Their voice recording said they are members of AAFP, AAHA, AVMA, and IVMA.

They said that a spay and 4 paw declaw is around $1300 and a 2 paw spay and declaw is around $849-980. Researcher asked if their doctors do declaws regularly and employee said yes.

 30- Bellson Animal Hospital in Columbia                             They said that you have to get a $45 exam to see if the cat is healthy enough for the procedures. They said they do declaws but they don’t recommend them because they are painful and if the cat gets out they have no defenses. They said that their 3 doctors do declaw and can do it at the same time as the spay.

31- Clyde’s Animal Clinic in Mattoon                              Employee said that a spay and 2 paw declaw is $235 and a spay and 4 paw declaw is $250. They said it is $85 extra for a laser declaw and there is “less pain, less swelling, less time for recovery, and smoother.” They said their vet does declaws often and that long term the cat would be ok.

32- Naperville Animal Hospital in Naperville                                                   After researcher asked for the price of a spay and said they are a first time cat owner and is there anything else that people have done or that they recommend to have done for their cats and employee said, “The only other thing is if you wanted a declaw.” A 2 paw declaw and spay is $329 and just a 2 paw declaw is more at $331.   Employee said their vet is good at them and she does them regularly. It costs $165 more for a laser declaw and they said that a laser declaw is less invasive, less bleeding, it doesn’t hurt , and there’s less infection.

33) Blum Animal Hospital                                                                                                        The employee said that they do declaws as a last resort and the vet will discuss other options in the exam and make the best recommendations. They use a scalpel for their declaws.

34-Skycrest Animal Clinic
Employee said “they haven’t done a declaw in awhile.” An exam & 2 paw declaw is $550. Employee said they use “old school scalpel”.

35) Teegarden Veterinary Clinic PC in Washington                After the researcher asked for the price of a spay and said they are a first time cat owner and is there anything else that people do or that they recommend to have done for their cats and employee said, “Some people do a declaw at the same time.”   Researcher asked for the price of a declaw and the employee asked, “Just a front declaw?”

A spay and 4 paw declaw is $460 and a 4 paw declaw is $380-$400. They said that they have two doctors who do declaws and they use a scalpel and that they do them all the time. They said you have to have an exam for the cats that cost $49.85 to see if they are healthy enough for the procedures.


 Illinois No Declaw Practices

36- Your Pets Wellness                                                             They do not declaw cats and their employee said their doctors, “don’t like to do them anymore, they suggest clipping the nails and using nail caps.”

37- Northern Illinois Cat Clinic                                                  They do not declaw. Offered to make a consultation appointment to address other options. Employee mentioned nail caps.

38- Hope Veterinary Care in Springfield                                  They do not declaw cats. Employee said that declawing is so hard on a cat because you are taking off appendages and they can have ghost pain and arthritis. They said they can help with other options and mentioned trimming nails and Soft Paws. They said that the recovery from a declaw is long and the cats often become more aggressive and bite. They said that the declaws are for the cat owners benefit and not for the cat’s benefit.


 CAT FRIENDLY Practices in Iowa

1-Scott Country Animal Hospital

Researcher asked for the price of a declaw. Employee asked, “Are we doing the front or all four?” They said that all their doctors do declaws regularly, they use a scalpel, and an all 4 paw declaw is around $450.

2- Adel Veterinary Clinic

Researcher asked for the price of a declaw and employee asked, “Do you just want a declaw? They said they usually do 2 or 4 paws and a 2 paw declaw is $427.75. A 4 paw declaw is $448.05. They said that their 3 vets use a scalpel and they do declaws all the time.

3- Avondale Veterinary Healthcare Complex

Employee asked, “Do you want the 2 way or 4 way?” They said that they use a laser, all their vets do declaws regularly, and a 4 paw declaw is $443.02.

4- Purr-sonal Care Cat Clinic- More about this practice Purr-sonal Care Cat Clinic story  Facebook post of a declawed kitty  

 5- Animal Doctors Veterinary Clinic                                            A declaw for a cat over 6 months is $172.90 and they say that they don’t recommend 4 paw declaws but they will do them. A four paw declaw is $262.67. They said that all their doctors perform the declaw procedure and that they do them regularly. They use a scalpel.

6- Ingersoll Animal Hospital

Employee asked if the price is for 2 paws or 4 paws. A 4 paw declaw is $375, all four vets do declaws regularly, and they use a scalpel.

7- Heartland Animal Hospital

Employee asked, “Are you looking for 2 paws or 4?” A 4 paw laser declaw is $270 and they said all their vets do declaws regularly.

8- Pipestone Veterinary Service.                                    Researcher asked for the price of a declaw and employee asked if they wanted a two paw declaw.

Employee said you have to have an exam first with a doctor who will go over everything with you and the pros and cons of declawing and then you can decide. They said they have done 4 paw declaws.

9-Taylor Veterinary Hospital

They said that you have to have an exam to talk to a doctor first because there’s lots of controversy about declawing. They said that if you talk to the doctor and you want to do the declaw, then you can still get it done.

10- Kimberly Crest Veterinary Hospital

Employee said that they are an AAHA hospital which means they follow protocols. A 4 paw declaw by scalpel is $1196. Employee said that you can try trimming the cat’s nails or scratching posts or Feliway if you want.

11-Animal Care Clinic West and Metro Cat Hospital

Employee asked, “2 paw or 4 paw?” A 4 paw laser declaw is $371. They said that their 3 vets do declaws regularly and that the older cats have more pressure on their toes so it takes longer to heal.


Cat Friendly Practices in Michigan

1) VCA Woodland Animal Hospital in Kentwood.

They said you have to bring in your cat for an exam and the doctor will determine the price for the declaw and if it is in the best interest to declaw. If everything looks good and the cat is healthy the employee said that the odds are in your favor that they will do the declaw.

2) VCA Allendale Animal Hospital                                          They said that they use a scalpel and over a year old is $300 and under is $270. They said they will do a 4 paw declaw with a doctor’s approval.

 3) Kentwood Cat Clinic in Kentwood (Same company as the next practice, Cat Clinic North.)

When the researcher asked for the price of a declaw the employee asked, “Just the front?”

If the cat is over 8 months you need an exam with the doctor so they can determine if a declaw is ok to do. Declaw is around $600 and they use a laser.

Another employee was asked about the Gold Preventative Care Kitten Plan w/Front Declaw Spay/Neuter. The employee said that yes a declaw is included and its usually done at age 5-6 months. They said that they use a laser and it is, “very nice for them.” They said the laser cauterizes and there is less risk of nerve damage, less risk of infection since it sanitizes the skin, there is quicker healing, and quicker recovery. They said their doctors are skilled at the laser declaws and have done a lot of them and do them regularly. They said that it is, “a lot easier on them when done as a kitten and they bounce back from it, just like kids do. “

4) Cat Clinic North in Grand Rapids

They have laser declaw listed on their website in their Preventive Care Gold Kitten Plan. It’s $75 enrollment fee and $69.95 a month. They said that you will need to go to their Kentwood location (Kentwood Cat Clinic) for the laser declaw and said it helps with healing. The employee said they are the type of clinic that tries to sway people away from a declaw because it is amputation of the digits. They mentioned some of the humane alternatives like scratching posts and nail trims but said if you want the declaw, they can do it.Link to Preventative Care Plan for a Kitten with laser declaw

 5) Midland Animal Clinic

The employee asked, “ Are you just looking for 2 or 4 paws?” They use a scalpel and a 4 paw declaw is $221.

