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Old 11-30-2015, 11:24 AM
 
318 posts, read 224,581 times
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I noticed another thread ended up as a declaw discussion. So as to not to go totally off topic for the OP there, I'm sharing this here. Some areas are changing on their stance in this issue.


A little over 12 years ago I had our families youngest cats spayed. Mother who was pregnant when she came to us, and kitten of hers I kept.

While I never went looking for information on declawing, I'd run past it in places (articles, reading online) these were not rabid anti declaw articles, even so it explained what the procedure entailed and seemed highly unethical, and seemed to indicate the issues my parents had with the only declawed animal they ever owned wasn't highly unusual.

The receptionist and vet tried to talk me into a sort of a package deal. I had to tell the receptionist who was booking no to the declaw portion a few times, and the vet ended up warning me how much more it would cost if I wanted it at a later date, and how they hated seeing cats euthanized/dumped for scratching issues. Odd, the ONLY cat my parents (who also used this clinic) didn't try and save when a pricey health issue came up and instead opted for a euth was a spayed declawed female (given to them LIKE THIS in from a "friend" in the 80's) who almost always urinated and pooped everywhere except her box- which my mother dealt with flack from my father and tried to help for 9 years! 9 years! after months of my mom's trouble shooting, no diagnosed medical reason and cleaning behind her she became basement cat (a very large room with the sheet vinyl flooring) until she finally got sick. Seems to indicate these were not people (our surname on their records) who dumped animals out of convenience of having a nice house.

Anyway, recently an old friend called me. Her boyfriend wasn't allowed animals as a kid, but as an older adult adopted his first at a shelter. Declawed senior male. after he passed, his next cat was also a declawed senior who passed earlier this year. He got another at the shelter, a young neutered male and it was the first clawed cat he had. He would have adopted a declawed cat but they didn't have any. Figuring it was normal and routine he called some clinics and he was surprised every place he called said "we don't do that anymore" THIS is the same region I grew up in. Anyway, he told his girlfriend and she filled him in as to why, and told me as she knew I'd be pleased to hear that the tune has changed from encouraging owners to have it done, to refusal.
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Old 11-30-2015, 01:41 PM
 
Location: southern kansas
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It may be a growing trend, and I hope it truly is. But completely eliminating declawing can't happen soon enough IMO. Veterinarians & their associations/lobbyists have a vested interest in keeping the practice alive, so I don't expect to see legislation outlawing it any time soon. The best way to end declawing is public education on a large scale. Get the word out in every way possible, as I truly believe most cat guardians would not have it done if they really understood what the long term effects are for their pet.

I know some vets are starting to see the light, and that's good. But way too many are still regarding it as a cash cow, and pushing their 'package deals' to uneducated clients. If everyone says NO to declawing, the practice will die on it's own. Hopefully sooner, rather than later.

Point is, we can't wait for Government or the vets themselves, to step in and fix it. The demand for the procedure needs to go away.
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Old 11-30-2015, 01:46 PM
 
6,307 posts, read 7,155,670 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SweetLittleWing View Post

While I never went looking for information on declawing, I'd run past it in places (articles, reading online) these were not rabid anti declaw articles, even so it explained what the procedure entailed and seemed highly unethical, and seemed to indicate the issues my parents had with the only declawed animal they ever owned wasn't highly unusual.
As I said in the other thread, I'm not a proponent of declawing, especially when it's considered as routine as spay or neuter surgery.

With that being said though, I do have an issue with speaking about declawing, or any other procedure, off-hat as "unethical". Quite a few professions have codes of ethics that practitioners are bound by. These are taken very seriously by most, as licenses can (and have) been pulled due to not following them.

IMO, there is a distinction to be made between what someone personally would consider "unethical" and what the professional community, as a whole, considers "unethical". Declawing falls into this category.

I did a quick Google search regarding declawing in the State of Washington. I came across this article:

Washington VMA finds veterinarians split on declaw issue

64% of the vets surveyed still declaw. Personally, I found this interesting (and higher than I thought it would be). But, fact remains, within the ethical boundaries of the profession here, it's an accepted practice. That an individual feels it's "highly unethical" is a lot different than the profession itself classifying it as such.


Quote:
Originally Posted by SweetLittleWing View Post
The receptionist and vet tried to talk me into a sort of a package deal. I had to tell the receptionist who was booking no to the declaw portion a few times, and the vet ended up warning me how much more it would cost if I wanted it at a later date, and how they hated seeing cats euthanized/dumped for scratching issues.
What??? A vet trying to upsell you??? Stop the presses!!


