Let’s Stop Declawing Cats in Maryland!

sad cat
Image by Quangpraha on Pixabay

Declawing, a euphemistic term for de-knuckling, is the surgical removal of the top knuckles of a cat’s toes on its paws. It is painful, often crippling, and permanently alters a cat’s paws for the rest of its life.

This bill would prohibit certain declawing procedures unless medically necessary to ensure the health of the cat.

Cats can suffer with pain for years after the declawing procedure, as people often do after an amputation. Since a large part of a cat’s weight is distributed on its toes, a cat that has been declawed must change its gait to redistribute weight on paws that lack a top knuckle on every toe. This surgical procedure can adversely impact a cat’s balance. Studies suggest that declawed cats are more likely to have long-term health problems such as back pain or behavioral problems. Even using the litter box can be painful on declawed paws.

New York outlawed elective declawing in 2019. Fourteen US cities have banned the practice including Los Angeles, San Francisco, Austin, St. Louis, and Pittsburgh. Elective declawing is illegal in most of Europe as well as in Brazil, Israel, Australia, and New Zealand.

Our cats depend on us to care for them and protect them from harm. Subjecting cats to this brutal procedure should not be done for our benefit. There are far more humane, inexpensive, and effective ways to stop our cats from scratching the furniture.

Declawing is NOT a cat manicure! #protectourpaws

Please contact your legislators and tell them that you SUPPORT SB 67/ HB 22!