 6) Serenity Animal Hospital and Pet Resort in Sterling Heights

They need to see the cat first for a $45 exam to see if it’s healthy enough for the procedure. They only do 2 paw declaws and the cost is between $260-$405. They use a scalpel for the declaw procedure.

7) Cedar Creek Veterinary Clinic in Williamston

The employee asked, “Is it going to be 2 paw or 4?” They use a scalpel and the 4 paw declaw is $221

8) Exclusively Cats Veterinary Hospital in Waterford

You need to schedule an exam with a doctor to discuss the alternatives and it’s up to the doctor’s discretion if they will proceed with the declaw.

9) Cat Care PC of Rochester Hills
Their website says that declawing is a “Routine Surgery.”

10) Red Cedar Animal Hospital

Employee asked, “Are you looking for 4 paws or just 2?” A four paw declaw is around $412 and they use a scalpel.

11) DePorre Veterinary Hospital

Have to schedule an exam to discuss a treatment plan first before the declaw. They use a scalpel for the declaws. They are also a Fear Free practice.

 12) Wyoming Animal Hospital

They asked, “Do you need the front ones done?” A four paw declaw is between $320-350 and they use a laser.

13) Eastown Veterinary Clinic                                              Employee asked, “Are you looking for the front claws or all four?”  A 4 paw declaw for a 1 ½ year old cat is between $885-975 and they use a laser.

14) Rockford Animal Hospital                                          Employee asked, “Are you looking for the front 2 or all 4?” They said that a 4 paw declaw for a cat that is over 5 lbs is $298.80. Said they do laser therapy for up to a month depending on how they scar and the cat might have to be on steroids. They just suggest doing the front paws for bigger cats so they can have something to rest on.

15) Frankenmuth-Birch Run Veterinary Hospital   (Also an AAHA and FEAR FREE Hospital)                                    Employee asked, “Do you want just the front feet?” A 4 paw declaw is $289.50 and they use a scalpel.

 16) Ottawa Animal Hospital in Holland                               Employee asked, “Are you looking for the front feet or all four?” They use a scalpel and a 4 paw declaw is $521.

17) West Arbor Animal Hospital in Ann Arbor. (Also an AAHA Hospital)   They use a scalpel and only do front declaws. They cost $468.11. They say you have to get an exam for the cat and if it’s healthy enough for the anesthesia they can do the procedure the same day.

18) Columbia Animal Clinic in Brooklyn

Employee asked, “Are you looking for just the front or all four?” They use a laser and say an all 4 paw declaw is between $290- $320.

19) Kittys Doctor in Grosse Pointe Woods

They said you have to have an exam to see if the doctor would do the declaw and said they won’t declaw a cat over 1 year old because there or too many side effects like limping and behavioral problems. The employee asked, “Do you want a front declaw only?” A 2 paw declaw is $185 and an all 4 paw declaw is around $240

20) Animal Hospital in Livonia.

They use a laser to declaw and a 2 paw declaw is between $300 – $460. They say they typically just do 2 paw declaws unless there’s a health reason like severe diabetes or other health issues.

21) Animal Medical Center of Wyoming in Wyoming.

They say some doctors there use the scalpel and others the clippers. They say you have to have an exam to see if the cat is healthy enough for the procedure. They said that they don’t advocate for declaws because it is painful and there are other options and they do it as a last resort. Employee asked if you wanted the price for a two or all four declaw. Price for a 4 paw declaw is $483. They said they have 6 doctors and all 6 do declaw procedures.

22) Bay Area Pet Hospital in Traverse City

They said they normally just do the front declaws and use a scalpel and it costs around $360. For a 4 paw declaw you have to ask the doctor and sometimes they can do it but they prefer to just do the front paws.

23) Gull Lake Animal Hospital in Richland

They asked, “Do you want just the front or all four?” They use a laser and an all four declaw is around $400. They said they do declaws regularly.

24) Oakland Hills Veterinary Hospital in Troy (Also an AAHA hospital)

They said that their vets use a scalpel and they’ve done quite a few declaws. You have to get an exam first for the cat to get a price for the declaw. They said both vets do declaws.

25) Northern Michigan Veterinary Hospital in Williamsburg

The employee asked, “just the front?” They say that Dr Peck surgically removes the nail. A 4 paw declaw is $440. They said they do around one declaw a week.

26) Harborfront Hospital for Animals in Spring Lake

The employee asked, “ just the front declaw?” They use a laser and a 4 paw declaw is $390. They said you have to schedule an exam to see if the cat is healthy enough for the procedure and if it is then they can do the procedure that day.

27) Cascade Hospital for Animals  and 28) Breton Village Animal Clinic

CASCADE HOSPITAL IS ALSO AN AAHA HOSPITAL

(These two clinics are the same company. Their website says that they are the largest facility for small animal care in metro Grand Rapids and they have a large staff) 4 different employees gave the following information.

The researcher asked for the price of a spay for their cat and the employee asked, “Are we also doing a 2 paw declaw?” Employee said that they use a laser which is safer. They said that all 12 vets do them and the declaws are a pretty common procedure there.

After the researcher asked for a declaw price the employee asked, “Is that for 4 paws or 2 paws?” A 4 paw laser declaw for a cat over 6 months is $491-$521. The employee said that their vets are the brightest from vet school who rotate weekly on surgeries. They said that they consider declaws a regular and routine procedure. They said that the laser is less painful, quicker recovery, and less medications needed.

Researcher called for the price of a declaw and the employee asked, “Do you want 2 paws or 4 paws?” They said that all their vets perform declaws and it’s a pretty routine procedure there.

Researcher asked for the price of a declaw for a 6 month old and 1 year old cat and another employee asked, “Are we thinking just 2 paws or all 4 paws?” They said that an all four paw declaw is between $445-$475 and said you can bring the cats in and the doctor will exam your kitty to see if it is healthy enough to go under anesthesia and if they are, you can leave the kitties have the procedure done the same day. They recommend blood work but it isn’t mandatory. They said Dr Paplawsky does lots of the surgeries and they can schedule the appointment with him.

Here is an ad on google search, elocalprofiles, for Cascade Hospital for Animals.



29) Veterinary Care Specialists in Milford.

Employee asked, “Just the front declaw?” An all 4 paw declaw is around $215. They said you have you have to have a consult with the doctor first and under 6 months is ok but old is harder on the cat. They use a scalpel for their declaws.

30) Madison Veterinary Hospital in Madison Heights

Employee asked, “Two paw or four paw?” They use a laser and you have to have an evaluation by a doctor to get the 4 paw declaw.

31) River Rock Animal Hospital in Midland.

They said that a declaw is taking out the first digit and they try to find alternatives if possible. They use a laser and a declaw is around $400. As long as your cat is healthy enough for the procedure, they will do it.

32) Blackman Animal Clinic in Jackson

Researcher asked for the price of a declaw. Employee asked, “Front or all four?” They use a scalpel and a 4 paw declaw is $171.

