Declaw Vets And The Dilemma Of Their Clients

By Ruth aka Kattaddorra

This article was inspired by Cal who is totally against declawing, but her excellent cat vet, even though she is against it too, will declaw cats for clients who demand it even after she has tried to educate them as to the seriousness of the surgery and the many alternatives to it….

Declawing Dilemma

Declawing Dilemma. Poster collage by Ruth aka Kattaddorra.

…My first reaction was that I wouldn’t go to a vet who declawed, not under any circumstances and I’d tell her why. But on second thoughts, supposing there was no other vet in the area, who apart from declawing was an excellent cat vet. What would I do? Could I trust a vet who breaks her oath to cause no animal to suffer?

It’s easy to say no I couldn’t, from a country where we have never declawed cats even when it was legal here, but supposing I lived in the USA or Canada?

We have to put our own cats first and very often cats get ill quickly, just as they usually recover quickly with prompt treatment. In an emergency especially we don’t want to have to travel many miles to see our vet, we are just desperate to get our cats to the person who can help them.

So would I risk upsetting my vet by challenging her about why she declaws cats? To be honest I just don’t know.

Maybe it would be better to realise that she won’t stop declawing while it’s legal even though if one vet after another started refusing to declaw, eventually there would be no vet left who agreed to do it.

Thinking about it though I don’t think that will happen because while clients threaten that it’s declaw, relinquishment or even death, vets will choose to declaw even though any caretaker who threatens that shouldn’t be allowed within 10 miles of any cat. They are not fit cat caretakers.

So it seems that reluctant declaw vets are not going to stop declawing while it’s legal, even though they know how wrong it is! Is it better to simply not challenge those vets but to keep on educating cat caretakers while working towards a ban on declawing?

Only a ban will stop the vets who are happy to declaw, the ones who push neuter/declaw packages for kittens or who advertise declawing with discount.

They are the vets to avoid more than the ones who feel pressured into declawing. They are the vets I would never entrust the care of our cats health to. I can well understand the dilemma of the cat lovers in the USA and Canada.

What do you do in those countries, does your vet declaw? Have you challenged him/her?
What would people do where declawing is banned, if it wasn’t banned and it happened in their country?

Ruth aka Kattaddorra

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Comments

Declaw Vets And The Dilemma Of Their Clients — 96 Comments

  1. Excellent and thought provoking article, Ruth. I feel for Cal, I must say. This is a real dilemma and, as you say, there are no clean and clear answers. One major problem is that there are so few vets who don’t declaw under any circumstances. I have a list on PoC:

    http://pictures-of-cats.org/north-american-veterinarians-who-never-declaw.html

    Declawing vets have a stranglehold over declawing. The truth is that some cat owners need to gently educate their vet because some cat owners are more enlightened and educated than their vet.

    I think that all we can ask is that a client informs their vet that they think they are excellent vets (that bit is said first) but that they disagree strongly with one aspect of their work: declawing. The client continues to see the vet. At least that chips away at the problem. At least that eases the conscience of the cat owner. The whole thing can be done nicely and politely.

    If there is a vet nearby who does not declaw under any circumstances (unlikely), then change vets. That has to be done if the option is available.

    A vet who hates delcawing but declaws does so because she would lose business if she stopped declawing. That really tells us that, to a vet, money is more important than ethics and the health of the cat. Why can’t a vet stop declawing and make up for the potential loss of business in some imaginative way? The vet needs to put his/her business hat on and find a way to fit ethics into business. They are paid to do that.

    • Michael, I appreciate who you and Ruth are saying. I’m thinking that a gentle approach is best. You know as well as I do, that she has years beyond me in the commitment that she has made. I really am confused as to what I can do. She has taken such good care of my felines, as you both know. She has given me such good advice in the past. And, you can surmise, none of it has involved the issue of whether or not a cat should have its joints removed. ):

      Her practice now includes two more female veterinarians. She has thought through everything to do with her practice. I think it may be time for me to send a polite msg letting her know why I no longer want to be a client.

      • Cal, I completely agree that gentleness with respect is best. Vets in the USA have had to live with a long culture of declawing. It is normal almost. So it takes time to change.

        I can tell that your vet is a decent person and has done good work for you and your cats. So, to reinterate, yes, the gentle approach coupled with respect is the best way.

      • Cal, I would just say you are thinking about switching vets over this issue. Share your dilemma, allow her to explain why she does it. Saying you are thinking about leaving might be enough to get her to stop. You may have no other options though. There are no vets who don’t declaw in my state. I wrote about my approach to dealing with that on the page featuring Ruth’s beautiful bookmarks. I was concerned for young after your comment that you weren’t coming back. Declawing is very upsetting and can just about put you over the edge. Believe me, I know.

