|OK In Health - Paws 4 Thot|
Declawing in Cats - May 2013
When Kitty just won’t leave the furniture alone…
Most normal healthy cats like to scratch things, whether it be trees, couches, stairs, even human skin! Occasionally, this normal behaviour becomes a nuisance when it involves household items such as furniture, stereo speakers and the like. As much as the cat might like to think of it as art, the overall effect tends to take away from the esthetic value of the item in question!
All cats should be provided with some object or structure to scratch on that they can call their own. This might be a scratching post covered with carpet or heavy rope, but I usually suggest something else in addition to this like a piece of a log or rough cedar that they can really sink their claws into. By providing them with something other than just carpet, all of the carpet in the house does not suffer from similar attacks. If the cat will not go for a vertical post, try one that is horizontally constructed.
When you first get a new kitten, make sure you begin right away trimming their nails, using scissors designed for cats, not human nail clippers. The latter tend to shred the nail more than cut it. Get someone to teach you how to do this. What this early trimming accomplishes is getting your kitten accustomed to this procedure and the fact that you are going to do it every few weeks, fully expecting them to allow it gracefully.
You will also want to “train” your kitten not to scratch on your favourite things. Despite their reputation for independence, cats can readily be trained to leave the sofa, curtains, or carpet untouched. Using surgery to prevent or correct a behavioral problem is expedient, but it is definitely not the smartest, kindest, most cost-effective, or best solution for you and your cat. Your veterinarian has an obligation to educate you as to the nature of the procedure, the risks of anesthesia and surgery, and the potential for serious physical and behavioral complications, both short- and long-term.
Cats with trimmed nails can still climb, so no need to worry if they go outside or that they will no longer be able to climb the curtains. The damage they inflict is somewhat less with short nails and not as much blood is drawn when they attempt to shred your arms during routine play!
If your cat has decided that no one will be giving them any more pedicures and that no one will dictate what they can scratch or cannot scratch, then, Houston, you have a problem. Declawing can solve this problem, but let’s take a look at how it is done.
Under anesthetic, your cat’s “finger-tip” from the last “knuckle” is surgically removed. Imagine the pain. Some cats, I feel, never seem to fully recover mentally from this and many become a little nasty over time, to put it mildly. They might brush up on techniques designed to inflict damage on you using hind claws and teeth instead of front claws. They might even stop using the litter box. You may have been told that declawing, which is now considered illegal in some countries, is the only option for cats that won’t stop scratching your stuff.
But, there are alternatives that are much more humane and effective at the same time. One such alternative is nail caps that are applied every 6-12 weeks with something like crazy glue. These can get a little expensive over years of use, but they do work as long as they are applied properly. You still have to trim the nails once the caps fall off and before the next application.
My preferred technique is called a Tendonectomy. This also involves anesthesia, like declawing, but no joints are incised and only mild and temporary discomfort is the result. The small tendons running along the bottom of each toe that allow the claws to be pulled in or flexed are cut through a tiny incision over each one.
What I have witnessed is the vast majority are up and acting normal very soon after surgery, the opposite of declawing where most are cowering in the back of the kennel with their paws tucked underneath them, even with pain killers. Most cats with the tendon surgery can go home the same day, certainly by the following morning and they do not need pain killers, bandages, etc.
One thing to keep in mind with tendonectomies is that your cat must allow nail trimming as the nails are still there and still grow, but they won’t be able to wear off the old growth by scratching and sharpening them anymore. So this procedure is not for the cats who become Tasmanian devils when they are restrained for manicures!
Dr. Moira's Bio: A practicing veterinarian for 20 years, has been in Kelowna since 1990, first owning Rutland Pet Hospital and now, after selling the former, Pawsitive Veterinary Care, opened in 2000 and focused on primarily holistic health care. She welcomes new clients and loves to educate! Kelowna (250) 862-2727. - Dr. Moira Drosdovech Website - Email
Copyright © 2004- 2011 OKinHealth.com. This article is of the copyright of OK in Health and the author; any reproduction, duplication and transmission of the article are to have prior written approval by OK in Health or the author.
This information and research is intended to be reliable, but its accuracy cannot be guaranteed. All material in this article is provided for information only and may not be construed as medical advice or instruction. No action or inaction should be taken based solely on the contents of this newsletter / e-magazine / website. Readers should consult their doctor and other qualified health professionals on any matter relating to their health and well-being. The information and opinions provided in this newsletter / e-magazine/website are believed to be accurate and sound, based on the best judgment available to the authors. Readers who fail to consult with appropriate health authorities assume the risk of any injuries. The publisher is not responsible for any errors or omissions. OK in Health is not responsible for the information in these articles or for any content included in this article which is intended as a guide only and should not be used as a substitute to seeking professional advice from either your doctor or a registered specialist for yourself or anyone else.
Connect with Us
|Use salt substitutes sparingly, if at all, unless you consult with your doctor. Some salt substitutes contain very high levels of potassium. This may be unhealthy for those with certain medical conditions. Instead of relying on a salt substitute, try seasoning foods with pepper, flavorful herbs and spices.|
|Bernice Granger ~ Love's Divine Light ~ Be the Love and Light You Are! |
|Specialty: Angel Empowerment Practitioner|
Vibrational Healing, Angel Card Readings, Reconnective Healing™ & The Reconnection®, Workshops. Helping you find your way with Compassion and Love, Aligning you to your Life's Journey!
|Healthy Solutions To Feel Better Living with Chronic Pain|
|Date: Dec 7, 2014|
Location: Kelowna & Central Okanagan
Transformational workshop for people living with chronic pain to be able to integrate effective, healthy solutions to improve health, decrease pain and allow greater function, quality of life and joy.
|Ancient Lemuria |
|The most important thing about you is who you are today. The energy of the planet is here to help you remember your spiritual wisdom, knowledge and purpose.|
|Healthy Beans and Chocolate Peanut Butter Brownies|
Description: Yes! this recipe uses black beans in these brownies. Beans are an excellent and inexpensive source of protein that can be added to many dishes. One cup of Kidney beans provides 43% of the recommended daily intake of fiber, which helps to lower cholesterol and prevent heart disease. Black beans are loaded with cancer-fighting antioxidants and pinto beans are packed with thiamin, a nutrient that has been proven to protect memory function. Beans are high in fiber, iron, vitamin B9, magnesium potassium, vitamin B1, and protein! How to Enjoy: The uses are endless! They can be added to any dish or served as a side to increase nutritional value and taste. Fun Fact! Try these amazing black bean brownies...you will never know they are bean based!