Originally Posted by Juniper
I don't think that mutilating an animal for your own convenience or benefit is ever okay under *any* circumstances. Why should an animal suffer for your (general your) sake? Sure, the surgery can be done in the most humane way possible, but there's no way you're (again, general you're) going to tell me that following the procedure, a cat does not suffer any pain.
Cats have claws. They scratch. If you can't deal with that for whatever reason, then get a fish, or some other animal that doesn't have claws. To me, it's just ludicrous to get an animal that is known to have a certain characteristic that you don't like with the reasoning that you'll just mutilate the animal to get rid of the characteristic - I mean, I like dogs, and lord knows there are plenty of them out there in shelters who need homes, but I really hate the sound of barking - it gives me a headache, and, I live in an apartment building with strict rules about noise, so a barking dog would get me in trouble with my landlord. But gee, I really want a dog anyway, so maybe I should get one and just have its vocal cords cut -problem solved, right? :
It's pretty clear that that kind of thinking is ridiculous when it's applied to another animal or situation, but for some reason over the years its become accepted that mutilating a cat to save your furniture is no big deal - I don't see the difference.
And I don't see how the 'the animal would be homeless or euthanised if we didn't allow the declawing' argument makes it any better. I mean, how far are we willing to allow this argument to go? Doing something painful and unnecessary to a cat is okay, as long as it keeps the animal in a home? Take that a little further, and let's just leave abused or neglected animals with their owners because hey, at least they have a home and they're not homeless in a shelter or euthanised!
I guess it's pretty clear that I'm 100% against declawing under any circumstances.
Debarking dogs is a medical procedure. Not one which many believe is valid, because in the long run, it doesn't make the dog unable to make noise, it just makes the noise different. Very few vets will actually perform this procedure, because it really doesn't do much for the animal or the owner. Declawing is different than Debarking.
However for fairness sake though, as with declawing, there are plenty of viable alternatives to debarking. Alternatives which have a very high level of success. Given these facts, declawing and debarking, are largely unnecessary medical procedures.
Painful & Unnecessary...well lets look at neutering, if you only have male cats, and if you have a fool proof method of keeping him[them] from coming in contact with female cats, then neutering falls into the category of Painful and Unnecessary. So the cat sprays the walls, or his urine smells quite repulsive...well that's just part of him being a cat. Yes the argument is extreme, but it is nonetheless valid, there is very little evidence to suggest that leaving a male intact has any serious long term negative effects on him. Testicular Cancer, prostate enlargement, etc are very rare in felids.
Once again, there is a very big lack of proof that a properly done declaw is cruel/abusive/[insert negative term here]. To lump declawing in with abuse or cruelty is extremely misleading.