        But I know that vets who absolutely refuse to do it make a difference. My pastor is against declawing because years ago a vet told him she wouldn’t do it because it is bad for cats. That’s all she said. But she saved a lot of cat’s toe ends. Her refusal was proof enough that it’s a bad thing. So vets who think they have to reluctantly do it are actually srnding a mixed signal. The clear signal works. My pastor’s cat Gideon might be a portly 18 pounds, but at least he has his toe ends!

        • Yes, Thank You all. I think can handle it now, without too much emotion showing through. I know that she will understand, because she is compassionate. And maybe I will discover that she’s changed her practice in a positive direction against declaws. I will know more soon. The past few days have been difficult for me, so I’m going to sleep on it for at least one or two more nights-no more, and then take it on when I’m feeling stronger; in a better position to be thinking more clearly and calmly. You folks, as you know, have certainly earned respect from me. I’m grateful!

        • Excellent advice, Ruth. I’ll do it! 🙂

          I’ve never understood why anybody would even want to let a cat hobble around in bandaged feet, when it wasn’t the cat/kitten’s decision. It just seemed so very wrong to me when I witnessed this in a friend’s home, as a little girl. That left such a profound, emotional image in my eight-yr-old mind.

          And don’t worry Ruth(K), Rose. I’m going to do diplomatically, emphatically, everything that I feel I can handle. I’m not passively leaving this behind…

  2. Well you know me I’d barge right in and say what a shocking shame you could be such a very good vet but you are not because you axe off cats toe ends.
    Well they can’t deny it can they only pretend they do it for the cats sake and how can that be when they send a cripple home?
    I don’t know what I’d do if the only vets I could go to were declawers,I’d have to move to somewhere near one who didn’t as nothing is as important as all the family being protected from suffering and that includes our cats.

    • Okay, so you make these comments, directed at me, in the stupid country that I live in? what gives? aren’t you being a little harsh on a person with feelings that doesn’t;t have the comfort of the government to mediate the situation?

      • Personally I strongly disagree with declawing, of course I do. However, I understand the difficulties in changing a culture and I respect people’s views and ideas. One has to. I don’t think the USA is a stupid country. There are some wonderful things about America. The food is great and the landscape. the space. the light etc. and the people are friendly. For some peculiar reason Americans decided to declaw their cats and wild cat species (i.e serval) that a lot of people like to keep as pets. This is obviously wrong to anyone with a bit of common sense and decency. How Americans got into this state of affairs is hard to fathom. Please get out of it as soon as possible.

        • Really. It is that cut and dried.

          [Scenario] “Dr. Becky, I think that you are an excellent vet, BUT!” fck it, she’s going to have her gaze fixed right then on those cats outside of that door who need neutering and apsying. SHE’s got her hands FULL? WHY do YOU THINK I TOLD YOU! ahem. She now has two other female veterinarians working for her. Are we clueless? WE have no idea how much she’s invested in alleviating abuse! Instead of focusing on me (which is easy), why don’t you focus on those who are not on this website: and help me to figure out a way to get more people on this website, cuz it’s alot more interesting than watching turnips grow. ?

          This is a waste of my time, for the most part, you are right; I should maybe be out there using my non-declaw_advocacy voice –tell you what? if I produce a non-diplomatic 8 1/2″ x 11″ poster that shoves de-clawing abuses in the busy, caring vet’s face, am I REALLY doing my job ? no, there are better means–it takes all of us to do everything we can. You do yours, and I will start to do mine. We’re all good, as long as we are not passive, nor ignorant. And ALL of us, we’re learningand working hard, imho. Hope you understand me a little better, and I, you. If you have constructive suggestions for those of us who feel like our gov’t doesn’t listen, please do post, because I’m all ears. My time is valuable–I make little money; expenses are excruciatingly high. Half of the time, I don’t even eat, and it turns out to be a blessing (cuz I can’t afford it). It has been years! since I have had the luxury to eat out or go to a movie. I simply can’t afford it. And no, why would I own a tv when I have my cats vying for space in the crook of my knees.
          Are you folks really that spoiled?

          “Declawing Cats: Far Worse Than a Manicure
          The Humane Society of the United States”

            • PoC is the leading web site on the truth of declawing and has saved thousands of cats claws, you can find articles and posters to cover every aspect of it and just being here and learning the truth and being able to pass it on helps.
              Michael isn’t afraid to publish the truth because he knows damn well how cruel declawing is and WHEN it IS banned he will have played a HUGE part in the banning and I thank him for that.

              • Yes it’s about the cats and I still can hardly believe that the very people who trained to care for them are the ones that abuse them and that for decades hardly anyone had questioned them as to why they think it’s acceptable, until the Paw Project was founded in 2000.
                I think it was around November 2007 when we UK troops found out to our horror it was happening and joined the battle along with those over there fighting.
                We’ve come a long way thanks especially to PoC but there’s still a long way to go yet 🙁 and I hate it that cats are suffering.

              • Thank you to all of you who regularly post on Michael’s website pictures-of-cats.org I am so grateful for each and every purrsonality here; cannot single out any one. You are all so strong in your convictions and your love for this often maligned furry, precious little species. It does feel good to take care of such a good-natured, loving, often unsung little hero.