33) Companion Animal Hospital in Traverse City

Employee was asked about their Companion Care Plan w/Front Declaw and Spay/Neuter. They said that they, “try to stay away” from doing declaws but if you’ve tried everything and are going to give it back to a shelter then they will do it. They said that it’s an amputation and there is always a chance that the cat will stand a little different. They said that all three of their vets do them regularly and have done multiples. They recommended Dr Rebecca De Simone for the declaw after researcher asked who the vet is that is most skilled at it.

Another employee said that they need to see the cat first and do declaws as a last option and want to discuss other options first. They use a scalpel to declaw.

Link to Companion Animal Hospital Care Plans with declaw Companion Care Plan with declaw

34) Animal Health Clinic in Fenton    They said that they don’t do declaws on cats over a year old.

35) Town Center Veterinary Associates in Howell                 They use a scalpel and a 2 paw declaw is $470.

36)  Grayling Hospital for Animals in Grayling                          A two paw declaw for a cat over 1 year old is $209.40. They have two vets and one uses a scalpel and the other uses a clipper. They said that both vets do declaws quite regularly.


NO-DECLAW CAT FRIENDLY PRACTICES IN MICHIGAN

37) Red Barn Cat Clinic in Richland.

They don’t declaw cats. They said that you can have a free exam and they can go over other humane alternatives to declawing and information about it.

38) Cat Doctor of Monroe

They don’t declaw cats. They say they believe in alternatives like Soft Paws and scratching posts, there’s proof that it’s bad for a cat, they’ve had to repair the paws of declawed cats.

39) Veterinary Health Center in Saginaw

They don’t declaw cats. They said that they send cat owners home with brochures about it and the alternatives. They said that AAFP doesn’t recommend declawing.

 40) Cats Veterinary in Clinton Township

They don’t declaw cats. They say it’s not good medicine to do them and that it hurts cats and doesn’t help them. They say that research and science and studies show that it can cause chronic pain, behavioral issues, and by nature a cat is not supposed to walk like that. Too many risks

41) Family Pet Practice in Waterford

They don’t declaw cats. They said that it can cause physical and behavioral problems for cats. They see a lot of declawed cats with arthritis. They said they can help with nail trims, soft paws, and other options. They said the owner of a declawed cat was going to euthanize the cat because of medical and behavioral problems so they took in the kitty as their clinic cat.

42) Arbor Pointe Veterinary Hospital-  Also an AAHA Hospital

They don’t declaw cats. They said declawing is unethical and causes behavioral and neurological issues. They said it causes arthritis and other issues.

43) Riverside Cat Hospital 

They don’t declaw cats. They said it is removing the last digit and it can lead to nerve damage and is painful. They said there are other options like nail trims, nail caps.


NEBRASKA CAT FRIENDLY PRACTICES

1- 24th Street Animal Clinic

A 2 paw declaw is between $125-$155 their doctors use a scalpel and the employee said that all their doctors do declaws regularly and that it’s a normal thing they do.

 2- Ridgeview Animal Hospital in Omaha

Employee said all their vets do declaws once or twice a week or more. A two paw declaw for a cat that is under 8 lbs is $254 and over 8 lbs is $300.  A 4 paw declaw for a cat under 8 lbs is $305.


New Jersey Cat Friendly Practices

1) VCA Allenwood Animal Hospital

Researcher asked for the price of a declaw and the employee asked, “How many paws were you looking for?” They said you need to schedule an exam to see if the cat is healthy enough for the procedures, their 3 doctors use a scalpel for the declaws, and the employee said they do them very often.

2) Carnegie Cat Clinic Inc. in Princeton. AAHA hospital and Gold level Cat Friendly practice.

The employee said that you have to make an exam first to see if your cat is healthy enough for the declaw procedure. They said that two doctors do the declaws and Dr Terry does them pretty frequently.” They don’t use laser and employee didn’t know if it was a clipper or scalpel.

3) Animal Hospital of Sussex County

They said that their vet does declaws regularly, they are very painful, and sometimes the cats get a fever afterwards. They said a 2 paw declaw is around $500-$700.

 4) Oradell Animal Hospital

They declaw cats. Researcher asked for the price of a declaws and the employee asked, “Just the two or four?” Another employee said that a lot of vets don’t do them but they still do declaws and it might be banned in New Jersey. A two paw declaw is $196 and that doesn’t include the exam and blood work.

5) Red Roof Fort Lee Animal Hospital
Employee said that you need to schedule an exam to see if the cat can be fixed by behavior management and the doctor will discuss the options with you. They mentioned that they respect the patient and ask why would the cat need that surgery. The employee said the cats become handicapped after the declaws.

Another employee said that you have to come in for exam and if the cat is healthy enough then they can do a neuter/declaw. Researcher asked if they can do the neuter/declaw at the same time and the employee said, “of course.”

6) Berkeley Veterinary Center in Bayville- Gold Level

They declaw cats and a spay/declaw is $1072.42. The employee said that both vets are very good at declaws but they don’t do them “super often.”

7) Cats Exclusive Veterinary Hospital Gold level practice

This hospital was surveyed in my 2016 New Jersey declawing study. Here are the results: Declaw is $826.   Declaw/neuter/microchip pain meds is $981 including Purina’s Yesterday’s News cat litter, that you need to use for a week they say.

When asked if their doctor was skilled at declaws, employee said, “Dr Pla definity does a whole bunch of those” and they go home the same day, they don’t go home with any bandages, and they say they send you home with Purina’s Yesterdays News. They said that he uses a laser and it , “cauterizes the nail as it cuts through it,  there should be less bleeding, no bandages, and quicker recovery time.”   When asked if the doctor takes the nail, they put me on hold and came back and said, “Basically if you look at your finger, it’s from the nail to the first knuckle which is a small part of the bone.”Cat owner said they read stories online that scared them but they thought if they were true, then veterinarians wouldn’t do them if they were harmful to my cats. Employee said,”Yea, he does quite a few of those.” Asked if there are any problems with declawing, “no we haven’t seen any.”

8) St Francis Veterinary Center in Woolwich Township

They said that you need to make an appointment with a doctor to examine your cat and have a consultation about the declaw and it is determined on a case by case basis if they will go ahead with your cat’s declaw. More about this Cat Friendly and AAHA practice in a story I did last year about them. Saint Francis story

New York Cat Friendly Practices

1) Colonial Veterinary Hospital in Ithaca

They don’t declaw cats and said it’s not something they recommend and it’s a painful procedure.

2) Pleasant Valley Animal Hospital

They don’t declaw cats. The employee said that it’s not a procedure that’s done much anymore because it’s a form of mutilation since it is removing the cat’s toes.

3) Amherst Small Animal Hospital

They don’t declaw cats. The employee said that most vets don’t do declaws anymore. They said it’s the amputation of the cat’s toes and they recommend other alternatives like scratching posts.

 

4) Creature Comforts Animal Hospital in Poughkeepsie- Gold level

They don’t declaw cats. The employee said it is against hospital policy as a Cat Friendly practice.

 

5) Briar Patch Veterinary in Ithaca- Gold Level

They do not declaw cats. They said it is actually quite painful and involves removing the first digit on the cat’s paw.

