Are Christians more likely to declaw cats?

by Michael
(London, UK)

This is a provocative question. I believe that there is a greater likelihood that a Christian will declaw his cat than an atheist. Here are my reasons. I respect the views of others as I respect all animals.

Christianity has moved on, become more modern. That is obvious and it was necessary because for centuries it was frankly a brutal and ignorant religion that caused a great deal of suffering. I would urge people to read these books:

Thomas Paine’s The Age of Reason and Sir Ludovic Kennedy’s It’s All in the Mind.

From the animal’s viewpoint, the trouble with Christianity is that well known passage in Genesis:

Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” (Genesis 1:26, NIV).

For most of the history of Christianity (and even to a certain extent today as far as I am concerned) “Christians largely ignored animal suffering” (Andrew Linzey). Christian thinkers believed and believe that humans were very superior to animals. I think that that legacy is still with us although many modern Christians believe that mistreating animals is a sin. However it is the idea that people are hugely superior to animals and that they can do as we please with them that encourages Christians to think of declawing as acceptable. Declawing fits in nicely with the traditional Christian view and there are still many traditional Christians.

For example, there are many Americans who vigorously reject Darwin’s theory of evolution as set out in his famous book, On the Origin of Species, published on 24 November 1859, and believe that God made man. Evangelicalism and bible bashing businessmen preachers are big in the USA. Socially conservative evangelical Protestantism occupies the so called bible belt, a large segment of the United States of America:

bible belt

Until September 7th I will give 10 cents to an animal charity for every comment. It is a way to help animal welfare without much effort at no cost. Comments help this website too, which is about animal welfare.

Wikimedia Commons image.

It would be interesting to do research on whether there is more declawing in the bible belt region than elsewhere. Christian theologians don’t believe that animals have souls. They are not intelligent enough they say. How do you measure intelligence, I say. Humans don’t look that intelligent do we? I am referring to the general way we conduct ourselves on this planet.

Christians have a collective thought, whereas atheists on the other hand have individual thought. Of course atheists declaw cats – some of them. But it is less likely that they will declaw their cat because they are more likely to take a more enlightened viewpoint..

Note: common sense dictates that declawing a cat is morally wrong and indefensible. Any right minded person would agree that.

What do you think?!

Update about a month later:â€ĶI read that surveys suggest that in the United States of America four in ten people believe in the biblical account of the origins of Man. These people are Creationists. Perhaps I should have mentioned the creationist movement in America. Here is a chart that shows the difference between creationism and science:

Mr Ham, a fervent creationists and the co-founder of Answers in Genesis provides educational material to schools.

If we believe in science (and all of humankind will believe in it, in 200 years or so) we understand that we are a part of all animals. We are ourselves human animals, scientific name: Homo sapiens. This discourages cruelty against our fellow animals. Declawing of cats is an act of animal cruelty under statutory legislation in the UK.

In contrast, if we believe in the text of Genesis in the bible, we are slightly encouraged (or not discouraged) to believe that we can declaw cats as they are lesser creatures and humans have dominion over them as stated in the bible.

This does not mean that fundamentalist Christians and creationists automatically declaw cats, far from it. It just means that there is an underlying belief that frees the mind into allowing declawing to become possible. USA is a civilised country but the belief in creationism is a throwback to earlier times.

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Are Christians more likely to declaw cats?

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Dec 25, 2011 To Susan
by: Ruth

You say ‘If an owner has diabetes or some other autoimmune disease and cat scratches could harm them, is it better to keep them and de-claw them or give them to a shelter where they will probably be euthanized?’

You obviously don’t know that many declawed cats bite because their first defence is taken away and that a cat bite is far worse and more dangerous than a scratch.
We have immuno compromised people in our country and no declawed cats. Declawing was never done here even before it was made illegal.
Would you have the dog of one of those people declawed ? Are you reacting with horror that a dog be declawed ? Why? Cats feel pain as much as dogs do and cats need their claws even more than dogs do. Many declawed cats end up in Shelters anyway and are killed as unadoptable because of behavioural problems. Not euthanised, that means gentle death for an incurable illness. No, they are KILLED because someone had their toe end amputated and then didn’t want them around when they turned into ‘bad cats’
It should not be declaw or death !

Kattaddorra signature Ruth

Dec 25, 2011 Ignorance
by: Susan

Although much of what you said may be true in some cases, most of what you stated is total stereotyping of evangelical Christians.
Unfortunately today, most Christians have not taken the time to study the Bible and do not understand Christian doctrine, but rather get theirs from “popular” evangelical preachers, many of which are not teaching God’s truth.
Yes, evangelical do believe that man was created in God’s image whereas animals were not. As far as animals having souls, the Bible does not speak to this principal and therefore we do not really know for sure.
With that being said, “having dominion over” the animals does not give anyone license to be cruel to an animal. The biggest principal in the Bible is love and therefore compassion. . The Bible also states that a just man treats his animal kindly.
God did say that animals could be used for food, but that does not mean we have the right to kill them in an inhumane way with no thought to their suffering which most slaughter houses take no account for.
Hunting for sport is also Biblically wrong because God did not give humans license to kill animals for this reason.
As far as de-clawing cats, no one can make a Biblical claim either way. Each person must look at their motivation for doing it. If an owner has diabetes or some other autoimmune disease and cat scratches could harm them, is it better to keep them and de-claw them or give them to a shelter where they will probably be euthanized?
You are making blanket statements about an issue that is much more complex than you are presenting it to be.