                This, hopefully you agree, epitomizes our love for this species:

                http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BcwgxZ9drJs&feature=youtu.be

      • Comments directed at YOU,my God woman you are not the only pebble on the beach.
        Struth I’ve better things to do that defend myself against such stupid remarks.

    • My apology, Rose. It was a very long day for me. When I get back to the comfort zone of my couch and my cats, there is nothing else more soothing than falling asleep after a good read. Including PoC. Thanks for allowing me to feel a part of your “family” here. even if you think I’m not quite as good as you. I’m trying. 🙂 The comment [below?] that I made on 7 May @5:06am should be dismissed. I had no business commenting at that hour, and in the future will refrain. I happen to respect and like all of you here, and would like nothing more than reciprocity. 🙂

      • As Micheal says it’s about the CATS,not about us and our sensibilities and it’s such a waste of time bickering and defending oneself when we all have the same goal,to get that legal abuse of cats into the history books.

        • Yes, a thousand times yes. It is a simple, clear goal. No one should be mistaken: there must be no declawing in the United States of America. If it takes a ban to achieve that, so be it. There is no need for argument amongst people who support a no-declaw country. We are all on the same side.

          • I’m looking for a new vet, any suggestions from you or anyone else on this page, would be so appreciated.

            Just so you know, I haven’t confronted her office face-to-face, but did call to tell the front-counter female that I was looking for another veterinarian after twenty yrs as Dr. Becky’s client. I am waiting to hear back, which isn’t surprising. My next step is to make a surprise visit w/neighbor’s cat (who’s given me permission to have him neutered), and do the face-to-face…

        • You said it so very well! Thanks for the reply. (btw, I don’t trust the history books, but I do trust that this legal abuse needs to end. Thanks again.

  3. ‘At least that eases the conscience of the cat owner. The whole thing can be done nicely and politely’

    Yes that is a good solution Michael, because saying nothing would make it seem as if you didn’t disapprove of declawing and surely vets must know the tide is turning against declawing, it’s out in the open now how cruel it is, why don’t they just admit it and stop!
    Yes Rose they must know they take in a perfectly healthy cat and send a cripple home, how they can do that and sleep at night I don’t understand!

    • I could tell Rose some horrific stories that would give her nightmares everynight for the rest of her Life. Try this one on for size: a cat with a hollow undercarriage–stomch, kidneys, liver, intestines, all eaten alive by maggots–she was my cat, given over to the care of “boyfriend slash housemate.” I imagine, and I’ve experienced a quite a deal of physical abuse myself in my past yrs (i’m 54), that you nor I can come close to visualizing, yet alone, experiencing, what Dr. Becky Arnold has at All-Feline Hospital.

      • Terrible about your cat!
        I’m sure Rose has seen some horrific stuff too and already has nightmares as she’s in cat rescue and I could tell you all some horrific heartbreaking nightmare making stories from my vet nurse days too, but it makes no difference how much horror we have seen, the horror of declawing comes high on the list and this nightmare scenario is LEGAL there!!!!!
        http://pictures-of-cats.org/the-shocking-images-of-a-declawed-cat.html

        • Thank you for your reply, Ruth. Now here is mine to you. I was raped in the military at age 19. My blood was sprayed over every single wall in the apt., while I was fighting to escape.

          Ruth, that does NOT EVEN come CLOSE to what my Panda experienced when she was eaten alive by MAGGOTS. When I discovered what was going on -my stupid, stupid, arrogant, sonofabitch male “friend” had given me his word to take good care of my little dear- when I found her on the basement landing, carried her little body to the kitchen table where I frantically picked maggots out of her, he lecherous lazy ugly asshole drove off in his car, leaving me no means to get her to the emergency clinic. I will never, ever, ever forgive myself. Those images of my dear little innocent cat, in all of that agony, all organs exposed and covered with maggots. She still holding on for life.

          I will never ever forgive myself for entrusting my sweet feline’s care with such a “friend.” I became a drunk for yrs because of it, wanting to kill myself slowly, tormenting myself over her horrific torture. I don’t have the passion for living like I once had. I look for positive, solid moral character in those that I meet, yet I don’t know. I no longer really trust my own judgement with people, only with animals.

          So please keep your remarks a bit less judgemental.

          • Caroline whilst I’m very sorry to hear of your past horrors and your poor innocent cat’s dreadful treatment I don’t appreciate being told to be less judgemental, we do NOT in our country let others tell us what to think or to say.
            It sounds to me, if you haven’t already had counselling, you need it, believe you me I had to admit to needing help with my past horrors and talking it through does help.
            Targeting other people with your guilt and grief and anger does not!
            Don’t like what I write? Then the solution is simple, don’t read it any more!
            At 65 years old I will NOT be judged or told what to do by ANYONE!

