CtK Blog

Please Help Me Inspire St. Hubert’s Animal Welfare Center to Support the NJ Anti-Declawing Bill

Maybe all of you can help me inspire St Hubert’s to support this important cat protection bill (without any bad amendments), the way that North Shore Animal League did for the bill in NY, without any amendments:

Please let St Hubert’s know how much you appreciate all they’ve done to re-home so many cats and kittens, as well as TNR programs for community cats, and we know that they are against cat declawing (it’s in their Positions Statement) … so why won’t they support the anti-declaw bill that was passed by the NJ State Full Assembly?

She shook her front paw for the rest of her life

This AAHA and AAFP Cat Friendly practice’s long time vet tech tells a first time cat owner that the only time you would do all four paw declaw is, “if your cat has a skin condition or it’s one of those cats that doesn’t have fur.”

She said, “Declawing is very looked down upon from a lot of different organizations.” She said, “Basically you are removing the top digit like removing the top tip on your finger tips and there are a lot of nerves there.” She said there is a chance of things being, “bumped the wrong way or in recovery a little open but about 95% of cats we declaw we don’t have issues.” She said that when the cats are older and heavier is when there are issues with a declaw.

Declawing A Cat, Dog, or Kinkajou is ALWAYS an Amputation Surgery

A supporter sent me this picture that a kinkajou owner posted on facebook. The owner said in a comment that she had her kinkajou 4 paw declawed because, “the declawing allows us to give them (she had another kinkajou named Mazy declawed) more freedom in the home. She said that her mom is on blood thinners and the kinkajou would “inadvertently” claw her. She said that her mom would , “help me bathe her, clip her nails or even play with her and she’d get cut up and bleed.”
This owner also said, “only his nails were lasered off. His toes are intact,” in a comment on facebook.

My cat is ruined and now it’s making my life miserable

I’m really struggling … I really hate my home life now. My cat is ruined and now it’s making my life miserable.
Out of kindness and compassion, I had adopted this botched declaw older cat from the shelter. He had been given up for urinating outside the box and had been at the shelter for a long time. He was in pain. I felt bad for him and no one wanted to help him.
So I adopted him and gave him a loving home.
But frankly I keep regretting saving him. He relapses and urinates everywhere, all over my stuff.

It Still Haunts Me

He was an orange and white splotched kitty with a huge personality matched only by his massive purr. A love bug to everyone who came in and playful. He tolerated having ears and tail tugged by special needs children that came to visit and would purr and snuggle despite it all. He understood they just didn’t understand and that they just wanted love the same as he did. He was the heart of the shelter and the staff and we all had a special place for Magic.

“I feel like I have failed you”

I received this sad note from an awesome woman who really cares about the welfare of cats. It’s really sad that this cat cruelty and abuse is happening in around 80% of veterinary practices in America. It’s hard to believe that all those declawing vets took an oath to EASE the suffering in animals yet are causing it by amputating the toe bones and claws in around 5000 cats a DAY in America.

Declawing A Cat Is NOT “Cat Friendly”

An American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP) Cat Friendly Practice, recently posted a video on facebook of a ragdoll kitten that was just declawed and said he is doing “great” after having his toes amputated. Here is a screenshot of the video that was posted on June 15, 2017.
This vet has declawing info on her website that says, “The declaw procedure is a surgical removal of the claw. Contrary to rumors and misinformed sources, declawing is not the removal of any of the actual toe itself, just the claw.”
This is a complete lie.

Is This The Standard of Excellence In Veterinary Medicine? Advertising Cat Cruelty?

In June of 2017 a coupon showed up in resident’s mailboxes in the Crystal Lake area of Illinois. This coupon was from Randall Road Animal Hospital and had an offer for a 2 paw and 4 paw declaw.

Last year, in 2016, this hospital was accredited as an American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) practice which means it has the highest standards of care in veterinary medicine. AAHA has a position statement on declawing that says they are “strongly opposes the declawing of domestic cats” and has 900 standards of care that these hospitals must follow, but not one for declawing. They go over these vet hospitals with a fine tooth comb but don’t care about how they address the mutilating procedure of declawing.

