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#61 Old 12-06-2006, 10:42 AM
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I think a huge part of the problem is that people wait to see if declawing absolutley 'unavoidable' then wait until the cat is 6 months or a year old and their house is ruined to bring them in and get them declawed. I have seen many, many declaw surgeries and they are not violent or particularly bloody...I have also seen many cats recover from a declaw (we keep them for two nights at the animal hospital where I work so the doctor can keep an eye on them) and it is a much less painful surgery when the cats are tiny. So many people wait until every piece of furniture in their house is ruined and their cat weights 10 lbs to bring it in for a declaw, and the suffering that big cats deal with is truly an abomination. We are always sad to see that. On the other hand, many kittens pass through and are declawed as young as 3 months, and they seem to recover within hours. My kitten came out of surgery around 10:00 am and by 5:00 was eating and playing- the next day he was jumping off the furniture at home. It is also important to note that these cats are on pain medication while they are kept at the animal hospital and owners are always advised to start them on newspaper in the litter box until their paws are healed.

Declawing is not a nice thing to do, but it helps place cats in the hugely overgrown cat population, and often into safe, indoor homes. We do our best to alleviate their suffering...which with the kittens is usually very little, but with the big cats is severe. My take home message, in all honesty, has been to declaw the cat when they are babies, which seems be less traumatic and cause way fewer problems to the cat, then to wait until they are fully grown and see if they will need it, then subject my cat to a very painful surgery. The difference between an adult declaw and a kitten declaw is night and day.
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#62 Old 12-06-2006, 10:47 AM
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We take our cats out on leads, btw. Its a good way to safely let them go outside. Of course they are vaccinated and have flea prevention. My one cat is sort of like a dog when it comes to this- he loves to go outside and will sit and wait by the door when I get the lead down.
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#63 Old 12-06-2006, 11:31 AM
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Dogs dont go home if theyre let outside, a lot of the time. Cats go home to get food. Dogs dont think like that. None of my nine cats have ever been injured outside, but we dont live close to traffic. Anyway, the cat I have now only stays in the garden anyway. For some weird reason!
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#64 Old 12-06-2006, 12:08 PM
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I don't think roaming outside is the top priority for cats. Actively playing with them and providing company (when they need it, given that they also like to be on their own) and exercise can pretty well compensate for it. And really, I don't know many areas where you couldn't take a cat outside on a leash. Even on a pretty urban area I once saw someone walking their cat. And I think cats can easily be put in a harness at least if you start to do it early on.

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#65 Old 12-06-2006, 01:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Aimra View Post

So, I just thought of something. Why is it that people have no problem letting their cat run out the door but they would never dream of letting their dog go out like that? (Farm situations excluded) Why is it that cats can go and roam and be exposed to everything but then people want to shelter and protect any of their other animals? Just a thought.





Because cats come back and dogs run away.
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#66 Old 12-06-2006, 05:12 PM
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I'm guessing here: Declawing cats makes them more appealing as pets and as a result more cats may be rescued from shelters.



Yes it does, I worked at a shelter and a lot of people wanted cats that were declawed. We didnt do it ourselves, but we ran a program where we transported peoples pets to a local vet hospital for spays and neuters, and people could choose to pay extra for declawing if they wanted.



I gotta say though, it really wasnt that common. I worked there for almost a year and only saw maybe...10-15 out of hundred of cats be declawed during that time. A lot of people seemed to want a cat already declawed but not be to interested in spending the money to do it themselves.



I think its mean and pretty unneccesary. Its not really a HUGE issue for me, I mean its not like its done while the cat is awake, and the cat does experiance pain while it heals but it doesnt seem to be extreme and heals pretty fast. I just think its unnatural and unneccesary. Some say the same about spaying and neutering but I disagree with that because it keeps the population of homeless animals down and lessens suffering.



Declawing is usually for stupid purposes like people not wanting the cats to scratch, but there are usually other ways to get cats to not mess up furniture (my boy is very well behaved and uses his scratching post, not the furniture). It just takes the time and effort to work with the cat. But even then some cats like some people, are just naturally more difficult and will never learn.



Overall the way I feel is Id rather see a cat declawed and in a good loving home than homeless in a shelter or starving on the streets. But its never something I could do myself.



edit- PS, Im a HUGE supporter of cats staying indoors. I think its total crap that cats "need" to go outside for whatever reason. My cat has lived indoors his entire life, there is no way in hell I will let him out. Working at the shelter I saw a lot of horrible things that people had done to cats. At our sister shelter in the bigger city near us (the one we took our animals to to be spayed and neutered) they had a cat that someone had actually poured gasoline on and set on fire. Cats have no need to go outside. The few times mine escaped he got scared and hid under the house. He is perfectly healthy and very happy, he gets tons of excercise running around the house, diving into stacks of newspaper, batting my nail polish bottles all around the room, etc etc. I wont expose him to the cruelty that exists beyond my protection...if anyone ever did anything to him...my god.



