Thursday 4 March 2021

Austin City Council could vote to ban the declawing of cats

Austin City Council could vote to ban the declawing of cats. The video on this page says more or less all you need to know but I'll add something. Austin could follow 9 other cities who've banned declawing (and did so some time ago), 8 of which are in California (Los Angeles, San Francisco, West Hollywood, Burbank, Santa Monica, Berkeley, Beverly Hills, and Culver City) and the 9th is Denver in Colorado. New York State banned declawing a little while ago. Large parts of Canada have banned declawing. 

Anti-declawing poster
Anti-declawing poster by Ruth aka Kattaddorra.

The first part of the news bulletin is on a different topic to declawing cat but the section on declawing is useful. They mention the pain it causes. It is one of the most painful veterinary operations. It is 10 amputations as you might know by now and there is no medical or other benefit for the cat. In fact the operation is very detrimental to the health and welfare of the domestic cat or kitten. Yes they put young kittens through it. Can you imagine the cruelty of it? A kitten looking for love and care from their human companion and all they get is hell and piles of pain. Not a good look

Declawing only takes place in North America and the USA is by far the biggest perpetrator. I think America is a great country but declawing is a horrible blind spot. It is a nasty stain on the character of the country. It tells us that millions of Americans simply do not have a good relationship with their cat companion. They don't have true empathy and sympathy for their cat. They are insensitive to their cat's wellbeing and welfare. 

I can say those things with confidence because no one with a grain of sensitivity towards their cat's welfare would put them through the brutal declawing operation for what they believe is their exclusive benefit. But it is a fallacy that cat owners benefit. They think they do because they can't be scratched. But declawed cats compensate by biting more. And their cat may be in pain for a long time or indefinitely. This may change their character for the worse. They may avoid the litter tray and urinate on the carpet. See what I mean?

For outsiders it looks completely bonkers. It looks like a crime to Europeans if they thought about it and it is a crime by the way. If a vet did it in the UK, they'd end up in prison! But a lot of Europeans hardly know about it. It would never occur to them. It is alien to them. So alien they don't think of it.

Yet for millions of Americans it is one of the first things they think of when they adopt a poor kitten. And the vet does it on request even though in doing so he is in complete breach of his oath to do no harm.

I just can't get my head around it. My message to people who want to declaw their cat: you do realise that cats walk on their toes and the declaw operation removes the end of each toe of the forepaws. Think about it: how would you like it if someone cut off the tops of each of your toes? You'd struggle to walk and humans are not digitigrades.

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