Cat Laser Declawing

Cat laser declawing is one of the newer elective procedures a cat owner can choose to keep a cat claw-free for life.

Why Cats Scratch

It's normal for cats to scratch objects. It helps them mark their territory; a scratch on an object can tell other cats to keep away. Scratching can also help keep a cat's claws in good shape by filing-off the ragged parts of a claw. The most well-known reason a cat scratches is for defensive purposes when fighting or needing to escape.

If a cat owner chooses to declaw a cat, experts recommend doing this when the cat is young. Younger cats recover more quickly and adapt to not having claws faster than an older cat would. Cats will experience more pain, which will reoccur throughout his lifetime, when declawed at an older age.

Cat Laser Declawing

Lasers have been used for a number of years in surgical procedures. However, using a laser is the latest controversy in cat declawing conversations. Instead of using surgical instruments, a laser is used to remove the third bone in a cat's toes. This procedure requires a cat to go under anesthesia.

Advantages of Cat Laser Declawing

Laser cat declawing causes almost no bleeding during the surgery and afterwards; lasers seal the blood vessels and nerve endings. A cat that was declawed with a laser will experience less post-operative pain and won’t have to necessarily wear a bandage on his feet. This makes for a faster recovery.  

Disadvantages of Cat Laser Declawing

Cat laser declawing is expensive. The equipment to do this type of procedure can cost up to $40,000. To help make up that expense, a declawing procedure can cost around $150. Traditional cat declawing usually costs around $50.

The person operating the machine may not have sufficient experience. Companies that sell the specialized machines offer training seminars to new customers and its laser operators, but this may not be enough. A less experienced person operating a laser to declaw a cat could burn the cat and make a mistake that would slow down the healing process. Some veterinary schools are teaching students how to use a laser to declaw a cat, but not all do. Some studies that have been published on the subject of laser declawing suggest there may not be any substantial benefits to laser declawing versus traditional methods.

One should check with their local laws to make sure declawing a cat is legal. This law has been put into effect in some areas; declawing may be considered inhumane, as a cat wouldn’t able to escape or defend himself when necessary.

Declawing may be a good option for pet owners and their cats if scratching and territorial behaviors are preventing a less than harmonious relationship. One should talk to a vet about cat training and declawing options before having this procedure done. Have peace of mind before a declawing a cat with a laser by asking the person performing the procedure how much experience they have, how many laser declawing procedures they've performed and their rate of success.