Ive had people say "oh you cant shelter them like that, are you going to do that with your kids?" and the difference is, children are dependants who are growing into independant adults. Cats will always be dependants. While children need to learn to survive on their own and toughen up to the ways of the world, my cat will be with me til he dies, and I will always give him my protection.
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#67 Old 12-06-2006, 05:48 PM
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Originally Posted by starseed13 View Post

Declawing is usually for stupid purposes like people not wanting the cats to scratch, but there are usually other ways to get cats to not mess up furniture (my boy is very well behaved and uses his scratching post, not the furniture). It just takes the time and effort to work with the cat. But even then some cats like some people, are just naturally more difficult and will never learn.



And some people simply don't want to take the time and effort to work with the cat so it learns not to scratch in inappropriate places. I have a feeling they expect the cat to be like a machine; you just take it out of the box, plug it in, and it works the way it's supposed to, automatically. Cats aren't like that.

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#68 Old 12-06-2006, 07:47 PM
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And some people simply don't want to take the time and effort to work with the cat so it learns not to scratch in inappropriate places. I have a feeling they expect the cat to be like a machine; you just take it out of the box, plug it in, and it works the way it's supposed to, automatically. Cats aren't like that.



Exactly. I had a lady e-mail me when I worked at the shelter and asked if we had a cat that would match her carpet. She didn't want the hairs to show up. Stupid. I told her I didn't think we had anything for her.



I had another lady who, on her application, said she wanted a cat who was quiet, didn't claw furniture and didn't shed. We told her she could buy a stuffed cat at WalMart.



People are so dumb.
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#69 Old 12-07-2006, 08:31 PM
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LOL! I can honestly say in my time at the shelter I never heard that one (the cat that matches the carpet). I dunno why but that cracked me up.



And yes most people dont want to take the time. Cats are not like dogs..dogs are easier to train/punish/etc. Cats are really independant. And most of them are smart as hell. Mine is good about scratching but he is a little brat about other stuff. I know he does stuff he KNOWS is wrong too, such as climbing on the kitchen counter at night. He knows hes not supposed to go up there and he would never do it in front of me. But occasionally Ill quietly get up in the middle of the night and there he is, climbing around over all the utensils and pots and pans. *sigh*



LOL..hes done a lot of stuff like that. Once he went into my fathers dresser, somehow OPENED the drawer, and took out all of my dads rolled socks (and I mean ALL of them, it was freaky) and batted them around the room. LOL Hes also removed the entire contents of my dresser, dragged all the clothes into a pile and made a bed out of them.



Hes a strange one but I love him!
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#70 Old 12-20-2006, 10:16 AM
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I can't believe so many people on here are in favour of indoor cats, but opposed to zoos. I can see why if you adopt a de-clawed cat you might not want to risk letting it out, or one with other special needs (such as deaf / blind) but cats are so independent that keeping one in good health shut inside your house on the grounds that it will keep it safer from harm is really no different than taking any number of wild animals into zoos to increase their lifespan. (Personally Im undecided about both (good) zoos and indoor cats, but I find it hard to see how people can be utterly opposed to one and so in favour of the other.)



Mine has safely lived outdoor / indoor for 17 years, and whilst our roads arent busy, her favourite hunting ground is the railway track. When she hears traffic coming, she just runs out of the way. Now she is going deaf I would prefer if she didnt go out so much, but I think the risk of not doing is worth the pleasure she gets from having the freedom to be wherever she wants. I also think that indoor cats often have a greater "need" for declawing, as whilst mine was told off for scratching furniture very young, she has always had fences and trees to use as a replacement. Without those alternatives I think persuading her that the furniture wasn't her personal scratching post would have been so much more difficult.



I was also wondering what the arguments against declawing indoor cats are other than that it is an unneccessary surgical procedure. If done at the same time as neutering, then extra anaesthetic is not a risk and the additional pain of recovery surely isnt much greater? (Would never have mine done cos they will go outside and need claws for climbing and hunting).
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#71 Old 12-20-2006, 01:06 PM
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I can't believe so many people on here are in favour of indoor cats, but opposed to zoos. I can see why if you adopt a de-clawed cat you might not want to risk letting it out, or one with other special needs (such as deaf / blind) but cats are so independent that keeping one in good health shut inside your house on the grounds that it will keep it safer from harm is really no different than taking any number of wild animals into zoos to increase their lifespan. (Personally Im undecided about both (good) zoos and indoor cats, but I find it hard to see how people can be utterly opposed to one and so in favour of the other.)

