Mr Boks supported this great campaign on his blog.
Shelter manager, Ed Boks has 30 years experience in animal welfare and control and he argued against the Santa Monica ban on declawing. In the event he lost his argument and a ban was granted. Please see: Declawing banned in Santa Monica. But the sickening thing is that this person is a gamekeeper turned poacher in my opinion. He says he abhors declawing. Yet he finds time to support it with a hopelessly weak argument, which I discuss below.
So what arguments did Mr Boks use? Remember his arguments are supposed to be about the best there is for pro-declawers.
He says that a ban will result in more cats being relinquished and abandoned and killed in shelters. He says that the people who criticize declawing because it is a mutilation of the cat are people who embrace other forms of mutilation such as cutting the tip off the ear of a feral cat and neutering and spaying. He says that the latter two mutilations are acceptable because it saves lives.
He says that declawing as a last resort is saving a life. If declawing is banned he says that it will force the cat keeper to relinquish the cat. Declawing is life saving when performed as a last resort. He also says that 55% of people would relinquish their cats to shelters if declawing was not open to them.
He was questioned by the council members. This is the summary:
QUESTION “Did the ban on declawing cause a rise in abandonments in West Hollywood?
ANSWER: I don’t know (these are not his words but they amount to what he said in response). He says that there are no studies on how many declawed cats are relinquished. He did not track that as a shelter manager. In fact he agreed that the reasons for relinquishment was not tracked.
Note: no other relevant question is asked in this video on Ed Books speaks for declawing cats
Ed Books speaks for declawing cats in the above video.
My comments on his argument
His argument is incredibly weak. He undermines it totally himself. His argument turns on the so called fact that declawing says lives by preventing abandonments yet he openly admits that he has no data to support that proposition. His argument must be ignored.
He also likens ear clipping of feral cats and neutering to declawing when they are completely different both in how they affect the cat and the reasons for doing the procedures. Declawing is done for the benefit of the human while the other two procedures are done to improve the lives of cats generally. Declawing causes massive pain and can have substantial secondary detrimental effects.
Vets almost never declaw as a last resort so that totally undermines his argument also.
Mr Boks also fails to address the most profound issue namely that people who actually, in truth, don’t want to keep a cat, as a whole and complete cat, then decide to keep one. It is these people who would abandon them if declawing was banned. The answer it not to perpetuate another wrong (declawing) to rectify an earlier wrong (the keeping of cats by unsuitable people) but to ensure that only the right people keep cats or people with the right mentality keep cats. The vets are responsible in peddling the idea that modifying cats is normal, encouraging the wrong people to keep cats or teaching people the wrong attitude towards cats.
Some Comments from YouTube Viewers on Ed Books speaks for declawing cats
This bloke is talking, nay reading from a script, pure unadulterated tripe…
He does NOT know what he is talking about. 9 times out of 10….
I guess the legislators saw through Ed Bok’s extremely poor and ill conceived arguments. The veterinarians must be getting worried about legislation that usurps their powers of decision making. They should be. What they have done in declawing cats so wantonly and callously for so long has shown the people that they cannot be trusted to make correct decisions based solely on the cat’s health and welfare and so the public is justified in taking decision making from them through their city councils.