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The Paw Project is proudly sponsoring AB 1230 to ban declawing in CA

Photo credit:
The Paw Project

Assemblymember Bill Quirk (D-Hayward) has introduced a bill that will end the unnecessary and inhumane surgery commonly known as declawing, for non-therapeutic purposes.

Declawing, also known as onychectomy or partial digital amputation, is the removal of the last toe bones in a cat's paws from which the claw grows.

The surgery is well-recognized to have no benefit to the animal and is mostly performed to stop cats from using their claws to scratch furniture.

“Declawed cats can suffer long-term physical complications as a result of declawing – it’s not just a fancy manicure. It’s painful, unnecessary, and needs to stop,” said Assemblymember Quirk.

Declawing is illegal, or considered unethical, in much of the rest of the world.

Eight California cities, including Los Angeles and San Francisco, enacted the first laws banning the surgery in North America.  Since the declaw bans went into effect, the number of cats abandoned to city shelters has decreased for multiple cities each year. 

“I attribute the decrease in relinquishment of cats to our shelters to the decrease in behavioral problems that are the result of declawing. We strongly believe that a ban on declawing saves the lives of cats,” explained the Los Angeles Animal Services Department General Manager, Brenda Barnette.

Dr. Jennifer Conrad, veterinarian and founder of the veterinarian-run nonprofit, Paw Project, said, “Declawing is one of the most painful and unnecessary surgeries in all of veterinary medicine. We've seen what these cats go through.  We are veterinarians who are standing up against the status quo because it is the right thing to do. We want veterinary medicine to be about helping animals, not helping couches.”

Common reasons expressed for performing declaw surgery are readily refuted by an increasing volume of evidence from scientific experts, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institutes of Health.

These health authorities have long held that declawing cats "is not advised" to protect people, even those with the most weakened immune systems.

Recent studies have found that declawed cats are more likely to bite, with the unintended consequence that immunocompromised people are actually being put at greater risk.

“I am proud to be partnering with Paw Project on this legislation. When this bill becomes law, only licensed veterinarians performing the procedure for specific therapeutic purposes will legally be able to declaw a cat, saving them from a lifetime of pain and possible lameness,” said Assemblymember Quirk upon introducing AB 1230. 

The Paw Project is holding a virtual protest march

The Paw Project will be in Sacramento on April 23, 2019, to testify in favor of Assembly Bill 1230. This is a critical first step in getting it passed and we need your help.

To show our elected leaders the groundswell of support for the bill, we are holding a virtual protest march.  To do that, we need you to actively engage on our social media and to reach out to your representatives by no later than April 16.

You can use the image in this email, share our posts, or create your own -- and include the hashtags #StopDeclawing #YesonAB1230 #PawProject. Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Take a picture or video of your cat and include the hashtags#YesOnAB1230 #StopDeclawing. Then post it on social media.
  • Download the "My Talking Pet" app from the App Store (there is a free version), create and post video of your cat "speaking out" in support of AB 1230. Post it on social media.
  • Share the Change.org petition link
  • Send a letter to your California Assembly representative to encourage them to vote "YES" on AB 1230.
  • Submit your letter online via the California Portal - there are detailed instructions at www.pawproject.org

More information can be found HERE

Cats around the world thank you!