Leashing, Feeding, Killing and Declawing Cats

by Elisa Black-Taylor
(USA)

Good morning, readers. If you pour yourself a cup of coffee before settling down with this article, promise me you won’t burn anyone with it. Because by the time I’m finished, you’ll be ready to lash out at someone. I’m rambling again. I don’t do that often. There are several issues causing me distress at the moment. I thought I’d just throw them all into a pot together and see how “stewed” we can all get.

With all of the anti-cat situations taking place, particularly in the United States, it makes me wonder if cats will ever be illegal to own. It seems like everywhere I look cats are getting a bad rap for NO reason. Every problem I want to inform you of today can be traced back to one cause. MAN. The failure to use a little common sense is putting our feline companions at a cruel disadvantage. I say this because every issue I want to discuss can be traced back to humans as the cause.

Even the declawing issue falls under animal cruelty.

It certainly fits the criteria of willful harm to an animal. With all of the media attention, both the cat owner and the vets know how cruel this practice is. Yet nothing is done about it. Cats are suffering because humans are too misinformed, lazy or unwilling to educate themselves about the physical and mental problems caused by declawing. There are pet nail files to help keep the claws at a safe level. There are also groomers who will trim claws at a very reasonable price. DO PEOPLE NOT KNOW THIS! I’ll inform everyone at the end of this article why I’m so hot on this today.

Now for the other issues.

Does anyone out there know the leading cause of death for animals in the U.S.? It comes as no surprise to me that the leading cause of death is euthanasia. Killing shelter pets, unfortunately falls under this same category.

I hope my readers caught the word “killed” instead of euthanized. There is a big difference. Euthanasia is a medical term meaning the animal concerned is sick, suffering, injured and non-treatable. While many shelter cats meet this criteria, most do not. These animals are “killed.” The unwanted, unloved, strays and ferals brought in usually fall into this category.

The National Animal Control Association Statistical Study states that 66% of all animals turned over to a shelter are killed. The rate for feral cats turned into shelters is close to 100%, as these animals are not considered adoptable. Just being labeled a feral often means they are labeled “unhealthy” regardless of the physical condition of the cat. The number of feral cats in the United States may be as high as 82 million.

One problem with researching the actual number of cats killed in shelters is that the shelters do not publicly publish the number of cats killed in shelters. The results are obtainable only after filing thru the Freedom of Information Act to gain access to these records. This is so sad.

I really don’t know if the “truth” would save many shelter cat’s lives. What if the shelter legally had to inform the pet owner relinquishing the pet that by leaving said pet, said pet will most likely be killed. Not euthanized. Killed. As in MURDERED. I seriously doubt it. Humans have a lot of practice at going thru life with blinders on.

One law that is only going to add to the number of euthanized strays is the leash law. These laws vary by region, but basically state than any animal found outside without a collar bearing a license is subject to removal from the area found and taken to a shelter. It basically gives the cat a death sentence for committing the crime of being outdoors. Many areas are either enforcing or creating new laws, so please check the laws in the area where you live. The story on pictures-of-cats,org involving the RSPCA really upset me. That story can be found at The RSPCA Stole My Cats.

Leash laws were created to protect citizens from the danger of physical and property issues (significant harm) caused by dogs. Cats don’t even fall into the same category. Since there is no legal owner for the feral cat, their reward for being homeless is death. Never mind that many of these cats are cared for by members of the community.

Officials and cat haters argue that cats destroy wildlife such as birds. This is a unfounded statement. Urban development destroys bird and other small animal population. Construction, road building and dams just to name a few. So have pesticides. We’re destroying their sanctuaries in the name of progress. Trying to lay the blame on cats is just an attempt to keep society in the dark about the real truth. Humans are to blame-NOT the cats.