Sep 05, 2011 As an American…
by: Anonymous

Ugh. As an American these kind of stats make me groan and become embarrassed. Of course, I don’t live in the Bible Belt, but in one of the more “enlightened” areas of the country. (WA)

Thing is, I think you are on to something, Michael. I grew up in a town that was conservative (
for the area, still nothing compared to the Bible Belt but there were a lot of moderate Charistians) and most of the vets still practiced declawing.

In fact, when I got my then-6 month old rescue cat back from his neutering, one of his front toes appeared to have the hair shaved off around the claw area. When I asked the vet why, they said they almost declawed him accidentally!(I didn’t know this vet practiced declawing at all)

Of course, I freaked out, saying that if he had come back to me with even one of his toes mutilated I would have sued the pants off of them. They didn’t seem to understand why I was so upset, and tried to brush me off with a “well, we didn’t do it, and wouldnt have charged you if it happened accidentally.” As if the money was the big concern! My baby boy is 11 now, and I can’t even begin to imagine him without his little “needlefeet”.

Fortunately I moved away from that town and to the more metropolitan areas of this state, and most of the vets here refuse to declaw, except in cases where the claw is somehow impeding the animal’s health or is a danger. It is also interesting to note that this area of the USA has one of the highest concentrations of atheists in the entire nation.


Sep 05, 2011 To Daniel
by: Ruth

Max may not be far away Daniel, if he doesn’t usually go out he will be hiding close by. Cats can get in the tiniest places, smaller than you’d think ! If he doesn’t turn up in the house (again look in the tiniest spaces, drawers that may have been open etc.)…go out after dark and call him, rattle a fork on a saucer or some cat biscuits, many cats that have got out by mistake feel safer to come back when it’s dark.
When doing Lost and Found for CP most cats did turn up eventually.
I hope Max does !

Kattaddorra signature Ruth

Sep 05, 2011 My Sincere Thanks to Ruth (Monty’s mom)!
by: Daniel in NC

First of all sorry to Michael for hijacking (what a term to use with the 10th anniversary of 9/11/01 just days away) your blog, so I’ll try and make it brief!

Thank you Ruth (Monty’s mom) for helping me solve the problem that I’ve had for 8 years since accepting Christ as my Saviour in 2003. The problem that I’m referring to is evolution or science vs. creationism or religion. Thank you, and thank God!

Now I’ve lost Max too, my second (and last) feline foster. Can’t find him anywhere in the house. Started fostering him 3 mos ago when his owner had no job and unemployment ran out so she had to move across the country to Washington State to live with her dad. She had told me that he was an indoor/outdoor cat (4-5 yrs old), but for the first two months he was here at my house he stayed either under the couch or behind the dryer. When he finally started coming out I thought everything was going to be fine as he was a very affectionate cat, just a little overweight. No way of knowing when he snuck out, probably when putting a bag of trash in the can right outside the back door. Of course, he could possibly return, but whether he does or not, I’m DONE fostering cats. There are just too many dangers out here in the country (the road with vehicles that got Snow White, the woods with wild life, etc.), so I’ll just stick to the canine’s that I can keep on a leash when outside! Of course Max was NOT declawed!

Sep 04, 2011 Pride is present in all people
by: Ruth (Monty’s Mom)

It is human pride that leads to mistreatment of animals. I think an evolutionist might mistreat an animal, believing man to be superior– the top of the evolutionary pyramid. Man IS the most complicated, highly developed living organism on the planet. But we seem unable to acknowledge that fact without getting all puffed up about it and going about causing a lot of harm to the planet’s other inhabitants.

When I was a teen we were studying human DNA in school–that DNA essentially functions to code for the protein synthesis by a cell. Through combinations of bases (cytosine, thymine and uracil) cells are basically told what to do. But why would a certain combination mean something to a cell, and always mean that same thing? And why should another string of bases mean something different– or anything at all? The more we studied genetics the more uncomfortable I felt. The reason I felt uncomfortable is that a code is a language which conveys meaning. You can’t have a language conveying meaning without a mind behind it, though I couldn’t put that into words back then. But I knew I was seeing evidence for a mind behind all that exists and that maybe Darwin’s theory might just be a lot of hooey. And if that were true, really true, it meant there had to be a God after all– and I, as His creation, would therefore be accountable to Him. Though I’d been raised to believe just that it was still surprising to me to find evidence that it probably was actually true. Surprising, shocking and unnerving.

Today I still see evidence for creation, but I don’t see evidence for evolution. An experiment in science should be observable and repeatable. I don’t see the evidence for things getting better over time by random chance. I see the second law of thermodynamics at work. I see natural selection narrowing the gene pool, not widening it. (For a trait to be selected it had to be there in the first place.) I see only evidence of animals producing after their own kind. I see evidence for harmful mutations only. I see only evidence for life coming from life, not from non-living material. The devil is in the details, or so they say. I could toy with the idea of evolution when I didn’t know much about science. The more I’ve studied in high school and college the more God shows Himself to me in His creation and I’m humbled by it and even a little frightened every time it happens.

