Austin Veterinarian Clinic
Declawing Your Cat – Is it a Good Idea?
Many a cat enthusiast has come home one day to find furniture ripped, carpet shredded, or curtains torn. Others may endure scratches from agitated or simply playful cats. Because of this, many cat owners have, at one time or another, considered having their cat’s claws removed, a procedure creatively known as “declawing.” During the procedure, which requires general anesthesia, the nails themselves are removed, and the last bone in each “finger” is amputated.
The question many cat owners ask themselves and others is: “What effect will declawing my cat have on him or her?”
Some pet owners and veterinarians are opposed to the practice of declawing. In their view, cats are natural predators whose claws are both hunting implements and defensive mechanisms. Clawing behavior, they point out, is not developed because a cat enjoys destroying furniture, but rather out of a natural desire for exercise and their innate predatory instincts.
Because clawing is considered such a natural thing for cats to do, some people feel that surgically removing their claws is cruel. They believe that declawing can not only affect the cat’s ability to walk, but may have an impact on the cat’s mental state and personality as well. Post-operation complications are also a concern. In some cases, infection, persistent pain, and lameness may develop after the procedure.
On the other side of the argument are those who believe that declawing a cat is generally a good option to consider. According to them, changes in a cat’s personality or demeanor after surgery are rare, and modern medical technologies significantly reduce the pain associated with an operation. Another consideration is the relationship between a pet owner and his pet. A pet owner who no longer has to worry about his cat destroying furniture and curtains or injuring family members and guests is more likely to develop a better relationship with their pet.
It may be difficult to decide whether declawing your cat is the best option to pursue. Our trained veterinarians can help provide you with the resources you need to make an informed decision. To learn more, visit our Austin veterinarian clinic website at http://www.austinveterinarianclinics.com