The Knesset – Israel’s parliament – has made it a criminal offense to declaw cats unless the the procedure is medically necessary or if a person can prove they would have a medical problem if scratched.
Offenders can be sent to jail for a year or face a fine of about $20,000.
Other countries that have banned declawing include the U.K., Austria, Brazil Finland, Estonia, the Netherlands, Germany and Switzerland. It is actively discouraged in most other European countries and in Australia, New Zealand and Turkey.
In the United States, several California cities have banned declawing: West Hollywood, San Francisco, Santa Monica, Los Angeles, Beverly Hills, Berkeley, Burbank, and Culver City.
Declawing is not like removing a nail; it involves the amputation of all or part of the end bones of the paw.
Declawed cats can develop chronic lameness and may also develop behavioral problems such as biting because they no longer have any other way to defend themselves.
Veterinarian, Dr. Christianne Schelling explains more about declawing and provides good alternatives here.
Have you ever had a cat declawed? What was your experience? Let us know in a comment or on Facebook.