While I’m on the subject of stupid laws, Brookhaven, NY is trying to implement a “no feeding” ban. A petition to prevent this ban can be found at http://www.thepetitionsite.com/482/petition-to-stop-brookhaven-towns-law-banning-feeding-feral-cats. The ban will prevent the feeding of feral cats on town property including parks and beaches. Penalty for breaking this law will be $250 for each offense and up to 10 days in jail. There is a date of June 1, 2010 on some of the articles about the feeding ban, so it may be too late to sign the petition for that cause.
. Without the table scraps, etc. left by the caring feral lovers of this community, there is fear the cats will slowly starve to death. Isn’t starving an animal to death illegal? Think of the rodent problem we’ll have without the ferals who keep the rat population down. I’ve semi-owned ferals in the past who were excellent hunters who often presented me with “fresh gifts.”

Now I want to jump to the declawing issue. Ruth, you’d better sit down for this one. Macon County, Illinois Environmental, Health, Education and Welfare voted 8-0 recommended a $125 fee for declawing a cats front claws. This is after receiving over 600 opposing emails. If these fees are approved by the county board the service will be available July , 2010. This is an option offered in a spay/neuter package by the Macon County Animal Control and Care Center. The centers vet, Dr. Devon Forden believes he’s offering a great service at an affordable price.

Oh please, just give me strength to finish this article without getting any madder than I already am. He’s a vet. He knows this will cause long term pain and disability to a cat and he offers a “discount” to do this. I thought doctors took an oath to “first do no harm.? Or does that only pertain to people?

I think I’ve made my point for the day. Now I’m going to go somewhere safe where I won’t allow this bad mood to ruin my day. I’m sorry for all of the bad news. These are all subjects we really need to consider before and after we adopt a cat. No cat should ever have to face any of this. They should be loved, cherished and protected. Anyone who doesn’t agree with this logic doesn’t deserve the undying love of a cat.

Elisa

Source:

PoC

Leashing, Feeding, Killing and Declawing Cats to Declawing cats

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Leashing, Feeding, Killing and Declawing Cats

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Sep 05, 2010 Tie out unacceptable for cats
by: Ruth (Monty’s Mom)

Although Monty goes out on his leash with me I would never do a tie out situation. It’s so unsafe. Monty often does come out in the back yard with me off leash if there aren’t many bees around, like at dusk. Then I can throw a toy and he can run like the wind after it across the whole back yard. And I let him go higher in trees without the leash, but he stops going up when I tell him to and comes down when I tell him to. When it’s time to go in he let’s me catch him and bring him in.
My time outside with Monty is really special for me. I actually enjoy our big back yard. It’s nice to get outside and take some time out to just enjoy Monty’s company. We have talked about an enclosure for him, but it would have to be made to keep out bees– probably the biggest danger for him. And if I had an enclosure I’d miss all the fun we have out there together. I think Monty wouldn’t be satisfied with an enclosure anyway. He has traded some freedom for security, but it’s a pretty good trade for an ex-feral cat.
People who are jerking on a dog’s leash all the time have no control over their pet. Monty listens to me better than some of my friends dogs mind them. He even has started to leave the bees alone if I tell him to, but sometimes his instincts are too strong and he goes for one and I have to pull him back with the leash or pick him up.


Sep 05, 2010 Tie out unacceptable for cats
by: Ruth (Monty’s Mom)

Although Monty goes out on his leash with me I would never do a tie out situation. It’s so unsafe. Monty often does come out in the back yard with me off leash if there aren’t many bees around, like at dusk. Then I can throw a toy and he can run like the wind after it across the whole back yard. And I let him go higher in trees without the leash, but he stops going up when I tell him to and comes down when I tell him to. When it’s time to go in he let’s me catch him and bring him in.
My time outside with Monty is really special for me. I actually enjoy our big back yard. It’s nice to get outside and take some time out to just enjoy Monty’s company. We have talked about an enclosure for him, but it would have to be made to keep out bees– probably the biggest danger for him. And if I had an enclosure I’d miss all the fun we have out there together. I think Monty wouldn’t be satisfied with an enclosure anyway. He has traded some freedom for security, but it’s a pretty good trade for an ex-feral cat.
People who are jerking on a dog’s leash all the time have no control over their pet. Monty listens to me better than some of my friends dogs mind them. He even has started to leave the bees alone if I tell him to, but sometimes his instincts are too strong and he goes for one and I have to pull him back with the leash or pick him up.


