My story isn't as bad as most, but if I had realized what declawing truly meant, I never would have caved in.
When my (now) ex-husband and I separated, I moved back into my parent's house with my two cats. Smokey was two and ThornArrow was one at the time. Both loved playing a lot. ThornArrow often did flips up to 3 feet in the air and would play with HotWheels cars in the kitchen, turning them onto their wheels so they would go further.
After being at my parents for a couple of weeks, my Mother said the cats (who stayed in my room) had to be de-clawed or find someplace else to stay. (I didn't have the finances built back up to be able to move out - the third option).
I bowed to her demands - I could never give up my babies! Smokey came back from surgery and did 3 and 1/2 foot leaps into the air, shaking her paws the whole way. She was in so much pain, she was oblivious to the world around her, only calming down if held in my lap with me talking to her constantly. Blood was literally splattered over the four walls in my room.
Both cats have forgiven me for the torture, but neither is as friendly to strangers as they once were (they now run and hide), ThornArrow no longer does her leaps or plays with cars on linoleum, and I have seen Smokey to be limping or just sitting holding one paw up - as though it hurts, a lot.
October 22, 2002