Cats have company and someone to care for them. Cats are domestic animals, with different needs from wild animals.



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I was also wondering what the arguments against declawing indoor cats are other than that it is an unneccessary surgical procedure. If done at the same time as neutering, then extra anaesthetic is not a risk and the additional pain of recovery surely isnt much greater? (Would never have mine done cos they will go outside and need claws for climbing and hunting).

If you anesthetize a human for a medical procedure, then why can't you cut his/her fingers at the same time? Then there's not a risk of extra anesthetic and the additional pain of recovery isn't much greater?



Declawing affects cats' movement in a negative way, they can cause too much emphasis on the wrong parts of the legs, thus causing problems. Here are also many of the downsides of this cruel procedure from an anti-declaw site:

Quote:
Once their claws have been removed, they can no longer perform their natural stretching and kneading rituals. They become weaker as they age and may experience debilitating arthritis in their backs and shoulders.



Furthermore, cats without claws have lost their first line of defense, and because of this, they live in a constant state of stress. Less able to protect themselves, they cannot fight off other animals, or escape quickly from a dangerous situation. They may also become biters because they no longer can use their claws as a warning. Groomers, veterinarians, and people who care for declawed cats in shelters find many of them to be nervous, irritable, and difficult to handle.


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#72 Old 12-20-2006, 10:38 PM
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Mine has safely lived outdoor / indoor for 17 years, and whilst our roads arent busy, her favourite hunting ground is the railway track

queenaradillo, I understand you are in the UK, and as your roads aren't busy, mine in Ohio, USA, is a main residential street right off of the highway. Again, this seems to be a regional difference. From what I understand, in the UK, in areas that don't have high traffic/population, it is widely acceptable for the cats to roam outside. This is just not feasable where I live, as I live on such a busy street with cars and people/neighbors right on top of me, horror stories I hear almost daily on what people here do to cats roaming outside, I've seen poor dead cats dead in the street hit by cars, I've heard what freak anti-cat neighbors have done to cats, teenagers bored looking for a fun time, what they have done to cats here (won't expound, it's too horrific), the poisions people set out for mice and chipmunks even!!! Anti-freeze from cars, etc.. no way would I subject my best pals and friends to this..
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#73 Old 12-21-2006, 06:19 AM
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That sounds horrible!



I wouldnt let my cats out either, but then maybe I wouldn't have any cats..
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#74 Old 12-21-2006, 09:50 AM
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That sounds horrible!



I wouldnt let my cats out either, but then maybe I wouldn't have any cats..





The problem is that most places in the US aren't very safe for outdoor cats, my boyfriend's parent's live in the middle of nowhere in a town so small they don't even have their own post office but cats in the feral colony they care for get hit regularly on the road by their house . Country roads tend to have very fast speed limits so even unpopulated places aren't very safe. The ones in my avatar were found starving in a field after their mom disappeared, we think coyotes got her, as they'll frequently go after and kill adult cats.



So you either have cats sitting in a shelter, etc. waiting to get adopted and getting killed because there aren't many good outdoor homes or you have indoor cats.
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#75 Old 12-21-2006, 10:21 AM
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I've heard what freak anti-cat neighbors have done to cats, teenagers bored looking for a fun time, what they have done to cats here (won't expound, it's too horrific), the poisions people set out for mice and chipmunks even!!! Anti-freeze from cars, etc.. no way would I subject my best pals and friends to this..



Now I think I understand the indoor cat thing a bit better. I really hope it never ends up like that here. If I thought mad people might be out to get my cat she probably would live indoors too.



Quote:
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Cats have company and someone to care for them. Cats are domestic animals, with different needs from wild animals.



I still dont really see how this works. Cats are only domestic animals because we keep them in our homes. They still have exactly the same habits and instincts that equipped them to survive in the wild, and so in terms of whether it is fair to keep them "in captivity" or not surely they have exactly the same needs as wild animals?
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#76 Old 12-21-2006, 10:47 AM
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ooh.



I dunno anything about that, I live in Norway, and even in the "big city" I live in, theres very few people.



Its better to have indoor cats, then to not have cats at all..I guess.
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#77 Old 12-21-2006, 10:53 AM
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Cats are only domestic animals because we keep them in our homes.