URGENT! How Can We Save These 14 Kittens From Being 4 Paw Declawed

Last night I received many notes from concerned people who were outraged about this animal hospital in Pacific, Missouri that was going to 4 paw declaw these 14 kittens that they rescued.

The veterinary professionals at this hospital deserve the accolades for helping with saving the lives of kittens and cats that they rescue, but then they turn around do a mutilating and inhumane procedure to the cats that will harm their health and well-being for a lifetime.

Declawing Veterinarians Can’t Be Trusted

She wrote, “I am in the medical field and smart enough to know surgery vs not. My cats, none of them have a knuckle or any amputation removed. Have you seen a human who had to have a toe nail removed? When it’s done it’s permanent. Apparently you need to educate yourself. ”

She went on to say, “I am educated to know what procedure I used and was anti declaw and still am however this procedure made sleep better at night. My animals were and are my babies until I had children.
My cats are not harmed for life. It’s people like you that give people like me who are educated and find other procedures, a bad name. When you hear de claw people like me, who research and find other options are thrown under the bus and our vet lied. Sorry. Some of us know the difference.”

For The First Time, All The Vet Heroes Are ALL Cat Heroes!

I’m happy to do this story about the American Humane Hero Vet Awards 2017 Contest!
For the first time, all the vet heroes are all cat heroes and none of them perform the inhumane, cruel, and unnecessary procedure of declawing.
They are true animal advocates in every way and they think of the animal’s needs first! Let’s all thank them and celebrate what they do to heal and help animals and vote for your favorite one!
I reached out to each of the finalist vets and asked them if they would give me a paragraph about their stance on declawing. All of their statements are listed in this story.

Amputating Laboratory Cat’s Toes To Test A Pain Med

These unethical humans used some of their cats that were purpose-bred laboratory cats from their colony and amputated the toes and claws on ONE paw, then did a washout/crossover, and 2 weeks later amputated the toes and claws on the cat’s other paw. Whatever treatment they got (Simbadol or nothing) the first time, they got the opposite the second.

They say in this study that none of the cats required “rescue” pain meds. Really??? In this day and age, why would anyone think it’s EVER okay for ANY cat to receive ZERO pain meds after barbarically having their toe bones and claws amputated is beyond me.

I Use My Authority To Abuse And Harm Cats

“As a veterinarian what I am not thrilled with is the legislature wanting to insert itself into my professional capacity. I am the one who is the authority, I have gone through the classes, I have had the instruction, I spent eight years of my life becoming very educated about these things. I think it comes down to being involved in the details of the procedure and knowing the situation in which you apply the procedure,” says Dr Chris Brockett, 2014 President of the NYSVMS, speaking about the anti-declawing bill in NY in this news video.

Declawing Ban Saves Cats Lives

In addition, statistics from the Los Angeles Animal Service Department indicate that there was no significant change in absolute numbers of cats adopted from our city shelters in the five years after the declaw ban as compared to five years prior to ban. Furthermore, as a ratio of cat intake, the adoption rate has gone actually increased. I can confidently state that the declaw ban did NOT have a negative effect on cat adoption in Los Angleles city shelters.

Cease and Desist Letter For Trying To Stop Cats From Being Harmed

” Please cease and desist calling my client. It is my understanding that you call every day. ” Wrong and a total lie! I wasn’t calling everyday. In fact, since March 20th, I tried to call once a week and then a couple times this week.
Their lawyer said in the email that I was, “harassing my client and such harassment is against the law.” He went on to tell me that if I persist in my, “telephone harassment”, then his client will “file complaints with local law enforcement, and the appropriate law enforcement agencies” where I live.
The phone messages that I left simply asked to call me back, said who I was, and that I wanted to talk about their declawing policy with the appropriate person who sets their pet policy. I never once left harassing phone messages or demanded anything.
Their lawyer also went on to say that they will, “also will file complaints with the FCC and seek to have you retrained from sending further e-mails.”

My vet, friends, and family started recommending that I look into getting them declawed

They also taught me that contrary to popular belief, cats CAN be trained to used appropriate scratching posts and that declawing is 100% unnecessary.

