Cat claw caps are vinyl sheaths which a cat owner glues to their cat’s claws to prevent their cat from scratching. In the UK, Battersea Dogs and Cats Home state that they are a cruel fashion statement. They released a photograph of a cat, Christina, being operated on by a veterinarian in order to remove claw caps. Battersea Dogs and Cats Home describe claw caps is extremely cruel and a craze. This is strong language from a very well respected rescue organisation.
Apparently, Christina was the first cat that they have seen with claw caps. That is interesting because they been around for a long time. They’re sold commercially. They are used by quite a lot of cat owners. They don’t need removing surgically unless there is some problem. And therefore I am bemused as to why a veterinarian had to operate on Christina to remove them. Claw caps normally fall off and then you have to replace them.
Lindsey Quinlan who is the Head of Catteries at Battersea said:
“This is the first time we’ve seen a cat come in with claw covers and we are concerned that this craze is becoming increasingly popular with pet owners. It’s extremely cruel to inflict this sort of thing on your cat as it stops them from displaying their natural behaviour. It’s worrying that claw covers for both cats and dogs can be so easily sought from the Internet. Pets are not fashion items. We want to spread the message that claw covers are unnatural for both cats and dogs.”
Well, there you have it from a well respected rescue: claw caps are a bad idea and even worse than that, they are cruel and a silly fashion statement. Some people will disagree.
Claw caps divide opinion. Perhaps they are seen as far worse in the UK because cats are not declawed in the UK. In America where many cats are declawed, claw caps are seen as a way to prevent declawing. Therefore there is some justification for their existence in America. I suspect that this is a reason why Lindsey Quinlan so vociferously argues against them and why she had never seen them on a cat entering Battersea before.
Note: Claw caps are made by Soft Paws. They call them “nail caps”.