 

6) Cayuga Veterinary Services in Auburn- Gold level

Employee said that they generally don’t do declaws and don’t recommend it. They recommend trimming their nails and teaching them to scratch in other places. They said you can make an appointment with a doctor to discuss it and they do around one declaw a year. A spay declaw is $466-536.

7) Four Paws Animal Hospital

 Employee said that their doctor isn’t comfortable doing declaws and it’s not the most humane procedure since it is taking off the last bone in the cat’s paw. They said that on rare occasions they might do it if there is an owner with an auto-immune problem or the cat might lose its home but they recommended finding another practice since the doctor isn’t comfortable with doing declaws.

 8) Newburgh Veterinary Hospital – AAHA hospital

The employee said they do front declaws and can do it at the same time as the spay. A spay/front declaw is $340 and they use a scalpel. The employee said that they don’t do a ton of them because people don’t ask for them as much anymore. They said a declaw is painful so the cat stays overnight.

9) The Cat Doctors

They said that you have to come in for an exam to discuss the alternatives and that a declaw can be traumatic for the cat. They said that they don’t do too many anymore but that if the person has medical issues, they are sensitive to those needs. A declaw/spay is $800 and they use a scalpel. They suggest if you want a laser declaw you can go to Fairport Animal Hospital which is an AAHA hospital. (On Fairportanimalhospital.com it says, “Our surgeons not only perform spay and neuter procedures, we also carry out; cruciate surgeries, tumor removals, declaws, exploratory surgeries, remove bladder stones, cesarean sections and necessary reconstructive surgery. This is just a short list of the surgeries we can perform.”

10) The Animal Hospitable

They declaw cats but said that the doctor doesn’t like to do them. They said you have to schedule an exam and the doctor will go over the benefits and risks of the declaw. They said if the cat is healthy enough after the exam then they can do the declaw.

 11) Animal Medical of New City

Employee said that they can do a declaw at the same time as a spay. They said that they have a disclaimer and you have to have an exam to have a conversation about declawing with the doctor. They said there are so many options to declawing and it’s a radical procedure, like amputating the last part of your fingers, and the cats have to live with that for the rest of their lives.

 12) Fairmount Animal Hospital

They do declaws but said you have to have it approved by a doctor in an exam. They said that a spay/declaw is around $500 and that they don’t do many declaws.

 13) Just Cats Veterinary Clinic Guilderland office GOLD level

The employee said their two doctors do declaws regularly and use a laser. A spay/declaw is $545.

14) Sand Creek Animal Hospital – Gold level in Albany

A spay/laser declaw is $745 and a laser declaw is $580. They said that the laser helps with the blood loss. They said it is not a simple procedure since they have to cut part of the toe and not just the nail.

CAT FRIENDLY PRACTICES IN OHIO

1) Ohio State University Veterinary Medical Center – Gold Level CAT FRIENDLY and AAHA hospital

They use board certified surgeons to do the declaws. A spay/declaw with a scalpel is $935-$1140. A spay/declaw with a laser is $1245-$1455. The employee said that they regularly perform declaws and it’s a personal choice. You have to have an exam for $140 to see if the cat is healthy enough for the surgeries.

 

2) Northwest Animal Hospital in Columbus

The employee said they have two vets who declaw cats quite regularly. They said that they use a scalpel and only do the front paws because the cats need their back claws in case they get out. They said that cats only scratch furniture with their front claws. A spay/declaw is around $700.

3) Norwalk Veterinary Medical Center

They don’t give out prices for procedures on the phone.

You have to have an exam for $49 to see if the cat is healthy enough for the procedures. They do declaw procedures and don’t use a laser.

4) Town and Country Veterinary Clinic

A spay and 2 paw declaw is $395. A 2 paw declaw is $383. The employee said, “We do declaws all the time.” They use a scalpel.

5) Avery Animal Hospital

Researcher spoke with a vet tech who said all of their 4 doctors do declaws, they use a scalpel, and said they are good at them. They said that they don’t do them frequently anymore. When asked if there are any problems with the declaw the vet tech said typically no but that some cats do limp.

6) Cats Only Veterinary Clinic

When asked for a price for a spay and then asked if they do declawing also, the employee said they do declaws and recommend doing them at the same time as the spay. They said their vet does multiples declaws and normally uses a radio surgical unit which they said is way more accurate, it cauterizes which makes less bleeding, and cuts the healing time. A spay/declaw is $910.

7) Purrfect Cat Care Feline Medical Center

Employee said that they don’t recommend declawing. They use a laser to declaw. They said that recent studies show that declawing does more harm than good. They said you have to have an exam and the doctor will go over other options and decide what’s best. They said that usually the only options where they will do it is if there is an immune-compromised person.

 

8) Bigger Road Veterinary Clinic of Springboro

They said they can do the declaw at the same time as the spay and asked, “ Would you just want to do the front?”

Researcher asked to do all four paws and the employee said, “Typically we just recommend the front paws.” They said if you are worried about the cat scratching furniture then just do the front declaw. They said their vets use a laser and it reduces pain and helps with healing time, all of their vets have done many declaws, and they don’t do as many as they used to because people are “phasing that out.” A spay/laser declaw is around $700.


9) Animal Clinic of Chardon AAHA

They don’t declaw cats. The employee said that declawing is a “very, very invasive procedure and it’s the removal of the first digit.” They said that being a Cat Friendly practice, they recommend cat trees, pheromones, and behavioral counseling. They said that you can deter the scratching in the area you don’t want and then redirect it in other areas. They said that after they stopped offering it some of their clients went to other practices to have their cats declawed and the cats died after the procedure. They said that being Cat Friendly and declawing cats don’t go hand and hand.

10) North Royalton Animal Hospital – AAHA

They don’t do declaws and said they believe that there are other ways to deal with behavioral issues than declawing.

11) Just Cats Hospital in South Euclid

Researcher spoke with the vet, Dr Pizzuli, who said they don’t do declaws. She said that it has been proven to cause behavioral problems and long term pain and many are taken to shelters because of . She said a paper came out from AAFP that showed these issues with declaws and they didn’t want to contribute to those problems. Dr Pizzuli said that they are happy to help with any issues in regards to scratching issues.


CAT FRIENDLY Practices in Texas

1) VCA Park Cities Animal Hospital in Dallas

Employee was asked if they can do a declaw with a spay and said, “ We certainly are able to do the declaw.”

Declaw/spay is around $1000. They also give an antibiotic injection and send you home with Purina’s Yesterday’s News litter.

They said that they have 3 vets who do declaws relatively frequently and they use a scalpel.

They said that you can bring the cat in for an exam on the morning of the procedure. They said in 10-14 days the kitty is back to normal.

2) VCA Castle Hill Companion Animal Hospital

Employee said that they do declaws but their laser isn’t working so they currently aren’t performing them and aren’t sure if and when it will be fixed. Employee said, “If you do get it done, make sure it’s with a laser.”

 

3) Kelly Hill Country Animal Hospital

They said that they do declaws and there’s a little discount if you do it at the same time as a spay/neuter. A spay/ laser declaw is $681.

They said that their vet does them pretty regularly. They said that the laser is less painful, less swelling, and speeds up the healing process.

4) Kyle Animal Hospital

They said that you have to make an appointment for an exam and to see if the cat is a candidate for the declaw. They said that not all cats can be declawed. A declaw is $120-160.

