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The Veterinarian’s Oath — 9 Comments

  1. Pingback:The Veterinarian’s Oath | Save Our Paws

  2. Pingback:AVMA Change Attitude Towards Declawing? | Pictures of Cats

  3. Another vet who uses the same old excuse about cats being declawed or losing their homes.
    Strange how when challenged with the truth that many cats lose their homes after declawing we have no explanation from those vets as to why.
    Strange how while “trying so hard” to educate clients they declaw tiny kittens who could very easily be taught claw manners.
    Strange how they think causing cats pain and disablement by taking away their essential toe ends isn’t breaking their sworn oath to cause no animal to suffer.

  4. I came across your discussion while perusing the web for cat pictures. I am a mixed animal veterinarian but before I owned my own practice I worked as a shelter veterinarian for five years. My experience in the trenches was this; the death toll for cats and dogs in this country is an unimagined horror most people, including veterinarians, do not understand.

    Over half the cats admitted to shelters are destroyed. Before I worked on the frontline of animal suffering, I felt as you all did about declawing, and felt I had very high morals regarding the ethical treatment of animals. Once I was faced daily with the suffering of these millions, and those unsung hereos who try to stem the tide, I realized there is a lot of grey areas.

    I would disagree with the general comments here that veterinarians disregard our oath. Every one of my colleagues tries hard to educate clients, use alternative methods like soft paws, feliway, and other behaviour modification.

    Every veterinarian that I know declaws only as a last resort, and does everything possible to prevent pain and suffering for that patient. I believe there is a case to be made for declawing a cat that will otherwise lose their home, or be turned outside. I challenge everyone who posted on this discussion to work for one month at their local animal shelter and then see if they have the same conviction to condemn those of us who toil day to day trying to help animals.

    Sincerely, Dr. Francis.

    • Thank you for visiting and commenting. It is very much appreciated. You know, if the vets did not declaw cats, cat owners would not ask vets to declaw their cats. And yes, those cats might end up in shelters and be killed. And then people would see the true scale of irresponsible cat ownership in the USA. By declawing cats you facilitate poor cat ownership. You perpetuate irresponsible cat caretaking and all its ramifications.

      It is time to add some rigour into the equation. You really must stand up and be counted and refuse to declaw. The old cliched excuse that declawing saves cat’s lives is tired out. Declawing insidiously, by the back door, undermines the value of the domestic cat. It encourages the belief that people can do as they please with the cat for their convenience even if is grossly against the welfare and health interests of the cat. Declawing undermines the ethic behind the cat/human relationship. It is a horrible perversion of what should happen, namely a loving, mutually supportive relationship.

      And declawing is plainly in breach of the veterinarian’s oath. All the vets of Europe would agree with that. Personally, I can never respect the American vet because they hurt cats in declawing them and then find a way to justify it. All you have to do is say no to a request to declaw. You don’t because you’ll lose business to some other vet nearby who will declaw. It is about profit. It has to be. American vets have lost their values. In watching some on videos it is clear how lost they are. They actually believe that declawing for non-therapeutic purposes is perfectly OK.

      Declawing is a complete blot on the veterinarian’s work. It is a total failure. The odd thing is that vets in the USA would probably make more money if they thought long term by promoting their image in genuinely thinking of the cat’s welfare by refusing to declaw.

    • If every one of your colleagues tries hard to educate clients as to the alternatives to the amputation of the cats last toe joints, then how come so many veterinarians advertise declawing with discount or declawing/neuter packages for kittens? It’s surely supposed to be a last resort surgery, not an easy get out for people too lazy to teach their kittens to use a scratching post. These people are not fit to have cats in their care and are more likely to relinquish them at the least excuse. How come some veterinarians make pro declaw videos and post them on You Tube and disable comments so that no one against declawing can point out the cruelty of it and the many possible physical/mental consequences to the cat? The only reason for promoting declawing is to make money, it’s obvious! I may be in the UK but I did Shelter data on the number of declawed cats relinquished to them, for 2 years, for a USA vet, we found that unrehomeable declawed cats killed on admission to Shelters were not even counted so the study was pointless! Why are the numbers of declawed cats relinquished with complications from the cruel surgery kept hidden?
      All veterinarians need to STOP declawing and start promoting neutering of all cats and start educating people that cats are living feeling beings, not possessions to be adapted, or discarded on any flimsy excuse to be killed through no fault of their own.

  5. I think it’s absolutely deplorable to take that oath,and then refuse to treat animals in an emergency situation. Not one vet in Sheboygan County, WI will voluteer for rotation to be on call for emergencies for animals in Sheboygan!!!!!!! My niece just went through a horrible event with her 15 yr old cat, on the night of the HUGE STORM in SHEBOYGAN. SHE CALLED HER VET, AND A RECORDING TOLD HER SHE HAD TO DRIVE TO PORT WASHINGTON (25-30 MILES)AWAY, IN HAIL,WIND AND POUNDING RAIN ALL ALONE TO GET HER YOWLING, HURTING ELDERLY CAT TREATED!!!!!!!!!! It makes me sick to my stomach, that these VETS would OPT OUT OF BEING ON ROTATION TO BE AVAILIABLE FOR EMERGENCIES AT NIGHT. HOW DARE THEY TAKE THAT OATH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! BUT I GUESS IT’S OK, IT’S ONLY AN ANIMAL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! HOW COLD AND UNCARING CAN THEY BE!!!! FOR SHAME
    ON THEM, SHAME, SHAME ON THEM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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