Declawing or onyxectomy of the cat: what interest?  Good or bad idea ?

Declawing Or Onyxectomy Of The Cat: What Interest? Good Or Bad Idea ?

Onyxectomy, more commonly known as declawing, involves removing a cat’s claws by amputating the last knuckle of each finger. This procedure requires surgery under general anesthesia. Focus on a very bad idea, because it is definitely a practice from another time.

The Usefulness Of Claws For A Cat

Nature does things well, so that when an artifice is useless, it removes it over time. But if the cat has kept its claws, it’s not for nothing, they are good for something!

First of all, the cat’s claws are essential for hunting. Indeed, this feline is a great predator and is an excellent hunter. Without a claw, it would be unable to feed in the wild.

Then, they are used to mark its territory. The pads secrete pheromones that your cat deposits when she scratches. They therefore allow him to circumscribe his territory to warn intruders of his presence.

Finally, to protect its territory, the cat must fight. Its claws are then its only weapon. A cat without claws has no means of defense and would come out of a fight with a fellow cat or another animal in very poor condition.

And then, let’s not forget that our favorite domestic feline is an agile animal. Its claws allow it to climb almost anywhere and reach inaccessible places to protect itself, rest, observe its environment, etc.

What’S The Point Of Having Your Cat Declawed?

Proponents of declawing cats present a whole range of arguments to justify this barbaric practice. Here is a panel:

  • protect children from scratches,
  • protect furniture,
  • protect cushions, sofas and other fabrics,
  • protect an owner who is sick or has medical treatment with anticoagulants, etc.

All the arguments cited, if they may seem legitimate at first glance, are ultimately only elements of comfort for the owner, without any consideration for the well-being of the animal. It’s a bit like shaving it, for fear of being allergic to its hair. The operation is absolutely useless for our companions!

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The Consequences Of Declawing

First of all, know that the operation is painful for the cat. Indeed, the amputation of the phalanges of his legs requires a healing time. Not only is this long and makes the animal suffer, but the risk of infection is also real. In addition, the bandages that he is obliged to keep on his paws for long weeks are a real obstacle to his freedom, which can go so far as to cause feline depression.

The cat is a digitigrade animal, which means that it walks on its toes and the soles of its paws never touch the ground. By amputating the last phalanx of each finger, it’s all his general balance that we put in danger.

There are also psychological consequences to onyxectomy. The cat will no longer be able to satisfy its instinctive needs requiring its claws. Hunting, marking and protecting one’s territory, gaining height, hiding, etc.

Let’s put ourselves for a few moments in the place of the poor tom, we would not like to have one or more limbs amputated even though they are useful to us and present no danger to our health.

Alternatives To Declawing

Maintain The Claws

Claws, like nails, grow constantly and therefore need to be maintained. The cat does it naturally, by “using” them during its daily activities or by scratching on different supports.

You can also help it by slightly cutting off the tip. But be careful, this is a delicate operation. Indeed, the claw is partly made up of a nerve and you have to be careful not to cut too much, at the risk of severing the nerve. Do not hesitate to call a veterinarian for this benign operation, which will not traumatize your cat.

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Put On Claw Guards

There are protections to stick on the claws of the cat. Thanks to this, it will be possible for him to go about his business without risking damaging your interior. The glue is of course non-toxic.

However, this is not a technique that your cat will approve of, because it will be hampered in its activities and as such risks injuring itself to remove these claw guards at all costs.

Buy A Scratching Post

Your cat needs to scratch. And if it’s an indoor cat, it could actually attack your furniture and fabrics. So to remedy this, invest in a scratching post!

There are models of different sizes and shapes on the market, you will necessarily find what you are looking for, just like your companion! Praise him when he uses it, to encourage him to scratch only on this medium.

Educate Children

To avoid scratches made to children, nothing better than teaching them the right gestures with cats. A few basic rules should be repeated to them:

  • Don’t wake them up
  • don’t corner them,
  • don’t run after them,
  • Don’t pull their tails,
  • Don’t get too close to their face,
  • Do not look them directly in the eye,
  • Don’t catch them.

Remember that when a cat scratches, it is only responding to aggression.

Do Not Adopt A Cat

The cat is a formidable pet, even if we will sometimes have the impression that he is a little ungrateful and that he would like to dominate us. But why want to amputate an essential part of its anatomy for comfort?

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The simplest solution, if we are afraid that a cat will scratch us or damage our interior, it is perhaps quite simply not to adopt one.

Onyxectomy, A Practice Prohibited In France

In France, as well as in the countries of the European Union which have adopted the European convention for the protection of pet animals, this practice has been prohibited since 2004.

This agreement, established in Strasbourg on November 13, 1987, is drafted as a follow-up to Article 10 of Decree No. 2004-416 of May 11, 2004:

“1. Surgical interventions intended to modify the appearance of a pet animal or for other non-curative purposes must be prohibited and in particular:

  • Tail docking;
  •  The cut of the ears;
  • Section of the vocal cords;
  • Removal of claws and teeth. »

This practice remains however, and unfortunately, authorized in many countries, in particular in the United States. It is estimated that one in four American cats have had their claws removed.

 As you will have understood, it is really not a good idea to subject your cat to this very controversial practice. The suffering caused has also motivated MEPs to legislate on the subject. The ban on onyxectomy is in line with the protection of animal welfare. In France, any offender is liable to 2 years in prison and a fine of 30,000 euros.

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