Cats are the most popular companion mammal in the United States — and for good reason! Though affectionate, cats are also independent and can generally manage at home alone while the rest of the family is at work or school. Cat owners need not worry about daily walks, or fenced-in yards. Most cats are self-cleaning and indoor cats can go years without a visit to the bathtub. As a predatory mammals however, cats are equipped with sharp teeth and claws. In an effort to make these animals even more “amenable” than they already are to life in a human home, some cat owners turn to cat declaw surgeries. These surgeries render their cats incapable of clawing furniture, but the surgery also leaves the cats unable to climb and less able to play and defend themselves.
Cat declawing is an amputation. The surgery cuts tendons, nerves, bones, and blood vessels. Remnants of the bone sometimes remain in the paw, causing pain and abnormal gait. According to a recent news article, Denver City Council in Colorado is considering passing an ordinance that would ban city veterinarians from performing the surgery. (Many veterinarians will not perform the surgery for ethical reasons, as veterinarians work to protect the welfare of cats, not furniture.)
Residents of Denver, Colorado, contact the Denver City Council and urge them to pass a law that would ban cat declaw surgeries.