Looking at the selection of cats in a typical Rescue Shelter, some of the reasons given by the people who relinquished them to the Shelter seem reasonable enough.
Messing out of the litterbox, biting, fearful, child’s allergy to cats all seem good enough excuses. Although always having kittens and kittens unable to be found homes for could have been easily avoided by neutering. Having a ‘real’ baby is a very sad excuse because the cat has obviously been the baby up until the ‘real’ one arrived.
Moving house without the cat is very sad too, that cat wasn’t taken into consideration as part of the family when deciding where to move to.
We’ve got a new dog and he doesn’t like cats is very sad too, that cat’s family obviously see cats as second class citizens to dogs, How unkind to part with the cat instead of the dog. After all the cat was there first.
Look further down the records of those cats and you would see written at the bottom of the description of each cat and the reason for relinquishment, the word ‘declawed’. Ah..now we have the true reason the cats were relinquished, but that is given as an afterthought.
All those cats awaiting some kind person to adopt them, have gone through the most painful and cruel operation a cat can endure. They have had 10 (or 18) amputations and they have problems from that.
But of course the people who relinquished those cats mostly gave other excuses as to why the cat was unwanted. Litter box avoidance, biting and fearfulness are just a few of the many physical and mental problems caused by declawing. Those poor cats are probably doomed to be caged forever as that Rescue Centre is a no kill.
In a kill shelter they would have been killed as unadoptable on admission. Let’s use the correct term, not euthanized, that means a gentle death as a release from a painful incurable illness.
They were killed because not only did their ‘owner’ pay a vet to remove the very essential toe ends from their cat, when the problems from that surgery began the cat was labelled bad and no longer welcome in the family.
But wait, you might say, surely those 2 kittens together which couldn’t be found homes for are not declawed, they are just babies.
The sad truth is that yes they are declawed because the owner of the Rescue Shelter thought it would make them more adoptable. It doesn’t seem to register that the number of declawed cats relinquished prove otherwise. It’s not a rare occurrence to see kittens only a few months old offered as wormed, vaccinated and declawed. To some Shelters declawing is more important than neutering.
I often wonder if the people who donate money to them to help needy cats realise what some of it is spent on? Just like declaw vets, all Rescue Shelters could educate people as to the cruelty of declawing and what the alternatives are instead of encouraging it.
How much cheaper and more humane if upon adoption of clawed cats the adopters were provided with a scratching post and told how to teach the cat to use it. Some Shelters do have people sign a no declaw contact, this should happen in all Shelters.
But the sad fact is that the truth about declawing is still being hidden and many thousands of declawed cats like the cats in the poster above, end up sitting unwanted in cages, some for life.