Some cat owners often mistakenly think that declawing is a safe and harmless way of preventing their cats from scratching. However, declawing a cat is a serious and permanent surgical procedure that is very close to being a form of mutilation. It is expensive to have it done and painful for your cat. Declawing your cat can also cause long-lasting physical problems. Declawing a cat can disable your pet on a permanent basis and can put him at a higher risk for psychological trauma and medical conditions. Incidentally, many countries have already banned declawing cats.
There are humane alternatives to preventing your cat from scratching your furniture. Declawing is an unnecessary surgery that will leave your cat defenseless if he goes outdoors. Most cats can be taught to scratch in areas of your home that you deem appropriate. Buy scratching pads or posts and treat them with cat nip and then train your cat that he can use these areas to scratch until his heart’s content!
A cat’s claws are an important part of his body and are used for a number of activities that he participates in on a day-to-day basis. Claws play an important role in proper balance and in having secure footing. Claws also provide your cat with the ability to defend himself when he is attacked and they also make it possible for him to grip surfaces, such as when he jumps up onto a windowsill.
Many people are under the misconception that having a cat declawed is analogous to trimming his nails. This is not the case. No other animal in the animal kingdom has the unique types of claws that cats have. The claws of a cat are moveable digits that are attached to both bone and muscle tissue. In fact the claws are similar to a person’s fingers. A cat is able to extend and retract his claws because of the strength that the tendons and ligaments provide him.
When a cat is declawed, some of the muscle and bone must be removed as well. Declawing is akin to cutting off half of the toes your cat has. To compare it to human beings, it is like having the first joint of each and every finger removed from your hand. This is not a pretty surgery.
A cat that has been declawed has experienced ten amputations. When both the claw and the last digit are taken away the motor nerves must be cut as are the sensory nerves. This damages and destroys both of them permanently. The injured site does not repair itself quickly at all. This leaves the declawed cat highly susceptible to the development of an infection.
The healing process following declawing surgery is long and very uncomfortable for the patient. The cat must walk around on feet that are severely injured and very painful. When the cat wants to eat, use his litter box or groom himself he must do so with his very sore stubs of digits. You may discover that your cat is using the floor instead of his litter box following surgery because the littler hurts his feet too much.
The cat’s feet will lack feeling following the surgery and he may also experience a tingling sensation that is not pleasant at all. Cats often will suffer in silence, but it is worth noting that felines actually have a keener sense of discomfort and pain than do human beings. In this way, their suffering due to declawing can be very great.