New York becomes first state to ban cat declawing

The bill will take effect immediately

July 23, 2019 - 9:47 am
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(KMOX) - New York just became the first U.S. state to ban the declawing of cats this week, after their governor signed a bill to join Canada and many European countries in outlawing the procedure that animal activists have labeled as cruel and unnecessary.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed the ban Monday, and State Assembly woman Linda Rosenthal said, "This is a real triumph for cats and the people who love them.”

Animal rights activist Becky Robinson also commented on the ban, noting that the declawing surgery "is traumatic, and the resulting disfigurement causes severe pain."

The American Association of Feline Practitioners has previously posted a statment saying it strongly opposes declawing as an elective procedure. They say scratching is a "normal feline behavior," as cats scratch to maintain the motion they need to climb and keep their claws sharp.

However, in May, the New York State Veterinary Medical Society posted an opposing view, saying it supports declawing as an alternative to euthanasia for cat owners with impaired immune systems or diabetes.

Similar bills are being considered in other U.S. states and are already in effect in some U.S. cities.

Supporters of the ban estimate that 25 percent of U.S. cats have the procedure.

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