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Pistachio's story

Pistachio does not belong to me, but rather, a young woman who adopted him from the vet I work for. I am very, very much against the procedure and always try to let people know that declawing is unnecessary, at best. I am not allowed to say much else. I have heard many stories about declawed cats having an aversion to correctly using litterboxes. The reason is this: declawed cats feel uncomfortable and often painful when digging through litter. Their little maimed toes just don't feel right. So they go outside of the box, in and on places that don't require painful digging.

While I pretty much believed that this was true, I never witnessed the phenomena firsthand. Until Pistachio. When Pistachio was adopted from us, my colleague was discussing the appropriate time to neuter. Ms. Jones said, "I am going to declaw." So my colleague went on, because most people do and most people who adopt from us do too. This is one of the main reasons I hate doing adoptions. So a few months later, I saw that Ms. Jones had made an appointment for a 4 PAW DECLAW, which is so much more disgusting than just a front paw. It seems to show such a complete lack of compassion and consideration for the cat, as the owner wants not ever to feel even one claw on their cat....all must go, no matter what the cat goes through.

When I called to confirm the appointment, I left a sort of different message...I said, "And if you would like to make a change of the 4 PAW DECLAW, please give us a call at..."

When she came in, I played dumb, and asked if it was just a front paw. (You take what you can get.) She said no, a 4 paw. I couldn't help it...I cringed. At that point, she did what no one else has ever done. She "told me off" about the fact that it was a "personal decision" and that if I had a problem with it, I should keep it to myself.

Pistachio needed extra painkiller after surgery. He went home.

Very shortly after that, (maybe a couple of weeks to a month) Ms. Jones brought Pistachio in for urinalysis. You see, Pistachio has been urinating just about everywhere except the litter box. He's done it on the couch, on rugs, everywhere. Of course, there is nothing physically wrong with him. His urinalysis is fine. The doctor advises Ms. Jones of things to do to change the behavior. A week later, nothing has worked. So the doctor prescribes Amiltryptyline, which is a drug that is used to treat anxiety. She labels the problem "anxiety" and there is no mention of possible causes. But to me, the cause is clear. Ms. Jones is at her wits-end and totally dismayed by the problem because the drug has not really helped. What's next, euthanasia? For I have seen more than one person who has made the decision to euthanize their innappropriately-urinating cat because they refuse to live with a cat who urinates everywhere. This poor cat has been through so much at the hands of an owner who made "a personal decision" that actually did not concern her own person in the least. .


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