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    Support New Jersey Bill to Ban Declawing

    New Jersey State Senator Troy Singleton has introduced legislation that would add onychetomy, or declawing, to the list of criminal animal cruelty offenses in New Jersey. Those who perform declawing (except to treat a medical condition affecting the animal) would face a fine for a penalty, according to the provisions of the New Jersey Anti-Declaw Bill S1209. The companion bill is A347, introduced by NJ State Assemblymember Carol Murphy.

    More information about the bill can be found at the New Jersey Legislature website HERE.

    New Jersey Anti-Declaw Bill Fact Sheet.


    Thanks to Senators Nilsa Cruz-Perez (Committee Chair), Troy Singleton (S1209 author and Committee Vice-Chair), and Vin Gopal for their YES votes. The Bill must pass the NJ Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee, the full NJ Senate, then pass in the Assembly before going to the Governor's desk where it could be signed into law.

    Assemblyman Troy Singleton has written powerful and heartfelt opinion pieces against declawing. CLICK HERE and HERE to read them. PLEASE share them!

    Please sign our PETITION!!

    Click here for General Letter-Writing Tips

    VCA Canada Announces the End of Declawing in its Clinics — May 17, 2018

    VCA Canada Medical Director Dr. Daniel Joffe announced the decision by VCA Canada, which runs 93 clinics in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Ontario and Quebec, to no longer perform non-therapeutic declawing in any of its clinics.

    British Columbia and Nova Scotia veterinarians have already imposed bans on declawing, which involves amputating part of each of a cat's digits, typically as a convenience for owners worried about ruined furniture.

    "Declaws have become quite a common thing and, in fact, people think of them as just a common procedure. And my veterinary generation created that problem," said Dr. Joffe, "We got very proficient at doing the procedure, especially as better pain medications and anesthetic protocols came along. We thought we could do it safely and fairly painlessly.

    "What we've learned is that, not only is that wrong, it's inhumane."

    British Columbia Bans Declawing — May 8, 2018

    Dr. Margie Scherk, Paw Project-British Columbia Director reports that the College of Veterinarians of British Columbia (CVBC) has banned the practice of declawing cats unless it is necessary as an appropriate medical therapy. Their announcement states, "The CVBC recognizes that elective and non-therapeutic declawing is ethically problematic and that it is not an appropriate means of dealing with feline behaviour issues....No medical conditions or environmental circumstances of the cat owner justify the declawing of domestic cats."

    The new mandatory standard of practice is being implemented after researching other jurisdictions and consultation with BC veterinarians. Although Nova Scotia is the only other Canadian province to ban cat declawing, it is also banned in Australia, New Zealand, Israel, Brazil, the United Kingdom, parts of Europe, eight cities in California, and Denver, Colorado.

    Under the Veterinarians Act, the CVBC has the power to investigate and impose disciplinary action on veterinarians who ignore the new standard of practice. The Act allows disciplinary enforcement of non-compliance with bylaws and mandatory standards of practice, without distinction.

    Support New York State Bill to Ban Cat Declawing

    New York state Assemblywoman Linda B. Rosenthal has introduced a bill, A.595 (formerly A.1297), that would make New York the first state in the nation to ban cat declawing. Soon afterwards, New York state Senator Joseph A. Griffo (R-Oneida County) introduced the companion bill (S.3376) in the Senate, giving it a majority-party sponsor in the GOP-controlled NY state Senate. The declawing bill would ban the amputation procedure unless it is done to treat a medical condition affecting the cat. The Paw Project is grateful to Assemblywoman Rosenthal and Senator Griffo. We are proud to have introduced the declaw issue to Assemblywoman Rosenthal and to have helped in organizing support for the bill. We are fortunate to have the help and support of the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), the Humane Society Veterinary Medical Association (HSVMA), and Ethical Veterinary to pass the bill. We will update this page when the bill is introduced in the coming legislative session.

    Please read the NY No-Declaw Bill Fact Sheet and the NY No-Declaw Myth vs. Fact Sheet, which have been presented to the NY state legislators.

    Support Assemblymember Rosenthal's Bill here - Sign the Petition!

    Support California Legislation to Ban Cat Declawing

    Legislation was introduced in 2018 that would end declawing in California. The bill did not pass a committee hearing on April 24, 2018. The bill's status is unclear at this time, but the Paw Project does not intend to quit.