Sep 05, 2010 My thoughts
by: Ruth

I don’t know of anyone who would put a cat on a leash here or walk them on a harness.We look upon cats as free spirits with the right to live their lives and enjoy their freedom within reason.
It makes me feel ill when I see dogs on leashes, yanked back by their owners and I’m very glad that cats on leashes aren’t part of our culture.
I answered a question not long ago,someone wanted to know if it was OK to put their cat on a harness and a long rope tied to a washing line.
My blood ran cold at the number of USA people who thought it was a great idea.Having seen cats choked by getting entangled in various things when at the vets and even a friend’s cat got caught up in a string hanging from a toy ..my blood ran cold at the thought of a cat tied up and panicking.
Why can’t people who live in dangerous places for cats knock up some sort of outdoor run?It’s very easy and far safer and much nicer for the cat to be able to sit in the sun and roll in the grass without being shackled like a prisoner.
Yes free cats catch birds but many do it to survive and domesticated well fed cats only weed out the weaklings,which is what Nature intended. People kill far more birds than cats do,as Elisa says, and also how come it’s OK for bloodthirsty people to shoot birds for ‘fun’ and for people to eat birds kept in terrible conditions and killed horribly for food.
Cats follow their natural instincts but people know what they are doing !

Kattaddorra signature Ruth


Sep 04, 2010 Leash for cats can be a good thing
by: Ruth (Monty’s Mom)

My ex-feral cat, Monty, has a 16 foot leash and a harness I purchased for him from kittyholster.com, which he wears most of the time when he goes outside. Monty always wants to tangle with bees, and having him on the leash during peak bee season has saved him some stings, and prevented him from swallowing a bee. Monty caught one bird while on the leash, but when he let go to play with it some more I was able to prevent him from catching it again and the birds flew off. Monty was furious with me, of course. He has suddenly, without warning jumped up at a bird on a low hanging branch, missing it only because I stopped him with the leash. His feral siblings who were not caught live mainly on birds caught near my neighbors bird feeder. The cats hide in her ornamental grasses near the feeder. My neighbor says she feels bad, but the cats need to live too. I used to think ferals would never go for birds since other prey would be easier, but this is not always true. But even if cats are decimating bird populations this is not the cats’ fault!
I don’t think a leash is always a bad thing. Monty purrs when I put it on him and he doesn’t seem to notice it outside. And having the leash actually protected the neighbor’s dog last week. My neighbors have a little weiner dog named Oscar. We were both in the back yard with our pets, talking over the fence. Oscar poked his head through a gap in the bottom of the fence, all ready to make friends, and Monty nearly took his face off with a swipe of his claws. The only reason Oscar did not get injured was that I had Monty on his leash. My husband blocked the hole in the fence, but without the leash, even with me right there, that little dog would have been really hurt by my tough little ex-feral cat. Is it wrong to be a little proud of him? Monty vs. Oscar: Monty wins. Ha,ha.


Sep 04, 2010 Leash for cats can be a good thing
by: Ruth (Monty’s Mom)