I thank God that I know Him through His Son, Jesus Christ. Without the knowledge of His love for me and the forgiveness He gives which I do not merit I would live life afraid and guilty, in terror of finding more evidence for Him. Studying nature alone cannot show God’s love, so it is no wonder people wish to extinguish and deny all evidence for Him. My desire is to study His creation to the best of my ability to better care for all He has given me– including my little furry friend, Monty, who brightens all my days in this vale of tears.

Sep 02, 2011 I have updated the page
by: Michael

I have added about ten lines to the original article. I think that I have a decent point. Of course, I would say that but it is the first attempt to really get behind the reasons why the USA (and Canada) are so out of step with Europe.

No offense is intended. I respect the views of others. We need to air those views in a reasonable manner for the betterment of humankind and our cousins the animals of the world.

Aug 30, 2011 Cats and the Bible
by: Ruth

My favourite book of the Bible is of course The Book of Ruth
‘Whither thou goest,I shalt go, thy people will be my people and thy land my land’
That book tells of love, caring and loyalty.
We have a very large King James 1st family Bible hundreds of years old. Ruth you’d love the paraphrases in verse in the back, the words are so very beautiful.
I think the modern versions lose a lot in the telling.
Sorry to stray from the topic of cats Michael, I’ll return to that very important topic with the following which proves to me that Jesus Christ cared for ALL living creatures and I’m sure would NEVER condone the mutilation of any cat by declawing.

There is a book called ?The Gospel of the Holy Twelve? said to be a translation of an early Christian document found in a Buddhist monastery in Tibet. One legend in it seems to be among those things left out of the Bible when they ought to have been put in, for they bring before us the mind of Jesus Christ much more clearly than some other recordings by the disciples.

?As Jesus entered a certain village, He saw a young cat which had none to care for her, and she was hungry and cried unto Him, and He took her up, and put her inside His garment, and she lay in His bosom. And when He came into the village He set food and drink before the cat, and she ate and drank, and showed thanks unto Him. And He gave her unto one of His disciples, who was a widow, whose name was Lorenza, and she took care of her. And some of the people said, ?This man careth for all creatures. Are they His brothers and sisters that He should love them?? And He said unto them, ?Verily, these are your fellow creatures, of the great Household of God; yea they are brothers and sisters, having the same breath of life in the Eternal. And whosoever careth for one of the least of these, and giveth it to eat and drink in it?s need the same doeth it unto me; and whosoever willingly suffereth one of these creatures to be in want, and defendeth it not when evilly treated, suffereth the evil as done unto me.?

Kattaddorra signature Ruth

Aug 29, 2011 To Ruth
by: Ruth (Monty’s Mom)

I agree with all that you said in response to my post. Humanity, were it not for continual divine intervention, would have wiped itself out long ago. In the end, I believe, God will put an end to this sinful world and will punish humanity’s evil. My favorite Bible story is when Balaam’s ass (donkey) talks to him. Balaam is beating the poor animal mercilessly, so God opens the animal’s mouth who then says, “Why are you beating me? Don’t you see that angel standing there?” Ha, ha. I hope when judgement day comes God opens the mouth of every abused animal to confront his abuser– “Why did you declaw me? Didn’t you know I needed those claws?” That will be great.

Seriously though, Ruth, you have the wisdom of Solomon. He saw the futility and foolishness of this world so clearly, as you do. But I don’t believe he saw Jesus. At least not when he wrote Ecclesiastes. Christ is there in Song of Songs as the Bridegroom of His church, but you will not find Him in Ecclesiastes. Solomon despaired. But, in the end Job did not, and I would wish for you the wisdom of Job. Not to say that Job was as long suffering and patient as people give him credit for. Most of the book of Job is filled with the account of Job whining and complaining. But in the end Job sees his Savior. One of our most loved Easter hymns comes from Job’s words: “I know that my Redeemer lives…”

We are all less than God created us to be, and God has a right to deal with us as He sees fit, even when that means we must suffer. But we don’t have to like it. After my first husband died I started reading the poetry of George Herbert every day and this one was one of my favorites: (The spelling is as Herbert wrote it. He wrote back in the days before English had standardized spellings. I like the way the word “sour” almost has connotations of “sorrow” in the spelling Herbert chose– perhaps that was deliberate.)

“Ah my deare angrie Lord,
Since thou does love, yet strike;
Cast down, yet help afford;
Sure I will do the like.

I will complain, yet praise;
I will bewail, approve;
And all my sowre-sweet dayes
I will lament, and love.”

Aug 27, 2011 PS for Christians
by: Ruth

Annie Bruce cat behaviourist/author/wonderful lady, was told by God that one day declawing would end.
I believe her !

Kattaddorra signature Ruth

Aug 27, 2011 People power
by: Ruth

People power got hunting with dogs banned in our country. Yes it took a long time and a lot of effort from a lot of people and it will take a long time to get declawing banned in countries where it’s stil legal, but it will happen. Politicians need votes to stay in power !
The anti declaw groups on facebook continue to grow, we have new members coming along every day. Maybe a bit of our good old British bulldog determination is rubbing off over there lol
Nothing worth having comes easy and Rome wasn’t built in a day !

Kattaddorra signature Ruth

Aug 27, 2011 Ruth, I understand!
by: Daniel, NC

I truly understand what you are saying, but somehow I think you may have missed MY point. In order to inact a ban you have to have PEOPLE behind you, and here in the U.S. a politician or two is going to be necessary also!

