By Ruth aka Kattaddorra
Cats naturally walk like ballerinas, on their ‘points’. Declawing throws them off balance, forcing them to learn to walk in a different way. This can eventually cause irreparable and painful damage to the spine. This is only one of the physical problems declawing can cause a cat and then there are mental problems too.
Imagine if a ballerina had her ten last toe joints amputated, she would be given counselling to come to terms with her loss, intensive medical care for a period of time and then she would be helped to relearn how to walk. Not so for cats being declawed!
They are forced to cope mentally and physically on their own, almost immediately to walk on their stumps and to dig in the litter box with them. No bed rest and physiotherapy and rehabilitation for declawed cats. Despite the shock of ten amputations they are expected to go on doing the things cats do.
Would a ballerina be expected to get up and dance? Of course not, she wouldn’t even be expected to get up and walk. Would she be given no pain medication so that she didn’t inadvertently stand up on her severed toe ends? Of course not, yet some vets deny cats pain medication so that they don’t jump up heights as cats normally do and open up their wounds.
This causes the poor creatures to hunch in shock and bewilderment, not knowing that the person they trusted …their caretaker …..has paid someone to cause them this pain and misery.
Laser declawing is said by some vets to be kinder. How can unnecessary amputations ever be said to be kind? Maybe that method causes less bleeding and pain and the wounds heal quicker, but the end result is the same, the cat’s essential toe ends are amputated, only they are burned off instead of cut off!
You might say it’s even worse for a cat having amputated toe ends than it is for a ballerina.
Yes that person would be devastated, her dancing career ruined and it’s unthinkable that it should happen to any person, dancer or not. But if she had her toe ends amputated it would have been for a good reason, probably to save her life because of gangrene.
People have other options, dancing is only one lifestyle, there are many other things people can do apart from dancing. She would still have her hands! A cat’s front feet are also her hands.
A declawed cat has no other options, she has to stay indoors, she can not jump safely, she can not scratch for exercise by digging her claws in to stretch her muscles, nor grab a toy in her front claws as cats love to do. She can not groom herself as cats need and like to, using their claws as a comb.
Her life as a cat is ruined. Yet she has no choice but to adapt and to stoically accept what was done to her by the person she trusted and the vet who that person paid to ruin her life.
I find this thought almost unbearable and can not understand how anyone at all can ever think that declawing a cat is acceptable!