Did you know that declawing your cat is actually an orthopedic surgery where the surgeon removes the last digit or phalange from the paw? By doing this, it prevents the nails from ever growing back, however surgical complications can arise causing infection, or bone burs to happen. The procedure also changes the way cats are able to walk on their paws, which can commonly lead to chronic spinal pain, and overall, long-term physical discomfort as adults.
Some cats, after the procedure tend to act out with life-long behavioral issues such as inappropriate bathroom habits. It has also been linked to cats having aggression to owners and veterinarian staff alike, from the traumatizing experience. Even when the surgery is done properly, life-long pain can occur from damaged nerve endings in the paws themselves. If a pet is declawed, they should never be let outside unattended as the surgery has removed the cats first line of defense against potential animal attacks.
As a veterinary clinic, we feel it is our responsibility to educate our clients on the truth about declawing and alternative solutions. The majority of Canada has taken a stance by completely outlawing the procedure due to it being unethical, unnecessary and having a negative impact on your cat’s quality of life.