            • lol here here,who are these people who come along laying the law down what THEY say goes?
              For God’s sake we’ve all lived through dreadful stuff,it haunts us yes but we deal with it with or without help.I’ve been too busy bringing up my kids and looking out for animals to think of me but I lie awake some nights in cold sweats of what I’ve lived through,don’t we all!

              • Rose, that is why I was so reluctant to key in one of my own, because it is true, that most of us, if not all of us, have our own traumas from the past. I had no business interjecting that whatsoever, and I’m sorry. I don’t know you, you don’t know me. And I should not have so foolishly written that. This, hopefully is the end of this. You won’t get any more replies from me, regardless of your comments’ direction. That WAS foolish of me–I know better.

            • Ruth, I did not target you with my guilt. [sigh]
              The information I gave you about myself was the mere tip of the iceberg. It doesn’t matter. And blv you me, Ive been through a little counseling for Panda’s atrocity–it did not help.
              I’m not really the type of personality to eve bring these private matters into the discussion (if indeed, that is how you feel). I was wrong to bring it to the table. I’m sorry.

              At our age, IMHO, the callouses provide us a means of spitting out an attitude/defense that keeps us from being sensitive to each other.

              I apologise, if I have you misinterpreted my last sentence in that previous posting.

              • That’s OK, I think those of us who love cats are passionate people and I know I sometimes write something instead of cooling off first and sometimes we go off the topic a bit but I think it’s a good thing that we can come to PoC and share our passion over our concern of cats.
                We need to stand together against the Woodys of the world who want cats eradicated just because they hate them. Oh yes they dress it up as concern for the environment but the truth is that they hate cats and they hate us cat lovers too.
                We in the UK feel that USA and Canadian vets treat cats as second class citizens, the vets there express horror at the declawing of dogs but why, when cats feel pain as much as dogs?
                It’s a hard road to follow,loving cats, that’s for sure.

                • I like people to express their passions in comments. They can be a bit strong sometimes and a bit off-topic but all the time welfare of cats is not far away in these discussions. I feel that even off-topic comments can be relevant to the core of PoC – cat welfare.

          • Maggots won’t eat living tissue. They even use them in medicine sometimes for wound debridement because the maggots eat the dead tissue, but leave the healthy tissue alone. So either those weren’t maggots on your cat or somehow she had tissue death occurring, whether from abuse or a disease process, it’s impossible to say for sure. It’s still horribly sad, but maybe it will help to know the maggots absolutely were only eating necrotic tissue, which once it’s dead has no living nerves in it. People who get the treatment with the maggots love it because when all the dead tissue and puss are gone they feel a lot less pain. As the maggots ate the dead tissue it probably helped her live as long as she did, but whatever infection (maybe initially from a wound?) was still killing tissue. It would have been painful as tissue died, but the removal of the dead tissue would not have been painful. It’s still horrible that he hurt her and didn’t treat her (my guess) but as gross as the maggots looked, it is doubtful to me that they ate living tissue. She had to have a would with necrotic tissue exposed– food source. Her living tissue– not a food source.

            • You are right of course Ruth and I didn’t like to bring up the subject of maggotts amd horrors but cleaning the mortuary was one of my jobs at both vet practices I worked for, I still have nightmares from what I saw, but I wouldn’t even begin to describe it here.

              • And that is why I didn’t say anything more…to horrific.
                I wish I hadn’t said anything in the first place. In fact after this tangent, Im completely at a loss as to why I shared anything with all of you. Why do you lash out at me–do I deserve it? I don’t think so.

            • You are correct, Ruth. I did not state otherwise, but you folks obviously don’t really want to give me any understanding/kindness and that’s fine. Since you replied with that, I feel an explanation for -well, forget it-since you all seem to assume that I know nothing about maggots. What’s the use.

              • I just thought it might be some small comfort to know she wasn’t “eaten alive”– small difference, I know, but to me it would make a difference. Was trying to help– not criticize.

                But as horrible as your tale of cat abuse is, declawing is worse and it’s legal. That’s why I can’t always do as much as I should against declawing– I have to take a break from thinking of it now and then to preserve my own mental health. Even if declawing were the only evil thing happening it would be too much to bear, and of course it’s not. People just don’t understand that it’s not about the size of the body part removed, it’s about the amount of the brain dedicated to sensory/motor input/output to that area. A declawed cat suffers more than a cat with a wound on her body, no matter how extensive. Cats recovering from spay/neuter operations compared to cats post declaw surgeries illustrate that fact. A cat’s distal joints are a marvel of proprioception and control– a finely tuned, delicate system that goes well beyond what we see, because for the claws to be useful at all to the cat his nervous system, in regards to them, has to be highly sophisticated. It is that system that declawing destroys, but since we can’t rip out the remaining nerves and a large section of the cat’s brain, we leave the animal in a very bad state indeed.
                Pus and blood and gore don’t gross me out (as one fifth grade boy found out who used to sit by me at lunch every day at the school where I taught and tell me every gross story he knew to try to put me off my food) but knowing about form and function and seeing a magnificent, functional design destroyed leaving an animal in tortuous pain for probably the rest of his life– that about puts me over the edge. To be told this happens because I don’t care enough or do enough– yeah, that really, really hurts.