Nope. They are domestic animals because they have undergone a long process of domestication by humans.

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#78 Old 12-21-2006, 11:50 AM
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Nope. They are domestic animals because they have undergone a long process of domestication by humans.





Exactly, humans have created a new species that can only live to it's normal lifespan with humans. Cats have no natural habitat, they are genetically different from their wild ancestors and their colorings, behaviors, etc. don't tend to allow them to live well in the wild.
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#79 Old 12-21-2006, 12:19 PM
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Yeah, declawing is a nasty thing. But I think it's better in the US to focus energy on the much bigger problem (imo) of pet overpopulation. I volunteered at a shelter. Seeing perfectly great pets being put down...
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#80 Old 12-21-2006, 12:32 PM
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I have three kitties right now. none are declawed and all are from cageless, no-kill cat shelter. I also used to work at one. We actually had a clause in our adoption contracts that people were to not declaw the cats they adopted from us. (the potential adoptors went through an interview process before they adopted cats to see how they felt about certain issues - spay/neuter, declaw, etc - and if they passed the interview, they were allowed to go and meet the cats that were up for adoption. If they didn't pass (for example, they might have said they would like to get the cat declawed), they were not allowed to adopt from us. This didn't happen to often. It was a way of screening out potentially bad cat owners.



We did have some declawed cats at the shelter that were older (had previous homes and were declawed there) and so if someone was looking for an already declawed cat to adopt, they could meet the declawed adoptees.



We also didn't adopt out kittens that were not spayed/neutered yet (can't always trust the people to go and do it).



If you provide the correct kind of scratching post and some training, your cat will love to use to the post to scratch on instead of your furniture. If you love your couch more than your cat, you shouldn't be allowed to have a cat.



Two of my three cats use the post. One of them ONLY uses the post. One of them will use the post and my sofa and chair. One will only use the chair or sofa. But of course, my sofa and chair are replaceable (and have slip covers which are easily replaceable) and my cats aren't.



All of my cats stay indoors because I normally live in very busy areas of the city. When I was younger, my family had a cat and we lived in a less congested and safer area and the cat would go outside and also stay in. She was not declawed and lived to the old age of 18. It did get into fights with the cat up the street at times but never got seriously injured - normally, she would just come home with pine sap stuck in her fur from chasing squirrels up the pine tree.
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#81 Old 12-21-2006, 12:36 PM
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I would rather (if given no other choice) have a cat declawed instead of put down. I think the real problem is that people are ignorant of what declawing really is and the bad stuff that can come with it (previously talked about in this thread). I think that if more people were informed about what it actually is and how it can effect a cat they wouldn't think they "had" to have the cat declawed.



When I was doing adoptions at the shelter and someone brought up declawing I would tell them what happens to the cat and the possible side effects. I would try not to be too biased but just give clinical definitions. The majority of people, after they understood that there was actual amputation of the "fingers" didn't want anything to do with it and adopted their cat with claws. We, of course, sent home hand outs on things to buy for the cats to scratch on (mine love those cardboard things) and ways to curb scratching.
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#82 Old 12-21-2006, 05:49 PM
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I would rather (if given no other choice) have a cat declawed instead of put down.

.



Why on earth would there be "no other choice"? The only "no choice" situation I can think of (apart from the balloon scenario) would be if the cat had cancer in all it's claws or something. That's half the point of oposing declawing - not only is it cruel but it is an utterly uncessessary cosmetic procedure.

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#83 Old 12-21-2006, 06:57 PM
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(Didn't mean to imply there was an either/or element to declawing and euthanasia of shelter pets. Just saying overpopulation as an issue on its own should be given more attention.)
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#84 Old 12-21-2006, 10:55 PM
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I am 100% against declawing however, I have had the chance to be the guardian of a declawed cat. We adopted her from the no-kill shelter where I had been a volunteer. She was the sweetest thing, not one mean bone in her body. I never had any problems with her while she was healthy. She got sick in Nov. 2003 and was diagnosed with bronchial disease. I had her on medication but it didn't help. I tried to keep her comfortable while she was sick. She would sleep with me, she was very unique. She was my "Sweet Candy". She passed away in Feb 2004 and will always be a part of my heart.
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#85 Old 12-22-2006, 07:17 AM
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Why on earth would there be "no other choice"?



It was hypothetical.



I was attempting to make the point that if there were some extreme situation where it was either die or get declawed, that would be the only time I would go with declawed. Otherwise I would NEVER declaw a cat.
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#86 Old 12-22-2006, 07:21 AM
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Sorry to hear about your kitty maketheconnection.
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