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What can we do to help mass declawers?

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
I already sent an email to this shelter a few weeks ago and heard no response. I sent my email from my company inbox, so its coming from a reputable place... not like "Yousuck@hotmail.com" or something, ya know?

This is what I said:
"Hi, I have occasionally scanned your webpage looking at available cats. Im considering adding another feline to my home someday soon, so I watch to see if one you have available catches my eye. However unfortunately Im saddened to see you front declaw your adult cats when they come to your shelter. Im saddened by this for a few reasons. 1. It must be a financial burden to pay for that vet care when that money could be spent saving other cats. 2, it is an unnecessary treatment and can be very harmful to cats. I ask that you take this in to consideration with your organization. Perhaps it is more harmful and financially draining to the cats and the shelter than it is worth? Many people will still adopt the cats even if they have all their claws. In fact, some shy away from declaws because of the problems the cats can develop from them. Please reconsider this, I wish your shelter the best of luck! Sincerely, "

What else can I do? This is just cruel how they routinely de-claw any cat that comes in whether they need it or not
Would anyone else like to join me in some tactful and helpful emails or letters? This is their website: http://www.petfinder.com/shelters/MN105.html
Please dont harrass them though, as I dont want to cause any problems. I just want to deter them from this practice. Thanks
post #2 of 17
A shelter that declaws cats? Maybe they need to be educated.
post #3 of 17
Sounds like you addressed the issue clearly and in a nonconfrontational way. Hopefully they will think about what you've said and give it a try.
post #4 of 17
OMG , that make me sick just reading that . I cant believe that a shelter is doing that . I wish that can be stoped somehow ....
post #5 of 17
Please keep in mind this is a shelter run by people trying to help and rescue pets. Please don't harass them. But, perhaps they might be receptive to the idea of performing declaws only at the adopter's request? Could you try suggesting that to them? Try referring them to the www.declawing.com website - it has a lot of valuable information about declawing and its alternatives.
post #6 of 17
If you do decide to write to these folks. Please keep your emotions in check and give them proof (if you have it on hand) about the problems with declawing. How sad for the kittens, and this is something brand new on me. I'm also moving this to the SOS Forum-
post #7 of 17
Thread Starter 
Thanks Hissy, I wasnt really sure where to post it
I did send them another email, trying hard not to be rude or pushy. I just wish they had acknowledged me or let me know if they are considering changing their ways.

This is my second email:
"Hi Shelley, I sent you this email a while back and hadnt heard anything from the shelter in response to it. I know you all are probably very busy, but I just wanted to follow up and see if anyone had considered it or talked about it. I have further resources if you would like to check them out. One good one is www.declawing.com. If nothing else, would you consider only de-clawing cats upon request of the adoptive owners? Some cats really don’t need to be declawed and it can cause a number of physical and behavioral problems. I know you all are volunteers and doing your best for the cats in need out there, so I hope you will take this in to consideration and perhaps cease to follow this practice in the future. Thank you for your time!"

Poor kitties
post #8 of 17
I have that same scenario here! I wanted to post about it but you did one better by emailing them that letter. Its a great letter. There are two shelters that do this in my area, that I know of. They say that cats are adopted out faster if they are already declawed. But I thought, if they are saving these poor homeless cats then that is better than putting them down. But then again, one of the reasons so many cats are in shelters to begin with is problems due to declaw. It is a vicious circle that should be remedied through education.

There will always be exceptions though. Like my SIL, she has a new kitten and is going to declaw her. She refused to hear me out and threw the papers, that I had printed out for her on the facts of declawing, back at me. She told me to mind my own business. She said her furniture was too valuable.

Some people just dont care.

On the flip side, my other SIL has the brother of the girl kit (they went at the same time to Animal Control) and was going to declaw him because the baby's claws hurt her young daughter. I laid out the facts for her and she decided she is not going through with the declaw. I was so happy. I went out and bought her Sticky Paws, nail clippers and gave her one of my old scratch posts. :

What about if shelters made flyers that detail the facts of declawing cats? How about setting up classes on how to train cats not to scratch? Train the people, save the cats. I know these things require money that is not there though. Its a sad situation.
post #9 of 17
OMG that is really sad :-( I cant beleave a shelter would waste money declawing cats! How horrible. And there names is purr and paws...they are taking half the poor babies paws off!
post #10 of 17
This just in from the PAW Project

The San Francisco Commission of Animal Control and Welfare voted unanimously to recommend that the San Francisco Board of Supervisors ban declawing in San Francisco on September 11, 2003. The Commission is an advisory group, and it will be up the local legislators to pass the ordinance. The Commission also recommended a resolution condemning declawing and supporting the Koretz Anti-Declawing Bill, AB 395.

