Declawing Ruined This Cat’s Life

by Ruth

Comparison between mutilated (top left) and healthy (bottom right) paw.

Comparison between mutilated (top left) and healthy (bottom right) paw.

This is a real cat suffering from being front paw declawed. The paw pads on the declawed paws are dark, rough, irritated, mis-shapen and shrunken, unlike the paw pads in the clawed rear paws which are pink, plump, healthy, and oval,just they way they should be!

Paw pads are for cushioning, not for walking! This front declawed cat suffers from painful arthritis (he was relinquished to a shelter due to stress and litterbox issues). He sits back on his wrists because putting his full weight on his declawed paws is uncomfortable (he repositions himself often) and has taught himself to land on his hind legs when jumping from heights, to avoid the pain of landing on his front stumps, which are just like our fingers would be had we been robbed forever of their essential distal phalanx.

declawing poster showing damage to paw pads

Although he still makes scratching motions, it appears to be more of a way to rub and soothe his severed joints. He licks and bites at them after trying to scratch, to the point of bleeding.

The possibility of this happening to a declawed cat, as well as other potential problems from declawing, such as biting, messing outside the litter box, stress illnesses (such as eczema or cystitis)etc, should surely convince anyone that declawing a cat is totally unacceptable.

Dr Jennifer Conrad DVM explains:

Without the third phalynx to keep the the digital pad pulled forward in its normal position, the pad begins to regress and move backward, atrophying with disuse. The second phalynx, unable to be stretched now that the claw has been removed, will tighten into a hammer toe position. The cat will be forced to walk on the tip of the second phalynx, the hammer toe, without the protection of the digital pad. Very often the hammer toe will pop through the skin and the cat will have to live with chronic ulceration of the skin in what appears to be a pad, but is actually a callus.

Dr Michael Fox DVM says:

De-clawed cats tend to walk abnormaly back on their heels rather than on their entire pads because of the chronic pain at the end of their severed fingers and toes. They often develop chronic arthritis and as the front toe pads shrink, chronic bone infections are common....The tendons that control the toe joints retract after surgery. These joints essentially becoming “frozen” The toes remain fully contracted for the life of the cat. In order to keep weight off the tender amputated toes, cats shift their weight backward, the altered gait stressing the limbs and spine, which could lead to arthritis later in life.

Recently there was an article written boasting of the fact that some vets can declaw cats by removing 'only' the claws.


There is NO WAY a cat can be declawed without the bone in which the claws are embedded being removed too.

A short message from Dr Jean Hofve DVM:

I've heard that "non-declaw declaw" nonsense before. Not anatomically possible.

And from the guardian of the cat in the photo above:

There is NO way to just remove the claw - the claw and bone are one digit - the claw is deeply imbedded into the bone. If you don't remove bone, the claw will just grow back - it would be like a nail trim at the base of the paw. You have to remove the entire nail bed along with it - which is BONE - the 3rd phalanx bone. Declawing is separating the 3rd phalanx bone/claw from the 2nd phalanx bone.

As the article mentioned above, stated that the 'claw only' declawing is very expensive we can only assume the writer means laser declawing. But that writer is WRONG as laser declawing of course DOES amputate the bone too.

Many declaw vets are pushing this method as humane but in reality is it just as cruel and as disabling to the cat as any other method of declawing.

PLEASE don't be fooled, NO method of declawing a cat is acceptable. Don't risk your cats paws ending up like the paws of the poor cat in the photo above.

Kattaddorra signature Ruth

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Declawing Ruined This Cat's Life

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Apr 11, 2012 Declawing is totally unnecessary NEW
by: Anonymous

People who make their pet go through this operation are downright lazy, careless and selfish.
I have a cat who gets handled a lot and lives around a lot of soft furnishings and carpets. (aside from the fact that I took the time to teach her not to claw the sofa or anything other than her scratching post)
I just clip her claws regularly. She's an indoors cat so doesn't need to have sharp claws for climbing or protecting herself.

