Anyway, Adelaide really wanted me to write about an important topic today, and she's supervising me right now. (Not kidding, she's sitting on the back of the couch right now with her front paws on my shoulder.) Here's an earlier picture of Adelaide for those of you who haven't seen her.
|She heard David Tennant was trending and wanted to see for herself.|
What I did not know is that this procedure can have adverse physical affects later in life. It is a surgical procedure, after all. More profoundly, the psychological effects on the cat can be significant. A cat's claws are a source of protection and security for her. Not having them any longer can make kitty feel very unsafe, which can result in behavioral problems far worse than scratching your love seat.
Besides, there are many alternatives to declawing. Cats can be trained to understand what is okay to scratch and what isn't, and Bonham's book details some great techniques for doing this. Failing that, there is a nail capping procedure that is far less physically scarring. (I don't know as much about the psychological scarring, though, so I would try training first.)
I know that there are a lot of apartment complexes that require cats to be de-clawed, and I think we need to pass some laws to make that requirement illegal. It's painful and cruel. Very, very, very cruel. (Adelaide insisted on more "verys.") By the way, declawing is a largely American (aka "give me the easiest solution") concept. Most other places in the world don't do it. Many have outlawed it.
Now, if the owner has an immunodeficiency or is on blood thinners, Bonham (who is definitely an opponent of declawing) feels that an exception could be made.
I don't. I truly believe that it would be better to let your cat live with someone else than to have this procedure performed on him. Adelaide concurs. Or she's hungry. I haven't figured out all of her "meows" yet.
Here are a couple more resources about de-clawing that you might find interesting:
Declawing Cats Q&A (from WebMD)
Declawing.com has information about de-clawing, scratching behavior, and more.
And, of course, I highly recommend Bonham's book.