Declawing your cat - Why you should never do it.The word Declawing is such an insult to cats. It seems to be another attempt to transform cats into an ornament for the convenience of selfish humans. Should a cat without claws be called a cat? Or a feline ornament? Declawing is a man-made procedure that is not natural and certainly doesn't benefit the animal at all.
Anita Frazier in her book The New Natural Cat writes a very informative chapter on the physical and emotional effects of declawing. I have summarized some of her points as follows.
Amputations10 amputations in one complex operations. The claw is harder to remove than a human's fingernail, because cats retract their claws.
Risky AnesthesiaThe cat has to be under anesthesia for a very long time. Anesthesia itself has many harmful effects.
Defenseless and weakerThe physical effect of declawing is gradual weakening of the muscles, legs and shoulders. Balance is impaired The cat is 75 % defenseless
Balance is impaired.A declawed cat is a clubfooted animal. The cat cannot walk normally because he must always move with his weight on the rear of his pads
StressDeclawed cats live in a constant stage of stress because they do not have the security of their claws to rely on and thus tend to bite more. They are also more nervous and insecure. Stressed cats are more prone to disease.
Modes of expression.Cats also use their claws as a mode of expression. They knead their claws unto a comfy blanket, or sometimes slap us humans with their claws when we are bothering them. The slap is merely a warning to let us naughty humans know that we can't fiddle and poke them when we please.
The main reasons that people have for declawing their cat are as follows:
FurnitureIf your furniture is more important than you cat, its best not to keep a cat. Cats should not be a "convenience" to have. If your furniture really stresses you out, just give the furniture to charity then you wouldn't have to worry about ruining good furniture. I mean if a small child naughtily sticks her hand in the cookie jar and eats cookies before dinnertime. Would we chop the child's arms off? As graphic as the analogy may seem we have to remember that cats have feelings and chopping its claws off is not a pretty alternative.
Baby ChildrenMany are scared that their cats may scratch a human baby child. People have to understand that cats just don't attack people unless they are provoked. If you have a small child that constantly seeks the cat to smack it or bother it, it will get scratched. The child should be trained to have respect for the cat.
Use of scratching postsMost people would say that the use of a scratching post is useless. The reason for that is that normal scratching posts are too shaky, unstable and shakes when your cat scratches. Cat lady author, Anita Frazier, recommends the Felix Catnip Tree. She gives detailed instructions as to how to assemble one securely and warns the user not to loose the little "metal wedge" that comes with the post. If you would like more info, please email me or try reading her book listed in the books section.
I call the first eight months or so of a cat's life the rambunctious months. During this time kittens are learning to use that wonderful body nature has given them. Just as a little human baby uses his teeth on everything in sight when he is teething, a kitten will try his claws on drapes, furniture, and everything within reach during the rambunctious months. Many cats are mutilated with a declawing operation at this time because owners don't realize that just as human babies eventually outgrow the desire to chew on buttons and fingers, kittens grow out of their desire to claw everything and are easily satisfied with a workout on their scratching post or a piece of old carpet.