My ex-feral cat, Monty, has a 16 foot leash and a harness I purchased for him from kittyholster.com, which he wears most of the time when he goes outside. Monty always wants to tangle with bees, and having him on the leash during peak bee season has saved him some stings, and prevented him from swallowing a bee. Monty caught one bird while on the leash, but when he let go to play with it some more I was able to prevent him from catching it again and the birds flew off. Monty was furious with me, of course. He has suddenly, without warning jumped up at a bird on a low hanging branch, missing it only because I stopped him with the leash. His feral siblings who were not caught live mainly on birds caught near my neighbors bird feeder. The cats hide in her ornamental grasses near the feeder. My neighbor says she feels bad, but the cats need to live too. I used to think ferals would never go for birds since other prey would be easier, but this is not always true. But even if cats are decimating bird populations this is not the cats’ fault!
I don’t think a leash is always a bad thing. Monty purrs when I put it on him and he doesn’t seem to notice it outside. And having the leash actually protected the neighbor’s dog last week. My neighbors have a little weiner dog named Oscar. We were both in the back yard with our pets, talking over the fence. Oscar poked his head through a gap in the bottom of the fence, all ready to make friends, and Monty nearly took his face off with a swipe of his claws. The only reason Oscar did not get injured was that I had Monty on his leash. My husband blocked the hole in the fence, but without the leash, even with me right there, that little dog would have been really hurt by my tough little ex-feral cat. Is it wrong to be a little proud of him? Monty vs. Oscar: Monty wins. Ha,ha.


Jun 22, 2010 I feel the same
by: kathy

I’m so glad there are other people out there who have lost their faith in fellow mankind as I have. We are not only destroying the planet but try to make our pets lives misreble also. Not us but our fellow mankind. I was glad and sad to read your article. I know Im not alone in my feelings about animals. Not just cats but all animals. Many people dont share my pilosophy of share the planet. Being part Native American gives me some different beleifs and feelings as to how we treat our fellow creatures. Not only animals but everything around us. That includes trees, rocks, plants, grass, water, air, all the elements that surround us. Well when theres nothing left only then will our so called fellow man be happy. Now the ocean is being destroyed by that oil spill. If you could see the sickly pictures in the papers of the oil covered wildlife, not to mention the ones being burned alive by the oil burns. What’s next???


Jun 21, 2010 Vet
by: Elisa Black-Taylor

When I read this vet is promoting this as a “sale” to save the public money I hit the ceiling. I don’t know about everyone else, but my cats have sharp back claws as well. What are the vets gonna do next? Offer a 4 paws for the price of 2 paws deal? And not feeding stray cats? Someone has to be crazy. This world has just went off the deep end into crazyland.

Thankfully on the euthanasia issue, I’ve only lost 2 pets. And there was lots of blood and suffering involved and I know I made the right decision at the right time. I don’t see how some people live with themselves and still call themselves pet lovers.


Jun 21, 2010 I am filled with despair
by: Ruth

Elisa I am as filled with despair as you are ! It’s a daily struggle to rescue cats in real life and educate on-line the few people we can reach, about cat welfare,the cruelty of declawing and the rights for all cats to be fed and cared for.
Amongst the 600 + emails to the Macon officials were some from our UK ‘troops’ In my own plea I pointed out that educating the new ‘owner’ that scratching is not bad behaviour, it’s necessary behaviour and that providing them with a scratching post would be far kinder and a hell of a lot cheaper than paying for their toe ends to be amputated.
My own sister pointed out in her email to them that most of those cats would be returned to the Shelter with mental or physical problems from the declawing.
What she has written about this in her own blog, will have you in tears:
http://clawsforever.blogspot.com/
What is wrong with some people that they look upon cats as having no feelings of fear or pain.
I’ve just come from our friend/neighbour’s house where her very old cat is dying,he’s not in pain or distress, he is weary and has now stopped eating. She faces the awful decision of if/when to call out the vet.We pray he slips away peacefully himself in his sleep.This is breaking our hearts and it fills me with anger and hatred towards anyone who abuses cats, as this cat, one of 15, is so much loved by us all who know him.He was doomed to be KILLED at 6 weeks old when Sylvia rescued him(YES Elisa let’s use the correct word)because he was no good for showing or breeding.
I feel so very helpless amd like Michael said on another page here on PoC, I sometimes really dislike this world.I feel as if we are fighting a losing battle.

Kattaddorra signature Ruth



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