Just because a couple hundred, or a few thousand people want declawing banned doesn’t mean it’s gonna happen, you know that!

Until more people are educated what declawing involves and get behind your cause, well it just isn’t going to happen, period! That was my basic point, that no matter what the goal, education is still necessary!

Aug 27, 2011 My thoughts
by: Ruth

If there were no weapons in this world there would have been no wars.
It was never meant to be a battleground for greedy power hungry people to rule over more vulnerable people, it was meant to be a place where humans and animals co-existed peacefully.
It was never meant for some to have more than enough and others to have nothing at all.
Humans corrupted this planet and they will go on corrupting it until they wipe themselves out.
If there IS a God (which I hope there is but although I’m a Christian I don’t have blind Faith after the awful things which have happened to my loved ones over the years) then He must be weeping copious tears that His good intentions have all gone wrong.

Kattaddorra signature Ruth

Aug 26, 2011 Only vets can help and other thoughts
by: Ruth (Monty’s Mom)

There are people who will only accept the argument against declawing if it comes from a veterinarian. They aren’t going to listen to the most well thought out argument if it comes from a layperson, because we “don’t really know.” They believe their vet. Sometimes even a vet can’t convince them because their vet doesn’t see anything wrong with declawing, so it must be o.k.

I do not despise guns, as Ruth does, because if it were not for a strong military we would not have freedom. Neither Britain nor America would be free today were it not for the sacrifices made by those whom we in America name “the greatest generation.” My husband was in the military reserves for 16 years. He said that you don’t keep qualifying “expert” in marksmanship unless you practice. I’ve known other people who do target shooting but never have fired a weapon at another living being. Jeff also would practice with his BB gun in the house, shooting at phone books. I kept sweeping up these little round metal balls from the kitchen floor and couldn’t figure out what they were, until Jeff’s father was visiting one day and told me. This was in our old place, long before we had a cat!

I still do not understand Michael’s stereotype because almost everyone I know is a Christian. If it were a valid stereotype you’d think there would be one person I know who mistreats animals and uses his religion as validation of that. I also don’t know anyone who is a Christian and hasn’t questioned or doubted, except maybe 7 year old kids. The questioning comes to everyone eventually and you either leave the faith or end up stronger for it– but blind faith is probably quite rare. Even John the Baptist questioned, sending word to Jesus while he was in prison, “Are you the Christ or should we look for another?” Every Christian lets go at some point. Not all are willing to admit it, however.

Aug 26, 2011 To Ruth
by: Michael

Ruth, I am being deliberately provocative. But I did say “unthinking religious belief”. You and your husband are very thoughtful people who are perfect cat caretakers/guardians.

But some people are indoctrinated into religious belief and they don’t challenge it or think about it. These people if they have arrogant natures are liable to be dangerous to cats.

And yes, I do describe a stereotype but stereotypes are based on real people and I am referring to this minority of people.

There is no intention to insult people who are religious. As I said, I respect other people’s views.

Aug 26, 2011 me again
by: Ruth

Education would certainly be the best solution IF it worked. It does to a certain extent as in 3 years we have educated quite a lot of people and know that through that education we have saved well over 200 cats toe ends.
BUT some people will not be educated, they argue that it IS only the claw removed, they reckon they know better than we who have researched this subject thoroughly.
Do they really believe it or are they fooling themselves ? We show them the hard facts in pictures of declawed cats deformed paws, but they still deny it.
Then there are the people who do know how drastic and cruel declawing is yet they still have it done to their cats because they think the cat is so lucky to have a home it should be happy sacrificing a healthy life for a disabled life.
They don’t care about the pain and shock and disablement the cat suffers, they are the ones who have a tiny kitten declawed along with neutering as they are too lazy to teach the kitten to use a scratching post.
Those people are the reason declawing MUST be banned !
As for guns, I despise them, why can’t people leave Nature alone ? What do they get out of taking life from innocent creatures ?

Kattaddorra signature Ruth

Aug 26, 2011 Few Know the Truth!
by: Daniel, NC

The U.S. has a population of approximately 310 million, or something close to that. Out of that number I would be willing to bet that no more than perhaps, maybe, somewhere between a quarter of a million, and half a million people are aware of the fact that declawing involves amputation! That is just an educated guesstimate, and that may even be a bit high.

In order to achieve the ultimate goal of banning this procedure obviously you must have people on your side, and in order to that people have to be informed of this fact.

Therefore, education will ALWAYS be the key to the problem not matter whether you are for a ban, or (like me) against it!

As far as the question posed involving Christians, I stand with the majority, but you certaining did provoke an interesting discussion.

Now, I had better get dressed and get myself to the local Walmart and get some water and batteries since we are expecting a visit from aunt Irene soon!

Aug 26, 2011 Stereotypes = “Belief Without Thought”
by: Ruth (Monty’s Mom)

Michael, you are citing stereotypes about Christians and using them as evidence against us. If I did this concerning African, Mexican or Native Americans or Muslims it would be labeled hate speech and rightly so. I would be shouted down for it– and rightly so. But somehow hateful speech against Christians is acceptable. I find it hurtful.