The move to ban declawing in San Francisco was spearheaded by Commissioner Susan Wheeler. Paw Project Director, Jennifer Conrad, DVM, was a featured speaker at the meeting and presented video and photos of declawing surgery and its complications. Other speakers supporting a ban included Pam Runquist of the Association of Veterinarians for Animal Rights (AVAR), Dr. Elliot Katz of In Defense of Animals (IDA), and representatives from Animal Protection Institute (API) and Fund for Animals.

SF veterinarian Dean Beyerinck from Irving Street Veterinary Hospital strongly supported a ban and told the Commission that Irving Street had a long-standing policy of not performing declawing or any other non-therapeutic procedure such as tail-docking or ear-cropping. Also supporting the bill were several animal behaviorists from SF-SPCA who testified that declawed cats that they encountered in the local shelters were disproportionately considered unadoptable due to behavior problems.

Whether declawing causes behavioral problems is a highly controversial subject, though shelter workers and humane organizations overwhelmingly claim declawed cats have a higher incidence of litter box avoidance and biting. The AVMA and other veterinary organizations deny this is the case.

Dr. Tom Mack, owner of Bayshore Animal Hospital in San Mateo, was the lone voice of dissent -- in a vague sort of way. He said that he represented the 4900 members of the California Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA), but did not respond to Dr. Katz's question whether he advocated declawing or not. He did say that he opposed cruelty, and in response to Dr. Conrad's presentation he said he was "shocked," and that veterinarians who had performed those particular procedures were guilty of "malpractice" and "should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law." He also said that declawing cats without a pre-operative consultation with a veterinarian and an informed consent was below the acceptable standard of care. Responding to questioning from Commissioner Wheeler, he said he could envision a time in the future when the CVMA would officially opposed all declawing.

The Commissioners advised San Francisco residents who supported a declaw ban to write to their Supervisors.

List of Supervisors
Tom Ammiano
District 9
(415) 554-5144
post #11 of 17
Thread Starter 
Im so sad, and feeling really angry that no one from that shelter has responded to me. Nothing at all! You'd think they could at least say "Thanks for your email, buzz off" or just acknowledge it! I bet the brat on the other end just deleted it as soon as she saw that it was about de-clawing. Ugh Makes me so angry and sad for those poor cats
post #12 of 17
I have since learned that this is common practice in many of the shelters across the country. Propelled by advice from the AVMA no less! The clueless ones!

A fellow author of cat books Annie Black has been trying to fight this sad cause for years with little success. After all, look at the powerful organization she is butting heads with!
post #13 of 17
Such a "One size fits all" solution seems silly to me. It bugs me that most of the cats they are declawing would likely never have a problem with inappropriate scratching.

As far as the AMVA they appear to be pretty pro-declawing. A search through their website revealed only token advice on how to prevent problem scratching. Almost as if it's an afterthought that was said just to cover their rear and not make them look totally foolish.
post #14 of 17
Despite the sad information that Hissy has just posted, I forwarded this information to PAAN in hopes that a few letters will help educate them.
post #15 of 17
That there is a rescue that declaws before they adopt out. Most Rescues do not want to even adopt out cats to those that want to declaw.
post #16 of 17
Our best bet is to educate the children before they are too old to listen. I have been talking to my son's school about starting a pet library of sorts. I will be helping the kids to understand that animals are not toys and what is needed to have happy healthy pets. This will include spay/neuter and not to de-claw. I'm sure a lot of you out there could vollenteer at a school near you.
post #17 of 17
Originally posted by jmierz
That there is a rescue that declaws before they adopt out. Most Rescues do not want to even adopt out cats to those that want to declaw.
I can't believe it either. We will not adopt to anyone who wants to declaw, and it is one term of the adoption contract that the cat(s) will never be declawed.

Education is very important,and it can work. We hand out literature to anyone who thinks declawing is fine, and very often the person will say "I had NO idea it was that bad!", and will look for alternative methods!
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