    Declawing is amputation, whether performed by scalpel, clippers, or laser. We believe there is never a reason to declaw for non-therapeutic reasons (that is, unless surgery were necessary to treat animals' medical conditions). Declawing does not keep cats in homes, a fact acknowledged by the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA). Eight cities in California - Los Angeles, San Francisco, West Hollywood, Burbank, Santa Monica, Berkeley, Beverly Hills, and Culver City - plus the City and County of Denver, Colorado have enacted declaw bans. Statistics available from those cities indicate that the relinquishment of cats to shelters in those cities, in the years since the bans were enacted, has not increased - in fact, the number of cats dumped in shelters has DECREASED consistently in the years since the laws went into effect.

    There is no reason to declaw cats to protect human health. The NIH, CDC, US Public Health Service, the Infectious Diseases Society of America, and the Canadian Medical Association, all have specifically stated that the declawing is "not advised," even for the animals of persons who are severely immunocompromised, including those with HIV. This opinion is echoed in statements on declawing published by the AAHA and the American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP).

    Support California Anti-Declaw Legislation here - Sign the Petition!

    Nova Scotia Bans Declawing — December 12, 2017

    Nova Scotia is the first state or province in the US or Canada to ban declawing, reports Dr. Hugh Chisholm, Paw Project-Atlantic Canada Director.

    "The Nova Scotia Veterinary Medical Association provides the following information.

    At its December 12, 2017 meeting, The Council of the Nova Scotia Veterinary Medical Association agreed to the following change in its Code of Ethics – Section 46. A three-month education period will take effect immediately and this change in the Code of Ethics will come into effect on March 15, 2018.

    No Member of the Nova Scotia Veterinary Medical Association shall perform the elective and non-therapeutic Partial Digital Amputation (PDA), commonly known as declawing or onychectomy, of domestic cats.

    The NSVMA views elective and non-therapeutic PDA as ethically unacceptable."

    Nova Scotia is the first state or province to ban declawing. The new NSVMA position has the force of law and effectively bans declawing in Nova Scotia as members are required to belong to the NSVMA to practice. In Canada, the VMAs serve as regulatory and enforcement bodies for the government.

    Denver Bans Declawing — November 13, 2017

    Denver City Council unanimously passed a ban on the practice on November 13, 2017. Declaw critics have labeled the procedure, which is common in most states, as inhumane. Denver is the first municipality in the country outside of California to ban declawing. Since 2003, eight cities in California have adopted Paw Project sponsored anti-declaw ordinances. Public opinion was strongly behind the bill.

    Paw Project Director Colorado Dr. Aubrey Lavizzo (shown in the picture at left with Councilmember Kendra Black, the author of the ordinance) had worked for several years on crafting the ordinance and had built powerful and effective coalitions of support. Paw Project Founder Dr. Jennifer Conrad and Paw Project Director and Pain Management expert Dr. Robin Downing also testified before the 13-member City Council.



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    "A heartfelt documentary....Certainly will make any cat owner, and perhaps some fellow veterinarians, think twice about declawing."
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    "The Paw Project doesn't have gruesome, bloody imagery or try to horrify you or guilt trip you. It explains how declawing actually works, why many people are against it, and leaves you empowered knowing you can do something about it."
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    Declawing is amputation; it is not merely the removal of the claws. To declaw a cat, the veterinarian cuts off the last knuckles of a cat's paw – cutting through bone, tendons, skin and nerves. In a person, it is equivalent to amputating each finger or toe at the last joint.

    Declaw surgery can be an extremely painful procedure with associated health risks and complications such as infection.

    Declaw surgery can produce permanent lameness, pain or arthritis.

    Declawing is the same mutilating procedure for house cats or big cats.

    More about feline declawing and humane alternatives to declaw surgery»


    THE PAW PROJECT's MISSION is to educate the public about the painful and crippling effects of cat declawing, to promote animal welfare through the abolition of the practice of declaw surgery, and to rehabilitate big cats that have been declawed. The short video below shows the dramatic contrast between Kona, a cougar who suffered painful and crippling health problems after declawing, and the natural, pain-free range of movement in a healthy undeclawed cougar.



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