You repeatedly quote one passage of scripture and then deride Christians for using that passage as an excuse to sin. Yes, Christians are sinful, but so are the rest of the people on the planet! Sinless human beings were given dominion over the animals. To some extent we still have it. Those who rescue little kittens and give them a home are a testament to it. What other species could care so much for lives of those in other species? My cat can’t do it. A bird or butterfly? He will kill and eat them without a thought. He cannot transcend his nature as a predator. Man, though also a predator, can do this. Many people choose not to eat meat, which is possible today due to advancements in nutrition and supplements. No other animals can do what we do, but no other animals can be evil as we are evil.

I believe that before sin all animals were vegetarians. Weeds didn’t grow and man didn’t toil for his daily bread and no one died. The second law of thermodynamics was not in place. But as a punishment for human sin God cursed His creation. No one in this fallen world can come to faith in God by looking at the created world, apart from the Bible, for he will conclude that if there is a god, he surely must hate us.

Christian belief backs up your aversion to punishing cats. No animal ever sinned, so no animal can merit punishment. In Eastern countries there exists the practice of torturing dogs before they are killed and eaten because men believe they will gain sexual potency by eating this meat. I pray for Christian missionaries to reach these places, because this practice is abhorrent to Christians.

The belief that man has an immortal soul stopped cannibalism and infanticide in the ancient world and continues to do so today wherever Christianity is preached. (As we move away from Christian thought abortion is on the rise.) It would be better if more Christians reflected that nowhere in the Bible does it directly say that animals do not have souls– but this does not negate improvements that have come about due to the belief that man has a soul!

I would ask, Michael, how many gun owning, far right wing Christians you actually know personally. Do I fit any of your stereotypes? (Well, the gun belongs to my husband– but he would agree with all I have said here.)

Aug 26, 2011 Dreadful
by: Rose

Whoever recommended that diabetic lady had her cat declawed did the wrong thing for both the lady and the cat.
What a pity declawing is still an option in that country because people will go on giving the wrong advice and cats will go on suffering needlessly for as long as declawing is legal.
Bad enough kittens and younger cats having such dreadful surgery but for an 8 year old cat it doesn’t bear thinking about the shock and the pain of suddenly being deliberately crippled.
I don’t see how any person with any humanity in them could condone that happening.
Cats claws are such a big drama and issue in the USA yet accepted in our country as a part of the cat as wonderful as the rest of cats are.

Aug 25, 2011 Ignorance, not religion
by: Elisa

I’m a Christian and I don’t see any connection between religious beliefs and declawing cats. I agree with Monty’s mom that bad vets are to blame.

When a cat goes in for spay/neuter is the biggest snowjob because many vets offer a package deal that includes declawing. They stress ‘why not?’ since the cat is already under anesthesia. They don’t bother to explain the danger and the cat owner puts her trust in the vet and doesn’t ask questions.

I also believe a lot of cat owners are timid when it comes to asking questions. I used to take a vet at his word, but as I’ve grown older I’ve learn to question and even offer suggestions on what I feel is best for my cats.

Until everyone is educated that declawing is in reality maiming nothing will change. Religion has nothing to do with it in my opinion.

Aug 25, 2011 Declawing for human convenience is always wrong
by: Michele S

A very interesting question Michael, and some even more interesting posts on this thread. I don’t believe that people of any particular religious faith are more likely to declaw than those who follow a different faith.

I do however believe that it is the trust and blind faith that some people have in their vets that is to blame for cats (and rabbits, ferrets etc) being declawed. There are still far too many vets out there who don’t explain what the procedure really involves or the suffering it can cause. Instead they’re too busy worshipping their own God (the almighty dollar) to honour their oath to protect an animal’s welfare.

Like others here, I totally agree that educating the public is the way forward. When declawing was legally banned in the UK in 2006, it received no coverage in the media whatsoever. The reason being is that 99% of the population (myself included) had never even heard of the practice. Vets here have never offered declawing. Instead they simply explain that scratching is natural and necessary behaviour which can be re-directed towards scratch posts, blocks etc. As a result, generations of people have grown up simply accepting that cats come with claws. Besides which, a quick swipe from a cat goes a long way in educating people to respect that cats have their own boundaries too.

My mum has an 85 year old diabetic friend who became a cat owner for the first time a year ago. She has been scratched accidentally a couple of times, but this has never caused her any health problems. The medical profession here doesn’t consider cat companionship to be a health risk to anyone with a compromised immune system.

Daniel – didn’t anyone suggest to the diabetic lady that she could simply keep a thick towel or blanket close by to protect her lap? This is what worked for me with one of my previous cats who loved kneading on my lap. Kneading isn’t malicious, it’s an emotional expression of contentment. Whomever suggested to this lady that she should declaw her cat is ignorant of their behaviour and should be thoroughly ashamed of themselves. There are also lots of no-kill shelters who would not have considered an 8 year old cat as being past their “best before” date. Please spread the word that there is always an alternative to declawing – no matter what the situation.

Aug 25, 2011 No Comment!
by: Michael

I wrote this to provoke comment, not to comment myself!

Well, I will. I don’t think being a Christian means you are more likely to declaw your cat. But I am not sure.

I have a feeling that extreme right wing thought, unthinking religious belief, gun ownership and declawing cats go together! Now that’s a bit near the bone.

Personally I am not religious but I respect people’s choices and desires.

