Cat Doctor of Monroe

PH (734) 682-5596

FX (734) 682-5629

11 W. Vine St.

Monroe, MI 48162

Declawing is inhumane and it is unethical for veterinarians to perform this surgery

A note from Dr. Miller:

My decision not to declaw cats came after much research into the subject and seeing the awful consequences of declawing. When I was a kid you had your cat spayed or neutered and declawed. No one ever questioned this or educated cat owners about this. Sadly, my two oldest kitties were declawed before I really realized the repercussions of doing this. My two young boys are not declawed. As I began practicing, I strove to change how I approached declaws. I was the first and only vet in the first practice I worked in to perform local numbing blocks for the procedure and to change how the incisions were closed and to not bandage the feet after surgery. This, and strong pain medication helped my surgery patients recover quicker and with less pain. However, I still dreaded doing the procedure! I began educating clients about the procedure and alternatives. I tried to educate the other doctors in the practice to raise their level of pain management for these kitties. Eventually, I only had a couple clients a month that requested declaw procedures and I elected to stop performing them. I have not declawed a cat since 2010 and regret sincerely ever having done this brutal procedure.

Now, we educate clients about properly training their cats and providing an appropriate environment for them to scratch in. We teach clients how to trim nails and offer Soft Paws (link) and Feliscratch (link) to our clients when they're having a particularly difficult time. Client reception to this education is wonderful and we love to see clients bonding with their cats as a result. I wish that more veterinarians would get on board with banning declawing. We would never condone declawing a dog that's scratching on a door or the floor, but we are okay with doing this for a cat? Why can't vets take the same approach they do for a dog - recommend training - and recommend training for the cat that is scratching?! 

Review the American Association of Feline Practitioners Position

According to a 2017 published research report (link to , declawed cats have increased…
 Back pain
 Urinating and/or defecating outside the litterbox
 Biting
 Barbering (overgrooming)
 63% of the declawed cats in the study (86 cats) showed radiographic evidence of residual bone fragments.

Declawing is the AMPUTATION of the last section of the toe at the last joint.