                Especially since members of my own family are about to do it again and they won’t listen to me. I’m a licensed teacher plus I have a degree in a medical field that focuses primarily on anatomy in terms of form and function– yet I can’t explain this to them. What kind of a loser am I? If I can’t get through to them then I’m incompetent in every area of my life. Yes, it hurts very much to be reminded of that here.

              • Oh no, I think it’s terrible that someone who you have explained the reality of declawing to, still intends to do it to their cat!
                Ruth it’s not your failing, I know I’d feel the same as you do, I’d think I was inadequate, but you can’t force someone determined to go ahead, not to do it.
                It must be absolutely heartbreaking to you to have to stand by helpless and see another cat’s life ruined. I don’t know what to say, I’d be so upset I couldn’t bring myself to ever speak to those people again, family or not.
                Someone knowing the truth yet still going ahead is as bad as the vet who is amputating that cat’s toe ends, how can they be so cruel!

              • Ruth, the way this format is set, I cannot reply to your comment below at May 10, 11:59 a.m. (hmm… 🙂 your time, which is the best time.

                I do understand what you commented, and I appreciated that. It doesn’t warm my heart though. And I know that you understand that. Please tell me, what can I do to make it up to Panda, more than the feeble attempts I make. respectfully, I,m waiting your reply, becasue sometimes i feel it is necessary to create a smidgeon of conflict, just so that any animal lover who loves their kitten/cat might chance upon this site; and, well you know the rest. Thanks for listening. “)

            • And, gosh, thanks for assuming I have no knowledge nor experience, nor as much insight as you do on the topic. I try not to pass judgement, nor make assumptions, until I have all the info pertinent to the matter at hand. I try not to make assumptions. If I truy no the person, then I might offer such comments as you females have.

            • Again, I reiterate: what you just wrote describing maggots behavior was uncalled for, esp. since this is quite a sensitive issue for not only myself, (but Ruth(K) does not seem to find fault with you for having posted that, and yet criticism is directed at me for having brought it on to this page). And I feel that Monty’s Mom Ruth was simply stating what she knows, thinking possibly that I might know. She did not attack. And I appreciate that.

            • Okay, Ruth(Monty’s), finally got up the courage to read your post. I have such a problem with seeing the word “maggot,” that I have to do something immediately that takes my visual mind far, far away as best I can. Pretty much, I have to be dulled by vodka now to even think about the larvae. nough said.
              Thank you for trying to help me with this, but I have a background in micro, biology, physiology,,,
              The reason that this reply is being posted is because I didn’t get your last one below, until tonight, and because I couldn’t bear to read all of this one. (which i’ know you understand)
              Not a day goes by that these thoughts and images, not just of Panda, but every single kitten/cat that suffers due to some egotistical, uncaring, or simply oblivious, self-important human being, these thoughts and images envelope my brain. As I stated before, the image of the cat who’s paws were wrapped in bandages because -when I asked at nine yrs of age “Why does she have to walk on those?” –well, those images will never leave my mind.
              And I think that those of us on this planet Earth, which doesn’t seem to have much a
              of a future at this point– who truly are sensitive about our fellow sp. and all other animals, insects, plants, whatever…we are truly sensitive about everything that breathes on this planet.

              But, there ARE those who DO care, who are so wrapped up in their lives that they do not have the time to follow PoC so, that is why I am beginning –just beginning- to understand why I MUST make a commitment to taking action as best I can in my city, state and country. [Thank God for Michael-website].

        • Your words ring so true. And sometimes, all too often probably, when I initially read a reply, it is misinterpreted in my tired, silly little mind. Thank you for replying. (I’ll try harder not to get so defensive. 🙂

  4. This must be such a dilemma that no one affected knows what to say, I’m very surprised about that as it would have been good to hear thoughts from the USA and Canada.

      • Your comments are very much appreciated. It would be nice, as Ruth says, to hear from other people too. Declawing is a sore point. I sense it is becoming a more sensitive issue because people are questioning it.

        • And that is why I don’t hesitate to “let it hang out,” in this outstanding forum. Hopefully our discussions will persuade others to join in, constructively. Thanks for your support. You’ve all just given me the needed encouragement to refortify my positive nature!

          • You are right, Michael. I’m not as outspoken as those whose countries are more intellient and caring, disregarding insidious monopolies like Monsanto. (i donn’t know WHERE that cAME FROM.

            What should I do, again, in the position of living in a US state that apparently doesn’t care about animal welfare? I am an intelligent, sensitive female, who would like to see more done here U.S., so where the “amen” listeners’ voices on this site??? SPEAK UP, citizens!