If your cat lives indoors JUST TRIM ITS CLAWS! Once a month or so is more than enough, and even though the cat may struggle at first, they do get used to it and it becomes routine after a while. As long as you look up where to trim the claw back to so you don't injure your cat, it's really not that difficult.
And take the time to teach it not to claw up furniture! Keep a spray bottle full of water handy and as soon as you see them try to scratch something they shouldn't, a quick spritz and a firm 'NO' will send them scampering off. It has to be constant though otherwise they won't learn. Sometimes they won't like their scratching posts, so you might have to try several different ones before they find one they like. I know of a cat who refused posts but who happily clawed at an old wooden plank that the owners brought in for him. Cats aren't stupid, they do learn which 'tree' is there for them to claw at and which are off-limits. It's all a matter of time and constant discipline.

Would you go and chop off the tips of your children's fingers because they kept scratching themselves? So instead of looking for a quick fix, treat your pet as you would a child: with love, dedication, time and care. You'll both be far happier for it!

Mar 29, 2011 To declawing is fine anonymous
by: Fran

Would you be fine after going through this?
Would it be worth it for your forever home?

Mar 29, 2011 anonymous
by: Anonymous

Declawing does NOT guarantee cats a forever home,take a look at and see the thousands there in shelters,not forgetting they are only the adoptable ones.
Thousands more are killed or stuck in cages for their lifetime.
Last resort my foot!
What do you call last resort,protecting your treasured furniture?
You are just like the other idiots who think declawing is fine.
For God's sake do some research.

Mar 29, 2011 To anonymous
by: Ruth

Yes the vet did something wrong as do all the other vets who declaw cats, because they break their oath to cause no animal suffering.
As declawed cats age, many develop painful arthritis from living their lives unable to exercise as cats need to because of the amputation of their toe ends.
You need to watch your cats extra carefully because cats hide their pain.
Many older declawed cats are suffering in silence.
If you and your family's cats have had/have no problems at all from declawing then that is some sort of miracle !
But even if that was true, all the cats you have had declawed have gone through the most painful operation a cat can endure and they have since had to adjust to living life as disabled cats !
Is that fair on them ? No it is not.
What will you do when declawing is banned ?
We will find out then who are the true cat lovers and who are the people who say they love cats but don't really because they don't understand or maybe don't care that cats come with claws because they need them.
The day will come soon when only the people who do truly love cats will have the pleasure of them in their homes.
The ones who don't like claws won't have cats !
No home is worth sacrificing ten toe ends for !!!

Mar 29, 2011 de claw
by: Anonymous

I have 5 cats, two are de clawed and both have been fine and no issues. The oldest is 12 and the other is 10. I have family members that have de clawed cats and they are fine. Seems most likely the vet did something wrong. I would never jump at de clawing unless it was a last resort and if it is going to guarantee the animal a forever home then fine.

Jan 09, 2011 To Blackmalinois
by: Ruth

So sorry no one has replied, your comment must have slipped through the net somehow. As it's more than a month ago you may have done something by now but if not and the cat is still limping or either cat has any problems, if I was you I'd go back to the vet who did this cruel operation and demand they be treated without charge.
I'm sorry your mother in law had this done to them and apparently then didn't want the cats.
People need to be brave and start making a fuss when things like this happen as vets have got away with crippling cats for far too long.
Please come back and let us know how things are now.

Kattaddorra signature Ruth

Dec 09, 2010 declaw injury

well i ended up with two seven month old bengals mother in law declawed. one after 3 days in a normal house jumping etc, is now in pain and limping rear leg .its not getting better. at my wits end dont know what to do . ask vet, he said x rays etc. a fortune, but i cant let her go much longer. rest metacam nothing helping any thoughts on this anyone

May 10, 2010 Its about time
by: kathy

Thank you Ruth for actually showing the horror that is caused by declawing. Its about time someone actually showed the deformaty that is actually caused by this cruel procedure. THANKS

May 06, 2010 shocking
by: Fran

OMG that poor poor cat,put through Heaven knows what agony at that place masquerading as a vets clinic,sent home bleeding,then the humiliation of being covered in urine she passed through pain and shock.One very likely candidate for cystitis due to stress as she must have held her urine back until she was away from that hell hole.
No one knows what cats go through in those places.........

