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Declaw Information for pet owners
Scratching is a normal behavior of cats. It conditions the claws, serves as a visual and scent territorial marker, allows the cat to defend itself, and provides healthy muscle engagement through stretching. In many cases, a cat can be trained to scratch only appropriate surfaces. However, a cat's excessive or inappropriate scratching behavior can become destructive or cause injury to people in the home.
Punishment is not an effective deterrent to scratching. However, there are numerous training and management options that can help redirect scratching appropriately:
- Providing appropriate scratching surfaces, such as dedicated posts and boards that are tall enough to encourage full stretching. What constitutes an attractive surface or location varies by cat, so don't be afraid to get creative!
- Scenting with catnip may help too.
- Frequent nail trims - every 1 to 2 weeks
- Nail caps - replaced every 4 to 6 weeks
- Positive reinforcement training, beginning with kitten kindergarten if available
- Pheromone sprays and/or plug-ins
- Discourage use of inappropriate surfaces by attaching sticky tape or tinfoil
PAWS performs declaws in a hope to keep the pet in the home, and out of the shelters. We recommend owners try the behavior modifications tips above before considering declawing.
- Indoor only
- Not obese, preferably under 10 pounds
- Under 2 years of age
Includes local nerve blocks, overnight hospitalization, and pain medication to go home
Front Declaw only…$300
When performed with Spay or Neuter…$250 plus the spay or neuter surgery price
WHAT IS DECLAWING (ONYCHECTOMY)?
Declawing is the surgical amputation of all or part of a cat's third phalanges (toe bones) and the attached claws. Most often the procedure involves the front paws only, but sometimes the claws are removed from all four paws. The surgery may be performed using sterilized nail trimmers, scalpel blades, or surgical lasers. If only part of the phalanx is removed the claw may occasionally regrow. However, it has been suggested that retaining a portion of the phalanx allows the paw to retain more of its normal function and appearance. Declawing may be performed at the same time as spaying or neutering. More in depth information available