5) Kitten to Cat Hospital in South Lake

They said that they do a laser declaw and their vet does a fair amount of declaws. A spay/declaw is $805. They said that they only do declaw with spay/neuters and usually in 14-21 days the cat will be healed.

6) Riverchase Animal Hospital

The spay/declaw is $518. They said that both doctors are experienced at declaws, they use a scalpel, and they do them regularly.

7) Highland Park Animal Hospital

The employee said that a spay/declaw is $650-750. All of their vets do declaws but that Dr Dixon and Dr Vargo do the most declaws and are their cat specialists. They said that they surgically remove the nail where it meets the finger. They said that in 10-14 days the kitty will be back to normal.

 8) Lexington Blvd Animal Hospital

When researcher asked for the price of a spay/declaw, the employee asked, “Just the front two?” A spay/4 paw declaw is $724 and the cat will stay for 3 nights. They said their vet who does the declaws, Dr Stanley, is a feline specialist and she uses a scalpel for the declaws.

9) Northern Oaks Bird and Animal Hospital- AAHA

Employee said that a spay/declaw is $550. They said that either of their vets are good at the declaws. They said that the cat won’t have their claws there to do the damage and the cat usually doesn’t know anything has happened after the declaw. They use the guillotine clippers for the declaws and a laser for healing after the declaw.

 10) Advanced Pet Care of Clearlake

The employee said that their spay/declaw is $700-$750, their vet, Dr Rush uses a laser and does them regularly. They said that they use a laser and it cauterizes when it cuts and it helps with inflammation and they feel better. They said that there’s a vet tech surgery assistant helping and they have a good team. They give a pain injection which lasts 3 days and an antibiotic that lasts 2 weeks.

11) Bent Tree Animal Hospital

The employee said that a spay/declaw is $404.40, their vet, Dr Kimball uses a scalpel and does declaws regularly.

12) The Cats Meow Veterinary

Employee says that their vets do laser declaws regularly. A spay/declaw is $585, the cat won’t have to have bandages, the laser takes off the claws so that there’s no bleeding, and they use 3 different modes of pain meds.

 13) Perky Paws Pet Hospital

The employee said that a spay/declaw is $305 and their vet, Dr Farmer, uses a scalpel. They said that she’s a Cat Friendly doctor and has extra skills when it comes to cats.

They said a declaw is the same as chopping off a finger and the cat will have to stay overnight. They recommend getting the pain medication for $48 but it is optional.

 14) Zippivet in Austin

They don’t declaw cats. The employee said that it’s not a good practice to declaw cats and that it’s horrible because it’s cutting off the ends of their little toes. They said to look it up and read about it. They said it can cause arthritis and pain for the rest of their life. Also, the cat has to go through pain for weeks from the procedure. Employee said that they don’t know of any vet in Texas that will do it. They talked about the alternatives like getting scratching poles and a product called Feliscratch which directs the cat to scratch on the appropriate things.

 

15) Feline Medical Center in Houston

They don’t declaw cats. The employee said that they stopped because it causes the cats a lot of long term issues like arthritis and behavioral issues. They talked about the alternatives like nail trims, soft paws, and giving the cats the appropriate scratching options. They said that they can help with tips and training if needed.

16) Metro Paws Animal Hospital in Dallas

They don’t declaw cats. The employee said that they advise against it and their vets aren’t comfortable doing them. They talked about the alternatives like getting proper scratching posts.

 

17) VCA Oso Creek Animal Hospital in Corpus Christie

The employee said that they no longer do them unless there’s a medical reason for the cat. Another employee said that they don’t declaw cats because it’s a company policy. They said that it’s a controversy because some people declaw their cats because they are scratching furniture or because they are aggressive.

 


October 2017
As you are probably aware, the AAFP recently revised its previous 2015 position statement on declawing to strongly oppose declawing (onychectomy) as an elective procedure. To support this change, we added a new criterion to the Cat Friendly Practice® program Checklist. 

1.16 The practice must educate clients on normal scratching behaviors and options for cats to exhibit appropriate scratching behavior in the home.

All new and renewing CFPs will need to meet the new criterion. A toolkit of resources has been created to assist veterinary teams in educating cat caregivers: It’s Natural to Scratch flyer and Social Media image, Guiding Clients on Living with a Clawed Cat summary flyer, Claw Counseling: Helping Clients Live Alongside Cats with Claws article, 2017 AAFP Position Statement on Declawing, and Alternatives to Declawing client brochure. 

We are supporting a path of change that focuses on educating veterinary teams and cat caregivers in an effort to help them learn and understand in order to make a future impact that sees lasting results. Veterinary teams at Cat Friendly Practices can access this online toolkit of resources.”
A Declawing Survey of Michigan Veterinary Practices in West Michigan

A Declawing Survey of Michigan Veterinary Practices in West Michigan

August 2018

PLEASE TAKE 20 SECONDS AND SIGN MY PETITION. LET’S GET TO 50,000 SIGNATURES! MY PETITION TO THESE MICHIGAN DECLAWING VETS

Most declawing vet practices use, recommend, and/or sell Purina’s Yesterdays News litter. Let’s try to inspire Purina to help us end this inhumane procedure with some of the millions they are making from it.  Purina Petition

I reached out to these 36 veterinary practices in Michigan to ask them if they were interested in helping us educate the public and their clients in their area about declawing and about the humane alternatives.

I received only 4 replies and none of them were interested in helping us.

Bryon Center Animal Hospital said, “Thank you, however, we are not interested..”

Preslesnik Animal Hospital wrote back, “Good Afternoon,
We do educate pet owners on the alternatives to declawing, however we do provide this service when the training doesn’t work. We use laser for the removal and laser therapy to promote quick healing with less pain and inflammation. The few cats that need this procedure do great!
Hope you have a great day from all of us,”

Animal Wellness Center of White Cloud, (This is one of the practices that declaws many of the kitties for the animal rescue) “We do have in our clinic numerous pamphlets and even on our website alternates to declawing. At this time Dr. Sam is out of office and can not reply, if you would like to visit our website by following the link, https://www.whitecloudvet.com/feline-education.html and see if there is any additional information we should add, please let us know. We appreciate your thoughts.”

( I reached out to them again for a couple follow-up questions but received no reply)

West Michigan Spay and Neuter Clinic.

“You are correct in that we do not offer declaw surgeries. Although we understand and appreciate your desire to educate others about the truths involved in the declaw process, we
do not wish to be involved in a film or to hand out brochures concerning this.

As a nonprofit, we try to keep away from promoting services that we do not provide and that are seen as controversial to some in our community.

Thank you for reaching out to us, we wish you the best.   Sincerely,   Kim Patterson, Director
West Michigan Spay and Neuter Clinic”


This survey of veterinary practices in western Michigan will show you why this state needs a lot of education about declawing and the humane options. These are the “veterinary partners” of an animal rescue in Michigan. This animal rescue declaws 100’s of kitties each year BEFORE they put them up for adoption.

Please sign up on my mailing list.  I will send out ways that you personally can help us educate the public about the awful truth about declawing and the easy, humane alternatives like scratching posts, horizontal scratchers, nail trims, Soft Paws, Feliway and Feliscratch, etc. CitytheKitty.com


The Method

We surveyed these 36 veterinary practices in Michigan to see how they address declawing.

