“Declawing alternatives” is googled quite a lot. The simple, obvious, direct and slightly flippant answer is, “don’t declaw your cat”. And if that doesn’t rock your boat, then don’t adopt a cat – easy, really.
I expect, though, that people searching for answers to the question, “declawing alternatives” will be looking for a more refined answer. Please read and fully digest these pages first, before proceeding:
First we owe it to ourselves and our cat to have the right expectations. Caring for a cat requires our input, effort and acceptance that a cat is a cat, not that far in character, skills and physiology from a small wildcat. I call it expectation management and I cover this concept and more on this page: 15 ways to avoid cat behavior problems. We need to respect the cat. With that out of the way…check this out, please:
Recently declawed cat pictures – if you can still declaw after that you are thicker skinned than me…
Cats are digitgrades – they walk on their toes – do you really want to cut off all your cat’s toes? They are family members, remember…
Delawing agony of kittens – still want to go ahead and declaw…?
Complications of declawing – more blood, pain, terror and anguish…not convinced; want to read some more?
Declawing my cat 16 years ago is my biggest regret. Now you’ve changed your mind about declawing cats, join the club. If you are still looking for “answers”…
…some declawing alternatives all of which must, by force of logic, revolve around the cat keeping all of his or her claws:
1. On the basis that 99% of people who declaw their cat do so to protect their furniture, I would sit in a quiet room and think about life’s priorities…family, children, knowledge, what we do and say, our friends, our home. Furniture comes a long way down the list and can be replaced. To hell with it if it gets a bit scratched. A cat’s toes-vs-sofa, who wins? Think about it.
2. Get some “softpaws”. These are little slide on covers for each claw. I don’t think these are very clever, to be honest. A cat needs to use its claws for a start. They are useful in so many ways. A claw is meant to be sharp so that it can hang onto things.
Please read this page about softpaw covers: Claw caps not really any better than declawing.
3. Learn to trim cat claws. Cats can get used to this particularly if done at an early age. It can become part of grooming your cat and a loving moment but patience and gentleness is required. I trim my old lady cat’s claws not because I care about her scratching my furniture (I don’t care even if one chair cost £1,500!) but because she is old and they don’t wear down so much because of reduced activity. She hates it but it can be done and I do it.
4. Get a good scratching post and site it well. Finn is the expert and the other wonderful cat loving visitors to this site. Encourage your cat to use it.
Please see: Will my cat use a cat scratching post and;
OK I am done with providing my answer to the google query, “declawing alternatives”.
I know some of the classy visitors will add a few comments some of which will no doubt improve on mine!