Aug 25, 2011 I hope so too
by: Ruth

Hi Daniel, I like you more and more !
Yes I hope Michael will comment and our other UK and Australian people who come here will comment too.
I think they will all agree with me, as will most of USA and Canadian people.
It’s amazing how many people used to think declawing was ‘just’ removing the claws, thank goodness for PoC which has educated millions.
If you are in touch with that lady, if her poor cat is now declawed, please tell her to take great care of herself and of the cat too and not to blame her and dump her after all if she (the cat) has physical or mental problems. I wish we could have told her before such a drastic step how unnecessary and how cruel declawing is.

R.I.P Snow White, I’m sad for her, fate is very cruel at times.

I will be interested to look at your link.

Kattaddorra signature Ruth

Aug 25, 2011 Fascinating debate!
by: Daniel, NC

I must admit that I’ve grown to love this debate, and this is an excellent example.

Thank you for you input Ruth. I’m going to see if I can figure out how to Fwd this to the lady that told me the story, or just tell her to log on to the website if she’s interested!

Michael, where are you? Would have loved to hear your input.

From personal experience, my next door neighbor who’s poodle I used to care for until he passed away last Oct. also had diabetes and Hope (Princess Hope Diamond, the poodle) used to scratch his legs unless he kept a blanket in his lap which he did religously (no pun intended), so I would have to agree with you on this one!

Everyone have a nice day, I’ve got to attend a humane society fundraiser, but if any of you are ever interested in seeing the cats (and dogs) that we have available our website is –

The one cat (Max) that I am fostering, and all of the dogs should say, contact Dan @……. I was fostering a 5 month old pure white kitten named Snow White for over a month, but tragically about a week ago when I went to take all the dogs (mine & foster’s) out to pee at 3am she slipped out the door with the dogs (something she had done before), but this night there was a stray large dog out in the front yard and all my little dogs got spooked and started barking. This also must of spooked Snow White and she bolted unfortunately toward the road, and as bad luck would have it a pick-up truck was just coming around the curve and hit her. She died instantly!

A VERY unfortunate accident, but that is a part of life, and yes I know that declawing is NOT a part of life, but a choice!!

Aug 25, 2011 No no noooo
by: Ruth

What would she have done in a country where declawing is illegal ? Declawing would only be done here for an incurable medical conditon affecting the cats toes, never for a person’s benefit.
If it was me, if I lived in a country where cat abuse by declawing is allowed, I would never never put any cat of mine through such an agonising operation. To a cat of 8 years the major surgery of 10 amputations would be very cruel. Much more cruel than finding her a home. She wasn’t faced with 2 choices at all, a Shelter doesn’t have to be the only option, if that person cared enough another home could have been found.
A cat having had claws all that time would feel totally defenceless after the shock of the operation and the chances are that the cat would start biting.
We all know that a cat bite is far more serious than a scratch, believe you me I’ve had both so I do know what I’m talking about.
But this is what happens in our country, the person with diabetes takes care of their skin. They have their cats claws trimmed so there is no sharp point, they put a thick blanket when the cat is sitting on their lap.
I don’t know of anyone with diabetes who has ever been scratched and the scratch become infected.
Tell me this, if anyone thinks it’s justifiable for a person with diabetes to have a pet cat declawed, do they think it would be justifiable to have their pet dog declawed ? Oh I hear shock and horror, but you can’t declaw a dog !! Oh yes you can ! A cat feels no less pain than a dog does, declawing a cat is no less disabling than declawing a dog.
My own late mother had fragile skin due to steroid treatment, she had 4 fully clawed cats which never once harmed her, but a neighbour’s dog tore the skin on her arm and it never healed !
No sorry Daniel, that person was wrong and the vet who mutilated her poor cat was wrong too.

Kattaddorra signature Ruth

Aug 25, 2011 To Aria
by: Daniel in NC

You GO GIRL! I’m with you Aria!

Just sitting here waiting for hurricane Irene so I can check out my very first one!

We had an earthquake the other day, but being originally from Los Angeles I’ve been in lots to those and this one was no big deal, although you would never know it from listening to the media.

I actually had an interesting conversation the other night with one of my fellow humane society volunteers while we were wrapping up taking applications for SNAP (Spay & Neuter Program) at the local library. For some reason the subject of declawing came up and she told me this story:
A lady that she knew had a cat for 8 years and this cat was her best friend. She had recently been diagnosed with diabetes (I think I spelled that OK). Apparently her cat would sit in her lap and would often dig her claws into her leg. This became a problem once she became diabetic, I think she said because most diebetics have problems with their legs (I’m not an expert on diabetes!) Long story, short, she was faced with only two choices: Have her beloved cat declawed, or give it up, and put in the local animal shelter where chances are it would be put to sleep on account of its age!

I think you can probably guess what she decided to do, but what I’d really like to hear is WHAT WOULD SOME OF YOU DO?

Aug 25, 2011 Christian Love
by: Aria

I am a Christian, admittedly not a fanatic, but I challenge anyone to limit the rights of an animal in my presence. The animals in my house are my children and are treated accordingly. To fundametalist Christians I would like to remind you that there are provisions in most religeons including Christianity and Judeaism that instruct you to feed and care for your animals before you feed or attend to your own wants.