 The general questioning went like this:

The practice was called by a researcher posing as a first time cat owner who was adopting a kitten and needed it spay or neutered. They had concerns about the declawing procedure and asked for a vet who was skilled at declawing. They asked if it was a regular and routine procedure that the vet does. They asked if there was anything else that they recommend or people have done at the same time as a spay or neuter. Many of the employees at these practices mentioned a declaw when that question was asked.

There were a few variants on the questioning, but essentially the researcher asked the veterinary professional on the phone about the side effects of declawing as well as the frequency with which their vets performed declaws.

All the practices said they require an exam to just make sure the cat is healthy enough to go under anesthesia for the procedures.

We have withheld the names of employees for fear that they might suffer a backlash for their honest answers.

Fremont Animal Hospital

This is the vet practice that is in charge of the local animal rescue according to a video on the animal rescue’s website. This hospital declaws many of the kitties for the animal rescue before they put them up for adoption.

Spay- $171 and front declaw- $167. When they were asked for a cost of a 4 paw declaw they said that they rarely do all four declaws, only in cases of a cat in a nursing home. Employee said it’s $80 extra for the back paws.

Employee said that they do, “quite a few” declaws and when asked if there are any negative long term consequences to a declaw one employee said they sometimes see cats holding their paws up, limping, not using the litter box, and hiding issues.

In 2016, I reached out to this vet, Dr Marie Breuker, and asked her if they would educate the local animal rescue about the facts about declawing and how it is harmful to the health and well-being of a cat.

Here is her response.

“City Kitty,                                                             2016

Here at Fremont Animal Hospital we declaw cats using a laser as an elective surgery. We declaw cats and kittens for (the animal rescue) also. You will not change our minds on offering the surgery as a clinic, and unlikely to change (The Animal Rescue Director’s name) position on declaws. Many Americans are lazy and many prefer declawed cats even with the knowledge of the negative repercussions. However, you have brought up many good points of things that I know to be true about the potential side effects of declawing cats. After you email we are going to be more proactive about educating clients of those negative side effects. We can always learn and improve. Thank you for your concerns.

Marie Breuker DVM”

Screenshot from Fremont Animal Hospital’s website on July 11, 2018. Fremont Animal Hospital New Kitten page


Animal Wellness Center of White Cloud

This is one of the vet practices that also does many of the declaw procedures for the local animal rescue.

The researcher spoke to the office manager and was asked if the vet is skilled at the declaw and she said, “Yes, Dr Sam does 15-20 declaws a week.”

The office manager also said Dr Sam does 8-10 declaws a week  for the local animal rescue.

When the office manager was asked if it’s ok to get an older cat declawed, she said that the owner of the animal rescue gets “older cats in too and we do all sizes, types, and ages for her.” She said, “we do a lot of declaws.”

She says that a spay/declaw is $177-305 depending of if you get the IV and blood work done. They said you should use Purina’s Yesterday’s News litter and they sell it there. They say that it takes about a week to 10 days to fully recover.

When asked if a declaw is ok to do since they read bad things about it on the internet and she said, “oh yea, it’s ok. It’s a personal choice” and that the cat must be an indoor cat.

They have info about declawing and alternatives on their website. https://www.whitecloudvet.com/feline-education.html


C-SNIP in Kentwood.

They don’t perform declaws. They only do spay/neuters. They recommend that you contact a vet and get a package deal to do both the spay/neuter and declaw together. They said, “That is in the best interest of your cat.”

Another employee said that declawing is not a service that they provide. They said to do your research about it, fewer vets are doing declaws, and declawing tens to have side effects in certain cats.


West Michigan spay/neuter Clinic

They don’t declaw cats.


 Safe Harbor Animal Hospital

The employee asked if the cat owner has tried the alternatives like scratching posts, nail clipping, Soft Paws, and pheromones. They said that with a little training and patience you shouldn’t have to declaw your cat. They said that declawing is amputating the last bone in the paw. They said that they charge $480-550 for a spay/declaw and that it’s best to do it as young as possible if you are going to do it. They said their vet uses a scalpel and severs the tendon between the joint and all of the bone is removed. They said for more information to go to the PawProject.org


 

Great Lakes Hospital for Animals

Spay/declaw is $330. They use a scalpel. They said all their vets do declaws on a “regular basis” and it is a routine surgery they do there. They say that the cat will be healed in 7-10 days and when asked if there are any long term negative consequences they said no. They said you have to use a special litter called Yesterday’s News.


 Byron Center Animal Hospital

Spay/Declaw is $555. The vet uses a scalpel and they just recommend a two paw declaw. The employee who said she was in the vetmed profession for 20 years said, “I personally would never have a cat that is not declawed” when asked if a declaw is ok to do to a cat. They say both Dr Sainsbury and Shaffer can do the declaw.

They give you Yesterday’s News included in the price.


SouthKent Veterinary Hospital in Caldonia.

A Neuter/2 paw declaw is $250.
Asked if there were any long term problems from the declaw, the employee said “not if done young”
Asked if her vets were skilled, do they do these surgeries often? The employee said “yes, they do a few a week”.
They said that Purina’s Yesterday’s News would have to be used at home till the Paws heal.


SouthKent Veterinary Hospital Byron Center

Asked for a price of a spay and who do they recommend also to do along with the spay. Employee said, “Some get them declawed so they only have to go under anesthesia once.”

Researcher said ok how much is a price for a spay/declaw. Employee asked, “Do you want just the front or all four paws?” Price for spay/4 paw declaw is $282.

They said their vets do “multiple declaws” each week and specifically said they have 3 scheduled on the day of the call. They said their vets use different methods, blade or guillotine clippers. They said Dr Amy Green uses the guillotine clippers and has “multiple declaws” scheduled on her day next Tuesday.

They employee said they haven’t seen any issues with their declaws except that you just have to make sure the cat isn’t too active after the procedure. They say the cat is all healed in around 14 days.

The vet, Dr Amy Green spoke to the researcher and said that she’s been doing declaws for 11 years and it’s not her favorite thing to do. She said she declawed her two cats because her husband said he wouldn’t have a cat unless it’s declawed. Asked if there are any issues with doing a declaw and she said she makes sure that the claw is removed so that there is no re-growth. She said the cat will stay with them for 2 days and they give an injectible pain med during those 2 days but no more after 3 days since cats can tolerate anymore. She said you don’t have to give the cat any pain meds when you take them home.

She said if after 2 weeks your cat is having any issues you can bring them back in and they will give an anti-inflammatory injection that lasts for 4-6 weeks. She said if the researcher wants to do the procedures to book it for Dec. 12th since she is all booked up until January. No mention of any humane alternatives.


South Crossing Vet Center

Neuter/2 paw declaw $450 and they use a laser for their declaws. The employee said for 20 yrs they’ve been doing declaws regularly. Researcher asked if there would be any long term effects from the declaw and the employee said, “I haven’t seen any”.
The employee said they you would need a special litter called Yesterday’s News.


Family Friends Vet Hospital in Cascade, Michigan

Neuter/ 4paw declaw $243-399 depending on elective services. They use a scalpel for their declaws. Researcher asked about long term negative effects to a declaw and the employee said, “No, not at this age.”
Researcher asked if the vet is good at the declaws and how often do they perform them, the employee said, “Everyday, we do them routinely “.