            [Michael e-mail me, pls.]

        • Yes Michael, declawing has been hidden away far too long and more people need to question it.
          This wonderful web site is not for the faint hearted, it’s for those of us who care for ALL cats worldwide and try to DO something to help them and I am proud to come here with so many like minded people.

          • I agree, Ruth. Let’s not have any dissension amongst ourselves, when dealing with such a hot, heated, colourful and lame topic. “Lame” in that it shouldn’t even be an issue on this plant.

            Do not declaw your cat. (or we will find you!) [sorry, couldn’t help it]

            Do not de-claw your cat. It is wrong on so many levels.

            Now, I suddenly realized, that I have spent far too much time on this site. I have to get busy publicizing this website, so we get a few more readers (with fingers that can actually use a keyboard to type a response to this serious issue)…

    • I’m not apathetic about declawing. I spelled out my approach on a previous page and I’ve been busy with writing a song, tutoring a kid and attending a social function at church. I’ve gotta go play organ now. Just because I don’t have time to respond to every page on declawing doesn’t mean I don’t care.

      • I don’t think Rose would mean you Ruth, but the people who either don’t care that cats suffer every day or care but don’t try to do anything about it.
        You personally do more than enough educating and I’m sure you’ve saved a lot of cats claws.
        It’s very frustrating for us over here because if it was in our country we’d be out on every street with tables with anti declaw leaflets on, petitions, etc and collecting for the Paw Project, but as it is we are helpless to do much at all, apart from on-line.

        • But I am busy printing pamphlets, I was more than ready to go to Michael’s protest, I’ve called vets and asked if they declaw and stated my reasons against it, I’ve talked to vets face to face about it and will do so again. We have people in the states who are trying. Ron Gaskin is doing awesome work and there are others. Many of us support the paw project. Those of us who are trying should not be made to feel we’re not doing enough. It’s sort of like preaching to the choir. They’re always there and don’t want to hear all the time how deplorable it is so few people come to church.

          America is an evil country and declawing is but the tip of the iceberg. We kill 4,000 babies a day, every day, through abortion. Those children that died in that fire near me were locked in a bedroom with a deadbolt requiring a key while the mother left them in there alone to go party. They died locked in that room with no chance of escape and the woman who did it had been cited six times for child neglect previously.

          I live in a country being brought down by costs of welfare programs, but they came to be when because of greed we abdicated our individual responsibility to help the poor and let people in the richest country in the world starve to death. We still have people starving to death because of all the stealing that goes on from welfare, so there’s not enough for those who truly need it, while we all sit fat and happy in our homes while people live in the street. My church, with others, runs a program to feed and give temporary shelter to the honeless and it’s shocking how many homeless people come for help, even families with children.

          Our children are assaulting and terrorizing one another in our schools, even the ones who don’t shoot up the place. Last week some older kids beat a toddler almost to death at a local daycare while the workers shot a video of it, laughed antd did nothing.

          I live in a really horrible, evil place and it’s hard just to survive here. So I’m sorry that I and a few others can’t fix everything that’s wrong, but the evil people far outnumber those with any decency whatsoever. This is the reality. Tell a greedy vet to stop declawing and he’s going to belittle you, question your intelligence, maybe yell at you and then say that you are being rude. Sometimes I can’t emotionally handle that with all that’s going on, especially the shocking numbers of murdered children happening every couple of weeks in my city and I’m not talking about abortions.

          I do some good with my life, though. I work with elderly people who often are depressed and confused and I try to help them the best I can. Even as I work to help them be safer and prevent falls, I also try to cheer them up, encourage them and honor the dignity of their lives and their contributions to this world. I tutor children in their school work and try to encourage, but the tales they tell of their school situations are horrifying and chilling. One week a student had to cancel our session because her pregnant mother had been shot.

          Those of us who want a better country are up against a whole society based on selfishness, greed and hatred. Those of us who try in a small way should not be made to feel that if we just protested a little more, or did this or did that, things would change. It’s going to take a lot more than that. It’s like when my dad implies he wouldn’t drink so much if he only had better daughters. There’s more to it than us, and even if we were ten times better than we are, I don’t think we can solve the problem of his alcoholism for him. If all it took were a few Americans protesting and handing out leaflets to end all the evils of society it would have happened a long time ago. Those who are trying to be good people are appalled at the evil things that are happening, but those who would rather do evil really don’t care what we think.

          • You are wonderful, Ruth, you must know that! We are doing what we can to stop the atrocities, dear. And we don’t stop! You are doing everything that you can, with your sensitivity and your infinite kindness. Now. It’s about time that I as an American citizen and cATLOVER, do everything that I can. The Cathouse is holding a $20 hor d’euvre fundraiser tmrw night. I don’t drink, but I DO plan on dressing up. Wish me luck! 🙂

        • Of course I didn’t mean those of you already doing all you can,keep up the good work Ruth Monty’s mom if there was more like you declawing would be in the history books.