Love and light to you all 🙂

Aug 15, 2011 Reply to Ruth (Kattadorra)
by: Daniel in North Carolina

In Christianity it’s called “reaping what you sow”! I guess it’s some eastern religions that call it “Karma” (I personally like that one too, Ruth!). And to secular society it’s called “What goes around, comes around!”
But whatever you call it, IT’S THE TRUTH!!!

Aug 15, 2011 More thoughts
by: Ruth

Daniel our kettle is always on the go for a good old cup of Yorkshire tea lol We aren’t actually in Yorkshire but we are next door to it and they don’t make a County Durham tea as good. You would be made very welcome.
I’m afraid that the young people here causing the riots don’t have good role models any more and also so many people ‘at the top’ are so money and power greedy and get away with it, which is a very bad example. While I’m not condoning violence or vandalism of any kind at all, I can understand how they feel, their logic is ‘They have plenty yet take what’s not theirs, we have nothing so why can’t we?’
Sadly it will get worse if their homes and benefits are taken from them as punishment, they will feel they have to turn to crime to survive.
Anyway sorry to deviate so far from the subject of declawing.
I believe that animals are not ours to own, we are merely their caretakers and if we take on their care we should always do what is best for THEM, not for US. Convenience declawing is never for the cat’s benefit.
Being a caring honest person is a very hard way to live, especially when you see those who abuse others or animals, happily getting through life.
I just hope Karma does catch up with those people.

Kattaddorra signature Ruth

Aug 14, 2011 Vets to blame, not religion
by: Ruth (Monty’s Mom)

I convinced a fellow Christian that declawing is wrong this weekend. It was easy to do. She did not know that the distal joint is taken, not just the claw. My pastor has never declawed a cat because a vet told him it was wrong.
It isn’t faith in Jesus that would cause someone to declaw, it’s misplaced faith in a vet who worships the almighty dollar.

Lutheran children are questioned on theology in front of the congregation before being given full fledged church membership. They are not given any questions on dominion of animals by humans. I don’t think we emphasize it since it was given to Adam before the fall into sin. Adam had dominion, though no animal was pet or livestock to him, yet he had responsibilities toward them. He loved them all and no animal would harm him. He took care of them, gave them names. He was like the Good Shepherd of all of them. He served them as Christ later served His disciples. Sometimes we refer to Christ as “the second Adam.”

The first Adam gave in to pride and then four little words doomed us all: “Did God really say…?” Since that time we are all “poor miserable sinners”– words we use in nearly every church service. George Herbert said it best: “What Adam had and forfeited for all, Christ keepeth now Who cannot fail or fall.”

We live in a fallen, cursed, imperfect world. Human pride caused it when we tried to play God. It’s in our nature now to live as enemies of God, of His created world and of each other. Even St. Paul lamented that the good he loves he does not do, but the evil he hates he does. We also believe that all animals are innocent, that God owns all the world and everything in it and loves His whole creation. We are saved by Christ’s sacrifice, but we will come before Him and answer for what we have done, just as you would apologize to any friend whom you have wronged. There will be tears before we enter glory.

How can those beliefs lead to anything but people who strive to serve others and care well for this planet and all its inhabitants? We try to do good not because we can earn heaven (we can’t) but because Christ’s love compels us. We sometimes live worse than we believe, but it’s impossible to live better than you believe! Christians believe they are accountable to God. Who are atheists accountable to? What motivation is there to care for others, animals or the planet if it all just came into being by random chance over time? I love my little Monty because he was a gift to me from a loving God– but Monty doesn’t really belong to me. He ultimately belongs to the God who loves us both. That knowledge is what motivated me first to research declawing and then to reject it.

Aug 14, 2011 To Daniel
by: Michael

In the England we have problems equal to those of the USA. We have lost that Englishness. Perhaps it exists in the country but in London and surrounding areas it is gone.

I think that there are many problems with the fundamentals of how to build a decent society in England. We have lost our way.

Aug 14, 2011 Education, Education!!
by: Daniel in North Carolina

What was that you said at the very end Rudolph? “Ultimately, it is education that will help people understand….”.
It’s nice to know that someone that sounds far more educated than I, believes in the same basic concept that I do!
Michael, what you said about political correctness, I have only one thing to say, Amen! LOL!
Ruth, I truly like you because at least you seem to respect my opinion, and I absolutely respect yours. If I ever make it across the “pond” I’d love to sit down and have a cup coffee, oh, excuse me, tea, with you! LOL!
Incidently, I’m NOT “from” North Carolina, and only moved here two years ago for reasons to many to bore you with (mostly financial), and in fact lived for over 50 years in Los Angeles and San Diego, California area!
And lastly, as far as whether I am, or am not a Christian? Well, in 2003 in front of Billy Graham and about 70,000 other people, I did accept Jesus Christ as my Savior! Now, I may take that back from time to time, sometimes on a daily basis, but I do try and be a better person on a daily basis, depending on the circumstances.
When it comes to subjects like religion and many other things, I try and just be concerned with myself! I don’t care what you, or six billion other people wish to do with there lives, nor do I want to judge them. And I do agree with Michael that being a Christian has nothing to do with being a good (or bad) person. There are lots of bad people, whether Christians, Muslinms, Hindu’s, clergy, police, judges, politician’s, and well I think you get the idea!
Ya’ll have a nice day now, ya’ hear!! LOL!

P.S. Really interesting watching in the news lately whats going on over in the U.K. since usually it’s just the U.S. that’s experiencing the upheaval and media spotlight!