Cascade Hospital for Animals and  Breton Village Animal Clinic

CASCADE HOSPITAL IS AN American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP) CAT FRIENDLY Practice, and American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) HOSPITAL

(These two clinics are the same company. Their website says that they are the largest facility for small animal care in metro Grand Rapids and they have a large staff) 4 different employees gave the following information.

Researcher asked for the price of a spay for their cat and the employee asked, “Are we also doing a 2 paw declaw?” Employee said that they use a laser which is safer. They said that all 12 vets do them and the declaws are a pretty common procedure there.

Researcher asked for a declaw price the employee asked, “Is that for 4 paws or 2 paws?” A 4 paw laser declaw for a cat over 6 months is $491-$521. The employee said that their vets are the brightest from vet school who rotate weekly on surgeries. They said that they consider declaws a regular and routine procedure. They said that the laser is less painful, quicker recovery, and less medications needed.

Researcher asked for the price of a declaw and the employee asked, “Do you want 2 paws or 4 paws?” They said that all their vets perform declaws and it’s a pretty routine procedure there.

Researcher asked for the price of a declaw for a 6 month old and 1 year old cat and another employee asked, “Are we thinking just 2 paws or all 4 paws?” They said that an all four paw declaw is between $445-$475 and said you can bring the cats in and the doctor will exam your kitty to see if it is healthy enough to go under anesthesia and if they are, you can leave the kitties have the procedure done the same day. They recommend blood work but it isn’t mandatory. They said Dr Paplawsky does lots of the surgeries and they can schedule the appointment with him.

Here is an ad on google search, elocalprofiles, for Cascade Hospital for Animals.


 Cedar Springs Animal Hospital in Cedar Springs. AAHA hospital

A 2 Paw declaw is $170 and they use a guillotine to amputate the toe bones. Researcher asked if there could be any complications or long term negative effects from the declaw. The employee said , “Sometimes the toe incisions could break open but once healed they are fine”.
Researcher asked if the vet was skilled at the declaws and do they do them often? Employee said “Yes, they do 5-10 declaws a week.”


Dorr Veterinary Clinic

They only declaw cats that are under 5 lbs or under 12 weeks old. They won’t do a spay/declaw together. A declaw is $170 and they use a laser. They said, “We feel it’s better to have their claws for their defenses.” They said that cats that are declawed over that age often develop behavioral issues.


Grand Haven Animal Hospital

Neuter- $70 /2 Paw declaw $215.
Employee mentioned a spray product to train the kitten to use a scratching post, and said the declaw is painful.


Prelesnik Animal Hospital

Asked for a price for a spay. Employee asked, “Do you want a declaw also?” Researcher said yes if that’s what they recommend. Employee said, “ We like to do it with the spay.” Their vet, Dr Sarah Prelesnik, uses a laser, a spay/declaw is $450-500. When asked if the vet is skilled at the declaw, the employee said, “She does them all the time.” They said the cats usually heal up in 2 weeks and when asked if there are any negative consequences to a declaw for the cat, the employee said no. They said you should go get Yesterday’s News for the kitty.


Plymouth Road Animal Clinic in Grand Rapids

They say they can do the declaw with a spay and it’s a little cheaper to do them together. Employee asked, “Just the front?” A spay/declaw is $350 and the employee said that all their doctors do declaws and they do them every week.


 Red Barn Veterinary Clinic Grand Rapids

Their spay/declaw is $225 and they use the blade technique. They said they have 4 vets and said when asked if their vets are skilled at declaws and do they do them regularly they said yes and said, “We do so many everyday” and “We do lots and lots of them.” Asked if there are any negative consequences to a cat from a declaw and they said, no and to not worry. They said if they do it on a 12-13lb cat then they might have to come back in for more pain meds.


Safe Harbor Animal Hospital- Grand Rapids  (Fear Free Veterinary Hospital)

The employee asked if the cat owner has tried the alternatives like scratching posts, nail clipping, Soft Paws, and pheromones. They said that with a little training and patience you shouldn’t have to declaw your cat. They said that declawing is amputating the last bone in the paw. They said that they charge $480-550 for a spay/declaw and that it’s best to do it as young as possible if you are going to do it. They said their vet uses a scalpel and severs the tendon between the joint and all of the bone is removed.  They said for more information to go to the PawProject.org


 Schmitt’s Animal Hospital in Grand Rapids

They declaw cats and said that they like to do cat declaws at 12 weeks of age and then have the spay done at 6 months old. They said all four of their doctors do declaws regularly.


Westwood Hills Animal Hospital
Neuter/2 Paw declaw $300-390 and they use a blade for the toe amputation.
Employee said that the declaw was painful, they spend one night & made comfortable, they will send home pain meds, quantity depending on weight of kitten.


East Holland Veterinary Clinic

Neuter/ 2 Paw declaw $212 and they use a scalpel for the toe amputations. A cool laser post op therapy is available for their paws for $25. The employee said a declaw is painful but they haven’t seen many issues.


Ottawa Animal Hospital in Holland.  AAHA Hospital , CAT FRIENDLY Practice, and FEAR FREE Veterinary

They said they declaw and recommend doing the spay/neuter and declaw together. A neuter and declaw is $489 and your kitty has to stay two days and they said that you have to use Purina’s Yesterday’s News for a month for their paws. They said a declaw is the amputation of the front knuckle, four of their five vets do the declaws regularly.

Another employee was asked for the price of a declaw and they asked, “Are you looking for the front feet or all four?” They use a scalpel and a 4 paw declaw is $521.


 Howard City Animal Hospital

They use a special clipper to do the declaws. They say the best way to go is to do the spay/declaw together because it is cheaper at $248. They said their vet does them regularly and he does a good job at them. They say that the recovery is about a week and your cats toes will be sensitive for a week.

They said they have done some of the declaws for the local animal rescue, depending on what area the person adopts the cat.

They say Purina’s Yesterday’s News cat litter is included in the price.

When asked if there are any long term negative consequences from a declaw, they say no.


 Georgetown Animal Hospital in Hudsonville

The employee was asked for a price for just a spay and gave a price for that and also said, “If you do a spay/declaw it’s $445-$495 and a 4 paw declaw/spay is $530.”

They said that they have 3 doctors that do declaws and each has their own method, either a scalpel or a Rescoe guillotine clipper. They said that they all are skilled at the declaws and do them regularly. They said that it’s better to do the declaw when the kitty is younger because their bones haven’t started to calcify and aren’t fully formed. They said that they will declaw older cats but because they have more weight on them, it’s harder on the cat.


Jelsema Veterinary Clinic

Researcher asked for the price for a spay. Employee asked, “Are you also going to declaw?” Researcher said yes. Employee asked, “All four, or just the front?”

They use a scalpel and an all four paw declaw/spay is $366. They said all three of their vets are good at declaws and they do a few declaws everyday.

Yesterday’s News litter is included in the price.

One of their vet techs said that they recommend just the front paws because they see behavioral issues with the 4 paw declaws. They said that full healing takes about 2 weeks.

Info on Jelsema veterinary clinics website.


