New Jersey to become the first state to ban the declawing of cats
New Jersey is on its way to becoming the first state in the country to ban veterinarians from declawing cats!
A bill that cleared an Assembly committee on Monday would add onychetomy — the medical term for declawing — to the list of criminal animal cruelty offenses. There would be exceptions for medical purposes.
Veterinarians caught declawing a cat and people who seek them out would face a fine of up to $1,000 or six months in jail. Violators would also face a civil penalty of $500 to $2,000, according to the bill (A3899).
The procedure is typically done to prevent cats from shredding furniture or other household property, or because a cat has not learned how to play properly.
The procedure is painful and has a lot of negative effects.
Nicole Feddersen, medical director for the Monmouth County SPCA, called it an "invasive surgery," that puts cats "at risk for pain and lameness. A cat still has urge to scratch but cannot."
"Declawing is a barbaric practice that more often than not is done for the sake of convenience rather than necessity," New Jersey Assemblyman Troy Singleton said in a statement. "Many countries worldwide acknowledge the inhumane nature of declawing, which causes extreme pain to cats. It's time for New Jersey to join them."
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