is it illegal to declaw cats

Maryland last year joined New York, which prohibited declawing in 2019, as the only states that bar the practice. But some U.S. cities, including Washington, D.C.; Pittsburgh and Allentown, Pennsylvania; Austin, Texas; Denver; Madison, Wisconsin; St.

Cat Declawing Legality by State 2024

There are various justifications for wanting to cut off a cat’s claws. The main reason is that they don’t want their kitties to scuff the furnishings. Cats must scratch objects in order to maintain their sharp claws. Regretfully, this also implies that the cat might choose to scuff the furniture, which can be a serious issue for a lot of pet owners. People especially dislike it when their leather furniture gets scratched up by cats. The desire to prevent their cats from scratching people is another reason why owners wish to trim their cats’ claws. In an attempt to find a compromise, some pet owners will cut off only the front claws while leaving the back ones in place.

In Which States Is It Illegal To Declaw a Cat?

The country has only two states where declawing a cat is prohibited. The first state to ban this practice was New York. In 2019, New York enacted a complete prohibition on this process. Maryland was the second state to enact a similar prohibition in 2022.

A bill to make declawing cats illegal is presently being considered by the state legislature in Rhode Island. Oregon allows declawing only under certain conditions. Although declawing cats is legal in the state, there are eight cities in California that have made the procedure unlawful.

You are free to cut your cat’s claws off if you so choose in every other state and the District of Columbia. There is an exception for therapeutic uses in states where it is prohibited. If you would like to request an exception that permits you to declaw your cat for therapeutic purposes, you will need to speak with your veterinarian.

Cities in the U.S. With Declawing Bans

These U. S. Cities that forbade declawing procedures have emerged as leaders in the compassionate care of cats:

  • Allentown, Pennsylvania
  • Austin, Texas
  • Berkeley, California
  • Beverly Hills, California
  • Burbank, California
  • Culver City, California
  • Denver, Colorado
  • Los Angeles, California
  • Madison, Wisconsin
  • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • St. Louis County, Missouri
  • St. Louis, Missouri
  • San Francisco, California
  • Santa Monica, California
  • Tacoma, Washington
  • West Hollywood, California


Which states is it illegal to declaw cats?

There are only two states in the country where it is illegal to declaw a cat. The first state to ban this practice was New York. New York passed a comprehensive ban on this procedure in 2019. The second state was Maryland, which passed a similar ban in 2022.

Will vets still declaw cats?

AVMA discourages declawing as an elective procedure and supports non-surgical alternatives. Declawing is a major surgery involving amputation and is not medically necessary for the cat in most cases.

Is it cruel to declaw a cat?

Sensory and motor nerves are cut, damaged and destroyed. Recovery from the surgery is a slow and painful process. This procedure can hamper the sensations and enjoyment involved in walking, running, springing, climbing and stretching. “Declawing is an inhumane, unnecessary procedure that has many alternatives.

Is it OK to declaw an indoor cat?

It is not recommended and unnecessary to declaw a cat (both indoor and outdoor). The reason for this is; the procedure itself means amputation. This operation involves surgically removing the end bones of the cats toes, in order to remove the entire claw.