Quote:
Originally Posted by SweetLittleWing View Post
Odd, the ONLY cat my parents (who also used this clinic) didn't try and save when a pricey health issue came up and instead opted for a euth was a spayed declawed female (given to them LIKE THIS in from a "friend" in the 80's) who almost always urinated and pooped everywhere except her box- which my mother dealt with flack from my father and tried to help for 9 years! 9 years! after months of my mom's trouble shooting, no diagnosed medical reason and cleaning behind her she became basement cat (a very large room with the sheet vinyl flooring) until she finally got sick. Seems to indicate these were not people (our surname on their records) who dumped animals out of convenience of having a nice house.
So, it was determined that the fact that she was declawed was the cause of her not using the litterbox?
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Old 11-30-2015, 03:13 PM
 
Location: southern kansas
7,678 posts, read 5,150,846 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mishigas73 View Post
As I said in the other thread, I'm not a proponent of declawing, especially when it's considered as routine as spay or neuter surgery.

With that being said though, I do have an issue with speaking about declawing, or any other procedure, off-hat as "unethical". Quite a few professions have codes of ethics that practitioners are bound by. These are taken very seriously by most, as licenses can (and have) been pulled due to not following them.

IMO, there is a distinction to be made between what someone personally would consider "unethical" and what the professional community, as a whole, considers "unethical". Declawing falls into this category.

I did a quick Google search regarding declawing in the State of Washington. I came across this article:

Washington VMA finds veterinarians split on declaw issue

64% of the vets surveyed still declaw. Personally, I found this interesting (and higher than I thought it would be). But, fact remains, within the ethical boundaries of the profession here, it's an accepted practice. That an individual feels it's "highly unethical" is a lot different than the profession itself classifying it as such.




What??? A vet trying to upsell you??? Stop the presses!!




So, it was determined that the fact that she was declawed was the cause of her not using the litterbox?
But the problem I have with that, is the very people who have a financial interest in continuing the practice are the ones who determine whether it is 'ethical' or not. I have a problem with that obvious conflict of interest. In my mind, just because the VMA , or whoever, declares it ethical, it doesn't mean it's 'good practice'.
Take the money out of the equation (prohibit vets from charging for the procedure), then take a poll and see how many vets would still do it based on it's own merits for the good of the cat. I'd be willing to bet that 64% number would quickly dwindle to near zero.

If other first world nations (like the UK & Canada) can declare it unethical and ban it, then why can't we in the U.S. The only answer I can come up with is money.
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Old 11-30-2015, 03:27 PM
 
6,307 posts, read 7,155,670 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by catdad7x View Post
But the problem I have with that, is the very people who have a financial interest in continuing the practice are the ones who determine whether it is 'ethical' or not. I have a problem with that obvious conflict of interest. In my mind, just because the VMA , or whoever, declares it ethical, it doesn't mean it's 'good practice'.
So, who should decide?

Politicians who are just looking for more votes in the next election? Or, perhaps people should simply vote with their money. You don't like a practice? Don't support it. It certainly seems to be working in some places.

Personally, I'm a member of a profession that has a code of ethics. Though it's certainly not perfect, I'm damned happy that people outside the profession don't have a say in what is "ethical". Frankly, if that were the case, it would be near impossible to conduct any sort of business. As it is, we run frantic with every "cause du jour".

Quote:
Originally Posted by catdad7x View Post
Take the money out of the equation (prohibit vets from charging for the procedure), then take a poll and see how many vets would still do it based on it's own merits for the good of the cat. I'd be willing to bet that 64% number would quickly dwindle to near zero.
Actually, I don't get that impression from the article that I cited at all. It seems to me that there are vets that do it, with the understanding that it's a last resort. That doesn't seem to be "all about money" to me.
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Old 11-30-2015, 03:44 PM
 
Location: southern kansas
7,678 posts, read 5,150,846 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mishigas73 View Post
So, who should decide?

Politicians who are just looking for more votes in the next election? Or, perhaps people should simply vote with their money. You don't like a practice? Don't support it. It certainly seems to be working in some places.

Personally, I'm a member of a profession that has a code of ethics. Though it's certainly not perfect, I'm damned happy that people outside the profession don't have a say in what is "ethical". Frankly, if that were the case, it would be near impossible to conduct any sort of business. As it is, we run frantic with every "cause du jour".



Actually, I don't get that impression from the article that I cited at all. It seems to me that there are vets that do it, with the understanding that it's a last resort. That doesn't seem to be "all about money" to me.
* The public. Specifically cat owners who want the best life possible for their pets.

* Believe me, I don't support it, and I never said politicians were the answer. They could be, but it will never happen here in the U.S. because vets/VMA still support it, and money talks on Capitol Hill. My opinion has always been that the best answer, barring legislation, is public education to decrease demand and acceptance of declawing.

* A last resort to what? Putting the cat to sleep over a torn sofa? There's always other alternatives beside declaw or euthanasia.