Aug 13, 2011 Thanks
by: Michael

Thanks Rudolph for your insights. They are always welcome. I tend to ask questions that are not normally asked but I think we need to do that if society is to improve. We need to be less politically correct too. Excessive political correctness results in problems not being properly addressed.

Aug 13, 2011 Are christians more likely to declaw cats?
by: Rudolph.a.Furtado

An excellent and thoughtful article on christians and “Religious Fundamentalism”.All religions consider animals inferior, hence their maltreatment and colonisation of their habitat.Some animals have a scared significance in some religions and hence venerated and protected as is the cow among Hindus in India. some animals are considered “Satan”, most famous being the snake as quoted in the Christian bible and the pig among Jews and Muslims. Hence Christianity itself is not responsible for ill-treatment of animals but has definitely been the main source for persecution of some animals on “Religious Grounds”. “Black Cats” were literally burnt to death as Witches companions during the “Middle Ages” in Christian Europe.The Great “Indian Mutinu-1857” was a result of rumours of “Pig Fat” being used in bullets.Dogs are considered unclean by muslims. Ultimately, its education that will make people understand that animals also deserve some space for living along with humans on planet earth.

Aug 13, 2011 Hi Daniel
by: Michael

Thanks Daniel for at least accepting that the idea is not crazy as it is possible that fundamentalist Christians believe that humans are vastly superior.

You know a lot of Christians are great people but a lot are not. Believing in Christianity does not automatically make your a person good.

Look for example at the all the pedophiles in the Roman Catholic Church who are protected by the Vatican and therefore the Pope. These people have committed one of the worst crimes possible and ruined the lives of a good number of people.

We tend to think of Muslims are fundamentalists but there are many fundamentalist Christians and they reside in the bible belt and believe in these crazy evangelists and what they say. That is how the evangelists become millionaires!

Aug 13, 2011 My thoughts
by: Ruth

The title of this article intruiged me so much I could hardly wait to see who had written it.
Michael you do write some very deep and thought provoking pages which I enjoy reading more than anything written by anyone else.
I really don’t know if Christians are more likely to declaw cats. As we have never abused our cats that way in the UK I couldn’t even hazard a guess.
I do know though that I’ve always been shocked that many religious people like Priests don’t care about animals like they do people because I’ve always thought Jesus Christ loved all living creatures.
Another thing that gets to me is when people, including Christians, say God sent animals for our use and for us to eat. This is totally wrong because animals were here first !!! Long before people.
Hi Daniel, nice to hear from you again, I remember you ! I still think that declawing should be banned worldwide because it is without a doubt cruel and unnecessary, but the people in some particular countries who have no empathy with animals will still put their cats through it as long as it’s legal.
No animal of any species should be mutilated for convenience sake and I will never ever change my mind about the need for declawing to be illegal.
As to drugs and abortions etc, people have a choice but sadly cats do not !

Kattaddorra signature Ruth

Aug 13, 2011 Maybe, Perhaps, Possibly!
by: Daniel in North Carolina (the “Bible Belt”)

“Are Christians more likely to declaw cats?” What kind of ridiculous question is that? So, maybe, perhaps, or possibly, this very small segment of american society could be more likely to declaw their cats! Even you hedge your theory with the supposition that “more modern christians believe that adusing animals is a sin”. I’ve got a news flash for you! All Christians that are living today, in modern times, would seem to me to fall into that category. And if there are some Christians that are extremely traditional, like for example older Southern Baptists here in North Carolina, they are a very small minority.

Let me give you some reality! I am a volunteer with the Humane Society of Wilkes (Wilkes County, in northwest North Carolina), and every week I go to the local country animal shelter to take help a couple of my fellow volunteers take pictures of the new cats (and dogs) that have arrived that week for placing on our website for possible adoption. Besides just taking their picture, we pick them up and check for details such as whether they may have been declawed so as to include that info on the website. Although I have only been doing this for about 10 months (because I didn’t become a volunteer until my wife passed away last year) in that time I have only encountered one (1) cat that was declawed.
That’s right, just one. I don’t know what that says to you, but it tells me that it’s not likely that there is mass declawing taking place right here in the good old Bible Belt.
I totally respect what you do Michael, and I also happen to respect your opinion. I don’t like declawing either, but as I’ve said before somewhere on your website, I don’t believe that banning is the answer. I’ll say it again. Banning has NOT stopped drug use, far from it. And when abortion was illegal it still was being done, just not out in the open (so-called “back alley’s”). To me the question comes down to this: Do you want to live in a society where the government tells you what’s right, and what is wrong, depending on what party happens to be in power at the time? Then I guess you’d love the book “1984” and Big Brother! Or would you rather live in a real free society where people are left to make the decision for themself, based on education and knowledge? Personally, I’ll take the latter myself, but everybody is free to make their own choice. I firmly believe that EDUCATION IS THE KEY, NOT BANNING!!

2 thoughts on “Are Christians more likely to declaw cats?”

  1. I am a Christian, and would never declaw a cat unless medically necessary, as I had to do for a polydactyl kitten I had. He only had the ONE toe removed, the rest of his claws were intact. The toe that was removed had been fractured, had a “super claw”–very large, got caught in everything, grew much quicker than his normal claws. He was much happier with that toe gone. He died at age 18.


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