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When is it too late to declaw cats?


  1. stephie d says:

    Most vets, for those who still do it, usually don’t like doing it after 6 months. 3 years really is too old. I’m sure you could find someone that does it, but really, it is so hard on the cat, and the older it is, the harder it is to adjust and more painful it is. If you love your kittens, and you got them declawed, I bet it would break your heart to see how they react after the surgery. Simple solution: Make sure they have a lot of different things that they are allowed to scratch, of different materials, and when they are scratching your furniture, spray them with a water gun or bottle. Try dabbing it with tea tree oil, they don’t like the smell. There really is a more humane way to get them to stop scrathing the couch.

  2. designer_brian says:

    I would say 1 year. With that said, my cat accidentally clawed my eye recently, he’s two.

  3. colecarlina says:


  4. cherished_angel22 says:

    I wouldn’t ever do it. I thought declawing meant removing the claws, but it actually involves amputating the kitty’s third knuckle. Maybe you could try soft paws instead.

  5. kill_yr_television says:

    Yes. It is always too late to mutilate an animal in this way. Why didn’t you think about this before you got cats? Or before you got such valuable and vulnerable furniture?

    You should either find new homes for your cats, get furniture you don’t mind them scratching, or use some means to discourage the scratching. Pet shops have a lot of products to meet such needs, including spray on repellants, alternatives like scratching posts, little plastic covers for claws, and books for more tips.

    Can you confine your cats while you aren’t home? Is there a little patio or somewhere in you apartment to build a big cat pen?

    Removing claws can make for some seriously unhappy cats. Imagine if someone removed your fingers! Some cats become very aggressive when claws are removed, and start to bite even people they love. No wonder, they are scared all the time without their claws!

    Please don’t do this to your cats.

  6. Natalie D says:

    The method of declawng cats has been known to cause serious problems to the animals.

  7. sha4marx says:

    it is never to late to declaw cats. i wouldn’t have any of mine if they were not declawed, they tear up everything.

  8. Dawn A says:

    It is very cruel at any age to do this,Most people don’t understand what declawing actually is,It’s not the nails that are being removed it’s the digit and to put in terms you can understand it would be the same as if you had the tip of you finger removed.All you have to do is take 5 minutes out your day and trim the nails or buy the nail caps to put over the nail.Those are much nicer solutions to do.

  9. grandma g says:

    I have 8 cats. The way to keep them from clawing the furniture is use double sided tape. Then you need scratching posts made with sisal rope for them to use to claw. Spread catnip all over it so they know it is for them. I also have three turbo scratcher toys they love to use. My furniture is safe and I no longer need the tape.

    Declawing is cruel and their *censored* hurt all of their lives. I have two adopted cats who are declawed and it is obvious they hurt. Also declawed cats are more prone to bite.

  10. KATLIBERTY says:

    I understand your problem and I empathize with you, I truly do. Unfortunately de-clawing cats isn’t the most humane way to take care of this problem and believe me, people are going to tell you this. It seems like a great fix but it isn’t a good process for you cat to have to go through. Try some alternate solutions. There is now a product called Soft Claws for cats. You can find more information at the link listed in sources. Also you can try giving your cat a proper and inviting place to scratch. There are a variety of scratching posts available on the market. I have found that my cats like the natural sisal posts with cat nip rubbed on them for the smell. You can try squirting them with water but this must me done every time that they try to scratch your furniture. If they are only scratching at one or two areas you can find a product at Petsmart that is supposed to discourage scratching. It is basically giant sheets of double-sided tape that cats will not like to place their paws on. Now this will either work and your cats won’t scratch anymore or they will find other places to scratch. One important thing to remember is that you need to always provide them with somewhere that they are allowed to scratch. Scratching is an instinctual behavior for cats and although it doesn’t have to be nourished necessarily we should provide them a proper place to scratch.

    Veterinarians that still perform this procedure will usually suggest that de-clawing only be done on kittens. Your cats, at three years old, are no longer considered kittens. They are full grown and therefore a de-clawing procedure is going to take longer to heal and may be accompanied by complications from the paws taking a long time to heal. De-clawing a cat is the equivalent of cutting off our toes. They will bleed longer than kittens because of the weight difference. Just as it takes babies less time to heal it takes kittens less time. Please try alternatives to de-clawing.

