You should never, EVER declaw a cat. I suppose there could be a rare medical reason – if a toe is crushed, has some kind of growth or cancer, that type of thing, but it is wrong to declaw a cat because they scratch your furniture, you or your kids. If you’re that worried about your furniture, might I suggest that a cat is not the pet for you. Get a fish.
When a cat is declawed, they don’t simply remove the nail as a doctor would a human’s ingrown toenail. The entire last joint of the cat’s toe is removed. It is the same as removing the tips of a human’s fingers at the joint below the nail. It’s painful, dangerous and has the potential to cause physical and behavior problems for the cat. For example, common sense says if a cat has no claws to defend itself with it may turn to biting instead. I’m not posting a picture but you can Google it and see how horrific the process really is. Those who say it’s not a big deal are full of crap.
Get or make a scratching post for kitty. They are commercially available and there are plenty of instruction online for making your own. If nothing else, a piece of firewood will do. While I’ve never used them or done serious research about them, you can also buy vinyl nail covers for kitty’s claws. Do some research. Find alternatives to declawing. Or accept the fact a cat may not be the right pet for you. Just don’t even consider declawing.
Would it ever cross your mind to cut off the tips of Juniors fingers because he picks his nose and eats it? Or because he scratches bug bites? If Junior bites other children, would you pull all his teeth so he can’t? Of course not! Pets are part of your family. Don’t abuse them, and in my opinion declawing a cat is animal abuse. What if kitty sneaks outside? How can he/she defend themselves? How can they climb a tree to get away from a dog or other animal?
Sorry if what I have to say offends anyone. On second thought, no I’m not sorry, not at all. I’m using extreme examples here to make a point – and if any readers are unable to comprehend that is what I’m doing, well, I feel bad for them. Yes, comparing declawing a cat to pulling a kids teeth or cutting off the end of their fingers may not be realistic but it makes the point.