Are you reading this you pro-declaws and cruel vets?

May 06, 2010 To John and Sue
by: Ruth

John you are so right, you are a man after my own heart.Ignorance is no excuse at all.I too wish people would boycott declaw vets, they'd soon get the message that their abuse of cats is not acceptable.
Sue I answered that question on Y/A too.I was glad to see so many against declawing but people like that asker won't admit they are in tne wrong.It's too late to save that cat and despite us asking how she is now,she hasn't told us.I kept thinking about her last night,her bleeding paws covered in urine and she'd be in pain and shock too.
It is just too awful that cats are suffering this way all the time.
I wish we could do more to speed up the process of getting it banned !
What can we do ?????

Kattaddorra signature Ruth

May 06, 2010 Cruel vets and ignorant owners
by: Sue

Look at this from Yahoo Answers yesterday....
I just picked my cat up from getting declawed and her paws are bleeding?
On the way home she also peed in the kennel and got it on her paws. When I called the vet and asked what I could do since she was still bleeding and she got pee all over her paws and her fur they said not to clean it. That it would make it more infected. That just seems like bad advice. Wouldn't pee do more harm than water? Please let me know what to do.

Lots of replies saying she shouldn't have been declawed at all,let alone sent home with bleeding paws,she needs to see a vet again asap..etc etc NOTE the vet said it would make it MORE infected!

But this was the best answer chosen by the asker.....
Don't let anyone bully you. There are so many unwanted cats in the world. I don't know how many are put down but in Ok it is hundreds a day. If this is what it takes to have a cat at your house so be it. She is not starving. She is not being used to bait dogs. She is not starring on u-tube being torched in a cage. I know some cats lovers hate declawing and I would not do it myself. If you have problems call your vet him or her. It is their job and they should cheerfully help you and your loved cat through these hard times.
With the comment from the asker...
My cat is an inside cat and does not need her claws to defend herself. That was also what my land lord said had to be done for her to be allowed to live with us or I was going to have to take her back to the SPCA. I also like this answer because they give me a chance to tell why I did and not judge.

Talk about in denial!
The laughable part of this..IF it was at all funny is these words in the best answer'The vet should cheefully help you and your cat through these hard times'

HAH .....the hard times are the rest of that poor cat's life ping more money in that corrupt vets coffers ...IF the cat survives from having infected paws!

This has upset me VERY VERY much,it HAS TO BE BANNED.

May 06, 2010 I make the decisions for my cat
by: John

I have a cat, I decide what she eats, where her scratcher is placed, what time she goes out (yes folks I let her roam free, send for the police)I make the appointments for her check up and innoculations, I decide what time she goes to bed and what time she gets up, the same time as I do.

My point is this, rightly or wrongly I "own" this cat, I choose to treat her well, I love her more than life itself, so if one day she was carted off to the surgery and her toes were removed the onus would be on me, not the vet, ME!!! Ignorance is no excuse, if one doesn't know what a procedure actually consists of then to allow it to happen is criminal.

That said veterinary surgeons who sell this horrible "service" should be boycotted because they are aiding and abetting the "owner" in committing a terrible crime against the cat.

May 05, 2010 Me too
by: Kathryn

I got told too that someone isn't happy we say the cat owners have to share the guilt.Well tough because so they should share the guilt.I don't think the declaw vets stand over them and force them at gunpoint to leave their cat to be abused.

May 05, 2010 Great article
by: Colin J

Those pictures are very graphic,you can actually see which is the crippled paw even if it hadn't pointed out.
I hope a lot of pro-declaw people see this page and realise what can and does happen to declawed cats.
I feel sad for this cat,not only abused by the cruel vet who did the declawing,but thrown out by the cruel person who had it done.
The blame must be shared by the rotten to the core vet and the cold hearted first owner of the cat.
Yes I did receive a message to all troops saying proceed with caution as we are being lectured from someone who reckons they know best,that it's the declaw vets who are entirely to blame,not the cat owners,but as I don't agree with that I'm not going to be hypocritical enough to say what is not true.