 Chicago Drive Veterinary Clinic

Spay/Declaw is $389. They said that a declaw is an amputation procedure. They said they do them routinely and it is a regular surgery and their vets do at least 3-4 declaws a week. They said their doctors won’t do an all 4 paw declaw unless there is a medical problem like a blood disorder or someone would die from a scratch. But they won’t do all four feet at once.

They say you can buy Purina’s Yesterday’s News for the aftercare.


 Animal Hospital in Jenison

Researcher asked for the price of a spay/declaw and employee asked if you want all four or just front feet. An all four paw declaw/spay is $234. Researcher asked if there are any problems with declawing and the employee said no and you but you would have to use a special litter called Purina’s Yesterday’s News for 1-2 weeks. Employee saidhey do not send you home with pain meds for the cat.

Another employee was asked for the price of a declaw and they asked, “do you want the front or all four?” A front declaw is $153 and an all four declaw is $169. The vet, Dr Meeusen, uses the clippers and the cat has to stay two nights at the hospital.  The employee said she does around 4-5 declaws a week, they declaw older cats but it takes longer to heal, and their paws are sore for the first week.


 Rockford Animal Hospital in Rockford

The employee said that they recommend doing the declaw when the cat is as little as possible because they are lighter and heal faster. Cat owner asked for the price of a spay/declaw and employee asked, “Two or four paws?”

A 4 paw declaw/spay is $413.10. They said that their vet uses a scalpel, does declaws regularly, and has never had to fix a paw for problems. The only rare thing they said that happens is sometimes on the older cats, their paws start to tighten up and they might need steroids.


Companion Animal Veterinary Service

They declaw cats. A Spay/declaw is $250. They have one vet who does declaws and she uses a scalpel but that they don’t do them that often.


  Harborfront Hospital for Animals- AAFP CAT FRIENDLY Practice

The employee said that their doctor uses a laser for the declaws and they say that they perform declaws quite often. When asked about a price the employee asked, “Are you interested in a front declaw?” Researcher said a 4 paw declaw and employee said the price is $454. Asked if there are any negative consequences to declawing and employee said that like any surgery you can’t guarantee the outcome but they don’t hear of any complaints except sometimes the cat is limping right after. They said it is your choice to do the declaw and it’s an elective procedure.

They said you should get Purina’s Yesterday’s News litter for after the declaw.


Kelley’s Animal Clinic

Neuter/ 2 Paw declaw $409.81 and they use a laser for their declaws. They say they use the laser because it’s less painful. When asked if their vet is skilled at declaws and the employee said, “We do them all the time.”

They said Dr Drysdale does at least 5 declaws a week. They also have a shelter there and they sometimes declaw the cats if they are doing a spay/neuter. They have many older declawed cats at their shelter and said that they usually were the ones who did the declaws.


Animal Medical Center of Wyoming – AAHA hospital and AAFP CAT FRIENDLY Practice

Asked for a price of a spay. Wouldn’t give the price on the phone. Asked if they declaw and they said yes. They recommend doing the spay with the declaw.

Asked if their vets are skilled at the declaw and they said yes and said they are an AAHA accredited practice. They said every doctor there has done hundreds of declaws and they do, “multiple declaws each week.” One of their doctors uses a laser and the others use a scalpel.

When asked about the pain protocols, they said they have good pain meds and it is a very painful procedure that takes about one month to heal and the younger the cat, the better.


 Wyoming Animal Hospital in Wyoming

Cat owner asked what else do they recommend or do people have done with a spay. Employee said, “If you wanted her declawed you can do that also.” Cat owner said yes and employee asked, “do you just want the front?” A 4 paw declaw/spay is $480-$550. They have 4 vets who are highly skilled at the laser declaw and do declaws several times a week. They said your kitty will be back to normal in 10-14 days and the laser helps with less inflammation and quicker healing.

Researcher asked for the price of a declaw and the employee asked, “Do you need the front ones done?” A four paw laser declaw is $320-$350.


 Zeeland Veterinary Hospital in Zeeland

Researcher asked what else do they recommend or do people have done with a spay since they were a first time cat owner. Employee said that the only other thing that can be done at the time of a spay is a declaw but if the cat is doing ok and not scratching things then you don’t need it. They said that their two doctors have done countless declaws and do them all the time. The employee said that they use a scalpel and the cat will be healed in 10-14 days.





 PLEASE REMEMBER TO TAKE THE HIGH ROAD AND DON’T BE MEAN OR THREATENING. WE MUST EDUCATE THE PUBLIC AND VETERINARIANS ABOUT THE FACTS ABOUT DECLAWING AND ABOUT THE EASY, HUMANE OPTIONS.
WHEN YOU ARE MEAN, IT HURTS THE CAUSE, IT’S WRONG, AND IT OFTEN HURTS ME BECAUSE THEY BLAME YOUR WORDS ON ME. THANK YOU.

 

 

I Stand Corrected

I Stand Corrected

I made a mistake.

It was an honest mistake and wasn’t meant to deceive anyone.

A supporter that I trust, who has sent me many things over the years, sent me a video of a kitty who appeared to be declawed and was laying in a chair with a towel around his head and his feet in a bowl of water. His paws were wrapped in what appeared to be bandages but the cat wasn’t declawed. He was just sedated so that it could have its matted hair trimmed.

The video that this supporter sent me had no information on it and was just a clip.

So I posted the video yesterday on my facebook pages and Instagram page and did NOT put the name of the clinic since I didn’t know where the video was from.

About an hour later the supporter who sent me the video sent me this comment from a vet tech that was on one of my posts of the video.

OUCH! Next time how about sending me a simple and respectful note saying that my information was incorrect and I would have been happy to take it down.

Right away, I started to look into this and saw a few message in my inbox. One of them was from the vet tech who took this video of this kitty and understandably she wasn’t happy with my post.

She said that the cat is NOT declawed but sedated for a clip down since it was severely matted and the client actually requested a video of their cat have a spa service before they began the procedure. She said that they DO NOT declaw at her clinic. She said that the cat had booties on to represent warming gloves used.

So I immediately deleted the video posts.

I received a big apology from the person who sent me the video. They were very sorry that they had sent me a video that wasn’t what they had told me it was. This person does a lot of work for our cause and had the best intentions. They made an honest mistake in thinking that the cat was declawed.

I also apologized to the vet tech who took this video for making this mistake.

I receive a lot of information from people everyday and it is a time consuming process to go through all of it and try to decide what to post and what not to post. I always verify the information that I post but this time I didn’t because I trusted the source.

We work on this cause from early in the morning until the late hours of the night. We don’t have a team. It’s just me and my mom. The little money we make to help support our full-time work on this cause is from the sale of my tote bags, t-shirts, and hats and lately a few donations. This is a very draining and depressing cause to work on since we see great suffering and harm being done to so many kitties each year by declawing vets and cat owners.

We don’t have fact checkers. We don’t have editors. We do all of these stories and posts on our own. Aside from a couple volunteers who have helped with research or studies, it’s just the two of us.

This is the first time in 4 years that I’ve made a factual error in a post from what I am aware of. I check and double check the sources and facts in all my stories to make sure that there are no errors.

This time I trusted a trustworthy supporter who made an honest mistake.

I’m sorry and I will try to make sure it never happens again.

I stand corrected.

City and Mom.

 

 

 

Pin It on Pinterest