We’ve Got the Cure for Cat Scratch “Fever.”
The argument over declawing cats heats up
This past week, a bill banning the declawing of cats cleared a committee in the New Jersey State Assembly. If bill A3899 goes on to become law, veterinarians who declaw a cat (and owners who ask them to do it) would face a fine of up to $1,000 or six months in jail. Violators would also face a civil penalty of $500 to $2,000.
Illegal or not, it’s inhumane
Regardless of whether this bill is passed into law, it’s hard for animal lovers like myself to justify the practice of declawing. It is an optional surgery at the first joint of each digit. It is painful, especially in older cats, and serves no medical purpose. In fact, the Humane Society of the United States purports that declawing may lead to making a cat less likely to use the litter box or more likely to bite.
Fish gotta swim, cats gotta scratch
The problem is, cats NEED to scratch. They can’t trim their fingernails the way humans do and scratching is the only way they know to keep their nails groomed. If an owner trains a cat early on to scratch appropriate objects and trims their nails regularly, the problem goes away. If not, something has to give.
The alternatives aren’t good…
For owners who can’t manage their cat and can’t deal with the destruction scratching can cause, there are a couple bad alternatives. One, declaw the cat. Or, two, take them to a shelter. We just discussed how bad declawing is. And those of you who read Dr. Lori Schluth’s blog post know how dangerous surrendering a cat to a shelter can be.
… except for one
If you can’t deal with a cat’s need to scratch, there is one good alternative: Get Your Pet. Much as we want you to keep your pet, and we do, if you just can’t, don’t declaw. And please, don’t choose the shelter.
Find them a new, loving home the simplest, smartest, most humane way there is.
WITH GET YOUR PET. Sign up right here, right now.