December 7, 2021 – Madison is the 14th local government to ban declawing. The ordinance was passed on December 7 following a unanimous vote from Madison’s city council. It prohibits elective, non-therapeutic onychectomy on cats, effective immediately.
The ordinance, which was authored by Alder Lindsay Lemmer, received support from several animal welfare groups, including the Paw Project, Alley Cat Allies, and the American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP).
“I am overjoyed my colleagues listened to the latest research, to veterinarians, and to our community, and made the humane choice to support the ban on elective cat declawing,” Lemmer tells Veterinary Practice News. “Declawing a cat is a cruel and outdated procedure. How we treat animals speaks to our deepest values.”
“I am very grateful Alder Lindsay Lemmer and her colleagues on Madison’s Board of Alders agreed it is important to protect our companion animals by banning declawing,” adds Jennifer Conrad, DVM, founder and director of the Paw Project. “Declawing is known to harm cats and cause behavioral problems, and declawing puts cats’ owners at a greater risk of being bitten. Prohibiting declaw procedures protects cats and humans and improves the human-animal bond.”