      • Ruth, you are an angel 🙂 You do all that a person can do and more. I am sure the “apathy” comment refers to the general state of affairs in the USA with respect to declawing.

        • Ruth, you can be really funny, whenyou are not going ballistic! 🙂 Thanks for responding to my sensitiv= oh screw it all–I don’t know you from Eve, but do know this, we understand each other very well: me? U.S. You? in a country where declawing was never even allowed by the folk of the country, never mind the gov’t WHICH IS SUPP
          SED TO represent the country. so why r u pcikng on me? because I deserve it, as I am the one who can control who I choose to use as a caregiver for my pets? Yes, you ARE ABSOLUTELY RIGHT!

          now.
          All of you, please, lay out for me in BOLD! what I can do as a tiny ant in the big sidewalk of things, to STOP this lame defect in our U.S. society.

          • Ruthie(Monty’s mum), that tired last comment I made was to the other Ruth, not you, dear. I am sorry to hear what you suffered from that neglectful mother of those babies. I cannot imagine what that felt like. When these images hit and I can’t seem to sleep due to sadness, if I don’t have a cat purring on me, I try to focus on rescues like this one, “Francis-Found Alone Crying in the Snow”

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?NR=1&v=BcwgxZ9drJs&feature=endscreen

          • Educate educate educate that’s what you can do, it’s all any of us can do.
            Educate one person about the cruelty of declawing, that person tells at least one other, they tell another, who tells another, the truth spreads to hundreds and you can save thousands of claws that way.
            Good luck

            • Yes, it is a grind but grinding gets you a long way. My experiences in life tell me that if you consistently promote something that is fair and right and proper, eventually you’ll make a bit of progress.

              • You are right Michael! Grinding gets you a long way, I like that lol
                It took us years to get the hunting with dogs ban and the Pet Welfare act but we got them in the end 🙂

          • Monty’s Mom, that wasn’t directed at you (my reply, I mean). You have never ever been unkind. I hope that this reply is very late, because you are the inspiration for so many!

    • What are YOU doing Rose? Don’t ASSuME that folks in NE, USA AND catlovers in CA aren’t trying. You sound a bit arrogant and you are bullying those of here who are trying… try to be a bit more compassionate to those of us who live under these gov’ts., then, maybe I will have some patience with you.

      • I happen to know that Rose works tirelesly in animal welfare and having just come along you won’t know she was even imprisoned for her rescue work of tortured animals.
        She is not arrogant, she is only outspoken and I for one would rather that than an uncaring ‘yes woman’ and no I don’t mean ANYONE here, if I took every comment to me/about me personally I’d be long gone from here. I even had a death threat from your country because my petition to ban declawing had over 4,000 signatures from all over the world.
        I’m a very sensitive person and I do hurt badly but I will NEVER give up on stopping declawing.

      • I couldn’t care less what anyone thinks of me,those who know me here know I’m far from arrogant and bullying but it’s no skin off my nose if you want to think it and you don’t need to have patience with me,who are you joint owner of PoC or something?
        What am I doing?I surmise you mean about declawing?
        Let’s see…5 years or so ago I was third to join the UK troops after Ruth/Katt and her sister Barbara started it,I helped spread the petition getting lots of signatures,I’ve educated all those years and stuck to the cause while most of the other UK troops gave up because YOUR fellow countrymen didn’t seem as dedicated to getting a ban.
        I have zero compassion for anyone not doing their utmost to stop the suffering of cats caused by your “excellent” vets axing off their toe ends.
        ASSuME doesn’t impress me at all I’ve heard it all before.
        Now I’ll get back to my UK cats who also need me to fight for their welfare although thank God I don’t have to fight for their right to keep their toe ends.

        • Rose, you’re great. You have a heart and it is in the right place. I think you know that. If not you should. If anyone criticises you, they’re wrong 😉

          I don’t care what people think of me, either. I really don’t. We should be truthful to ourselves and know what we are.

        • FWIW, you are loved by every single individual here. We all, esp. a newbie like me, knowing very little, yet caring very much like so many of us do here in the states(?); we do care, but for some reason, my friends seem to have their head-up-their-ass! [sorry!] nd sticking my big foot in my mouth? WHY, why, why, aren’t we ALL working together? That’s what I don’t understand.

          -what would you like to see me and all the other catlovers do over here, in the “great” USA, {sorry, that was a jab at my “compratiots?” wow. the funny thing is, I’ve never considered myself to belong to any country. Maybe I should participate, politically? Let me know. I’m all ears. -Cal

  5. Silly me, I almost “offed” myself ystrday because of my naivete in all of this. Thank goodness, I woke up!

    • Woke up to fight it I hope.
      I can well remember 5 years ago when I first discovered it was happening, I didn’t want to stay in a world where someone would pay a vet to mutilate their healthy happy cat and a vet would agree or worse still, offer to do that.
      But no opting out for me, I’ll fight this legalised cruelty to my last breath and thankfully thousands more people worldwide are now fighting it too!
      Yes it’s easy to say that as we don’t have any vets here who declaw but I was interested in how cat lovers do cope if they only have access to a vet who declaws.

