Declawing your cat. Don't!
Declawing cats: Far worse than a manicure
Instead of declawing your cat, try our effective, humane methods for resolving scratching issues. People often mistakenly believe that declawing their cats is a harmless "quick fix" for unwanted scratching. They don't realize that declawing can make a cat less likely to use the litter box or more likely to bite. Declawing also can cause lasting physical problems for your cat.
Many countries have banned declawing. The Humane Society of the United States opposes declawing except for the rare cases when it is necessary for medical purposes, such as the removal of cancerous nail bed tumors.
People who are worried about being scratched, especially those with immunodeficiencies or bleeding disorders, may be told incorrectly that their health will be protected by declawing their cats. However, infectious disease specialists don't recommend declawing. The risk from scratches for these people is less than those from bites, cat litter, or fleas carried by their cats.
The truth about cats and scratching
Scratching is normal cat behavior. It isn't done to destroy a favorite chair or to get even. Cats scratch to remove the dead husks from their claws, mark territory, and stretch their muscles.
Cats are usually about 8 weeks old when they begin scratching. That's the ideal time to train kittens to use a scratching post and allow nail trims. Pet caregivers should not consider declawing a routine prevention for unwanted scratching. Declawing can actually lead to an entirely different set of behavior problems that may be worse than shredding the couch.
What is declawing?
Too often, people think that declawing is a simple surgery that removes a cat's nails—the equivalent of having your fingernails trimmed. Sadly, this is far from the truth.
Declawing traditionally involves the amputation of the last bone of each toe. If performed on a human being, it would be like cutting off each finger at the last knuckle.
It is an unnecessary surgery that provides no medical benefit to the cat. Educated pet parents can easily train their cats to use their claws in a manner that allows everyone in the household to live together happily.
How is a cat declawed?
The standard method of declawing is amputating with a scalpel or guillotine clipper. The wounds are closed with stitches or surgical glue, and the feet are bandaged.
Another method is laser surgery, in which a small, intense beam of light cuts through tissue by heating and vaporizing it. However, it's still the amputation of the last toe bone of the cat and carries with it the same long-term risks of lameness and behavioral problems as does declawing with scalpels or clippers.
If performed on a human being, declawing would be like cutting off each finger at the last knuckle.
A third procedure is the tendonectomy, in which the tendon that controls the claw in each toe is severed. The cat keeps their claws, but can't control them or extend them to scratch. This procedure is associated with a high incidence of abnormally thick claw growth. Therefore, more frequent and challenging nail trims are required to prevent the cat's claws from snagging on people, carpet, furniture, and drapes, or from growing into the cat's paw pads.
Because of complications, a cat who has been given a tendonectomy may require declawing later. Although a tendonectomy is not actually amputation, a 1998 study published in the "Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association" found the incidence of bleeding, lameness, and infection was similar between tendonectomy and declawing.
Some negative effects of declawing
Medical drawbacks to declawing include pain in the paw, infection, tissue necrosis (tissue death), lameness, and back pain. Removing claws changes the way a cat's foot meets the ground and can cause pain similar to wearing an uncomfortable pair of shoes. There can also be a regrowth of improperly removed claws, nerve damage, and bone spurs.
For several days after surgery, shredded newspaper is typically used in the litter box to prevent litter from irritating declawed feet. This unfamiliar litter substitute, accompanied by pain when scratching in the box, may lead cats to stop using the litter box. Some cats may become biters because they no longer have their claws for defense.
Try our tips for stopping unwanted scratching
If you are worried about your cat damaging your home, or want to avoid unwanted scratching, start with these tips:
Don't subject your cat to unnecessary procedures
Declawing and tendonectomies should be reserved only for those rare cases in which a cat has a medical problem that would warrant such surgery, such as the need to remove cancerous nail bed tumors.
RESOURCE: TIP SHEET
RESOURCE: TIP SHEET
Article from: http://www.humanesociety.org/animals/cats/tips/declawing.
Keeping your cat healthy
If you keep your kittens indoors, they will be happy to be stay there where they are protected from harm, other pets and diseases.
Good fences = happy kitties
Be sure to cat-proof the yard by checking that your fence has no escape routes and by keeping toxic plants, garden chemicals and other dangerous objects away from kitten.
Walk this way
If you live in a peaceful neighborhood in which you can walk without encountering loose dogs, consider buying a harness and training your cat to walk on a leash. This training takes time and patience, for both you and the cat, and it's easiest when your cat is young. Some cats can even be harnessed and tied to a stationary object to enjoy the outdoors while you are gardening nearby (but be sure to never leave your cat alone while they are tethered).
Install a perch indoors near a sunny window; padded perches can be purchased at many pet supply stores, through catalog retailers or at our online store. Another option is an enclosure that sits in a window frame (much like an air conditioning unit) and provides a secure space in which your kitty can hang out. Larger perches can attach to the side of a house or ground-floor apartment patio.
