As many residents know, it can be difficult to rent an apartment or townhouse in Nebraska if you have a cat, as most landlords require that all cats be de-clawed.
I implore you- landlords should not require a process that is deemed inhumane.
The Humane Society of the USA stopped de-clawing cats, as they deemed it an inhumane procedure- if a de-clawing operation were to be performed on a human, it would be like cutting off the finger at the last knuckle. Imagine- not being able to ever grasp something properly ever again. Imagine- losing your primary means of defense in a world where the dominant species is far larger than yourself, and does not always know what you are saying or feeling.
De-clawing is the number one reason that cats start biting- often times at the least provocation. For those people with immune deficiencies, the likelihood of infection or disease is far higher from being bitten than it is from a scratch or from contact with litter.
De-clawing is the number one reason that a cat starts defecating and urinating outside of their designated waste area (litterbox, for most cats.) De-clawing is an incredibly painful procedure, and digging in litter can lead to immense pain.
De-clawing can potentially lead to dangerous infections- sometimes requiring further surgery or amputation of a leg.
De-clawing can lead to a number of health problems with a cat- lameness, back pain, tissue death, and worse. De-clawing a cat would be akin to Chinese foot binding- forcing the paws into a painful, unnatural position, unable to be reversed.
De-clawing is one of the number one reasons that a cats behavior changes, often drastically. A once loving, friendly, playful cat may become shy, fearful, or even worse- aggressive towards humans. Behavioral changes are one of the top reasons that a person may decide to abandon a pet- and we all know that this great country does not need any more pets in shelters, or roaming the streets.
Nebraska and Federal law states that any inhumane act done against an animal may be punishable by law. As de-clawing is both inhumane, and money is brought into it, should de-clawing be no worse than dog or cock fighting? All can cause irreversible damage to the animals involved, both physical and mental, and are done for money.
Most loving pet owners would be more than happy to submit to an alternative- such as putting a product called "Soft Claws" on their cat. (Soft claws are small vinyl sheaths that attach to a cats claws via a glue- very similar to a human getting acrylic nails. Soft claws are very economical, as low as $13 dollars for a set of 40 sheaths, and last up to 6 weeks.) Soft Claws do not cause the damage that de-clawing does, and the cat is prevented from doing any damage to the apartment or townhouse with its' claws.
Most apartments and townhouses require a pet deposit, pet rent, or often times, both. A regular deposit is used to pay for any damages done by tenants during the time of their lease- should a pet deposit not go towards any damages done by a pet during the time of the lease? If landlords require that cats be de-clawed, then what exactly is that lease going towards? Some cats spray, yes- I know that many pet owners have carpet steam cleaners for this reason. Yes, an apartment may need to be sterilized, should an allergic person wish to rent that apartment next- I would hardly call that a damage.
Landlords have every right to REQUEST that a cat be de-clawed, but they should not be allowed to REQUIRE what is an inhumane procedure.
I implore you- please change this!