ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — New York would be the first state to ban the declawing of cats under legislation heading to Governor Andrew Cuomo’s desk.
The legislation passed in both the senate and assembly Tuesday afternoon,.
It used to be the “norm” says Chris Weihe, owner and operator of A Purr-fect Fit Animal Rescue and Adoption Center.
It’s a no-kill shelter for cats.
She said as animal advocacy and rights were pushed to the forefront in America, people and legislation started to catch up.
Education by vets caused people to stop wanting to declaw their animals as if it were a normal procedure.
Weihe said she fears if this bill is signed into law by Governor Cuomo — it might push more people to surrender their cats because they are not willing to put in the time to train kittens not to claw at people or furniture.
“Having leather furniture is not a reason to declaw a cat,” said Dr. Reed Stevens at West Side Pet Clinic on Niagara Street.
The clinic does not perform cat declawing, and a Purr-fect fit does not support the procedure.
“We do have some people that come in and ask for declawed cats,” said Weihe. “They would never do it themselves, but they are willing to take animals that may have been surrendered that are declawed.”
People who support this bill call declawing a gruesome process - it involves removing the nail, nail bed, and the bone that’s attached to the nail bed.
And, Dr. Stevens says there’s not medical reason to do this to cats.
Many owners do this to prevent scratching of skin or furniture.
Weihe says she offers free nail trimming to anyone who adopts her cats — the can come back every 6 to 8 weeks and get them trimmed for free if they’re unable to do it themselves.
Declawing a cat is already illegal in much of Europe as well as in Los Angeles, San Francisco and Denver.
The state's largest veterinary association has opposed the bill. It says the procedure should be allowed as a last resort for felines that won't stop scratching furniture or humans.
If you’re interested in adopting a kitten — A Purrfect Fit is having a “kitten shower” Saturday at Noon. All kittens who are in foster care will be available for viewing. You can fill out an application on site.
Kittens are $125… 10 months and younger - they come with all their paperwork and shots up to date.
Cats 11 months and older are $85.
If you can’t make it - head to amazon and donate an item from the shelter’s wish list.