If you’ve just adopted a cat into your family, you may be mulling over the idea of getting it declawed. While you may think declawing will help you protect children and furniture, there are some defininte drawbacks to the procedure that need to be considered. Take a look at the negative effects of declawing and some alternative options:
The Negative Effects of Declawing
If you have young children that aren’t sure how to be gentle with the cat, you may think that declawing will be a good option to mitigate possible swipes from an agitated cat. However, pets.thenest.com says that declawing can actually change the temperament of your cat and make it more aggressive. Since the claws are the main form of defense, leaving your cat without them will make it feel more vulnerable.
If you were planning on letting your cat go outside, you won’t be able to without watching him or her. If your cat gets lots outside or attacked by another animal, there’s no way for your cat to protect itself.
While some people believe that declawing is equivalent to a manicure, the procedure actually maims your cat. The recovery period is painful; and since cats use their claws to balance biggest issue of declawing your cat is that it equivalent to maiming. Like toes, cats need their claws for balance and mobility. Removing them means your cat will have to learn how to walk again.
Not only does declawing maim the cat, but potential complications can arise. For instance, there could be painful regrowth of a claw inside the paw, damages to the radial nerve, and chronic joint pain.
Obviously, you don’t want to hurt your cat, so what can you do? There are many alternative methods to keep your cat’s claws at bay. While these options take a little time, effort, and money, your cat will be happier and better trained.
Alternatives to Declawing
If you’ve never had a cat and don’t know how to clip their nails, ask your veterinarian to teach you. You may be scared that your cat will scratch you in the process, but if done correctly, you can do this quickly and safely. It’s best to do this while your cat is relaxed and vying for some attention.You’ll take your thumb and stroke downward on your cat’s toe to extend a claw.
The biggest mistake is trimming too much off. If you cut too much off, you could cut into the “quick,” or vein. Not only will this hurt the cat, but they will be less likely to let you cut their claws again. Again, a vet can show you how to do a trim safely and quickly.
Use Vinyl Nail Caps
If you don’t want to clip the nails, vinyl nail caps are a great way to cover up claws. These caps are completely safe and can be applied easily to your cat’s nails with an adhesive glue. As your cat’s nails grow out, the nail caps will become loose and fall off.
Buy Clawing posts
Cats innately scratch to mark territory, relax, stretch, and exercise. The trick is to direct their scratching to scratch-appropriate areas. If you know they like to scratch a certain area, you may want to put a post in that room to direct their efforts. You can deter any bad behavior with a spray bottle.
Use Furniture Tape
In conjunction with a scratching post, you may want to put some temporary furniture tape on your couches, chairs, curtains, etc. This tape is a win-win since it’s safe for both cats and your furniture. Since your cat won’t be able to get a good grip on the furniture, they’ll ideally move on to their scratching post. While the tape is used for temporary training, it is transparent so you could keep it on for longer without having an eyesore.
As you can see, there are many ways to remove the clawing problem without hurting your cat. Be sure to talk with your vet about other options. To learn more, contact a company like TLC For Pets with any questions you have.