Lastly, and most importantly, they taught me that saving a couch, drapes, and carpet can never replace saving a life…..the life of a cat whose chances of making it out of a shelter alive drastically decreases if it doesn’t have claws on its paws.

It is time to make a change

My decision to stop doing this surgery now is that other veterinarians will hopefully follow the new position statement from CVMA and stop declawing cats. As fewer and fewer veterinarians perform this procedure there is less of a concern that clients will go somewhere else and less concern that the surgery is not being done properly with the appropriate pain control.

The demand for this procedure comes from the public, and veterinarians should not be the only ones at fault . Cat owners need to stop asking us to do this procedure and we need say no and provide alternatives.

Clairabelle, the declawed kitty who is suffering from her amputations

In 2015 I adopted a 5 year old calico that was front paw declawed. She was declawed with her spay surgery.
I was told that she is a pure breed straight ear Scottish fold.
I picked her up in a freak snowstorm at 4 am because her former owner was leaving on vacation and would be dropping her at the vet for euthanasia if I couldn’t get her that morning. They said she was having cat pan issues. I was certain I could help her and I fell in love with the pictures they sent me of her. I’m happy to say that we never had any pan issues.
She is getting older and I noticed that her right leg was sensitive sometimes after she would jump down off the furniture. Lately, she is limping most of the time. I can feel a pointed piece of what I think is bone in her sore toe.
She is a love bug but when she is hurting she will gently bite my hand while I’m checking her feet. I love her dearly and I know she was destined to be my baby for the remainder of her days

I Think I Would Know If My Cats Toes Were Gone

This veterinary practice in Oklahoma uses a guillotine clipper for their declaws and says that they, “cut off the nail and nail bed then use surgical glue to close the incision.”
They charge $69 for a 2 paw declaw and $97 for a 4 paw declaw.
When a cat owner asks them if there are any negative consequences to declawing or if there will be complications they say, “typically not, we do them frequently with no problems.”

Two Declawed Cats, Zachary and Maximilian

A frequent justification for declawing is that the cat would otherwise be banished from the home and that the procedure is a small price to pay for the kitty to live out its life in a safe and nurturing environment.
Sounds good, but it’s complete BUNK! Anyone who would subject their cat to the pain, disfigurement, and lifetime of misery resulting from a declaw procedure would discard them without a second thought.

West Virginia, Please Ban Declawing And Save Cats From This Cruelty

Quote from West Virginia pro-declaw veterinarians, “You are right when you state there are those who would like to make declawing illegal. Many of those opinions have been formed by misinformation and what I call “internet-hype.” When performed properly, the declaw procedure results in no harmful side effects. In our experience, the cats have no higher incidence of any behavioral problems, which is in direct contrast to some of the fabrications that are now circulating. “

Buddy The Declawed Cat

The cat’s paws were scarred deeply in the back, with declawed stumps in the front. Affectionately known as “Buddy”, the cat pees outside the litter box, and is a powerful biter. It’s obvious why his owners threw him out of the house. How he survived outdoors was truly a miracle.

Alternative Declawing Facts By Two Prominent New Jersey Vets

Dr Jose Pla is the vet who does their declaws. They advertise their laser declaws on their facebook pages, their employees say that Dr Pla performs declaws, “all the time”, ” Dr Beeber says that a cat will be ok from being declawed, they post photos of declawed cats and promote their laser declaw, and they charge $875 for their laser declaws and will even do them on older cats.

How One Semi-Famous Vet Played The Victim Instead of Helping The Welfare of Cats

In one sentence he said he was, “impressed by my passion and dedication”, and that I’m someone who is working hard to help pets and do good in the world. He said that he hopes I see similar characteristics in him.
And in the next sentence he said he didn’t feel inspired but he felt attacked.
Hmmmm. How did I attack him?
I simply asked some questions in a private email as to why so many employees at his practice that is a AAHA, AAFP Cat Friendly hospital were saying that they are a high volume declawing practice and that cat owners could book a declaw surgery with him personally.