May 04, 2010 Cruel and ignorant
by: Fran

Pictures like this should be shown to every ignorant and cruel person who wants their cat declawed.If they still want to go ahead they should have their own finger ends axed off first,they'd soon change their minds.
I don't hold with it being entirely the fault of vets and I'm not going to stop saying the cats owners are as much to blame,because the fact is,that is the TRUTH.
Anyone putting a cat at risk with an unwarranted aneasthesia and life changing procedure should have their cat taken away from them.
All of us can see the truth,so why can't everyone?
I feel very sorry for the people of America and Canada who feel as strongly as we do about this deliberate cruelty,it must be soul destroying to them that it happens in their countries.

May 04, 2010 Should be compulsary viewing
by: Petra

Anyone who is contemplating declawing their cat should be made to see these pictures, and that dreadful video of an actual dclawing. Should they then still want to go ahead with it then their cat should be taken from them. This is a really good article and I hope it is seen far and wide across America. Thank you kattaddorra.

May 03, 2010 That poor cat...
by: Maggie Sharp

Wow, you can really tell the difference between a healthy paw and a declawed paw, that poor cat doesn't deserve a life like that...

This is a great article, Ruth. I found it was very indepth...

This article proves how declawing a cat to protect inanimate objects, such as a chair, from a cat's claws just isn't worth it, the life it gives the cat after is just so cruel and overall unnecessary... And just thinking of how that cat's life could have been if it hadn't been declawed really is so incredibly sad... I hope that the owner of the cat in the picture reads this article, and ceases to make the same mistake again...

May 03, 2010 Poor cat
by: Kathryn

I'd like to meet the first guardian of this cat,the one who arranged for this cat to be crippled,on a dark night down a back alley!
I'd like to meet his present guardian too to congratulate them on taking him in.
It's beyond human understanding how anyone could risk their cats paws ending up this way.
Bad enough the pain and distress of declawing and the lifelong results from it.
I'd also like to meet the vet who did this dreadful thing to the cat and no doubt thousands more cats too.He/she would never declaw for the rest of their life after I'd finished with them as they would have no finger ends.
Ten finger ends for ten finger ends.

May 03, 2010 Tragice
by: Anonymous

Deare Lorde this is so verye sad.My hearte aches for that poore unfortunate cat who had the misfortune to be taken by cruele people to be so mistreatede.
May his presente guardiane be blessed by the Deare One.

May 03, 2010 This is unbearable
by: Edward

Man I cant bear to think what that cat is going through.Im in tears,a grown man,it has touched my heart.Somebody had it done to him then put him in a shelter.They are not human.They are lowest of the low.
Everyboby thinking of getting their cat declawed should be made to read this and know what can go wrong.

May 03, 2010 Another great write up
by: Rose

Ruth I don't know how you keep on thinking up new ways of trying to get the message across that declawing is CRUEL.
This one is the real nitty gritty of what cats must be suffering in this way.I've seen at least one more cat question about those callus things asking what they could be.It was on Y/A.
It's horrible to think of cats limping their way through life because of the ignorance surrounding declawing and the outcome of it.
Keep up the good work.

May 03, 2010 Proof of the evil of declawing cats
by: Babz

Poor, poor cat he is paying with the rest of his life for his previous owner's selfishness in removing his essential claws. I purposely use the word owner because he has been treated as a possession and not as the beautiful,clever, individual, living, loving creature that he obviously is. Guardian implies that one would guard the cat from danger, pain and suffering, this obviously did not happen until he was saved by his present guardian (guardian angel in fact)if this story does not illustrate the devastation caused by declawing then I don't know what it's going to take to convince people.

Barbara avatar

May 03, 2010 I'm mortified
by: Anonymous

I did not know this could happen and I have wondered what all the fuss was about declawing and had it in my mind that vets would not do anything to hurt cats.
This has opened my eyes to not only the regular(
for want of a better word)troubles it can cause but the extreme troubles this poor cat is suffering.
May God forgive me,I did not know.

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