Alternatives to Declawing

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Alternatives to Declawing

By the Paw Project
— November 4, 2021 —

Alternatives to Declawing

There are healthy alternatives to surgical declawing, which is a drastic solution to unwanted behavior that can actually make things worse for both the cat and the cat owner. Some of the alternatives include Soft Paws, Feliscratch, frequent nail trimming, and providing appropriate designated areas where a cat can exercise its natural, healthy instinct to scratch. Cats scratch on surfaces as part of their natural behavior and to remove the sheaths that grow on the surface of their nails. Frequent nail trimming can help prevent destruction, and most cats can be taught to scratch where it’s appropriate such as cardboard scratching boxes or scratching posts. It is important to provide both horizontal and vertical scratching surfaces and Feliscratch can be applied to these appropriate surfaces to encourage use of these areas rather than inappropriate surfaces (your furniture or carpet). Soft Paws are rubber nail caps that can be easily applied to your kitty’s nails after trimming to prevent it from scratching furniture, people or other pets. Many veterinary clinics will apply Soft Paws as an outpatient procedure or will teach you how to apply them yourself. In general, Soft Paws stay in place for 6 to 8 weeks in most kitties, depending on their activity and behavior. It is a well-known fact that declawing may often lead to other inappropriate behaviors in cats including litterbox avoidance, which is one of the most common reasons cats are relinquished to shelters.