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Cat: To De-claw or Not to De-claw (1 Viewer)

Angelo.M

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Adopted a 3 year old cat for my daughter. Never had one as a kid, so I have little experience with them.

Should I have the cat de-clawed? Advantages/disadvantages? Thanks in advance.
 

Patrick Sun

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Tough call.

I would never declaw my 2 cats. I try to keep their claws clipped/dulled as much as possible.

For some people, the prospect of having furniture ruined by their clawed cats is unappealing to them, and de-clawing seems to be the answer to that problem for them.

If the cat is to be an outdoor cat, de-clawing will leave the cat more defenseless against other animals.
 

Malcolm R

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Ohmigod. Can open...worms everywhere. **running for cover until the storm passes**


Never.

Should your fingertips be amputated at the first knuckle?
 

David_N

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Most reputable vets will always advise against it especially outdoor cats. I have two indoor cats with claws now. In fact when we adopted them from the shelter, we signed an agreement with them to never have them declawed. I've placed a scratching post in every room and rubbed catnip on all of them. They love the posts and we have never caught either scratching any furniture.
 

James Edward

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No. It is very painful for the cat. It's a little more work, but we have used a nail clipper to keep our
cat(s) claws a little on the blunt side. 1-2 times a week does the trick.

And: Not all cats scratch furniture. The one we have now is a dirtbag in every other way, but does not scratch the furniture. Scratching posts can go a long way to alleviating the need to scratch anything else.
 

Dean Cooper

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It really depends on a couple of things. If you plan on letting your cat outside I would advise not to, period. An out door cat will require claws on the front a number of times during its life to defend itself. If you don't plan on letting your cat outside then its really up to you. It will save your stairs, furniture and probably your daughters hand a few times but that’s about it. Pay attention to what your cat is doing in these areas. If it has a problem keeping its claws to itself than look into de-clawing; if it seems fine, don't fix what isn't broke. All of the cats that I have seen it done to don't really seem any worse for wear, sure they have sore paws for about a week but after that they don't seem to miss them at all. There is a new laser procedure for it that has improved the process considerably, ask your vet about it.
 

Jared_B

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Indoor cat = yes.
Outdoor (at all) = no.

My cat is declawed and he is just fine, thanks! Although, before doing it, I'd suggest giving it a try to see if you have any problems before having the surgery done. Like James said, some cats just don't scratch.
 

Zen Butler

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+++Hides in bomb shelter awaiting Briggs Missle+++

Siscal Rope scratching posts at least 36" high should be an ample alternative to de-clawing. Some have great luck with the Cedar posts. Don't waste any money on short posts, they need to fully extend.
 

Walt N

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When I was a kid my next door neighbor's cat slipped out, went into our back yard, and was attacked by our German Shepherd. I heard the commotion from inside the house and saw the reason. The cat was missing it's front claws so it couldn't get back up and over the fence, and it was a sad and pathetic sight to see it trying to scramble for it's life without having the tools it needed.

I would vote against declawing for sure. (The cat took some stitches, but it only survived because I was there to call off our dog.)
 

Mary Giddens

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In most cases, if the cat is a totally indoors cat, I'd say declaw unless the owner has any qualms against it. But with a 3 year old cat, that can be traumatic to the feline. In most cases, declawing is done at a very young age, as early as possible is best because they haven't fully adjusted to life with claws. But declawing a 3 year old cat would be like losing the lower half of both of your arms in your 20's.

And that's just my personal opinion, fueled by the fact that I've literally had to get stitches because of friendly cats with claws.
 

Nathan*W

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Angelo.M,

In the end it is your choice. I recommend doing some research on the subject before you decide. (like Google)

I think you will find that are pro-declaw and neutral on this forum are pretty ambivalent, while the anti-declaw folks are very...um, let's just say vocal about it.
;)
 

Edwin-S

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Uggh. The whole idea of having a cat's claws removed grosses me out. If a person wants to keep a pet they should expect to take the bad with the good. The bad with a cat is that it scratches. With enough time spent on training, the cat can been taught not to scratch furniture.
 

Jack Briggs

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Never declaw a cat.

What most humans fail to realize is that a cat's claws are not analogous to human fingernails. Instead, the claws are an integral part of a cat's anatomy. Removing them and thus mutilating the cat is the equivalent of amputating a human's fingers at the final joint.

Whether an indoor-only or outdoor cat, removing his claws is cruel. If furniture is such an issue, then don't adopt a cat. But my cat never claws anything other than his seven-and-a-half-foot-tall scratching tower with its many compartments and perches.

Really, cats are living beings, not pieces of property to tailor to a human's whims. Living with a cat involves making accommodations and compromises in one's lifestyle.
 

Tony Whalen

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Also agree with Jack. Cruel and unnecessary.

I have three cats, and my furniture is fine... they just use the scratching post.

A little care to clip the claws once in a while, and a nice post is all it takes.

I also had to sign agreements to never get my adopted cats declawed.
 

Angelo.M

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Thanks for the opinions on both sides. In fact, my furniture was/is not an issue; the cat has been with us for several months already, and hasn't done any damage. And, I wouldn't have thought of having her de-clawed even if she had done something to the furniture. I'm extremely fond of her--having always considered myself a 'dog person'--and wouldn't want her hurt in any way.

And, as a 'health care professional' (I'll leave it at that!) and someone who knows a fair bit of biology, I'm quite aware that claws are not analagous to human fingernails.

My only concern was for my toddler, who, at almost 3, has taken a liking to chasing the cat. I just don't want her scratched. Perhaps this concern is naiive; I'm certainly no expert in cat behavior. However, having seen cat scratch disease a few times... Anyhow, she'll remain and indoor cat, with her claws. :D
 

Angelo.M

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Also, we've tried scratching posts, but Rosalita (yes, she's named after the song) isn't interested. Yes, we've tried the catnip-treated kinds; she seems to want no part of them. She'll scratch at our carpet runner, and that's about it.

Any tips/suggestions?
 

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