My Veterinarian Accidentally Declawed My Cat

He was a fun and spunky kitten. At seven months old, I was able to get a voucher for a reduced cost neuter. I took him to the vet to have the procedure done. They let me know that I could pick him up at the end of the day. I had a sense of dread all day and when I didn’t hear from them, I called to make sure I could come pick him up. They informed me that he had his first procedure and was doing well and his neuter was scheduled for later. I was confused and asked what she was talking about.
When she said his front paws were declawed, I lost it. I was so angry and upset that I don’t remember what I said. That anger grew when she said “Sorry. We mistook him for another cat.”

A True Advocate For All Animals

I have been a veterinarian for 20 years, 16 of which have been in 100% feline practice, and I have never had anyone threaten to euthanize or relinquish their cat because of clawing behavior. The behavior problems that I have seen result in euthanasia or abandonment are inappropriate elimination and biting, which I see far more often in declawed than clawed cats.
I have always been adamantly opposed to declawing and have found that if I simply tell people that it requires amputating the last bone on every toe, the vast majority of clients do not want to do it. Most people really do love their cats, and they don’t want to hurt them, but they haven’t been informed about the procedure.
I always counsel people about having appropriate scratching posts, trimming nails, and using Soft Paws. It does require some effort, but so do most things worth having in life.

Beware, the Banality of Evil

Beware, the banality of evil.

Some old time vets will hang on to the past, using antiquated techniques and medications, because that’s what “they were taught.” They don’t question what is “normal.” Other vets are more innovative and want veterinary medicine to be as progressive as human medicine. State of the art medicine and diagnostics can really help save lives. These vets are willing to learn new, life-saving techniques and medications and therefore eschew the old, the less effective or inhumane.

New Jersey Veterinarian Says Declawing Is Malpractice

The veterinary professional organizations have not recognized onychectomy for what it really is: malpractice.

For a veterinarian to harm an animal and with no physical benefit to that animal is
tantamount to malpractice. Despite cautions to their members for decades, professional
veterinary associations have not effectively reined in their veterinarians from performing routine
onychectomy.

One Giant Step For Catkind That All Veterinary Practices Should Take

We used to believe that declawing cats saved their lives. We feared that cats with claws would be turned in to the shelters in record numbers, and that we were doing a good thing by making cats more likely to stay in their homes.

As it turns out, the numbers do not bear this out. When areas have stopped declawing, the number of surrendered cats actually dropped. This left us with a question. We know that even under the best of circumstances, a declaw is a major and painful surgery, (and no less so when it is performed with a laser, by the way.) It is an amputation of the end of the cat’s “finger,” not just the removal of the claw itself. And even when performed perfectly, can have life-long complications.

So we wondered, if we weren’t saving cats, and this procedure can be painful to cats, why were we doing this? Although we know furniture destruction can be a problem, it can almost always be prevented with the right techniques. Besides, when it comes down to it, as veterinarians, our main concern is the cats, not the couches. We have to do what is best for our patients.

Dixie, The 4 Paw Declawed Cat That Was Saved From Being Euthanized

Here is an update about Dixie the kitty who was relinquished by her owners to Tails Humane Society because of behavioral issues from her four paw declaw and was to be euthanized yesterday. Good news!!! She has a second chance in life!

Tails Humane Society said that Dixie is not going to be euthanized! She has to recover from a bad upper respiratory infection and needs dental work before she can be taken out of this shelter.

There are two rescues who want to get her out of the shelter and into a good home.

Amputating 10 Cat Toes Is No More Painful Than A Neuter – NJVMA SpokesVet

When cats start walking on their balls then we will start believing the NJVMA’s spokesvet Dr Yurkus and his animal hospital that declawing isn’t more painful than neutering.

Meanwhile, the American Association of Feline Practitioners’ policy on declawing states:

“Physically, regardless of the method used, onychectomy causes a higher level of pain than spays and neuters. Patients may experience both adaptive and maladaptive pain; in addition to inflammatory pain, there is the potential to develop long-term neuropathic or central pain if the pain is inadequately managed during the perioperative and healing periods.” [AAFP Policy Statement on Declawing, 2007.]

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