We'll have to agree to disagree about the 'money' thing.
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Old 11-30-2015, 03:47 PM
 
6,307 posts, read 7,155,670 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by catdad7x View Post
* A last resort to what? Putting the cat to sleep over a torn sofa? There's always other alternatives beside declaw or euthanasia.
We'll have to agree to disagree on that one as well.
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Old 11-30-2015, 03:54 PM
 
Location: Wisconsin
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We adopted our youngest cat (now one year old) at a smaller no-kill shelter in August 2014. (We had adopted other cats, but at a different shelter.)

I was pleased that they had us sign a contract, stating we would NOT declaw the cat. And they included educational handouts about cats needing their claws, etc. (We would never declaw but it was awesome to see that they had it in their contract.)

I give that shelter a BIG thumbs up and now donate to them regularly.
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Old 11-30-2015, 04:02 PM
 
318 posts, read 224,581 times
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My apologies for not being clear.


Quote:
64% of the vets surveyed still declaw. Personally, I found this interesting (and higher than I thought it would be). But, fact remains, within the ethical boundaries of the profession here, it's an accepted practice. That an individual feels it's "highly unethical" is a lot different than the profession itself classifying it as such.
Yes, and I'll take ownership- I felt after reading how it was performed that doing this procedure to my animals is off limits to me. It's unethical to me. At the same time I will not paint those vets as evil, or horrible. It used to be a very routine to have done and it is still legal here. If a client is still absolutely insistent on this procedure, I would rather see a veterinarian do it well, or refer that person to a place that does it well then drive a client to a backwards place that has little consideration standard of care or pain management.

Quote:
So, it was determined that the fact that she was declawed was the cause of her not using the litterbox?
As for my parents cat. We simply don't know. Literature I read (and not from sites that use gore to scare) does state her issues are not rare in declawed cats - if it was the cause, who knows. The friend went MIA as soon as they accepted the cat- so my parents did assume she knew this cat had issues. It had been a cat this lady originally wanted to keep as her own pet- so perhaps she didn't mind pee all over, and this was something grumpy cat always did or perhaps this animal used the litter-box faithfully prior. Other then our personal suspicions we don't have proof either way. This was the 80's and vets did have less tech then and attitudes were different so it was never blamed on the declaw. Things like UTI's were ruled out and other common medical causes of litterbox avoidance at the time were also ruled out. She was listed as a "healthy" cat.

The friend's boyfriend's two declawed cats were obviously well behaved and nice pets. I met the second, and he was such a affectionate doll. NOTHING like grumpy. Obviously he liked the first two enough to adopt yet another kitty into his life. So I didn't feel like I indicated that all declawed cats are ruined as companions in my original post.

Quote:
What??? A vet trying to upsell you??? Stop the presses!!
I really feel that he wasn't trying to bleed me for cash. This was the same one who spent time gathering history and after completing the series of vaccines all kittens should get didn't want our pets in for annual vaccinations for everything as they were indoors and we didn't expose them to strange animals. I would have paid him for a dental on one and he sold me dental food instead. again, money left on the table.

His practice through client experience encouraged it so we wouldn't dump them or request that they be put down later for scratching a couch. It sounded like something that happened often at the time. Which is why I mostly mentioned grumpy. a miserable grumpy cat who bit people, peed everywhere and pooped on the floor- if a couch being scratched was such a big deal to those folks they wouldn't have kept a cat like her for a week, nevermind 9 years. So I was puzzled as a non-dumper that the issue would be pressed. My mother tried a lot for that cat, even spending time in that room reading or throwing toys for her so she had company. I also read books in there, or would throw toys for her to chase if she wanted. she never liked being pet, but would sit beside you. Her limit was being told she needed $500-$1200 in treatment when she did get ill, mom opted for euthanasia and stated if it had been the other cat, there would be no question- treat it. But not for a cat who was very rarely "happy" and soiled outside her box for years.

My point in sharing what my friend told me indicates attitudes around declawing in that region are changing. Which is a great thing. This is an area that is very busy, competitive with a look what fancy stuff I own attitude. (vs. the laid back town I live in now.) Hopefully it means that more people are using behavior techniques and posts. The only unfortunate part with my friends boyfriend, is this was not a cheap man. he would have agreed to an appointment at one of these places to discuss alternatives. Instead they simply got him off the line without him knowing exactly why except "no- we don't do that". So it was his girlfriend who discussed scratching posts, the sizes and placements and how to get the cat to use those instead of furniture to him.
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Old 11-30-2015, 04:09 PM
 
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Both my cats are declawed, never caused any problems and if I got another cat I'd have her declawed as well.

I don't get the uproar about it, if you don't want to declaw your pet, don't. It should be up to the pet owner and their vet.
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