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Ban cat declaw in Washington state

This petition had 4,931 supporters

This petition speaks for those that cannot speak for themselves, cats. A lot of us have cats as our beloved companions. In the United States, it is estimated that 25% of cats are declawed. Most people don't know that when you declaw a cat, it isn't just removing the nails. It includes cutting off the tips of the digits/fingers. This is mutilation. It is an inhumane act, in which the cat has no voice. Many countries believe it is unethical and already have bans on the procedure. Those countries include England, Scotland, Wales, Italy, France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Norway, Northern Ireland, Ireland, Denmark, Finland, Israel, Slovenia, Portugal, Belgium, Spain, Brazil, Australia, and New Zealand.

I volunteer at a cat shelter that is truly there for the cats, they even have no declaw in the contract. Volunteering at the shelter exposed me to terrible stories of cats that came through who had been declawed. My first time seeing the horrors firsthand was with Olive. Olive was a beautiful girl. She had been surrendered to the shelter due to aggressive behavior. We found out she had been declawed. After looking at x-rays, we saw that what bone was left in her paws had splintered like shrapnel and was hitting her nerves. Her aggression was being caused by the nerve pain. We put her on pain medication and she felt better, which you could tell through her improved behavior. She will have to take pain medication for the rest of her life.

Cat declaw is a completely selfish act. The owner is the only one who has something to gain. The cat in no way has anything to gain, only something to lose. Most reasoning behind declawing a cat is to protect furniture or other belongings and to stop the owner or owner's family from getting scratched. There are ways around these behaviors that don't include harming the cat. 

Side effects of cat declaw can include acute pain, chronic pain, hemorrhage, paralysis, etc. The cat also is less likely to be able to defend itself if outside the home. I am aware that not all cats have side effects, but some do. Those that do should be enough for the procedure to be banned.

Arguments for allowing the declawing of cats mention that if the cat weren't to be declawed, that it might have been euthanized or let outdoors. Here in the state of Washington, we are lucky enough to have many cat or general pet shelters that accept surrendered animals. Yes, some shelters do euthanasia, but many are no-kill. 

I am proposing that Washington state bans the declawing of cats completely. Washington is a progressive state, full of caring people like you. I truly believe that with your support and the help of our politicians, we can make this a reality.


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