  11. momwithbusyspirit1 says:

    Sometimes the benefits out way the risks. If you need to declaw your cat to make it a better pet then do it. It is never to late. I had a cat that got declawed when he was 6yrs. Would you rather yell and your cat everyday for clawing stuff, or spend that time loving him. It might be hard to find a vet. Call around. Declawing a cat is kind of like getting a breast reduction; if it improves your life do it.

  12. CF_ says:

    be aware that declawing causes serious mental and physical side effects,

    refusal to use litter box
    nervous paranoia
    sore back (from being forced to walk unnaturally on heals since toes are removed)

    BUY a product called SOFT PAWS, you glue then on kitties front nails to protect furniture

    Provide scratching posts and rub with cat nip to encourage use – try laying the sratching post down or moving it occassionally to stimulate interest

    More toys, especially honeysuckle toys, and rotate them every 4 days so cats think they are getting "new" toys

    BUy spray products that deter cats from areas

    Declawing should only be a last resort to euthanasia, it is cruel and illegal in some European countries
    you should value your cats more than your furniture

  13. chinnookwinds says:

    I don’t think it is ever too late to declaw your cats. I had mine declawed when he was 5 because he developed this nasty habit of ripping up the carpet and not using his scratching post anymore. My cat is now 9 and he is fine.

    The vet told me, as long as they are a good weight and not obese he would declaw them at any age. Because overweight cats put too much pressure on their *censored* after surgery and that increased the risk of infection and improper healing.

  14. imNangel270 says:

    We had lived in a trailor for about 3 years. My cat was very hyperactive and constantly ripping up my furniture and the trim on the doorways. We moved into an A-frame about 6 months ago and there was no way I was going to let the cat destroy this house and my new furniture. so, we got him declawed, he was about 3 or 4. He is fine, he is not so hyper as before but that’s a good thing. He has even caught a few mice in this house without his claws.

  15. sun_shine_22222 says:

    It is very wrong to declaw a cat, that is how they protect themselves. What if he/she should get out and somthing tries to eat them…..kiss kitty bye bye!

  16. eriqak says:

    Declawing a cat is cruel and should not be done at any age. They actually amputate their claws at the "knuckle" or joint. How would you like to have the first knuckle on your fingers removed? Wouldn’t be too pleasant would it? That’s exactly the same thing that you would be doing to your cat. Anyone who does this does not care about their pet. They were born with them for a reason. Keep them that way.

  17. Cat says:

    You should try instead of declawing. Declawing is extremely painful and has been proven to cause problems for cats.

  18. leecee439 says:

    Please don’t declaw your cats! "Declawing" is really removing the end part of their toes!!!

  19. moterkat says:

    I agree don’t do it….I would never, never, never do that to my kitty. If they got out how would they defend themselves???
    would you want to walk with your toes cut off. Then you have to worry about infection , pain.

  20. scottsdale sweetie says:

    my cat’s vet said at 4 months of age they’re ready to be declawed. you could get it done now but i would talk to your vet first to see if there would be any complications due to the older age.

  21. Silvereyes says:

    I think the maximum is 2 years old. I was against this but my kitty has a really bad attitude, and she was scratching everything. Anyway, I ended up doing it to her when she was about 2 1/2 years old. Once at the vet, she ended up biting me so bad that she put me in the hospital. My hand was infected really bad. Anywho, she is almost 9 now, and she acts like she doesn’t know she is missing her claws.

  22. _sew_ says:

    I would rather invest in a stay-away spray to put on my furniture, or try asking the vet about Softpaws, which are little plastic nubs you can slip over the cats’ claws so they don’t have such great access to your furniture.

    It sounds very mean to declaw a cat when you think about it. After all, it would be like someone taking you to the hospital to have your fingernails ripped out. Imagine how much pain that would be, even under sedation.

    I know it’s annoying when a cat destroys your furniture. But I don’t think declawing is the way to go.

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