    • I’ve been where you are, Cal. But a dear Pastor friend said to me that death is always a blessing when Jesus sends it, but when the devil sends it it is always a curse. “In this world you will have trouble.” Jesus wasn’t kidding about that. But offing yourself doesn’t end your trouble. I know too many people who live or have lived in a home where the former resident committed suicide and in each instance there is a feeling of dread, of darkness and of evil in that place. To do off oneself must be so wrong that it kind of throws everything for a loop near the spot where it happened. We cannot stop evil by committing an evil act. The father of lies will whisper to you that it isn’t evil– that you’re even doing a good thing. Don’t listen, Cal. If I can manage not to listen, you can too. Those thoughts are not from Jesus Christ.

  6. I’m not sure what all the cryptic comments are about so I’m going to ignore all that and just comment on the article which is really thought provoking for which my thanks go to Ruth. My first instinct was that I’d rush in there hot headed and give the vet a piece of my mind then slam the door on my way out having told her to shove her practice where the sun doesn’t shine, but then I thought again and this time thought that although I despise vets who declaw cats and (if circumstances were different and I lived in one of the few backward countries that still allow cats to be de-fingered) would never knowingly become a client of one who so blatantly cared nothing for the actual creatures they have taken an oath to help, if after I had used that vet for a time I found out that she offered a defingering service,if I was satisfied with the way she treated MY cat, if she was kind to him, spoke to him as well as me, stroked and petted him to calm him and understood cat illnesses, then maybe I would take my time, research for a different vet, one with moral standards, and then calmly explain why I was leaving her practice, as a protest against her making money by inflicting devastating injuries to cats otherwise healthy paws. Or maybe I would chicken out of face to face and write a letter!

    The end result would be the same though, I would no longer use her practice, but I would hope that telling her why I wouldn’t be using her again rather than losing my head and shouting all the things I really want to shout might make more of an impression on her calculating brain, if only more people would boycott these butchers in smiling women’s clothing maybe what $’s they lost in business would be more than the $’s they make by declawing.

    It’s a hard one because even after all these years of helping in the stop declawing fight I still can’t really imagine what sort of a nightmare it must be to actually live where it is done, to see the affects of declawing in the (bloody) flesh, to have to be civil to people who think it’s an OK thing to do to cats. I can’t comprehend that one person, let alone millions of people, would think chopping off toes with attached claws was anything other than gross cruelty. It’s a bit like the Emperors new clothes, someone must have said it was an acceptable thing to do and somehow that impression has spread so that now there is a mass belief that cats toes are disposable. It always astounds me that people are willing to admit to taking part in cruel things, hunting, shooting, declawing cats, dog fighting are a few examples, you’d think it would be something kept in the closet to be ashamed of rather than spoken openly about, even advertised, wouldn’t you?

  7. there is a mass belief that cats toes are disposable..

    Yes, over say 50 years, a culture has developed, driven by vets who have argued that declawing is acceptable, that declawing a cat is removing the “nail” and so on and the cat does not mind.

    It is a two way problem – vet and cat owner – but the primary culprit is the vet because they have allowed this to happen and fostered it through doing it uncomplainingly. When a vet like Cal’s vet says that she has to declaw because the client will go elsewhere, she has, with all the other vets, created that very problem. Therefore she can’t use it as a defense or reason to declaw, which, incidentally, perpetuates and strengthens the culture of declawing.

    Marc (I mean Babz), we agree on how to deal with the dilemma posed by Ruth. Great.

    • There must be something wrong with my page as I don’t see a comment from Marc here? I’m sure Cal’s comment wasn’t on earlier either?
      Good points Barbara and I agree. I still can’t comprehend how ANY person trained to love animals can mutilate cats that way, surely they studied anatomy of the cat at college, even people here who don’t particularly like cats are shocked that anyone would take ‘even only’ their claws, when they hear it’s actually their toe ends they shudder.
      A culture is right and damn the person who started it, he was the reason kittens from a day old to adult cats were experimented on to ‘perfect’ declawing. I can never forget reading how a mother cat ate her day old declawed kittens, cats have emotions, I can’t bear to think of how that poor desperate mother cat felt.
      There seems to be no solution while vets pretend cats don’t mind, of course they mind, they have no say and suicide is not an option for cats.
      It’s a horrible emotive subject but if we don’t flog at it then it will go on and on and on ……I find that unbearable!

  8. 95 comments! Great. At one time Ruth thought there was something wrong with the page 🙂

    It is a fine page that asks a really good question. I wonder if someone can summarise the comments 😉 ! LOL — What I mean is, what conclusions did we come to in resolving this dilemma? Or are there any? There may be no answers.

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