Why You Should Not Declaw Your Cat

Why You Should Not Declaw Your Cat

Never take your cat's claws away.

What if someone told you that you needed to cut off your fingers? Now, you like your fingers. You need them to do the things you love. You use them to text, play video games and flip pages in a book. Of course, you also need them to pick things up. Someone you live with says, "Hey, you should probably go get a check up at the doctor's office soon." So, they drive you to the doctor. The doctor says, "Everything looks good here. Hey, you know what? I could get rid of your fingers if you'd like. It'll only be an extra $450 dollars." You obviously don't want this, but your friend thinks it would be a good idea...and it will stop you from ruining his expensive furniture.

Sounds ridiculous, right? I imagine this is what cats go through when their owners take them to the vet to be declawed. Most pet owners would probably think that declawing a cat is a normal procedure that isn't harmful to their feline friends, and is an easy fix to destructive behavior (i.e. damaging furniture, scratching, etc.) However, if they knew the truth about the surgery, they would never choose to put their cat through it. The surgery can be extremely detrimental to cats, and there are better, safer ways to control your cats claws. Here are some reasons why you should never declaw your cat.

1. The surgery is painful.

The Paw Project describes the declawing surgery on their website. They say that it is not just simply removing the claws; it's an amputation of the last knuckles of a cat's paw. This procedure cuts through nerves and tendons, potentially harming the animal. It's equivalent to a person getting their fingers cut off at the top knuckle. If you wouldn't do that to a person, why would you subject your cat to that?

2. Your cat "kneads" their claws.

See what I did there? Some may think it's annoying, especially if your cat decides that your leg is the perfect scratching post, but kneading is important to cats. It helps them express that they're content and comfortable. Not only that, but cats knead so that they can stretch their claws. Kneading can also mark a cat's territory. A cat's claws are so unique and special, and they should not be taken away from them.

3. A cat's claw are their main defense.

Unfortunately, cats don't wield lightsabers. So, they use their claws for protection against Sith lords and bigger, meaner cats. This is especially important if the cat is primarily an indoor cat. If an indoor were to accidentally run outside, without their claws they will not be able to defend themselves.

4. It's expensive and unnecessary.

While the expense is certainly not more important than the pain it can cause your pet, it's still a reason you shouldn't go through with it. Vets can charge up to $450 (sometimes more) for a declawing surgery. Some vets will ask pet owners if they would like to declaw their cat when they bring their cat in for something else. Sadly and too often, vets will not inform pet owners of the possible consequences of the surgery. If a pet owner is not told that there are alternatives and that it's just simply unnecessary, they may end up agreeing to the procedure, spending too much money and hurting their pet.

5. The aftermath is not worth it.

The consequences of the surgery are simply just not worth it. According to The Paw Project, declawing can cause permanent damage such as arthritis and lameness. Is it really worth putting your cat through unnecessary pain just so you can protect your furniture?

A pet is your best friend. They're the best listener, they're always free to cuddle and they love you just as much as you love them. So please don't allow your cat to endure the pain that the declawing surgery can cause. If you're really concerned about your cat's scratching, there are several alternatives to declawing, such as nail caps, scratching posts, etc. The Paw Project's website is a great place to learn more about the risks of declawing and claw repair surgery. The first step to ending the cruelty that is declawing is being informed of the risks. Now, go hug your cat and promise them you'll never take away their claws.

Cover Image Credit: Personal Photo

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8 Reasons Why My Dad Is the Most Important Man In My Life

Forever my number one guy.

Growing up, there's been one consistent man I can always count on, my father. In any aspect of my life, my dad has always been there, showing me unconditional love and respect every day. No matter what, I know that my dad will always be the most important man in my life for many reasons.

1. He has always been there.

Literally. From the day I was born until today, I have never not been able to count on my dad to be there for me, uplift me and be the best dad he can be.

2. He learned to adapt and suffer through girly trends to make me happy.

I'm sure when my dad was younger and pictured his future, he didn't think about the Barbie pretend pageants, dressing up as a princess, perfecting my pigtails and enduring other countless girly events. My dad never turned me down when I wanted to play a game, no matter what and was always willing to help me pick out cute outfits and do my hair before preschool.

3. He sends the cutest texts.

Random text messages since I have gotten my own cell phone have always come my way from my dad. Those randoms "I love you so much" and "I am so proud of you" never fail to make me smile, and I can always count on my dad for an adorable text message when I'm feeling down.

4. He taught me how to be brave.

When I needed to learn how to swim, he threw me in the pool. When I needed to learn how to ride a bike, he went alongside me and made sure I didn't fall too badly. When I needed to learn how to drive, he was there next to me, making sure I didn't crash.

5. He encourages me to best the best I can be.

My dad sees the best in me, no matter how much I fail. He's always there to support me and turn my failures into successes. He can sit on the phone with me for hours, talking future career stuff and listening to me lay out my future plans and goals. He wants the absolute best for me, and no is never an option, he is always willing to do whatever it takes to get me where I need to be.

6. He gets sentimental way too often, but it's cute.

Whether you're sitting down at the kitchen table, reminiscing about your childhood, or that one song comes on that your dad insists you will dance to together on your wedding day, your dad's emotions often come out in the cutest possible way, forever reminding you how loved you are.

7. He supports you, emotionally and financially.

Need to vent about a guy in your life that isn't treating you well? My dad is there. Need some extra cash to help fund spring break? He's there for that, too.

8. He shows me how I should be treated.

Yes, my dad treats me like a princess, and I don't expect every guy I meet to wait on me hand and foot, but I do expect respect, and that's exactly what my dad showed I deserve. From the way he loves, admires, and respects me, he shows me that there are guys out there who will one day come along and treat me like that. My dad always advises me to not put up with less than I deserve and assures me that the right guy will come along one day.

For these reasons and more, my dad will forever be my No. 1 man. I love you!

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The Old Oak Tree

A short poem about returning to one's childhood home.


Looming over the burned-out house is an oak tree,

Hundreds of years old at least.

The smell of smoke is gone, but skeleton of the house remains,

A mere speck when compared to the tree.

Whose branches reach out to me like hands,

Begging for me to come closer.

I do.

I sit under the tree like I did when I was young.

The ground is damp from the rain,

I feel the sogginess soaking through my jeans.

I remain.

It is cooler under the branches,

A limitless amount of leaves shades me from the daylight.

I stay there. All day.

Staring at the charred remains of my childhood home.

I stay there until fog begins to form in the crisp night air,

Cold and sharp against my cheeks.

No longer able to withstand the cold, I take my leave looking back once more.

It's nice to know that even when I'm gone,

The old oak tree remains.

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