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Declawing is a series of bone amputations. Declawing is more accurately described by the term de-knuckling and is not merely the removal of the claws, as the term "declawing" implies. In humans, fingernails grow from the skin, but in animals that hunt prey, the claws grow from the bone; therefore, the last bone is amputated so the claw cannot re-grow.
The last bone of each of the ten front toes of a cat's paw is amputated. Also, the tendons, nerves, and ligaments that enable normal function and movement of the paw are severed. An analogous procedure applied to humans would be cutting off each finger at the last joint.
Declawed animals may be at increased risk of injury or death, if attacked by other animals. They are deprived of their normal, instinctual behavioral impulses to use their claws to climb, exercise, and mark territory with the scent glands in their paws. Declaw surgery exposes cats to the risks of general anesthesia and complications of the surgical procedure, which include bleeding, infection, lameness, nerve damage, gangrene, extensive tissue damage, and death.
Jankowski, in JAVMA August 1,reports that acute complications "develop in up to one-half of onychectomized declawed cats. The estimates of the prevalence of declawing vary considerably.
The reason for this high number is that many veterinarians actively market and recommend the procedure without disclosing the details of the procedure to their clients with cats.
Others perform declawing unquestioningly. Many people with cats don't understand that declawing is amputating the bones and think they are doing "all the right things" for their beloved animal.
Not only is declaw-on-demand the norm, the staff at veterinary clinics commonly encourage clients, whose cats are scheduled for spaying or neutering, to "supersize" the procedure by adding declaw surgery.
Clients who bring their cats to these veterinarians typically report that neither the nature of the procedure, complications, nor humane alternatives is ever discussed. Declawing is one of the most painful, routinely performed procedures in all of veterinary medicine.
Each toe of the cat is amputated at the first joint. Declawing a cat is equivalent in a person to amputating the entire first knuckle of every finger. Declaw surgery is so predictably painful that it is used by pharmaceutical companies to test the effectiveness of pain medications in clinical trials.
Initial recovery after declaw amputation surgery takes a few weeks, but even after the surgical wounds have healed, there are often other long-term physical complications and negative psychological effects.
Declawing is associated with "severe pain," compared against spaying "moderate pain" and neutering "mild pain". Pollari states in JAVMA June 1,"Because these procedures are so routine, they are often trivialized by clients as well as veterinarians. There is a physiological cost associated with uncontrolled pain.
Thus, provision of adequate analgesia…would be of benefit. The article also points out the challenges in assessing pain in cats.
Cats instinctively hide signs of pain. Although cats typically are sent home one to two days after declawing surgery without pain medication, Carroll points out that "the optimal duration of post-operative analgesic treatment for cats is unknown.
Karen Tobias, an associate professor in small animal surgery at the University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine, who conducted a study on pain in cats after declawing surgery.
For those animals receiving pain medication, there are potential problems. Some veterinarians have proposed the use of fentanyl patches. The patches, which are placed on the skin, contain a powerful narcotic.
Their use in humans for post-operative pain was abandoned after several deaths occurred from accidental overdose. Yes, declawing deprives cats of their primary means of defense—their claws.
Non-declawed cats will use their front paw claws to stave off a threat by swiping. Without these claws, declawed cats have to resort to biting to protect themselves. Many people mistakenly believe that a cat can protect itself by kicking with its back feet claws.
What they do not realize is that in order to use the back claws, the cat has to be in the very vulnerable position of laying on its back, which is a disadvantage that can easily lead to losing the battle.
Do people abandon or euthanize their cats, if veterinarians do not perform a declawing procedure? There is evidence that declawed cats are disproportionately abandoned to shelters, and that declawed cats may be euthanized more often because of the behavioral and physical problems that the cat begins to exhibit because the cat was declawed.
Pet owners typically cite protection of their furnishings as being foremost among their reasons for having a cat declawed; however, such owners may not realize that the pain and other complications from the surgery can cause behavioral problems that are even worse than the problems for which the cat's toes were originally amputated:Why Dogs Make Better Pets Than Cats.
Dogs and cats are most pets that are seen with their owner. These two animals make good pets to have. Dogs are physical and fun animals that runs with a . Please note that the contents of this guide is for informational purposes only. If you would like to receive professional advice to diagnose a pest control related problem (especially if you have medical concerns), please contact your local exterminator or certified practitioner as soon as possible.
One step we can take towards accepting and living with our decomposition is to plan for a natural, also known as green, burial.
Natural burial means your body is placed directly into the ground with only a shroud or biodegradable casket. PLEASE MAKE CHECKS PAYABLE TO: The Paw Project P.O. Box Santa Monica CA The Paw Project is a (c)(3) non-profit organization.
The volunteers of The Paw Project and all of our feline friends thank you for your support! Natural Burial & Embracing Decay “We must give back to Nature what she has lent us. We must return from whence we came.”-Gomberville, La doctrine des moeurs.
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