Buy a ready-made cat tree (often called a "kitty condo"), or make your own. A cat tree can be short, or may stretch from floor to ceiling. It provides great climbing opportunities and, in multi-cat households, creates more play and rest areas by taking advantage of vertical space. If you can, locate the cat tree next to a window so your cat can watch the action outdoors.
Play with your cat each day. Try different types of toys that allow your cat to stalk, chase, pounce and kick. When you've tired out your cat, store toys that could harm them (such as toys with strings attached) out of reach. When you can't be there to supervise, leave out "toys" such as paper bags (with the handles removed) or cardboard boxes. Be sure to switch the toysfrom time to time so that they seem "new" and more interesting to your cat.
Bring the outdoors in
Plant cat grass (available from pet supply stores) in indoor pots so your feline can graze.
Cats can be neat freaks, so clean the litter box regularly. Here are some tips for preventing and solving litter box problems.
Even indoor cats should still be outfitted with a collar and visible identification. The occasional open window (make sure your windows have secure screens) or door offers a tempting opportunity for your cat. And your cat may become frightened and make their way outside if strangers come to work on your house or if there is a fire or similar disaster. The collar and visible ID could help someone get your pet back to you.
Article from: http://www.humanesociety.org/animals/cats/tips/cat_happy_indoors.html
Shadowylinx Maine Coon Cattery
Elisa Medina 99 Moran Street Waterbury CT 06704
Sale contract for kitten sold as pet only
Please read carefully
⦁ Kitten cannot be declawed.
⦁ Kitten cannot be used for breeding. I sell breeding rights, please inquire.
⦁ Kitten must not be taken to a shelter, but must returned to breeder in case you cannot keep it anytime
⦁ Kitten will be reserved with a $150.00 deposit which will go towards balance.
A list of low cost spay/neuter clinics and vaccination clinics will be attached to this contract. All locations are in Connecticut, USA
⦁ Deposits are non refundable after 14 days.
⦁ All deposits will be returned if you decide you don’t want kitten before 14 days of this contract.
⦁ Kitten will not go home before 12 weeks to 14 weeks depending on health.
⦁ Kitten will be microchipped with a $30.00 additional fee; will receive first shots and vet record, and congenital disease guarantee.
BOTH PARENTS ARE REGISTERED WITH TICA, The International Cat Association, and CFA, Cat Fanciers Association
All kittens have been given first shots and examined by our vet at Banfield Animal Hospital in Waterbury, or at Petco clinic, Vetco.
⦁ The Breeder guarantees the kitten/cat to be healthy at the time of sale (to the best of our knowledge), FeLV/FIV-negative, and free from any life threatening illnesses, infections, internal and external parasites, ear mites, fleas and ringworm. This guarantee is valid for 14 days from the date of purchase. During this period of time, the kitten/cat should not be exposed to any ill animals (doing so will void this health guarantee).
⦁ The Breeder recommends the Buyer to take the kitten/cat to their own veterinarian (at Buyer’s expense) within the first 72 hours for their own satisfaction and protection. If the vet feels that the animal is ill and that the illness was present prior to sale, the Breeder should be contacted at once, before any major treatment is begun (except in an emergency situation). The Breeder will (upon receipt of a statement from the examining veterinarian that the illness was present prior to sale) pay the cost of the medical treatment (up to the purchase price of the animal). If the kitten/cat should die from a problem present prior to sale, the Breeder will either replace the animal with one of an equal quality, or refund the purchase price.
⦁ The Breeder guarantees against the death of the kitten/cat due to genetic defects for one year from the date of purchase (FeLV, FIV, and FIP are not genetic and are specifically excluded). In the unlikely event of death of this kitten/cat due to genetic abnormalities ((proof is to be provided to the Breeder in the form of a detailed autopsy report and a letter written by a licensed veterinarian stating the exact cause of death, and including the description of the kitten/cat’s date of birth, name, sex, color and pattern), the Breeder will replace kitten/cat with one of the equal quality (if available) or refund the Buyer’s purchase price. 4. Health guarantee will not be honored if ownership changes.
⦁ The Breeder agrees to accept the kitten back and refund the purchase price excluding deposit (deposit is not refundable) if within 14 days the Buyer finds that allergy reactions make it impossible to keep the kitten/cat.
⦁ If the kitten/cat is returned to the cattery between 15 and 30 days after the date of purchase, the Breeder will refund half of cost only
⦁ If at any time after the first 30 days the Buyer can no longer take care of the kitten/cat, the Breeder agrees to accept the kitten/cat back without an obligation to refund the purchase price
Buyer agrees that at no time will this kitten be sent to a shelter. If buyer cannot keep kitten for any reason after one year, the breeder will take kitten back with no promise of returned money.
Phone Number _________________email___________________
99 Moran Street
Waterbury, CT 06704
203 953-8496 firstname.lastname@example.org
Signatures indicate full agreement with all of the above provisions.